To all pregnant women throughout the land-let it be known. Compression tights are the best invention ever. I don't know why I waited so long to purchase them this pregnancy. More people should rave about them so that you all know how wonderful they are. Except they look terrible and are hot. But it is sooooo worth it.
So a little pregnancy update. This has been my hardest pregnancy by far. I was soooo sick for soooo long and even still seem to have the weakest stomach that gets majorly upset by the slightest smells. On top of that...I noticed one day that I have varicose veins. Bulging, ugly, horrible varicose veins. No wonder my legs have been aching so bad whenever I have to stand for any length of time--like doing the dishes. Apparently, the more pregnancies you have the more likely it is to get varicose veins. I cried to Sterling because varicose veins are ugly. And lets have a real girl talk moment here--I am sooo lucky when it comes to pregnancy and bouncing back to my normal body afterwards. I am SOOOOOOOOOO lucky. But man, these varicose veins are nasty. And they HURT. And I take back any hesitation I ever had when one of my sisters asked me if it was vain to get surgery on all the veins even if only the big ones hurt. Sterling's already promised me I can have surgery as soon as we're done having kids and done medical school. HAHA.
BUUUUUT lest you think all I did was come here to whine---I really want to share with you the beauty of compression tights. I've been trying and trying to get my insurance to cover them, but finally just got a pair on amazon. WHY DID I WAIT? Oh blessed feeling of wonderfulness that is NOT pain and achiness in my legs! So let it be known to all the world---don't wait. If your legs get achy in pregnancy, just do it. Get yourself a pair. Because the bliss is worth it.
And that is the end of the rant on compression tights.
In other news, we've been reading some great books over here so I thought I'd share. I started looking up specifically the Caldecott winners last time I checked out library books (I do it from my computer now and just pick them up from the hold section, otherwise I feel like I am just picking through nonsense books that I don't like reading to my kids.) and we scored on a couple.
On Market Street, by Arnold Lobel. It's really just your basic ABC book, and it's not even that fabulous of a story line, at least in my humble opinion, but my kids LOVED and ADORED the pictures. And so did I. And since Ruth knows her letters now, she would read the whole book to us and feel very proud and Will would point out all the things he saw. I would recommend checking it out from the library a time or two, especially for your 4-6 yr olds. Just to look at the awesome pictures.
In The Night Kitchen, by Maurice Sendak. It is also a Caldecott book, but I'd say meh. So if you come across it on your lists, feel free to check it out, but I'd give that one a thumbs down. Although the premise is whimsical.
Tops and Bottoms, by Janet Stevens. THE BEST BOOK EVER THAT I NOW WANT TO ADD TO OUR LIBRARY IMMEDIATELY!!!!!!! Also a Caldecott book. The first time we read it out loud, Sterling was reading, and he did a Southern Kentucky drawl (he can whip that out sometimes since he grew up there) every time the rabbit talked, and all of us were just rolling. But even when I read it, without the benefit of a cool accent, it is just such a great story. And because it is a Caldecott book, the pictures are just perfection. I love it so so much. Five stars.
The last Caldecott book I tried was Saint George and the Dragon, Retold by Margaret Hodges. This is definitely a long read, and while my 4 and 5 year old stayed enamored through the entire thing, my 2 yr old definitely did not. It's your basic knight fighting a dragon book with incredible tapestry pictures throughout. I understand why it won the medal, the pictures are gorgeous. The story is a decent one--worth checking out from the library I think, but not one I'd buy for my own personal library.
We also checked out Snow Lion, by David McPhail, because it is an old favorite of mine from growing up. Still a great story. Ruth is at a great age, because she understood why the snow wouldn't stay put (Will is probably old enough to understand, if he had any experience with snow at all.) and she thought it was very funny. I plan on purchasing this one someday, but that could just be because I grew up reading it. It's a Parents Magazine Press Early Reader (or read aloud reader, the same books come up under both searches), which apparently is a thing because you can buy them in lots on ebay (and my parents had lots and lots of those books) but I think they are great early reader books. I loved them when I was little-and they are silly and funny instead of always trying to teach something like I feel most books are geared around these days. (am I the only one who just wants to let them read whimsical and witty sometimes? haha) That same Parents Magazine Read Aloud Reader has the Clown-Arounds series, which my kids fell in LOVE with at Grandma's house this summer, even though I wouldn't pick it as my favorite. They thought it was hilarious. So definitely fits the age group.
I also just got a 30 day free trial for audible and checked out The Penderwicks, which I had just gotten from the library in book form, but then thought it might be nice to get the kids used to listening to books on the LONG drives to and from Ruthie's school. So far, (an hour into a six hour book) it has been a SMASHING success. I haven't read it before, although I did read the first five or so chapters before turning it on, but they all enjoy it. Will was very confused for a little while at why a 'bowl' was scary, and we had to explain that a 'bull' was very different, haha, and it has said Stupid a couple of times and Idiot once--much to Ruth's dismay--but the story has been delightful and so far I would definitely recommend it. I think listening to audio books has to be a trained thing a little bit, and what better way than in the car when they have nothing better to do anyway! I'm hoping this way I can get more of the books read to Ruthie that I think she would be loving right now, without having to take quite so much time out of my evening to read to her. I'm not big on pushing her to read, but she's so ready I keep thinking I need to just pull out the books I bought when I thought I'd be homeschooling this year, and let her have at 'em. But...there's always so much going on. And the sunshine here. It takes up all our time because all I want to do is bask in it, so we head to the park or the pool. Which, I guess I could take them with me and have her sit by me on the park bench for a bit. Anyway, the moral of this story is I think audio books are a great thing to use for your kids for SOOO many reasons, and the Penderwicks have been a great choice so far. We have done Mercy Watson before that, and my kids love it, but its pretty quick and we end up re-listening until we are all really, really done with them, haha. Penderwicks is stepping up the game to a much longer book. It's about four sisters on a summer vacation to a nice little cottage. There are a few Penderwick books, we started with the first (I think? I hope?) and they came highly recommended.