Tag: Book

Morning Sunshine!

“Morning, Sunshine! A beautiful story using haiku’s to describe nature that surrounds us as the sun rises to start a new day. A must read story with your little ones.” – Momma Braga


As we all wake up, the outside world bustles with life! Discover new facts about familiar creatures – from fluttering moths and scurrying beetles to shy foxes and humming bees – as they go about their morning activities. In the city, the countryside, and the suburbs. Nature can be found everywhere!

A series of haiku takes readers on a close-up, observational look at the amazing abundance of nature right outside our homes. Each stanza focuses on an aspect of the natural world or a creature going about their daily activities as the sun begins to rise. Alongside the haiku, informative text goes into depth about each subject – from how much honey a bee can make to the size of a hummingbird’s egg. Instructions to help kids create their own haiku poems, a unique form of poetry from Japan, as well as a glossary add value for a STEM and Core Curriculum book that can be enjoyed both in the classroom and at home.


Morning, Sunshine! made our reading time so much brighter. We truly enjoyed reading and learning as we went through the book. The book is fun to read especially with the Haiku format.

What is Haiku?

“Haiku is a form of Japanese poetry with seventeen syllables or beats, usually in three lines. The first line has five syllables, the second seven, and the third five. One way to find how many syllables a word has is to clap them out.”

We felt that the haikus used made the book that more special and we love how the author included instructions in the back on how to create your own. So I took it to the test and created my own Haiku and since I work in the construction industry, I thought I should create one of the field.

That was my fun attempt and now we will take what we have learned and apply it to our daily adventures to see what else we can come up with. Once you get the hang of it, it truly is simple to do. All you need to do is watch the world around and be inspired to write what you see following the pattern above with the syllables.


On one side of the page there is the Haiku and then on the other side you have an amazing description of the creature. I think the most interesting piece for me was learning about moths, it was absolutely fascinating to learn that they have markings that warn potential predators to stay away. Nikki’s favorite was learning about snails and how their mucus helps protect them from sharp objects they might slide over. It was just an amazing story to read and the book also provides a glossary in the back – very helpful!

Therefore, for this #MelAndNikkiReview we give it 10 sunshines out of 5! This book offers so much learning for children and parents. We loved reading it so much and the illustrations are absolutely perfect. If you would like to purchase a copy of Morning, Sunshine! Click here. Great children’s book for children ages four to eight as it offers so much learning opportunities.

About the Author

Keely Parrack came from the United Kingdom to the United States for fun twenty years ago, and liked it so much she’s still here doing what she loves best: writing poetry, picture books, and young adult novels and motivating kids to love reading and to be confident creative writers. Her work has been published in The Christian Science Monitor, The Contra Costa Times, Patch, Spider magazine, and Mothering.com, and her short story (written under the pen name Keely James) “Listening to the Leaves” appears in the anthology Simple Pleasures of Friendship: Celebrating the Ones We Love. She has been a science and language arts specialist and teacher at an elementary school in inner-city Nottingham, UK, a children’s center director in San Francisco, and the coregional advisor for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, San Francisco North and East Bay. Parrack now fills her time working for her local indie bookstore, tutoring kids in creative writing, and designing haiku cards for her friends and family. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband, son, and a very demanding cat.

About the Illustrator

John Bajet is currently a designer on the Cartoon Network Show Tom & Jerry; art director at Renegade Animation; and the illustrator for Baby Shark, Planting Seeds of Kindness, If We Can Do What Animals Do, and Bigger than Baseball.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

Momma Braga

*This book was provided in exchange of an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.


Ezpz Just Got Even Better…Is it Possible?!

A few months ago, my family and I were introduced to The Happy Mat made by ezpz and it has been a beloved product in our home ever since. If you missed our review, please feel free to check it out here. In my review I noted that we would be seeing much more exciting things from them and I was right!

So what more could this amazing company have to offer to parents and children everywhere? What other innovative solutions could they possibly offer to create family mealtimes healthy and happy? How can they promote creativity, healthy eating, and a stress free mealtime?

All these answers can be found in one book and not just any book, but the first ezpz book titled, Making Mealtime ezpz: Fun Ways to Fill the Happy Mat.


This colorful, beautiful and detailed book takes you into a whole new world of making food fun and creative for children.

The book’s focus is on one to three year olds and making mealtime creations for the Happy Mat. It provides parents a resource to recreate nutritious snacks and meals that children are more willing to try by adding a dash of creativity. There are “ezpz” recipes and food art samples for parents to make. There is also other content and tips such as serving sizes; list of superstar foods; the benefits of playing with food; clean eating facts; tips for picky eaters; and creative ways to include kids in the kitchen. Ezpz has truly thought of it all when putting this great book together!

The Crazy Cat by ezpz
The Crazy Cat by ezpz

We were so inspired by the book that we started to create some food art ourselves. I have to admit that it is fun to make and Nikki’s eyes light up every time I introduce her meal character. For instance we had “Pooh Bear” and the “Breakfast Monster.” I think our favourite ezpz recipe in the book so far is the “Crazy Cat.” Nikki just loves cats and it uses all of her favourite ingredients so it is “meow-errific” on Nikki’s toddler list!

Our Breakfast Monster created by Momma Braga
Our Breakfast Monster created by Momma Braga

We also love the tips on little kitchen helpers in this book as it is so important to get children involved and encourages healthy eating habits. We have fully embraced this in our home and Nikki loves to help me in the kitchen. Of course the activities that I allow her to do are age appropriate and safe. By allowing Nikki to participate, she becomes more eager to learn and eat. Thank you ezpz!

Nikki helping prepare her favorite, broccoli. Yup! You read that right! ;)
Nikki helping prepare her favorite, broccoli. Yup! You read that right! 😉

Nikki and I give this book 5 happy smiles out of 5. This book has been a great addition to our Happy Mat as it provides us with creative ideas for healthy meals for our growing toddler! We can’t wait to try all the recipes in this book so make sure to follow me on Twitter and Instagram to see what we make next! 😉

Make sure to also follow ezpz on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube. They are making an impact with ezpz solutions for the every day parent so you don’t want to miss a thing!

Also want to take this opportunity to send the ezpz team a heartfelt congratulations on officially securing the utility patent on their invention! AMAZING!

To purchase this great book, click here.

Until next time…..Happy Parenting!

– Momma Braga

Baby Self-Feeding Book is Empowering Parents

“Your baby’s relationship with food starts with her first bite.”

I had the recent pleasure of reading, Baby Self-Feeding, by Nancy Ripton and feeding therapist Melanie Potock (Coach Mel), MA, CCC-SLP. This book provides solutions to help empower parents to create lifelong, healthy eating habits for their children.


It was an easy and enjoyable read from beginning to end. The book provides practical solutions and step-by-step ways to transition your baby to early solid foods and smart-start purees. This book sets your child up for a lifetime of healthy, adventurous eating by letting her lead the way. It puts your child in the driver’s seat, helping to establish a positive relationship with what’s on her plate. This book helps parents encourage a confident and healthy eater at an early age and some of this books features are: valuable self-regulatory skills; mindful eating strategies; 25 baby tested and approved functional food recipes; smart-start purees and healthy finger foods, and how to introduce them; ways to avoid picky eating; methods for avoiding food allergies and reducing choking hazards; and mess-free tips for dining out.

This book appears to cover it all and they do a great job at it too! I love how they provide great recipes to try and even specified ages for each recipe section (6 to 9 months; 10 to 12 months; and 13 to 18 months). I also loved seeing one of my favorite products featured in the book, the EZPZ Happy Mat.

Throughout, Baby Self-Feeding, there is a lot that they touch upon and as you read this book you may learn new things that you never knew before. I know I learned a great deal and here are some learning highlights for me. 1) It is important to repeat exposure of foods that your kids dislike as it takes time for them to like them. Could take 8 to 15 times before they will accept it. 2) Don’t pressure feed and offer food in a positive, non-judgemental environment. 3) There is a helpful self-feeding checklist that you can use to see if your child is ready. There is so much more that I learned; however, I don’t want to spoil the whole book for you. 😉

My favorite part of the book is the tips for dining out with your kids as it provides success secrets that I just love!

I give this book 5 healthy fingers out of 5! It truly covers so much more than I expected such as vegetarian diets, babies who are breastfeed and those who are formula feed, just to name a few. It was inclusive to everyone and was done in a positive manner. This was such a great book and one that I would recommend to everyone that I know.

If you are interested in purchasing this book please click here.

To follow Nancy Ripton, follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

To follow Melanie Potock (Coach Mel) and learn how to raise adventurous eaters, follow Parenting in the Kitchen on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. To learn more about feeding therapy and extreme picky eating, join Coach Mel at My Munch Bug on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

Until next time…..Happy Parenting!

– Momma Braga

Betty and the Loaf-of-Bread Sit

This week a new book landed on our list that introduces young readers to a lovable cat’s adventure in a new book called, Betty and the Loaf-of-Bread Sit. This book is written by Marisa Wiens and illustrated by Laura Toews. Betty and the Loaf-of-Bread Sit takes young readers on an adventure with Betty as she finds the perfect sit for her adorable and lumpy self. After many failed attempts at finding the best sit, she finds herself hungry and ends up finding the perfect sit. Betty even decides not to eat after all as the “sit” was just too comfy!

The illustrations are just adorable and they illustrate the story beautifully. My daughter just loved seeing the “kitty” as we turned each page. It was an overall adorable and easy book to read. These are my favourite as they keep my almost two year intrigued from beginning to end.

I had the opportunity to speak with author, Marisa, to find out a little bit more about her and what inspired her.

“I’ve always been a child at heart and I love to get creative. Once I had my son, we were borrowing a lot of books from the library and reading them at bedtime. I was not impressed with a lot of the children’s books that were out there and the idea came to me one day that I should write a children’s book”, said Marisa.


As for her inspiration, it all started with gramma. “My cat Betty (who is named after my deceased gramma and who found me on the eve of my gramma’s passing) is the inspiration for my book. Since my gramma passed before she could ever meet my children, I feel this is a way for them to get to know her and I always feel her chuckling and reading along with us”, stated Marisa. I always find the stories behind the stories so touching and this was one of them!

The neat part in making this book is that Marisa and the illustrator Laura grew up together in North Delta, British Columbia and have been best friends. These two could always be found on the playground, reveling in their own unique world of unicorns and peculiar merriment. So it was only natural to ask her best friend who was a fantastic artist to be her illustrator. Marisa stated, “I thought it would be something really cool for us to do together so it did not take much convincing to recruit her for the illustrations.”

Cat #2

When I asked Marisa what message does she want children to get out of her book, she stated, “I think I mainly want to tap into the playfulness and silliness that is in children. I think the message is that you can be silly and have fun while reading.” I think that message is awesome!

This book is a great read for young children one to five years of age and especially perfect for a young reader with a love of cats.

To purchase this lovely book you can visit, http://bookstore.authorhouse.com/Products/SKU-000980241/Betty-and-the-LoafofBread-Sit.aspx https://www.amazon.com/Betty-Loaf-Bread-Marisa-Wiens-ebook/dp/B01BVMJKG0/182-4031052-4891628?ie=UTF8&*Version*=1&*entries*=0

You can also follow them on social media:

Twitter: @BettyatLobs
Instagram: @bearcat_betty_books

Mom & Daughter
Author Marisa and daughter Emeri

Marisa now resides in Victoria, British Columbia, with her husband, Chris; her son and daughter, Carver and Emeri; her two cats, Betty and Luongo; and her dog, Makaveli. She dedicates this book to her cat-loving gramma, Betty, who taught her unconditional love and who is now somewhere over the rainbow in heaven.

We give this book 5 meows out of 5!

Until next time….Happy Parenting!

– Momma Braga