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Fun Facts about Macaroni and Cheese & Crafty Weekends Link Party


Did you know today is National Macaroni and Cheese Day? To celebrate I thought I would share some fun facts about the All-American comfort food and have two link parties! One for our normal Crafty Weekends and one for your favorite mac and cheese recipes!

Crafty Weekends--a craft link party


We are still celebrating Independence Day (the fireworks were rained out until tonight), so I am going straight to sharing the features from last week. It was a small party, so there are only a few!! Thank you to everyone who shared with us at our last party.  Just a reminder that we do not feature any of the food/recipe posts and ask you not to share them here. There were some great ideas shared. Below are a few of the features from our last party, but be sure to go back and check out the many great crafts shared! Please remember Creative Kids Culture Blog Hop is a place to share all your diverse and cultural posts there. 
 I can't wait to see what your latest creations are!!

Features


1) From The Real Thing with the Coake Family: Cute 4th of July Decorations

2) From The Scrap Shoppe: DIY Flag Planter

3) From 3 Boys & a Dog: Coconut & Key Lime Homemade Soap


4) From The Style Safari: Oversize Bow Dress

Thank you to everyone who shared the last week!! I hope you will share again!! If you are featured here, please feel free to grab a featured button to display proudly on your blog. I would love the help spreading the word about Crafty Weekends!!


You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!
Click here to enter

Chapter Books for Different Ages

Disclosure: We were sent a copy of each of these books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own.

Summer has hit and now the kids are off school. Looking for something for them to read? This post is for you. It has suggestions from age 6 to 14! And there is something for everyone! Our first book is the third book in a series written for 6 to 9 year olds. It is Big Foot and Little Foot: The Squatchicorns by Ellen Potter and art by Felicita Sala.

Review of Queen of the Sea

Disclosure: We were sent this book for free in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are our own.

    Queen of the Sea by Dylan Meconis is a delightful tale about a young orphaned girl, named Margaret, that has lived at a convent all her life. She had a quiet, happy life until the King died, and the true identity of the new ruler is questionable. A mysterious prisoner arrives at the convent, and as they befriend each other, Margaret begins to unravel the mystery of who she really is.

Easy DIY Napkin Rings -- a Crafty Weekends Craft & Link Party


We are having a fun Independence Day week and are planning a barbecue. I found these fun patriotic napkins  at  Target for $3. I thought it would be fun to make some simple napkin rings for them. These are really easy and cheap. And completely disposable. I used a toilet paper roll and a piece of scrapbook paper. I cut the toilet paper roll into fourths (one-inch each). Then I cut one-inch strips of the scrapbook paper and glued them on. 

Ocean & Beach Books Perfect for Summer!

Disclosure: We were sent these books in exchange for honest reviews. All opinions are our own.

With the start of summer I am in the beach mood even if the temperatures here haven't been beach weather yet. At Crafty Weekends I shared a beach theme craft this week (have you shared your creations there yet?), and today I'm sharing some books about oceans, fish, sea glass and boats. Yup basically beach and boating themed!! So much fun. These books include picture books as well as nonfiction books. Let's start with the nonfiction books. We will start with a new one from National Geographic Kids. It is Captain Aquatica's Awesome Ocean by Jess Cramp with Grace Hill Smith and Joe Levit. 

DIY Beach Tic Tac Toe -- a Crafty Weekends Craft & Link Party


Summer began last week. I am guessing people are getting ready to go to the beach and on vacations. Today I am sharing a simple craft that can be planned with purchased sea treasures or with found ones. The idea for this craft came from a tic-tac-toe game that I saw at our local Hallmark store. I didn't want to spend the money but loved the idea. The one at the store used sand dollars and starfish.

Weird But True! USA -- Fun trivia to awe your friends and family on the 4th of July

Disclosure: We were sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own. 

Which had more viewers the walk on the moon in 1969 or the 2018 Super Bowl?  What state has the most people who walk or bike to work? What state's trees helped the colonists during the Revolutionary War? What is the only state name that is one syllable? What building (in the USA) contains rocks from the Great Pyramid of Khufu in Giza, Abraham Lincoln's tomb, the Alamo, and the Colosseum in Rome? Which state produces the majority of the toothpicks used in the USA? Can you answer these questions? You can if you read the book we are sharing tonight. It is National Geographic Kids Weird but True! USA

Review of Poetry Books

Disclosure: We were sent copies of these books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Today I am going to share three different poetry books with you. They are each very different from one another and each is a wonderful addition to any poetry unit or collection. Two of the books have themes that will also lend toward other subjects as well. We will start with The Day the Universe Exploded My Head by Allan Wolf and illustrated by Anna Raff. 

Biographies & Non-Fiction Stories

Disclosure: We were sent copies of these books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own. 

Today Hazel and I are writing a joint post. She is going to review half the books. All of the books we have put together are biographies and non-fiction stories. Two are novels of stories about war. Let's start with the two picture books. The first book is Doctor Esperanto and the Language of Hope by Mara Rockliff and illustrated by Zosia Dzierzawska. 

DIY Flower Wreath & Crafty Weekends Link Party


A few weeks ago I was in one of the craft stores and checked out the flower summer wreaths. I couldn't believe how expensive they were so I looked at supplies. I found this twig wreath and two flower stems on sale. Since our front door gets so much sun that hot glue melts, I used wire to secure the flowers. I cut the stems of the flowers and stuck the stems into the spaces in the wreath. Once I got the flowers arranged how I liked them, I wrapped the wire tightly around the stems and hid them with the flowers and leaves. I added a ribbon to hang it and now have the perfect wreath for my red door.

20 Recipes Kids Should Know Review

Disclosure: We were sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Hazel has always loved cooking and wants to really learn how to cook on her own. I have gotten her a few cookbooks over the years. Tonight I am sharing a new one, 20 Recipes Kids Should Know by Esme Washburn and photographs by Calista Washburn. This is one of my favorites of all of them. 

Calligraphy & Lettering: A Maker's Guide -- a Crafty Weekends Review & Link Party

Disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Tonight I am sharing a book that is coming out in a couple of weeks (June 25, 2019). It is part of the Victoria & Albert Museum's A Maker's Guide Series. Tonight we are sharing Calligraphy & Lettering: A Maker's Guide

Science Books & Resources

Disclosure: We were sent these books and kits in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

I have been sitting on these books for awhile and the pile keeps growing, so I am getting these reviews done. Are you looking for some fun science (mostly space) resources for STEM activities and lessons this summer? I have a group to share with you. The first book is a middle grade novel. It is the first in a series of novels from National Geographic Kids. It is Explorer Academy: The Nebula Secret by Trudi Trueit. 

Crafty Weekends


I took a break from Crafty Weekends due to the holiday, so now we have two weeks of crafts to add to the party!!  So it is time to see what you have been creating!  Thank you to everyone who shared with us at our last party.  Just a reminder that we do not feature any of the food/recipe posts and ask you not to share them here. There were some great ideas shared. Below are a few of the features from our last party, but be sure to go back and check out the many great crafts shared! Please remember Creative Kids Culture Blog Hop is a place to share all your diverse and cultural posts there.  I can't wait to see what your latest creations are!!

Memory Making Mom Review

Disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

What are your childhood memories? Do they ever sneak in when you think about your own parenting? Or perhaps even your own identity? I remember back in my teacher days taking a class where we were asked to write about our own identities. I was single at the time and only had five or so years of teaching under my belt. I wrote about some of my childhood memories. It was really interesting when we shared our stories. It was a class on diversity training. Unfortunately I lost the paper (and digital) copy of my paper. As a young teacher my childhood memories really helped define me. They are important and will affect our kids throughout their lives. This is the basis of the book I am sharing with you today. It is Memory Making Mom by Jessica Smartt. 

Jesus Calling for Teens: 50 Devotions for Busy Days Review

Disclosure: We were sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

My life has been a bit busy lately. Has yours? I find May always is a bit busy. There is the rush after Easter and our April school vacation week because the end is near. The days and weekends seem full of birthday parties, confirmations, first communions, graduations, award ceremonies, the list goes on and on. Today I am sharing a book perfect for busy teens. It is Jesus Calling for Teens: 50 Devotions for Busy Days by Sarah Young. 

Crafty Weekends Link Party


This has been a crazy and stressful week, so I am not sharing any crafts or craft products with you. So it is time to see what you have been creating!  Thank you to everyone who shared with us at our last party.  Just a reminder that we do not feature any of the food/recipe posts and ask you not to share them here. There were some great ideas shared. Below are a few of the features from our last party, but be sure to go back and check out the many great crafts shared! Please remember Creative Kids Culture Blog Hop is a place to share all your diverse and cultural posts there.  I can't wait to see what your latest creations are!!

National Geographic Kids Almanac 2020

Disclosure: We were sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

National Geographic Kids is celebrating the tenth anniversary of its annual almanac. This year's is packed full of interesting facts and amazing photos. Today we are sharing with you National Geographic Kids Almanac 2020

Our World and the Great Outdoors

Disclosure: We were sent these books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own.

Well Earth Day happened last month and my life has been so crazy I never got around to sharing the amazing books I have gathered for it. So I am going to share some of them with you today. We will start with Champion: The Comeback Tale of the American Chestnut Tree by Sally M. Walker. 

Crafty Weekends Review & Link Party


Disclosure: I was sent these books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Tonight I am going to share two fun coloring books. These books are a bit like adult coloring books but for kids--think tweens. They are recommended for ages 7 to 10. Hazel LOVES them. The series is Press Out + Color, and we have had the pleasure of sharing with you some of the other books in this series. The first one we will share tonight is Press Out and Color Unicorns by Kate McLelland.

Spring Board Books Round-Up

Disclosure: We were sent these books in exchange for honest reviews. All opinions are our own.

So I decided to share with you some board books today that have been sitting on my shelf. Since one of them is about spring I figured I better hurry up. Although it is just feeling like spring here, we are half way through it on the calendar. These books range in ages from baby to 3.

Crafty Weekends Link Party


This has been a crazy week here. We celebrated Teacher Appreciation Week a week early and I spent a lot of time at school helping out/running it. Then Thirty-One announced a Pop-Up Sale (Disclosure: I am a Thirty-One Independent Consultant so I will receive a percentage of any purchase made through this link.). It ends tomorrow if you want to shop a deal! I have been advertising it and sold at a craft fair as well. As a result I am not reviewing anything tonight. 

Japanese Crafts -- Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

Disclosure: We were sent these books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own.

May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. This year I thought I would focus on Japanese crafts. I have written a few posts about Japan and Japanese culture over the years. If you want a general overview of the country and its culture you should check out my review here. When I looked at my shelf of books to review I saw a bit of a pattern and realized I had a collection of books about crafts in Japan. Part of what I love about these books is most of them also teach a bit about the culture.

Where the Heart Is Review

Disclosure: We were sent this book in exchange for an honest review.All opinions are our own.

Today Hazel is sharing a novel that she really enjoyed with you. It is recommended for ages 10 to 14.

Fairy In Waiting Review

Disclosure: We were sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own.

Today we are starting something special. Hazel is going to be writing some of the reviews for me! So here is Hazel's Corner!!
Since this is my first real review I will tell you a little bit about myself. I am ten and in fourth grade. I love all subjects, and some of my favorite animals are birds, especially flamingos and owls. I play the violin.

Sewing School Fashion Design -- a Crafty Weekends Review & Link Party

Disclosure: We were sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Welcome to Crafty Weekends!! Life here has been busy, but I have exciting news. Starting tomorrow Hazel is an official writer/book reviewer here at Crafty Moms Share. Since I have gotten so behind on my reviews and many of the books are for Hazel's age level (or younger) she is going to start writing her own reviews. The first one will be published tomorrow!! So please come check it out!

Today we are sharing a book that is written for tweens. It is from our favorite kids' sewing series--Sewing School. This one is Sewing School Fashion Design by Amie Petronis Plumley and Andria Lisle.

Crafty Weekends -- Happy Easter!!

I have been celebrating Easter and spending family time this week, so I am not sharing any crafts. However I do want to wish you and your family a very Happy Easter before we get the party going!!





Art Books for Kids

Disclosure: I was sent these books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Today we are going to look at books that teach kids about art and artists. The books range for ages 4 to young adult. We will go in order of age. The first is Dancing Through Fields of Color: The Story of Helen Frankenthaler by Elizabeth Brown and illustrations by Aimee Sicuro. It is recommended for ages 4 to 8. 

This book tells a simple form of the story of Helen Frankenthaler. Helen Frankenthaler is a female artist from the 1950s. She dreamed in color and dreamed of sharing the colors she saw in her head with the world, but the art world was telling her to paint in a certain way.
I love how the pictures illustrate the thoughts and work of Helen Frankenthaler. The story is not very detailed but is perfect for this age group to be introduced to this artist. It is a fun book!




Our next book looks like a board book, but it isn't. It is recommended for ages 6+ and is by the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It is I (Heart) Art. 
This book shares many pieces from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in different categories like I Heart Art, I Heart Sports, I Heart Reading, Writing and Drawing, I Heart the City and more. Each category is full of artwork that fits into it. 


Each piece of art is presented with information about it and the artist who created it. The art varies from paintings to sculptures and more. It is almost like a visit to the museum while sitting at home, but of course the work is in much smaller of a size.

Our next book is about another female artist. It is The Bluest of Blues: Anna Atkins and the First Book of Photographs by Fiona Robinson. It is recommended for ages 6 to 9.
Anna Children lived in the 1800s and was brought up by her father. Her father is a scientist and teaches Anna about plants and insects. She begins a collection of nature--plants, shells and more--similar to her father's insect collection. She draws pictures of them and labels them with their scientific names. As she becomes an adult she becomes a botanist. She eventually marries John Pelly Atkins. 

Anna goes on to having a collection of over 1,500 examples in her herbarium. This is far too many to illustrate, but she wants to share it with the world. She is not allowed in The Society, so she cannot share with the scientific community. Then her father gives her a gift--one of the first cameras ever made.  I love how most of the book is blue and white like her original photographs. She eventually creates sun photos of her plant samples. A wonderful project to go with this book would be doing sun prints! You can purchase sunprint paper and kits in many different places including Amazon. 


Our next book is Leonardo's Art Workshop: Invent, Create, and Make STEAM Projects Like a Genius by Amy Leidtke. It is recommended for ages 10+. 

Now we all know Leonardo Da Vinci was an artist as well as an inventor and scientist. This book draws on his name and introduces STEAM projects to learn more about aspects of art. 


Each section gives the science behind the project and then has detailed instructions for the project. The photographs are amazing and the instructions are easy to follow. 



As you can see the project has steps listed and photographed. I love the details of this book. It teaches and gives the reader things to do to learn and see on his or her own. It is a wonderful book to check out!! I could see using it in the summer for keeping kids entertained!!


Our final book for today is recommended for young adults. It is Draw Like an Artist: A Self-Portrait Sketchbook by Patricia Geis. 

This book introduces readers to various artists and shares one of their self portraits. Then it provides a place for the reader to draw his or her own self portrait similar to the artist. Some of these places are blank pages like this one for Frida Kahlo. 



Each artist's self portrait has an explanation about it and a question to inspire the reader in his or her own self portrait. The artists in this book range from classical artists to modern artists and everything in between. Some of the inspirations are not really questions but more learning a style like this one with the Van Gogh self portrait.  


What a fun book to explore artists and self portraits as well as to learn a bit about different types of art and how to draw and paint. 

Each of these books teaches different things about art and artists. I hope you will check them out!