The Insomniacs

There are folks at our house who sometimes don’t want to go to bed at night. Like the Mom Person. The Person that my world revolves around.  I have trouble understanding this. I know when my bedtime is. And when that time comes around I want to go to my bed.

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But my bedtime never seems to be the same bedtime as the Mom Person’s. She would stay up all night if I let her. Typing away on the computer. Doing crossword puzzles. Doing laundry. Or reading a book. She reads BIG books that take her forever to finish. I try giving her my sad face, and laying down under her feet and moaning. But she says, “Just one more chapter.”  Those chapters sure are long ones!

I try to tell her that she needs to stick to picture books. They say just as much as the big books with a lot fewer words and pages. We found a good one at the library this week. A perfect one —The Insomniacs. Written by Karina Wolf and illustrated by The Brothers Hilts. It was published by G.P. Putnam’s Sons in 2012. It is suitable for K and up.

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Mrs. Insomniac gets a new job that requires them to move 12 time zones away. They found it impossible to adjust to the time change. They couldn’t sleep at night and then would fall asleep during the day at work and school. Father, Mother and Mika tried all sorts of things. They took hot baths, worked crossword puzzles, counted to 1,000 and sipped mugs of warm milk. ( My Mom Person sometimes does these things too!)

They wondered who knew the secret of getting to sleep and decided to go ask the bears. They found a cave but not a bear. Instead they roused a “cloud” of bats who flew out into the night! And then they noticed that there were a lot of animals that were awake and lively during the night! So they decided to do the same. Father, who was a photographer, did his developing in the dark. Mother, who seems to be a scientist, studied the stars, and Mika went to night school. And when the sun started coming up they pulled down the blinds and went to bed.

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The Mom Person and I both loved this book! It’s all about her! Those Brothers Hilts did a fantastic job with the illustrations. They are dark and kind of strange. Kind of Edward Goreyish or Tim Burtonish. Just perfect. The pictures make you feel like you’re creeping around in the dark. Pretty cool!

The Insomniacs could provide an opportunity for some great discussions about sleep habits – of people and animals. You could also talk about nighttime jobs and activities. What kinds of jobs could insomniacs have? What kind of things could they do for entertainment?

There are some very interesting activities that can be found for lessons on nocturnal animals. One can be found here.
The Crayola website has coloring pages and lesson plans.
Bats Conservation International also has a great website with lots of information.

For a list of other fantastic picture books and great resources visit Susanna Hill’s Perfect Picture Book Friday.

And go check out The Insomniacs! you’ll be glad you did!

Now I will leave you with The Beatles and Good Night!  Good night!

The Sun and The Moon

The Mom Person and The Big Guy With the Treats were gone to California for a long, long time. To visit the Princesses. That’s a good thing for them. Not so good for me. It was a very boring time.

CIMG7820We had some good buddies taking care of everything here. And we got our dinner and our treats and some good pats and a little bit of ball play. But it just isn’t the same without the Mom Person. She is my Sun and my Moon.

But they are home now!!!! And life is good again! It was a full moon when they arrived home. An auspicious sign! IMG_3130

And now even though it’s raining outside, my sun is shining for me! The rain is a good thing too! She has brought it all! The moon, the sun and the rain!

While they were away, I took care of the house. I slept on their bed because it smells like them. I tried to change the sheets before they got home. But those corners had me stymied.

IMG_0267The Mom Person was very appreciative of my efforts though. She said she was sure glad that she didn’t change the sheets before she left!

She brought back some really yummy treats and some new tennis balls and lots of postcards. They had a fine trip.

But let’s get back to the moon. That great big full moon. It’s nice to go walking out under the full moon. The world is bright and you don’t have to worry about stepping on snakes that you can’t see. We read a book called The Moon Jumpers by Janice May Udry and illustrated by Maurice Sendak. I love Mr Sendak. His pictures are so funny and clever. This book has black and white pictures along with 2 page spreads in color. They look about the same to me, but the Mom Person assures me that the color ones are quite lovely.

The Moon Jumpers was published in 1959 by Harper & Row. It’s a very old book, but it can still be found if you look.

IMG_0275It starts out with:
“Summer night is the cool dark grass
And big tired trees
With the moon sailing
On a wind.”

It’s a lovely story of kids going out to play at night when the moon comes out. They sing and dance and do somersaults. They climb a tree and tell ghost stories. They jump and jump, but “nobody ever has touched the moon.” And in the end they go to bed and “dream of tomorrow’s sun.” Just as I dreamed of my sun’s return.

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I’m very happy that everyone is home now. The world is right and the new year will be off to a good start. I hope that all is right in your world. And I will leave you with a little song from the Beatles to brighten your day —

Here Comes the Sun!

And if you are interested in Mr Maurice Sendak here are some interesting stories at NPR. Enjoy! And Happy New Year to you all!!