Perfect Picture Book Friday – Mowing and The May Pitch Winner and The May PPBF Winner

We interrupt our regularly scheduled program for an important service announcement from our sponsor:

For anyone who might not have read Monday’s post, this is our second to last week of Perfect Picture Books before summer.  PPBF will go on hiatus from (and including) June 22 – August 31.  After June 15, the next PPBF date will be Friday September 7.  I apologize to anyone whose style this cramps, but I just can’t be sure of being able to keep up over the summer.  The updating is very time consuming and there have been glitches lately which means work has to be redone, and I am going to be crazy busy for the next 12 weeks.  Plus, a lot of you are going to be busy and traveling and etc. too.  So we can all take a break for the summer – read and gather up lots of great picture books for the fall.  In the meantime, there will be fun and games going on around here on Fridays to keep you from missing PPBF too much – Summer Short & Sweets! – quick writing fun served with fresh lemonade and cookies 🙂

We now return you to the program already in progress 🙂

Apparently all I can think about this week is baby deer 🙂

So in about 14 seconds you’ll understand why I chose this week’s Perfect Picture Book 🙂

Written By:  Jessie Haas
Illustrated By:  Jos. A. Smith
Greenwillow Books, 1994, Fiction
Suitable For: ages 4-8

Themes/Topics: farms, grandparents, generations, modernization, respect for wildlife, vehicles

Opening:  “Early in the morning Gramp and Nora go to the field to mow.  They hear the cry of the bobolink, the swish of the tall grass, the thud of the horses’ hooves.
At the edge of the field Gramp lowers the cutter bar.
“Hop off, Nora,” he says.  “You’ll be safer on the ground.”  Gramp speaks softly to the horses.  “Giddap!”  They walk, and the mowing machine begins to clatter.”

Brief Synopsis:  Just as morning is peeking over the horizon, Gramp and Nora head out to mow the hay.  Gramp drives an old-fashioned sickle bar mower with Nora in his lap holding the reins.  When they reach the field, it’s Nora’s job to hop down and keep an eye out for any little animal that might be injured by the horses or the cutter blades.  What does she see?  (I’m betting you can guess one thing she sees! :))  When the mowing is done, two tall islands of grass still stand.  Gramp says some would call that a bad job of mowing, but he and Nora know better.  They know they have taken care to leave the animals safe and protected.

Links To Resources: Fawn Coloring Page 1, Fawn Coloring Page 2, Fawn Facts, National Geographic Groundhog Facts, National Geographic Killdeer Facts.  Talk about the difference in the way hay is mowed today.  Talk about other situations where you might want to be respectful of wildlife.

Why I Like This Book:  This is the kind of sweet, quiet book that I absolutely love.  My kids loved it too, and we read it over and over and over.  The language is gentle, the story is simple with that nostalgic feel of hearkening back to a different time, and the message of caring for all the creatures who share our world is lovely.  On top of that, the art is just beautiful, particularly the way the artist captured the changing light, from dawn through late afternoon, and the different perspectives he uses.  It’s a wonderful book for nap time, bedtime, or anytime kids need to unwind.

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

Before we all head off for the weekend, I have a couple other things to say (because I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t, right? :))

First, I know none of you were able to sleep last night, wondering who the winner of the coveted May Pitch Contest would be.

And I’m going to tell you just as soon as I finish singing 99 Bottles of Pop On The Wall (because this is a kid-friendly blog where we would never think of drinking anything stronger than soda pop :))

“OOOHHHH…….!!!!!  99 bottles of pop on the wall, 99 bottles of pop.  You take one down and pass it around, 98 bottles of pop on the wall.  98 bottles of pop on the wall, 98 bottles of pop….”

Everyone!  Join in!  Can you hear me on all seven continents???

OK, OK, enough of that.  Would you guys quit fooling around?  We have important business here.  I’m trying to tell you, if you would stop caterwauling, that the winner of the May Pitch Pick is………

ELIZABETH!!! with her pitch for MAGNIFICENT!!!

WOO-HOO!  Well done!  I must tell you, it was an exceptionally tight race!  So congratulations to Elizabeth, and to everyone who bravely entered and hopefully learned a lot so they can now feel more confident about their pitches.

And NOW, just when you thought the prize giving was over for the day, it’s NOT!

As you know, I like to thank all the wonderful participants in PPBF for their hard work each month by randomly selecting a blogger to receive a prize!  The winner for May is Laura R at I’ve Got A Book For That!!!  Please email me, Laura, and let me know which you would like for your prize: *rummaging in my bag of goodies…* let’s see… your choice of Red Knit Cap Girl, Chicks Run Wild, a signed copy of Can’t Sleep Without Sheep, or a $15 Amazon Gift Card.

PPBF bloggers, please add your post specific link to the list below, and everyone have a great weekend!

65 thoughts on “Perfect Picture Book Friday – Mowing and The May Pitch Winner and The May PPBF Winner

  1. Elizabeth Stevens Omlor says:

    No way!?! I won?! Are ya sure? 🙂 There were some awesome pitches that I thought for sure had it in the bag! I had a major voting delimma to say the least. I seriously cannot believe it! I have this awful case of insomnia and now I am so excited, I'll NEVER go back to sleep! Thank you so much everyone for this amazing opportunity. I learned SO much from this experience!

  2. Erik The Great says:

    Congrats Ms. Omlor! 🙂 Congrats Ms. Laura! 🙂
    This book sounds cute. I am guessing they see a groundhog 😉 I really like the message – everyone should listen to it.
    OOOOOHHHH – “…You take one down and pass it around. 97 bottles of pop on the wall. 97 ….”

  3. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    Almost too much to comprehend in one day, huh? Your daughter reading her first word and you winning the pitch pick 🙂 Your pitch is off to Erin – I'm sure you'll hear from her soon 🙂 Now go back to sleep!

  4. Tina Cho says:

    Congratulations, Elizabeth!!

    And Susanna, I did her ya singing all the way over here. And I'm surprised you said pop instead of soda. I grew with pop in Iowa. I thought on the East coast they said soda. ? Anyway, glad to hear someone else use that word 🙂

  5. Iza says:

    I wonder if they see coyotes. When my husband mows our farm fields, he often sees a coyote or two waiting at the edge to catch mice that scurry away from the tractor and mower (no horses- though we make hay for horses). I should have this book in my collection!
    And yes, I heard you singing over here too!

  6. Angela Brown says:

    Congrats to Elizabeth for winning the May pitch contest! Woot!

    And I really enjoyed your choice for PPBF. It sounds like one of those books where I could sit down, curl up on the couch with my Chipmunk and have an enjoyable time reading with her.

  7. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    Being as this is a children's book there are no hungry coyotes lurking at the edges 🙂 but I can see how that might happen in real life. I think you would like this book, Iza – it's really beautiful. And my singing voice is not as good as yours – you better sing louder and drown me out 🙂 Oh, and thanks for the PPBF tweet!

  8. Laura Renauld says:

    I love farm stories. Mowing sounds like a beautiful book. And thank you for the recognition! I've loved doing PPBF. It's great to share and read other great book suggestions every week.

  9. Kirsten Larson says:

    Congrats Elizabeth and lucky Laura! Thanks for this book recommendation, Susanna. It seems inspired by Jemma's backyard antics?

  10. TracyBermeo says:

    You know, there is really something wonderful about the smell of a farm in the summer. I love the way the animals were protected. Susanna, your timing is perfect for the summer break; gives me some time to find new books and work through some serious querying I need to do 🙂
    Congrats to Elizabeth!
    Don't forget Save the Bookstores Day on June 16th!

  11. TracyBermeo says:

    Before we end with PPBF next week, I want to take a minute to say THANK YOU. Once I started posting books on your site (I honestly don't even remember how I found you) I actually started having followers on my blog, tried my hand at writing in different genres with your contests, made many online friends, and found the courage to pitch to others and ask questions to a larger group. So, THANK YOU- PPBF changed my blogging life and for that I owe you one! 🙂
    I'm looking forward to whatever is next on your list for us this summer. Have a wonderful weekend!

  12. Beth Stilborn says:

    It is perhaps no surprise that Julie and I, who both hosted Emma Walton Hamilton on our blogs recently, have chosen the same picture book for today, Simeon's Gift by Julie Andrews Edwards and Emma Walton Hamilton. Oops. However, it is such a lovely book that perhaps it can withstand having two recommendations. (And I checked so carefully with the listing to make sure it hadn't been done before! Sigh.)

    After reading your wonderful recommendation of Mowing, I realize fully why you mentioned it to me last week in connection with my PPBF pick of One Duck. I definitely must read Mowing!

    Now to find a unique and wonderful PPB for a slam-bam finish to the PPBF season next week! Then on to the lemonade and cookies! I mean, on to Summer Short and Sweets, with a side of lemonade and cookies.

  13. Clarike Bowman-Jahn says:

    OH! You have a great weekend, too, Susanna!

    I just love the sound of your PPBF selection. Sounds so quiet and serene, like a sleeping toddler. I need to read it. Since we're not going to be blogging about PPBF now, it'll be the perfect time to catch up on reading all these books. I”ll refer to the list for that this summer.

    Congrats Elizabeth! And congrats Laura R!

  14. Kerry Aradhya says:

    Wow, Susanna. You always have so much going on at your blog! Thanks for hosting PPBF. I haven't posted in awhile but am glad I got one in before the summer hiatus. Hope you have a great weekend, too!

  15. Vivian Kirkfield says:

    Congratulations, Elizabeth…the pitch for Magnificent was…magnificent!!!
    Susanna, what a charming book…reminds me of the older “Dick and Jane” books from my childhood school days (back in the Stone Age). 🙂 It's really important for young children to develop an appreciation for the wild creatures in nature. Thanks for the activities and resources.
    Looking forward to Summer Short and Sweets…although I will probably continue a Friday picture book review…but I often wonder how you do it…and your response to comments is phenomenal…we are all lucky to have connected with you, that's for sure!!

  16. Penny Klostermann says:

    Congrats to Elizabeth for winning the pitch contest! And…congrats to Laura for being the lucky one!

    Susanna, I'm looking forward to reading Mowing. It sounds precious. I tried to post my link several times, but I'm not having any luck. I'm having to do this from my iPad, so maybe that's the reason. If anyone wants to check it out, my blog is pennyklostermann (dot) com.

    I'm looking forward to checking out all of your books. I have had a couple of really busy weeks, so for the next few days, I will be looking at PPBF for today & the past two Fridays. I know I will find a plethora of delights!

  17. Joanna Marple says:

    Congrats to Elizabeth and Laura!

    Did Gemma pick today's PPPF? It pairs so well with my Grandpa's Tractor from last week – just lovely. I love quiet ones too, and so do some kids!!!

  18. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    No, Jemma is not allowed near the books at the moment because she rolled in something stinky! She's batting 1000 this week 🙂 It was your Grandpa's Tractor and Beth's One Duck from last week that reminded me of this book that I love so much, so yes – they would make a great set to read together! And I think a lot of kids enjoy quiet books at the right times… 🙂

  19. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    Your link seems to be working now, Penny. Phew! I'm glad it magically fixed itself 🙂 I've been struggling to keep up lately too – life seems to get very busy around now – hence the coming hiatus 🙂 I'm looking forward to catching up!

  20. Tiltonph says:

    Enjoyed you Mowing story — reminded me a bit of Grandpa's Tractor. Love it that the child carefull watched out for animals. Beautiful cover, so I imagine the illustrations are lovely. Great choice.

    Congratulations Elizabeth and Laura.

  21. Tiltonph says:

    Yes, thank you Susanna for coming up with the PPB idea. I have been reviewing a lot of books for over a year, and it gave me an opportunity to share some of them with a larger audience. And, I made new friends! Can't get better. Now, if we can find a way for parent groups to know of what we've done. Can you tell by you site stats if people are looking at PPB?

  22. Robyn Campbell says:

    Congrads Elizabeth! Yippee!!!! Congrads Laura! Another yippee!!!

    Susanna, you gotta know I love this book. I mean I'm sitting on a farm right this moment. What a magnificent choice. *waving*

  23. patientdreamer says:

    Tracy has said it lovely, I know I will miss PPBF very much as it is now winter down here and I will be spending many hours tucked up with a blanket and my laptop on my knee wondering what delightful “summer” treats you have instore. Will look forward to the return of PPBF in September…”Yay” Thankyou for all you do Susanna, and for the lovely new people that come my way because of PPBF.
    Congratulations to Laura and Elizabeth to.

  24. patientdreamer says:

    Oh, forgot to mention, I love your PPBF choice, I read it only this morning, like 2 hours ago in the library and nearly brought it home to use as my next weeks review…. whew! that was close….. but I do love it.

  25. books4learning says:

    I just came across this link up. I have been enjoying looking at all the participating sites. I especially love how each one offers an extension activity.

  26. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    I'm so glad you like it! The extension activities are really what sets Perfect Picture Books apart from other book review sites/groups. We want to make the books easily useful for parents and teachers, and encourage people to include picture books in their classrooms and daily routines. We are going on hiatus for the summer, but there's an extensive list on the Perfect Picture Book tab at the top of my blog which should give you lots of great books and resources, and we will be back to the weekly link-up on September 7 if you'd care to join us! Thanks so much for visiting!

  27. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    I'm sorry the timing is off for you, Diane 😦 You can have hot chocolate and a cozy fire while we have lemonade and cookies, and I'll try to remember to give you some winter fun while we're cavorting through summer. And thank YOU for all your support for my continual hair-brained schemes 🙂

  28. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    That is crazy! since it's an older book that not everybody knows about. But they say great minds think alike 🙂

    patientdreamer (unregistered) wrote, in response to patientdreamer (unregistered):

    Oh, forgot to mention, I love your PPBF choice, I read it only this morning, like 2 hours ago in the library and nearly brought it home to use as my next weeks review…. whew! that was close….. but I do love it.

    Link to comment

  29. bgruener says:

    Good morning! I just re-read your post and wanted to thank you for a fun farm pick. I grew up on a dairy farm that my brother still has in WI and I, too, love the smell of freshly-cut alfalfa!

    I wanted to join the other bloggers in sending gratitude your way for the amazing gift that is PPBF. Librarians LOVE you, Counselors LOVE you, Teachers LOVE you, Parents and Guardians LOVE you . . . that list you've compiled is indeed incredible. Thank you for your labor of love!!!

    Happy hiatus; keep on singing!


  30. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    So glad you've been enjoying it, Pat! 🙂 And as far as I can tell, the PPB tab has had between 4 and 5 thousand hits so far. A lot of them are probably from us checking to see what books are there before we post, but certainly not all of them! The challenge now will be to get the word out more to people who can make use of it – parents, teachers, home schoolers. We will all have to put on our thinking caps 🙂 I wonder how many hits all of you guys get on your PPBF posts?

    Tiltonph (unregistered) wrote, in response to Penny Klostermann (unregistered):

    Yes, thank you Susanna for coming up with the PPB idea. I have been reviewing a lot of books for over a year, and it gave me an opportunity to share some of them with a larger audience. And, I made new friends! Can't get better. Now, if we can find a way for parent groups to know of what we've done. Can you tell by you site stats if people are looking at PPB?

    Link to comment

  31. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    I'm glad you enjoyed the book 🙂 and thank you so much for your very kind words – I so appreciate them! I'm sorry to be putting PPBF on pause for the summer, but I'm afraid if I don't it will get WAY out of hand… and perhaps a little break will refresh us all so that when September 7 rolls around we'll all be filled with new enthusiasm. The challenge for all of us now is to try to figure out a way to get the word out to more people who can make use of it. Everyone whorl so hard to make this a valuable and useful resource – I'd love for it to really be used! “43 bottles of pop on the wall, 43 bottles of pop….” 🙂

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