Perfect Picture Book Friday – First Snow (And Some Other Odds And Ends!)

Well, you guys are in for it today!

After several brief (for me) posts in a row, I’ve used up my ability to be short-winded and I have so much to tell you today I can’t even believe it.  I’ll try to be succinct 🙂

First, my Perfect Picture Book, because I like that to be at the top on Friday.

First Snow
Written & Illustrated By: Kim Lewis
Candlewick Press, 1993, Fiction
Suitable For: ages 4-8

Themes/Topics: kindness, helping others, friends, pets, farm life, beloved toy, loss

Opening: “Wake up, Sara,” whispered Mommy.  “Daddy’s not very well today.  I’m going to feed the sheep on the hill.  Would you and Teddy like to come?

Brief Synopsis: To help Daddy, Mommy and Sara and Sara’s bear, Teddy, go up the hill to feed the sheep.  It’s a long climb, and while they’re up there, the first snow of the year begins to fall.  Hurrying to get home before they can’t find their way, no one notices that Sara’s beloved Teddy has been left behind.

Links To Resources: The Working Sheep Dog (video), Sheep Herding Demonstration (video), Fun Sheep Facts For Kids, Facts About Border Collies Talk about what you could do for someone that would be nice or help them in some way.

Why I Like This Book:  I love that whole story takes place because Sara and her mom are trying to do something nice for Daddy.  As they hike, you can feel the steepness of the hill, the cold air, the first tentative snowflakes followed by the real snow.  For children who may never have been out in the real country, the book gives them a taste of it.  The sense of wanting to get back to their cottage pulls the reader along, but on the whole it’s a fairly quiet book.  The art is gorgeous.  It’s drawn in colored pencil and the little cottage where Sara’s family lives is so warm and inviting, and the vistas of the English hills so lovely it makes you want to step right into the pages of the book.  The sheep are beautiful, the border collies exceptional.  But maybe the thing I love most about the book is the understanding it shows between a child and her pet.  It is not Mommy or Daddy or Sara who recovers Teddy 🙂

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

Next, two things that kind of go together.  When Beth asked to interview me about Perfect Picture Books I was happy to do it to raise awareness of this resource that we all work so hard on (and because Beth is nice and I like her :)) but I never in a million years expected the kind of response we got.  So I wanted to thank you all from the bottom of my heart for your wonderful comments.  They meant so much to me.  I really can’t find words to tell you how much… which is bad for a writer!  But it was an unexpected gift for which I am truly grateful, and it just makes me value this wonderful community even more.  I wasn’t kidding when I said I was going to print out that post and stick it on my wall to read on days when I feel low 🙂  So thank you.

In the same vein, Randy over at Author In Training very kindly gave me the Addictive Blog Award.

In addition to linking back to him (and I hope you’ll go visit him if you haven’t because he does great writing prods and is currently writing a YA novel that you get to read a bit of every Friday and just has an all around great blog!) I am supposed to list 10 blogs I am addicted to.  But I can’t list only 10.  Especially after being reminded Wednesday of just how wonderful you all are.  So consider yourselves all recipients, and feel free to take the award badge and post it on your blog!

The next item I wanted to mention is that tomorrow, December 1 (a Saturday so I don’t post) marks my 2nd Blogiversary!!!  I can’t believe it’s been 2 years.  I have had so much fun here, getting to know you all and dragging you into all my hair-brained schemes!  Anything that’s good about this blog is good because of you, so please give yourselves all a big pat on the back and a round of applause!  Some confetti would be nice, too.  And of course, I think we should serve Something Chocolate, even though it’s not Wednesday 🙂  I would also like to give you A PRESENT!  Of course, I’d really like to give you ALL a present, but I don’t have the resources, so two (that’s 2!) lucky random commenters today will receive a packet of 5 assorted hand-drawn greeting cards by our own superbly talented  Tracy Campbell!  Here’s a little sample:

copyright Tracy Campbell 2012 used by permission

copyright Tracy Campbell 2012 used by permission

copyright Tracy Campbell 2012 used by permission

Aren’t they gorgeous?  Please click on the link to her blog and explore and you can see many other cards!

Second to last (see? there’s a light at the end of the tunnel :)), I wanted to let you all know ahead of time about a special PPBF.  At the suggestion of Pat at Children’s Books Heal and Vivian at Positive Parental Participation, on Friday December 14, which is the anniversary of the date in 1954 that the UN General Assembly recommended there should be a Universal Children’s Day, we are going to be doing our part to raise awareness of the plight of children around the globe and to promote the welfare of children in the world by posting books which focus on multicultural/multiracial issues, human rights, and/or children who have helped to change the world in some way.  For example, Pat plans to post the picture book version of The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind.  Beatrice’s Goat and Wangari’s Trees Of Peace are other examples of books in this category (although they’re already on our list.)  Please join us if you’d like to!  But of course, if you’ve already got a book in mind and would like to post a regular PPB that is fine too – all picture books are for children 🙂

FINALLY (here we are! this is the end!) I’m hoping to post the rules for the Holiday Contest on Monday.  Of course, that will depend on whether I make up my mind about what it’s going to be by then 🙂  But here’s hoping 🙂

That’s it!  Go forth!  Run free!  Go see all the wonderful picture books that have been chosen this week!  And have a GREAT weekend! 🙂

(PPBF bloggers, please remember to add your post-specific link below!  And don’t forget, 2 lucky commenters will win beautiful cards, and the winners will be chosen totally by and not at all based on how nice the things you say about me or my blog are :))

63 thoughts on “Perfect Picture Book Friday – First Snow (And Some Other Odds And Ends!)

  1. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    No, it really does not! She's an exuberant little marmot 🙂

    Beth Stilborn (unregistered) wrote, in response to Susanna Leonard Hill:

    True. (regarding the “6”) And what was I thinking? You're right about Phyllis (of course you are. You've lived with her all this time. You know what she's like. And Groundhog Day excitement will end, and she'll start planning for April Fool's Day. It never ends, does it?)

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  2. Sandi Purdell-Lewis says:

    Happy Blogiversary.
    The cover of First Snow looks so gentle and welcoming. Makes you want to go and do something nice for someone.

  3. Laura Miller says:

    ha-ha…I think it's because the house doesn't show appreciation (and rarely does family)…but there is something about the presence of the animals-their vitality and warmth and presence. Of course–I only clean up after a dog, a cat, a rabbit and a bird (and the bird still tries to nip me) *sigh*

  4. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    🙂 Also, people could technically help clean up after themselves 🙂

    Laura Miller wrote, in response to Susanna Leonard Hill:

    ha-ha…I think it's because the house doesn't show appreciation (and rarely does family)…but there is something about the presence of the animals-their vitality and warmth and presence. Of course–I only clean up after a dog, a cat, a rabbit and a bird (and the bird still tries to nip me) *sigh*

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  5. pennyklostermann says:

    Happy 2nd Anniversary!!! I love your blog!!!! It deserves lots of cake and candles and party hats and possibly a magician! Party! I know I'm a day behind!! I just had a busy Friday so I'm making my rounds this evening.

    Love the sound of First Snow. I will have to see if the library has it.

    I think posting books for Universal Children's Day is a great idea. I thought of one right off the bat…but, alas, it is on the list. I will have to see if I can come up with one. I don't have another one in mind, but a trip to the library may solve that.

  6. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    Penny, you are a girl after my own heart who knows what's really important for a party 🙂 Thanks for the wishes, and I'm so glad you like my blog 🙂 I'm having the same problem with a book for Universal Children's Day… the one's that leap to mind have already been done! So, library or bust! 🙂

  7. Rhythm says:

    i like the look of this book. I'm partial to books with sheep and dogs and kids. Thanks for sharing this one. Congratulations on your anniversary and your award. i hope that you will be around for many more years and many more celebrations.

  8. Stina Lindenblatt says:

    Love those cards!

    My daughter lost her beloved bunny when she was a toddler. It was accidentally left in the Walmart shopping cart when we had to leave the store without buying anything, because the line up was too long and my son was due home soon. Whoever found the cart abandoned in the clothing department never handed it into lost and found. 😦

    Santa bought her a replacement a year later (when he found it in a store). She's almost nine and still has the bunny. 🙂

  9. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    Aren't they beautiful, Stina? You could make Tracy's day by ordering some as a gift for someone. And Tracy is a Canadian too – so fewer postage issues 🙂 What a sad/sweet story about your daughter's bunny! When we were kids my brother through my sister's stuffed dog out the car window on a steep winding road out west somewhere – never got that one back! And, hmm…, 40 odd years later she hasn't forgiven him for that! 🙂

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