Monday, June 21, 2010

Cien Por Ciento

To entertain the kiddoes on our colosal road trip from South Carolina to Arizona, I've checked out some great books on CD.

Anne of Green Gables, The Hobbit, some Magic Treehouse, some Little House on the Prairie, Judy Moody, Stuart Little, *Kira-kira, *The White Stag, *A Wrinkle in Time, When You Reach me, *Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, When You Reach Me.

*books I haven't read. I know. A Wrinkle in Time. How did I miss that as a kid? Apparently every other ten-fourteen year old loved it. My kids WILL have advantages that I did not, so it shall be written. We did read some amazing books and I'll never forget my mom reading Charlotte's Web to my fifth grade class and weeping. I don't actually remember being embarrassed. And I wept when I read it to my kids. And whenever I read them Kate DiCamillo. Must be genetic.
A-hem. On with the blog. My apologies for keeping you here in the fine print.

By some Magic Treehouse, I mean twenty titles. I guess when I was requesting materials online, those looked really good. Over and over.

I've noticed that when we listen to books, there isn't the same behavioral backlash that we get when they watch a movie. Plus, it makes driving more fun than listening to books. Listening to movies without being able to see the picture is kind of annoying to me, esp Popeye. I can watch it, but to listen only makes me want to gouge my ears  out of my head. Hmm. That's not as poetic as gouging one's eyes out. I tmakes me want to throw our portable DVD player out the window? Yes. That.

And in a shocking development in the field, The Hobbit has flopped. Nobody wanted to continue past the tea party with the neverending dwarf names/stories. I thought it was much more fun to hear someone sing the pub songs than to read them. (That was one of my favorite things about the LOTR movies. Hearing tunes to the songs. Especially in the extended version, when Eowyn sings this dirge...OR Viggo could have been my favorite part of the movies. Hmmm. That's a really hard call. Look at this picture and help me decide.)

Back to the Hobbit on CD. I wish the actor was Brittish. That can add a lot to a story- for instance, listening to 'Island of the Blue Dolphins' was cool because the actress had that Tongan-ish accent and it was just beautiful.

We're over halfway through "When You Reach Me" and that's holding their attention pretty well. I read that book earlier this year and didn't remember some of the mild cursing in it. That's the bad thing about audio books versus reading it aloud to the kids- I can't insert milder words like 'heck'. A good discussion will come of this, right?

And just to let you know of a cool resource, I've listened to some good recordings of common domain books, like "A Midsummer Night's Dream" and "Pride and Prejudice" on, a site where individuals volunteer and record their favorite books. I like to do that while folding laundry or doing dishes.

The Midsummer Night's Dream was great because they had different people reading each part and it was easier to understand than straight reading from the page. I tend to skim over the name of the character speaking, and generally get confused by reading plays. How lazy that sounds. Now you know my secret. I'm a lazy reader.

It's late and we're driving from Little Rock, AR to Veda, TX tomorrow (about 10 hours with a stop planned at the science museum in Oklahoma City, so I'm off to bed. And in case you were wondering, the science center in Birmingham AL was really really fun. We got to pet some sharks and rays and lie on a bed of nails.

Anything to add? Thanks for reading!


  1. SC to AZ? Are you mad, woman? (In a Mad-Hatter-ish sort of way, of course:) )

  2. We love to listen to books on CD on a drive. Some of our favorites are anything from the Hank the Cowdog series, any Beverly Cleary, and the New Kid on the Block.

    I must confess, I was the only kid in American not to like A WRINKLE IN TIME.

  3. Just gave you an award on my blog, Kelly.

  4. It sounds like your trip is well-stocked with books - oh so important. It could mean the difference between anarchy and peace!

  5. Hey guys! We made it, only a few riots. And I feel kindof crazy! We got hailed on in Texas. And were disappointed not to see anybody with a cowboy hat or a gun.

  6. Glad you made it!

    We drove last weekend from Dayton Ohio to Hilton Head SC. No kids, but still a loooong drive. We listened to the end of Harry Potter book five and most of book six. It made the time pass much faster. Or at least it seemed that way.