Category: Children’s books

Honey Nut Cheerios Launches Their Third Year Of Bring Back The Bees

Honey Nut Cheerios has launched their third year of Bring Back the Bees! If you haven’t heard the buzz about the bees then you have come to the right place!

Bees have been around for millions of years but in the last few years, their population has been on a dramatic decline. Did you know that bees are a crucial part of our agriculture? It is called pollination. In fact, one third of our global food supply is pollinated by bees. They keep our plants and crops alive. So it is very important to help the bees to thrive.

“Bees love to live in urban settings where there are short flight paths and a variety of different plants and flowers to sample just as much as they love the country.”

This year in honor of the #BringBackTheBees Campaign, Honey Nut Cheerios has partnered up with Canadian author, Paulette Bourgeois and illustrator Josee Bisallion. They have created an engaging new children’s book to encourage Canadian kids to do their part to help, Bella and Jack Bring Back The Bees!


We got a chance to review this book and we are so glad that we did!

Bella and Jack Bring Back The Bees tells the story of two kids who learn about the threats to our bee populations and are inspired to do their part to help bring back the bees.

The beauty of this book is the ability it has to teach children the importance of bees and how we need to help them. I know that as we read the book my three old was very concerned about bees and said, “We need to help Momma!”

Since we got our Wildflower seeds, I showed her how we were going to use them to help the bees. Now my three year old is very excited that she can do something to help her buzzing friends. As soon as Spring gets to our backyard, we will plant them in our garden.

We give Bella and Jack Bring Back The Bees, 5 BUZZZZZ out of 5! The great news is that Honey Nut Cheerios is giving away 100,000 free copies of the book nationally, through Indigo, Coles and Chapters and online. Just visit Bring The Bees website to see how you can get your own copy of this adorable book.

“Bees have good colour vision. That’s why flowers are so showy. They especially like blue, purple, violet, white and yellow.”

How You Can Help

Honey Nut Cheerios is making it easy to help by providing wildflower seeds across the country to help preserve and grow the natural habitat bees need for survival.

Over the past two years, the Bring Back the Bees campaign has helped Canadians plant more than 600 million wildflowers across the country, and this year they’re hoping to plant another 300 million seeds.

So how can you get wildflower seeds? You just order them online for your free packages of wildflower seeds and they are sent to you ready to be planted in the spring weather. It is that simple to help out the amazing bees!

We can’t wait to plant ours and do our part to help the bees and our agriculture. Make sure to order your seeds and remember that its FREE! Once you get your seeds and plant them, feel free to take a picture and tag @MommaBraga , @CheeriosCA and #BringBackTheBees as we would love to see your photos!

For more information on this great campaign and all things bees please visit,  https://bringbackthebees.ca/.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

– Momma Braga

 

Brave Jane Austen An Inspiring Story Of An Empowering Woman

Women’s History Month is an annual declared month that highlights the contributions of women to events in history and contemporary society. It is celebrated during the month of March in the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia, corresponding with International Women’s Day on March 8.

This is always a great time to reflect and look back in history on the women who have paved the way for us today.

While we look back at history, one woman who can not be forgotten especially in the world of literature and that is Jane Austen.

This was why I was excited to receive, Brave Jane Austen written by Lisa Pilscou and  illustrated by Jen Corace. This children’s book gives us a little glimpse into the world of Jane and how it was to live in a world where girls didn’t have the same opportunities as boys. No matter the challenges that went in Jane’s way, she kept paving the way until one day one of her books were actually published. When you think about the 1700s, then you know that this was a big deal.

Jane Austen’s novels are widely taught in middle schools and high schools nationwide, and most have been adapted into major motion pictures.

Jane was brave, insightful, and fiercely creative. Her story will reinforce these essential values in young readers, particularly girls. Not only is it an inspiring story but the book also includes an author’s note, quotes from Austen’s admirers in the literary community across time, and excerpts from Austen’s own letters to her loved ones.

#MelandNikkiReview

So what do we give this book in the #MelAndNikkiReview, 5 stars out of 5! It is a lovely story about an empowering woman who did what many would have thought was impossible to do. We recommend this book for young readers between four to eight years of age and anyone who wants to read about an incredible woman. The illustrations are beautifully done and it gives us the feel that we are in the 1700s – love it!

If you would like to purchase this beautiful book, click here.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

Children’s Graphic Novel Teaches Kindness Through A Jungle Adventure

We are delighted to introduce our readers to a new Children’s graphic novel called New Shoes, written by Sara Varon.

“Francis the donkey is the best shoemaker in the village. He uses only the finest materials: coconut wood for the soles, goat’s wool for the insoles, and wild tiger grass for the uppers.

One day he receives a special order from Miss. Manatee, the queen of calypso (and his own personal hero). But he’s all out of tiger grass! To make the perfect pair of shoes, Francis must journey deep into the jungle…and that means leaving his village for the first time.”

Francis takes a journey into the jungles of South America where he meets an array of animals and makes new friends along the way. This new journey teaches Francis kindness and to have an open mind to all the different animals outside of his village.

We just loved this book and it is one of the more unique books that we have read on the #MelandNikkiReview. The layout of this child’s graphic novel reminds me of a comic book with the feature of comic strips throughout the book. I haven’t come across many books with this type of format but I loved it! The story flowed nicely in this format too and the pictures were super cute too!

We also loved the message in the book around kindness and respect to all animals no matter how different they are from one another. We can definitely use this lesson around how we treat others as people too! New Shoes also dips into teaching children about the different animals especially from the South America jungles and this piece is very educational. As we went through the story and were introduced to the many animals, I would have to say my favorite was the Giant River Otter – love them!!! *Momma Braga Fact: I have a soft spot for otters!!!

#MelAndNikkiReview

With all this being said, we have to give New Shoes, 5 shoes out of 5 for the great storyline, adorable illustrations and of course for the beautiful message that we should all adopt whether we are children or adults.

To purchase this lovely book for your collection, please click here.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

 

My Mamma Wants To Eat Me Up

We truly love our books at our home as it is the most peaceful time for all of us. We especially love books done by local authors as those are extra special for us. This is why we were delighted to receive, My Mamma Wants To Eat Me Up, written by Faiza Venzant and illustrated by Patrick Girouard.

Of course as soon as we received this special book (before it hit the bookshelves) we had to read it right away. But before I go into the review of the book, I want to provide our readers with a deeper look at to how important this book is to the author, Faiza.

Faiza is a mother of two children. There is two year old, Qayam and almost one-year old, Malik. Qayam was born in November of 2015. During the first couple of months together, they spent it indoors since winter was in full force outdoors and spent their time with books and songs. Qayam loved music which inspired Faiza to create a song that she sang with him several times a day.

“Oh geez! Just my luck! I love you too much to eat you up. From the top to the bottom, from the left to the right, gonna love you all day and all through the night.”

When Qayam was about five months old, Faiza had the idea to expand the song into a story from his point of view and this is how My Mamma Wants to Eat Me Up! was born.

Now the story does not end there. In February 2017, Faiza gave birth to Malik who was born 13 weeks early and they spent 11 weeks together in the Neonatal Intensive Care Units of Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and St. Michael’s Hospital. This was a terrifying, isolating and a difficult time for Faiza as she watched her son fight, thrive and cling to life. The only thing that she could do in the early weeks was hold and sing to him. Faiza would sing her song to him as she did with his brother and this brought her so much comfort and healing. The song was a powerful way to spend those crucial weeks together and it established their bond together. As he got stronger so did their bond.

When Malik was released from the hospital, it motivated Faiza to self-publish her book and she made sure to include a biracial child in the illustrations to reflect the diversity within her own family.

That is how it all began and we just love it as it’s inspiring for all of us as parents. We love hearing about the story behind the story and we have to say thank you to Faiza for sharing it with us!

#MelAndNikkiReview

So how did this book do on the #MelAndNikkiReview? I sat down with Nikki to get her thoughts on the book and what she rated it. You don’t want to miss hearing it below. 😉

As you heard from Nikki, she gives the book 10 stars out of 5! Of course you can not get a better rating then that! The book is easy to read and it was very easy to get into character as a parent. The illustrations are also very beautifully drawn and they are bright and appealing to the little ones. You may find yourself loving the book so much that you start telling your child “I want to eat you up!” Then your child might be like mine and say “That’s just like the book!” 😉

We highly recommend this book for children newborn to toddlers as they will all love it and parents will have fun reading it too.

This book is now available for purchasing (click here) and it would make a great addition to your little ones library.  Make sure to follow along on Facebook and Instagram too.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

My Pet Wants A Pet

Pets are great additions to families and they bring us so much joy. But what if our pet wanted a pet to care for and love like we do?

That is exactly what happens in the book, My Pet Wants A Pet written by Elise Broach and illustrated by Eric Barclay.

“Once there was a boy who wanted something to take care of. Something of his very own. He begged and begged his mother for a puppy. Until, what do you know? She said YES! The boy loved his puppy. He fed him and played with him and cuddled with him in his arms. But soon, the puppy wanted something to take of – something of his very own. So the puppy got a pet; then that pet wanted a pet…and on and on until – HELP! How many pets are too many?”

We just adored this book and we loved how each pet picked a pet that you would never expect to…but we think that is what makes this book awesome! This is why we give this book, 5 barks out of 5! The storyline is adorable and the message that we all want someone to care for us as much as we care for others is perfect! It is absolutely a sweet book for any child to read or have it read to them. The illustrations are also very beautiful and captivating with each page turn.

As we read the story, my daughter picked up on the common theme throughout the book. Therefore, I would ask her before I turned the page what did the pet want? She would excitedly tell me, “A Pet Momma!” Then as we turned the page and I told her that she was right, she boosted with proudness that she knew. That to me was perfect as I can see that this book has helped her pick up on a theme and learn it.

This is why we recommend this book to any little one who enjoys a good read and especially those who really love to care for people and furry family members. 🙂 If you would like to purchase this book, click here.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

– Momma Braga

Don’t Ever Look Behind Door 32

We love books in our home and we get very excited to read new releases or even books that have not yet hit the book shelves yet.

This is why we were thrilled to get a new children’s picture book, Don’t Ever Look Behind Door 32, written by award winning author B.C.R. Fegan and illustrated by Lenny Wen. This book is available this month (March 2018).

Don’t Ever Look Behind Door 32 takes young readers on a journey through the magical Hotel of Hoo, a mysterious place with some very unusual occupants. As readers explore the strange hotel, they are invited to experience everything it has to offer with just one warning… don’t ever look behind door 32.

Behind each of the doors in the Hotel of Hoo, leading up to Door 32, readers meet and greet a bevy of characters who have taken up residence at the hotel, from ghosts cooking roasts, to paintbrush-wielding elves, tea-drinking monsters, miniature giants, and more.

This imaginative picture book aims to take children beyond the first ten cardinal numbers, and introduces them to the patterns of counting in a fun and accessible way. With rooms to explore and unique objects to count, children will enjoy lingering on each page as they make their way closer to the forbidden door.

We just loved the book with each page turn. I am a big fan of rhyming books as it makes reading so much more fun for me as a parent and the illustrations are very captivating throughout. This book is recommended for children ages three to eight and it will be one of our favorites for story time.

For this #MelandNikkiReview we give it “32 Doors out of 5” as we love the rhyming, story, characters and the fun learning incorporated in the book. The book was so much fun to read and I know you will enjoy it too!

As a special treat, Nikki did a video of her thoughts as a three year old on “Don’t Ever Look Behind Door 32.”

You can purchase this lovely book on Amazon and I know it would make a great addition to your child’s story time. Make sure to follow this great author on Twitter too!

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

 

 

Legends Of The Lost Causes

Imagine being in a world where you were fighting zombie outlaws in the wild west. Seems far fetched? Well, authors, Brad McLelland and Louis Sylvester bring the idea to life in the first book of a new series that just hit the book shelves. It is a new middle-grade fantasy action-adventure series in the Old West, Legends Of The Lost Causes.

Legends of The Lost Causes follows a ragtag gang of orphans on their quest to find the powerful Char Stone before the sinister Bad Whiskey.

The synopsis states: “This is Keech Blackwood’s new life after Bad Whiskey Nelson descends upon the Home for Lost Causes and burns it to the ground.

With his home destroyed and his family lost, Keech will have to use the lessons he learned from Pa Abner to hunt down the powerful Char Stone. Luckily, he has the help of a ragtag team of orphans. Together, they’ll travel through treacherous forests, fight off the risen dead, and discover that they share mysterious bonds as they try to track down the legendary stone. Now, it’s a race against the clock, because if Bad Whiskey finds the stone first. . . . all is lost.

But Keech and the other orphans won’t hesitate. Because they’re more than just heroes. They’re Lost Causes.”

This book is full of action-packed adventure, full of live characters and a captivating story for all the enjoy. With each page turn, you are more intrigued on what was going to happen next. I have never read a novel so quickly like I did with this one as I just couldn’t put it down!

For this #MelandNikkiReview, we give it five Zombies out of  five for it’s intriguing characters, vivid descriptions, and unique story line. The chapters are easy to read and flows beautifully. It is full of action and we would recommend this fantasy action-adventure novel to anyone over the age of nine.  This is the first of the series and I can’t wait to read the next!

If you would like to purchase this intriguing novel, click here. You really will love this unique book series as I know I did!

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

 

I Love You For Miles And Miles

There is no denying that we love books in our home as it gives us an opportunity to explore new ideas, worlds and characters.

This is why we were thrilled to receive a new book called, I Love You For Miles And Miles by Alison Goldberg; illustrated by Mike Yamada.

Of course it became top priority on our reading list as soon as it came to our door. We excitedly got ready for bed and got the book out to read. As we read each page, we were captivated by the beautiful illustrations and the message behind the book which is all about how much a child is loved.

I Love You For Miles And Miles is an “I love you” book that speaks the language of the vehicle-obsessed toddler and touches on themes of separation, and loving from afar. It is recommended for children 2 to 6 years of age and that fits perfectly with our household. So what did we think of this book? I had to consult with the expert in my home which is my three year old daughter, Nikki.

Momma Braga: “How did you like this book, I Love You For Miles And Miles?”
Nikki: “I liked it a lot momma! Can you read it again?!”
Momma Braga: “Sure! What did you like the best about the story?”
Nikki: “I like everything and the pictures. Can I take this book when I go to school?”
Momma Braga: “Yes you can take this book when you start school in September.”
Nikki: “Yeah! The kids going to like this book Momma. Because everyone loves love.”
Momma Braga: “That is so nice! So what do you give this book out of 5?”
Nikki: “5 Momma! I did good?”
Momma Braga: “You did great Nikki!”

There you have the official feedback from the expert herself. I have to agree with Nikki as it is a lovely book and a great gift idea for this Valentine’s Day or for any other day, as who doesn’t love love?!

The story is articulated beautifully with the words and illustrations with each page turn. You won’t regret this great addition to your reading line up. To purchase this book, click here.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

The Condo Kids: Project Haunted Condo

The Condo Kids are back and just in time for Halloween!

I was very excited to see the next book release for the Condo Kids as I loved the first one, The Condo Kids: Adventures with Bob the Barbary Sheep. I was curious to see what kind of adventure the condo kids were going to go through in this next book.

The Condo Kids: Project Haunted Condo has all the amazing condo kids that we fell in love with in the first book and this time their adventure involves finding a ghost. Noah, Michael and their friends embark on a spooky adventure to try and solve the mystery that has become the talk of their building. There have been reports of disappearing food, vanishing wigs and mysterious white flashes which could only mean one thing – right?! You will need to read the book to see if the Condo Kids solve this mystery or if they get outsmarted.

We give this book five ghosts out of five. The book literally had me giggling out loud. The imagination the Condo Kids is amazing and is reflected in the adventures that they have. I truly love the storyline and how much fun these children have living in a high rise! It truly is such a delight to read from beginning to end. Oh! At the end you get a little taste for the next upcoming Condo Kids adventure – can’t wait! Another great job Jackie Burns!

 

I recommend to check out The Condo Kids especially if you have children in the 6-9 age group and they don’t need to be living in a condo to appreciate the story. Not only is this book entertaining for children to read but when you purchase this book, 10% of book profits go directly to support Earth Rangers. Earth Rangers is the kids’ conservation organization, dedicated to educating children and their families about biodiversity, inspiring them to adopt sustainable behaviors and empowering them to become directly involved in protecting animals and their habitats. Talk about wins all around!

Please feel free to visit Amazon or The Condo Kids website to purchase the book directly.

Looking forward to the next book in this series! You can follow The Condo Kids on social media to keep up-to-date on what’s going on (Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest).

Until next time…..Happy Parenting!

– Momma Braga
#MelandNikkiReview

“If My Dog Could Talk” Warms All Our Furry Hearts

Imagine if your dog could talk! What do you think they would say? You don’t need to wonder anymore as I See Me! has created a book on exactly that!

But not just any book but a personalized book for your dog. I was very intrigued by this idea as I do love animals and have a furry nephew by the name of Theodore. This was a great gift idea for my sister-in-law to share with my daughter. What makes this perfect is that it ties in two things that they both love, reading and Theodore!

To customize the book, there are a few details that we needed to submit first. We had to select our dog’s style and there are 12 to pick from. The next step was to pick a color for our dog. Then we needed to fill out the Dog Lover’s First Name, Dog’s Name and Dog Gender. Of course with I See Me Books you can make the gift extra special and add a dedication and sender name. They have really thought of all the details.

We submitted all the info and we waited for our personalized book to arrive. I must say that it arrived quickly and was neatly packaged. The package included the book, bandana and mat for the furry family member’s food. It surpassed my expectations and at this point we only had opened it up. Can’t say I have had this experience before.

Theodore proudly wearing his bandana by his new mat with his food. Talk about “Bark-Tastic!’

A personalized gift for dog-lovers that captures the hilarious mischief and pure love of your furry friend.

Now it was time for the big moment, reading time. I sat with my daughter and told her that we were going to read a very special book. She was really excited and being three of age, she gets REALLY excited quickly! I told her we were going to read a book about Theodore. “Bubba!” exclaimed Nikki which is the nickname that her Auntie calls Theodore. I told Nikki that yes it was all about Bubba and some other special people too. So I have set the stage for my very eager toddler and I have to admit I was just as excited.

We went through each page and being very detailed oriented I noticed that I See Me didn’t miss a single detail. Inside there was a photo of Theodore and it was dedicated to everyone we had listed and it included our dedication, “May you always know the pure love of a furry friend. Nikki & Family. 2017.” This piece meant a lot to me to see as our furry family members are an important part of our families.

The story takes your furry dog through his day and thoughts about why people do what they do and why they couldn’t just do what dogs do. It really is cute and funny. You can’t help but wonder how accurate this could really be. 😉 Each drawing is colorful, bright and detailed to your family. This is where I See Me separates itself from anyone else. They inserted Theodore’s name in all spots that it could go on such as his bed, collar, towel, bowl, etc. They also inserted the special people we listed into the drawings. There is one part of the book where you see everyone’s name framed along with handprints (this tickled my heart pink!). I was just amazed on the little details to really make the book feel like it was ours.

At the end of the book, we see an adorable photo of Theodore with a poem which read: “You give me hugs and hold me tight. You fluff my hair and say ‘goodnight.’ When I grow old and my face turns grey, I’ll remember the love you gave each day.” (At this point I had tears as our love is unconditional for our furry family members and I remember our dear Lily the cat).

My daughter clapped with delight once we finished and asked to read it again (four times). Each time I read it we both loved it more.

For this #MelandNikkiReview we give, If My Dog Theodore Could Talk!, 5+++ barks out of 5This book has also made it onto our Recommended List. It is an unique, very personalized and cherished book for any family especially for dog lovers. The illustrations are beautifully done and detailed. My daughter (and I) were captivated by the bright colors. We also loved the gifts that came with the book for our furry family member and it makes it that more special.

As many of you already know that I love companies who give back and I See Me Books does just that. You can save 10% and help SAVE an animal in need by entering code RESCUE (only for a limited time). It’s a win-win for everyone!

We do highly recommend this most precious book to any dog lover on your list as it would make a perfect gift or keepsake. To purchase this book, please click here.

Make sure to follow I See Me Book on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram. Also stay tuned as we will be releasing another #MelandNikkiReview on another book from I See Me! You don’t want to miss it!

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

* Please note that the product was given in exchange for an honest review. Views expressed in this review are of Momma Braga and were not influenced by the company.