{Books}

A few months ago I was at my parents house and we busted out a huge tub of pictures. I love looking back at old photos of my parents and pictures from my childhood. As we were flipping through photos, laughing at the hair dos and bell bottoms it hit me that most people of my generation will not have this sort of experience. Think about it, we all have smartphones. Which is a great and super convenient way to document life. Our phones can hold thousands of pictures but that's the problem. Most of us just let those pictures sit on our cell phones. Then one day a warning pops up that you are running out of memory and what happens? You just start deleting the photos left and right to make room. After my family and I had finished up with the pictures I promised myself that I would get my pictures off my phone and print them off! First I went to Walgreens, but if you use the Instagram app to take pictures and then try to send them to somewhere like Walgreens, the picture is very distorted. I learned this the hard way when I decided to go to town and ordered 30 of my Instagram pictures. Let's just say it was a waste of a trip because every.single.photo was so blurry. A friend had told me about Chatbooks  (click on link for more info. You can also use this code to get your first Chatbook for free: HQA4NHJG) If you're like me and use the Instagram app to take most of your pictures, Chatbooks takes all those pictures and puts them into a 60 page book. You can choose how many books would like to receive or subscribe to all the volumes of your Chatbooks.I thought I had heard somewhere that pretty soon you will be able to use the Chatbooks app to make picture books of the photos just on your regular camera on your phone. If that's true, that would be pretty great too. After receiving my first Chatbooks, I was really impressed and excited that now I was finally getting all of those precious pictures OFF my phone and into my hands! These would make great gifts as well!

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Speaking of books, we visited the library a few weeks ago. It had been a while since we had been there and the books we do have here at home we have memorized. It was time to get some new books! I've toyed around with starting a library series on here just because I really appreciate when other people share what they are reading. I'm trying to be a bit more intentional with the books I check out, only because in the past when I have checked out books at the library for the kids most of the time when we get home, the story isn't that great and the kids get over them pretty quickly. For this library trip I took the time and looked up kids books especially ones that I thought my kids would really be into. I also looked on friends blogs to see what kind of books they were checking out for their kids. After I had compiled my list, off we went! Here are some of the favorites below. It's been almost a month and the kids are still loving these books. I think being more intentional with the books I get really makes a difference. Normally, I grab whatever book looks appealing to me only to discover the storyline is a bit strange or the illustrations aren't that great. So...anybody have any book recommendations? Because I'm all ears!

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Gavin's favorite has been, "Rita's Rhino" and Sophia has really liked, "Goodnight Ark". I honestly have enjoyed all of them. "Chu's first day of School" was a great one to read the night before Gavin started pre-school. My little man is pretty reserved and gets intimidated by larger groups, so school is a little scary for him. I think this book helped him as Chu (the little panda ) is really worried about the first day of school, but by the end of the book ends up liking it! After the first day of pre-school Gavin told me he was just like Chu, he was a little nervous but then it turned out great. I really liked how the book helped Gavin identify his emotion and he was able to talk to me about it.

Overall, this library trip was a great success and we are looking forward to the next trip back!