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2014 Year in Review or What was read....

I've been doing a year in review for....I don't know, forever, so here is 2014!
And I know what you are thinking...hey, the year isn't over yet, but it is my friends. It is.

I fell way short on my Goodreads goal of 114 books, and this is because I became obsessed with short stories. So, my new goal has become: read 100 pages a day. Some pages are short stories, some are in one of the books I am currently reading, and others are articles, etc. I'm going to end up at 87 or 88 books read for 2014. Not too shabby.

For the rest of this year (the whole week and some change we have left) I plan to finish The Best American Short Stories 2014 edited by Jennifer Egan. And -maybe- The Family Fang (which I'm loving!)Please feel free to friend me on Goodreads and see what else I read this year and what I'll be reading next year. I love Goodreads.

Here are my Top Five that I read in 2014:
I'm not going to review the books again, I wrote heartfelt reviews the second I finished all of them on Goodreads. These were the best of the best and I read a great many good books this year, but you can see one that scared the hell out of me, one that I-could-not-put-down (and that had not happened in loooong time), one that charmed me so much I still smile when I see the cover, a new author I just worship, and one that put me back into the 1990's and reminded me what being a teenage girl was really like. I declare 2014 to be the year of George Saunders for me. I'm hooked. I actually also read the 10th of December, but preferred Civilwarland (maybe because I read it first).
Some honorable mentions:

I also did a bit of rereading this year (Hitchhiker's Guide, Ready Player One, The Giver...) I don't usually reread old favorites for fear they won't hold up again (The Giver did NOT, for me, hold up to my original reading in the early 2000's). And I forced myself to finish some books I did not like. I'm not doing that next year. I think I was chasing that high of a great storytelling, reality melts away page turning trance that I found with The Martian and found again in many of the short stories I read this year.
I didn't do any book challenges, or follow any new blogs- two things I plan to correct in 2015.


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How to Make a Sharknado for Your Shark Craft

I have had an insane amount of fun this summer, but I always try to do something for Shark Week. This year I called it Shark Lab and we are making three crafts I have never done with the kids before.

But for ME, I wanted a Sharknado.
Inspired by this post, and I tried several different dish soaps and NONE of the tornadoes looked as good as they did in this lady's posts. She must have magic soap, but it really works!

Then I went to three stores to find either plastic sharks that would be light enough to float and not just sink to the bottom of the jar and/or shrinky dink material (make my own damn sharks!) Both hunts were fail, so I made them myself using  a template I cannot find again. Sorry.

 I flipped the images, cut them out, glued them together and then book-taped the hell out of them! Presto, waterproof.

The jar needed I made a small label with
"Sharknado" bookended with some fancy orange chainsaws and voila!

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Teddy Bear Storytime

Tonight's storytime followed the same format I use for all of my day storytimes as I have temporarily suspended my idea of doing storytime in reverse in order to get the kids sleepy. They only seem to run out into the library to pick out movies and books and the effect is lost. So here is what we did tonight.

Our theme was teddy bears, but our night storytime is always wear jammies, bring a lovey, and low action.

My opening song is Hello Bubbles which I learned from Read Sing Play here. BTW this woman is a storytime goddess and I have picked up many great ideas on her blog.

Story the 1st: The Red Hat by Lita Judge

 Why? Because I want to get across to my kids that books do not always have to have words in order for us to "read" them, and I want to give pre-readers a chance to feel proud they finished a book on their own. I plan to try to read or highlight at least one wordless read for the next couple of storytimes.

Flannel Board: Ten in the Bed
I used a modified versi…