Archives for July 14, 2012

Alphabet Glue giveaway!

Today I am hosting a giveaway for Alphabet Glue, one of my favorite resources for book and paper themed fun for my children.

Alphabet Glue is a downloadable magazine for families who love books!  Filled with activities, printables, projects and plenty of inspiration, Alphabet Glue was created in hopes of helping more families to incorporate creativity, imagination and all things literary into their everyday routines.  Each issue contains leveled reading lists, bookmaking tutorials, storybuilding activities and hands on projects that complement favorite titles in children’s literature. Alphabet Glue makes a great resource for homeschooling families, as well as for families who are looking for ideas for crafting and reading together on weekends and during school vacations.  

The magazine is published six times per year, and is a one-woman production, being written, photographed and self-published by Annie Riechmann. Annie is an educator, mama to two little ones and has a deep affection for striped socks, unfinished projects and big bunches of kale. Annie blogs about everything from dangerous laundry piles and picking too many blueberries to science experiments and kid’s literature on her blog, Bird and Little Bird. She is also an associate editor for Rhythm of the Home.

Book bracelet

If I were to name two of my children’s great loves, they would be books and paper.  Librarians sigh when our turn in line arrives and we heave bag after bag of books onto the counter.  I sigh on the days when my children decide that they absolutely must make dozens upon dozens of identical origami boxes.  Alphabet Glue is absolutely perfect for us.  Each issue is packed with themed booklists for both picture and chapter books.  The paper crafts are amazing, and require little help on my part when the older boys get involved.  At four dollars an issue it is an amazing deal.  For twenty six dollars you can buy all seven issues.  (Annie also recently released a special Summer Science Issue!)

Alphabet Glue

I want to share the way I have organized my own issues of Alphabet Glue to maximize my ability to put them to good use in my house (and to demonstrate a little bit of geekiness on my part.)  There’s nothing really special about it, but it’s inexpensive and makes it easier for us all to enjoy the magazine.  I simply printed all seven issues, three hole punched them, and then put them in individual three pronged folders.  I went an extra step and glued the cover page to the cover of each folder so I could identify them easily.  These serve as our master copies.  When we want to do one of the crafts, I simple reprint those particular pages that have the templates we need to cut out so that our master copies stay intact for future reference.  I have a houseful of kids and many of the projects in Alphabet Glue will be repeated over the years I am sure.  When I need library book ideas, I can grab the bound issues that correspond with the season, and carry them with me to the library.

For this week’s giveaway, Annie is offering two winners a set of all seven volumes of Alphabet Glue plus the Summer Science special issue.  For a chance to win, leave a comment on this post.  Comments will close and a winner will be announced within this post on Wednesday July, 18.  Comments are closed.
The winners are Christy:  “I can’t believe I’ve never run across Alphabet Glue, it’s brilliant! …thank you so much for the giveaway.”
and Leanne:  “Thank you for the chance to win this great prize. I will cross my fingers!”

Saturday Garden Journal

Despite all the storms and our abandonment of the garden for the week we left town, everything is growing so nicely. It’s amazing how much a garden can change in a week. We came home to sprawling melons, sweet potato vines, and various squashes. We’ve been eating cucumbers, Cherokee Purple tomatoes, and the first of the Amish Paste tomatoes that I grew from seed are starting to turn. All the beans and peas that I planted in the week before we left are doing very well.

Years ago, we planted two apple trees, but only one survived (two are necessary for proper pollination.)  The pollinators must have visited our neighbors apple tree because we have a few apples this year.  I think our surviving tree is one of these.

mystery squash
This is a mystery squash.  I didn’t plant it, and I don’t know what it is.  The plant is pretty compact.

Melons:  vedrantais and green fleshed pineapple with sweet potatoes in the background

Amish Paste
Amish paste

July 13 Garden
black eyed peas in the foreground

We ended up with four peanut plants.  I am curious to see what becomes of them.

Cherokee Purple
Cherokee purple

July 13 Garden
I thought I was setting out zucchinis in this bed.  Turns out, there were some pie pumpkins mixed in as well.  We are doing a pretty good job holding the squash bugs at bay by diligently hand picking them off the plants every day.

July 13 Garden

July 13 Garden

Intruder evidently had a stroke while we were traveling so he hasn’t been joining me in the garden.  He spent a few days recuperating indoors and is now almost back to his old self.  He is still a bit wobbly, but I am so grateful that he is all right.  He has always driven me crazy with the leg biting, but I realized that I am actually very fond of him the day we arrived home and I noticed that something was wrong.  Maybe he won’t return to his bad ways and will be a sweet cat from now on.

July 13 Garden
Jonny mowed the paths today.  Things look a little more tame.  I do have several beds to weed and mulch though.

How is your garden growing?