T is for Ten Twenty-two (and Twenty-two Ten) (in Twenty Ten)

It’s pavlovian: all day I have been craving pizza and old black-and-white movies.

I’ll go get the pizza toppings ready, and you can fire up the movie projector, ok? Start with some Buster Keaton, please.

Oh happy happy happy me!

The Spooky Wheels on the Bus

Please oh please add The Spooky Wheels on the Bus to your pile of Halloween books to read! I’ve been reading it for the past month to my classes, and it just keeps getting better and better.

With apologies to author J. Elizabeth Mills, the story isn’t nearly as spooky as the title suggests. But this is good! You want non-spooky! It’s a highly entertaining book, and you’ll have everyone paying attention the moment you open your mouth and start singing.

Yes, please sing.

The youngest ones will start singing along and naming the various passengers on the bus. Your counting toddlers will love counting the passengers (find that 8th witch for me, please…), and your older kids will spot piles of quirky little details you will miss if you tend to read books upside down. Illustrator Ben Mantle keeps things busy but never cluttered on a page.

Here: take a peek, see what I mean? Now run to get your own copy! Hurry!

Knock on the door, and then you say….

This week’s favorite misheard lyrics:

Knock knock



We’re working on it. He’s three, and the Halloween party is still a few days away……


Did you notice? We only have 2 more times to get a triplet number date! At least for a while.

You know…10/10/10.

Did you plan anything special for today?

Family Flashlight Walks

If your slightly moody older kids refuse to go on brisk and invigorating early morning autumn walks with you because such walks are: a) brisk and invigorating, b) early, and c) with you, change your plans.

Get everyone to go right after dinner instead, and make sure everyone has a flashlight.

Don’t sprint energetically around your neighborhood, just aim for a casual 15-minute stroll.

Focus those flashlights on the neighborhood around you, and the kids won’t really be seen with you.

And as long as no one thinks you’re hyperventilating, take lots of deep breaths and start to relax.


Idea inspired by Go Outside by Nancy Blakey. Have you bought all of her books yet?

Kids Draw and Cook

I’m really awfully tempted to start up a multi-language version of Kids Draw and Cook. It beats the happy toques off many of those “made for kids” cookbooks out there, doesn’t it?

Gentle warning that you’ll find many non-vegetarian recipes here. I nevertheless adore the site, because it’s a terrifically simple but brilliant idea that combines kids and food and fun (and, shhh! just a bit of science and math and reading and oh something else educational, too!).

Find your favorite recipe, draw a picture with all the How To’s, and submit it today! (What’s that? Shy about your artwork? Show it to your favorite adult. You’ll immediately feel better. Go!)

Saaaay, this would be a fun family reunion project, yes? Off I go to call the cousins.

Green Halloween: Costume Swap Day

Remember that fabulous Halloween costume you wore last year? Go find it.

Then tell your friends to do the same, and everyone should plan to meet on October 9th.

October 9th is national Costume Swap Day, which is when you have every right to take someone else’s fabulous Halloween costume and make it your own this year.

Oh yeah, you save money, too!

Already busy on the 9th? Okay, you can swap on a different day, but hurry! Halloween is soon!

Click to watch the vid:

Word Nerds: Do you know the origin of the word swap? No? Go find it!

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