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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Summertime, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 15 of 15
1. Paula's Illustration--IFK Summer '12 Postcard Promo

Summer is my favorite season, as I enjoy being outdoors as much as I can. The above is my image for our IFK summer promo postcard, which had the summer theme of "beach". I did several prior to this one, finally opting for a looser, devil-may-care style with heavier ink. And I liked the idea of a poodle in a polka-dot bikini, lying on the beach. I was also doing dogs on a beach-scene for my own summer promo, below, so these kind of went together.

Have a good rest of your summer, everybody!

2 Comments on Paula's Illustration--IFK Summer '12 Postcard Promo, last added: 9/8/2012
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2. Summer Solstice 2012

The longest day of the year, the first day of summer, has arrived.  Ah, sit back and relax, starting tomorrow the days begin to get shorter and school is here before we know it.  Of course, the longest day is not more than 24 hours, but it gives us in the Northern Hemisphere the sun for the longest period of time.  It appears to us Earthlings at its most northern point. At the North Pole, nearly the entire day is bathed in sunlight. Some years ago my youngest brother pitched summer baseball with the North Pole Nicks in North Pole, Alaska.  The big game was on the Summer Solstice and played at midnight without lights! You can guess what the shortest day of the year brings the folks up north–darkness.

See NASA’s Solstice Animation –what the Earth would look like on the Summer Solstice if you were standing on the Sun!

The spin axis of our planet is tilted 23.5 degrees with respect to Earth’s orbit around the Sun. The northern summer solstice is an instant in time when the north pole of the Earth points more directly toward the Sun than at any other time of the year. It marks the beginning of summer in the northern hemisphere and winter in the southern hemisphere.

A few children’s titles come up with a keyword search, summer solstice,  at the San Francisco Public Library:  The Summer Solstice by Ellen Jackson, The Longest Day by Wendy Pfeffer, Mermaid Dance by Marjorie Rose Hakala, and Mermaids on Parade by Melanie Hope Greenberg.

Visit StarDate Online from the University of Texas at Austin MacDonald Observatory to get the latest Summer Solstice news for 2012. Enjoy your summer! SSPP Reads will post around the Fourth of July.

Reposted from June 2011.

Graphic from Flickr Creative Commons License by rupjones

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3. Bubbles!!!

What kid doesn't love bubbles on a warm, spring day? Try using some different solutions and unusual bubble wands. We made bubbles out of water, liquid dish soap, and karo syrup.

Try not to be irritated when the bubbles are overturned. It's inevitable, isn't it?

After bubble-making, cool off with a cup of cold chocolate milk...Bubble-blowing permitted. Chocolate mustaches encouraged.

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4. When Memorial Day Becomes Rememberance Day


On Friday, May 25, 1984,  in a small town of 1200 people, in a small grocery store on the highway not too far from cornfields, at the golden age of 14, I became a comic book collector.

What set me on this path that has led me  >choke<  27 years later to be a comics missionary, spreading the four-color gospel far and wide?  Well, I blame Morgan Freeman and Jim Shooter.

SSS4 When Memorial Day Becomes Rememberance DayAs a child of the Seventies, I would watch Sesame Street, and immediately after that, The Electric Company.  During the 1974-75 season, TEC started showing episodes of “Spidey Super Stories”.  These were comicbook/live action hybrids, mixing live action with drawn panels.  Spidey usually had to thwart some crazy villain, and never spoke, except in silent word balloons which had to be read by the viewer.  (My favorite villain: The Can Crusher, who, while visiting a tomato canning factory as a child, loses his pet frog in a kettle.  Thus he spends his adult life crushing open tomato cans in supermarkets, searching in vain for his beloved croaker.  *sniff*  Such pathos.)

I was just learning to read, as well as going through the “superhero phase” most young boys experience.  So I got hooked on Spider-Man, and my mom actually bought me the first comic book I ever read!  (Thanks, Ma!)  As you can see on the cover, the Easy Reader (Morgan Freeman) gives his seal of approval, stating “This comic book is easy to read!”  (The Comics Code approved it as well, but they’re as square as their seal.)

I would continue to enjoy Spider-Man throughout my childhood, taking my Spider-Man vitamins every day, and reading the daily comic strip whenever I had access to the Des Moines Register during my summers.  (Their comics were much better than those in the Omaha World-Herald.  The Register ran Star Trek, Asterix (!), Bloom County… and on Sundays we’d get the smaller market Sioux City Journal with the comics never seen in bookstores (Eek and Meek, Born Loser, Berry’s World).)  But I never really bought comics as a kid.  From 1979 until 1982, I was a fan of Mad Magazine, buying back issues and passionately learning all I could, pre-Internet, about The Usual Gang of Idiots.  From 1982 until 1984, my passion was video games.  While my family owned nothing more advanced than an old Coleco Telstar 6040 playing variations of Pong, that didn’t keep me from haunting arcades, searching for the new and unusual, and buying almost every videogame magazine I could find.

Of course, like most kids across the country, I read comic strips, bought the occasional strip collection, watched the CBS specials, and looked at any comic or cartoon (including the ones in my older brothers’ National Lampoons).  I even glommed onto an old graphic novel from the 1950s… the first Pogo reprint from Simon and Schuster.  When I was sick, I would read Richie Rich comics (the superhero covers at the pharmacy just made me sicker).  But it was just part of the multimedia background collage of my life, with older interests constantly being covered by newer distractions.

So, given all this, what caused me to become a comics fan?  What brought comics into the foreground, eclipsing my other interests?  Junior High and Mattel toys.

12 Comments on When Memorial Day Becomes Rememberance Day, last added: 5/31/2011
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5. A landlocked trip to the seaside

What with the turning of the calendar to July and the activity books I’ve been researching, Summer is definitely in the air. And nothing sings summertime more than a trip to the seaside!

Today’s books is perfect for anyone, adult or child, dreaming of a day on the beach. Traction Man and the Beach Odyssey, the latest book (published today!) from Mini Grey, follows the adventures of superhero Traction Man and his fearless, loyal sidekick, Scrubbing Brush.

Traction Man, the favourite toy of a young boy, is taken on holiday to the seaside where a series of perilous adventures befall him; he is swept out to sea, then washed up in a dank cave, found by another child on the beach, and nearly lost in a tremendous earthquake when the sandcastle he is inhabiting is enthusiastically attacked by a dog.

This story will thrill any child who brings their toys to life and creates adventures, journeys and real-life personas for them. Like the two earlier Traction Man stories (Traction Man is Here and Traction Man Meets Turbodog), this too is pacey, creating just the right amount of manageable anxiety that dissolves in wonderful relief with the resolution of the story. It’s packed with humour and provides parents with plenty of perfect opportunities for silly voices and even singing theme music from thrillers should they really get into the swing of it (I like to read it to my kids with a Sean Connery-esque accent!)

Image reproduced with permission. Inside spread of Traction Man and the Beach Odyssey. Click for large scale image.

Appropriately enough, some of the illustrations recall Marvel comics. They’re eyecatching and reward repeated readings for all the added details tucked away in them. If you’re looking for a superhero story that’s got all the action, excitement and adventure you could possibly want, but without any violence or malevolence, the Traction Man stories are for you. Particularly loved by the boys I’ve been reading to in the year 1 classes at M’s school, the girls too have been asking each week for another Traction Man story.

Those who already love Traction Man will not be disappointed with this new story (let’s hope there are more in the future!), whilst those who are new to the delights of this superhero and his sidekick will be able to adore this book in its own right, before (I’m confident) wanting to track down the two earlier stories.

Now, where we live is just about the furthest you can get from the seaside in

3 Comments on A landlocked trip to the seaside, last added: 7/7/2011
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6. Summertime! Hallelujah!

Summertime! Hallelujah! I’ve written about the summer slide–don’t get caught in that–and last year gave a list of engaging activities for students and their families, check that out here.

Don’t lose track of the summer reading requirement from Sts. Peter and Paul Salesian School.  Below are a few books in the top of the New York Times Children’s Best Sellers. SSPP Reads will be back come the Summer Solstice June 20, 2012. Happy Reading!

Children’s Picture Books

  1. Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons by Eric Litwin, Illustrated by James Dean (Harper/Harper Collins) Ages 3-7
  2. The Duckling Gets a Cookie? by Mo Willems (Hyperion/Disney) Ages 2-6
  3. Dinosaur Pet, lyrics by Marc Sedaka, Illustrated by Tim Bowers (Imagine!) Ages 4-7

Children’s Chapter Books

  1. Insurgent by Veronica Roth (Katherine Tegen/HarperCollins) Ages 14 and up
  2. Middle School: Get Me Out of Here! by James Patterson and Chris Tebbets. Illustrated by Laura Park (Little, Brown) Ages 8-12
  3. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (Dutton) Ages 14 and up

Children’s Paperback Books

  1. Divergent by Veronica Roth (Katherine Tegen/HarperCollins) Ages 14 and up
  2. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (Knopf) Ages 14 and up
  3. The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan (Disney-Hyperion) Ages 10 and up

Children’s Series Books

  1. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (Scholastic) Ages 12 and up
  2. Kane Chronicles by Rick Riordan (Hyperion) Ages 10 and u0p
  3. Theodore Boone by John Grisham (Dutton/Puffin) Ages 9-12

Graphic from Flickr Creative Commons License momentcaptured1

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7. Gratuitous Beach Shot

I planned to have my foot in there as a compositional element, ha! Surreal, no?

It seems quiet in blogland these days, what with vacations and shifting summer routines. I'll get back into posting more sketches and art soon. But for now, think I'll just go with the flow... Read the rest of this post

5 Comments on Gratuitous Beach Shot, last added: 7/19/2008
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8. Educated guess...

And you thought priests were the only ones peddling smut...
I did this for Playboy magazine a few years back. I think I did 5 pieces of art for them over a few years. I don't really do this style anymore. I thought it fit the SFG topic well.
Come to my blog to see other blasts from the past and NEW doodles.
Enjoy Summer!!!!!!!!!!!

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9. 5 O'Clock in the Morning*

Even my mother wouldn't say "Oh how nice dear" to these sketches. But 5 o'clock in the morning is the time to get down and dirty with ideas. With summer here, the kids home, and plenty of reasons to be distracted from work, quiet time is at a premium. I don't want to lose momentum.

*Note to self: Okay it is early but remember to write legibly enough so you can decipher your brilliant scribbles later.

4 Comments on 5 O'Clock in the Morning*, last added: 7/10/2009
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10. Summer Schedule

This little guy showed up on our driveway last week. He's some sort of a homing pigeon, I think, because of the tag on his right leg. He wasn't hurt, but seemed to have lost his way. He appeared a bit dazed. Eventually he fluttered off.

It looks as if my fantasies of empty summer hours will be an illusion around here-- between kids, vacation, work, and summer writing & illustrating goals. (And trying to keep up with the weeds!) So blog posts may be a bit sporadic. Hope the sun is shining wherever you are!

3 Comments on Summer Schedule, last added: 7/9/2009
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11. The Small Adventures of Popeye and Elvis

Popeye is ready to spend yet another day in his regular life, with his bedroom ceiling dripping rusty water and listening to his grandmother Velma recite British royalty in order of reign to prevent herself from cracking up. It's been raining for a week, and Popeye feels like he is the one who is going to crack up!

Once the rain finally stops, Popeye takes the opportunity to get out of the house. He is walking down the road, pitching stones into the ditch when he sees it – a big motor home that is “tilted precariously to the side, one of its giant wheels sunk deep down into the gloppy red mud of the road”. (p.12)

Popeye’s summer, and his life, are about to change.

The owners of the motor home are a family with a passel of rag tag kids who quickly induct Popeye into their Spit and Swear club. The eldest, named Elvis, takes an interest in Popeye and soon the two are inseparable -- having small adventures for at least as long as the motor home is stuck in the mud. They spit and swear, discover Yoo-Hoo boats filled mysterious notes and soon Popeye has dreams of hopping on the motor-home and finding adventures that are even bigger. Each day Popeye hopes that his Uncle Dooley, who is supposed to dig the motor home out, will stay true to his nature and not get it done!

On the surface, this book penned by Barbara O'Connor seems to be simply about a summertime adventure that happens to blow into town, but dig a little deeper. Popeye, who has always listened to Velma before, tries on defiance for the first time, not just for the sake of making trouble either. In the name of adventure, he is willing to risk Velma’s wrath. After Popeye and Elvis meet Starletta (a girl who lives through the woods and down the creek) readers can feel Popeye’s inhibitions and apathy peeling away. Dreams start to seed, and readers will believe that Popeye will not end up like his Uncle Dooley…he’s made of bigger stuff.

2 Comments on The Small Adventures of Popeye and Elvis, last added: 2/20/2010
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12. Fun Summer Reads for the Family

Today, I have a post at Latter-day Homeschooling with a few reviews of beach reads, perfect for reading while sitting under a shade tree and and sipping fresh lemonade. You can see the post here.

4 Comments on Fun Summer Reads for the Family, last added: 6/5/2010
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13. One Crazy Summer, by Rita Williams-Garcia

Last time I had a book in hand on the train to ALA, it was Grace Lin's Where The Mountain Meets the Moon.  This time I took along One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia, and was pleased as punch when I closed the book upon arriving at Union Station.

Delphine is trying to keep her younger sisters Vonetta and Fern calm as they jet through turbulence on the way to go meet their mother Cecile in California.  Delphine has an inkling of the turbulence she and her sisters may be in for once they get to Oakland.  She has vague memories of being with Cecile in their kitchen in Brooklyn while she wrote on the walls and muttered to herself.  She also knows that Cecile left soon after Fern was born.  After that, Big Ma moved from down South to Brooklyn and took up right where their mom left off.

Now the girls are about to spend their summer with Cecile, just because Daddy says it's time.  Cecile didn't send for them, or ask about them, but they are coming anyway.  When they finally land, the stewardess hands them off to Cecile -- a strange woman in a pair of man's pants, gigantic sunglasses and a scarf.  Not one for affection, she tells them to follow her and strides off.  After a commute that involves a particular taxi and a bus ride, the girls enter into Cecile's house.  It's more than the girls thought it would be based on all of the talking that Big Ma had been doing.

But it's not quite homey.  The girls are banished from the kitchen, and are told to head to the back bedroom that they would all be sharing.  There's no food in the house, no television, and it becomes obvious quite quickly, that the girls won't be depending on Cecile for any entertainment this summer!

The morning after they arrive, Cecile directs Delphine and her sisters to the People's Center to get some breakfast.  She tells them that it will be easy to find.  After all it's "black folks in black clothes rapping revolution and a line of hungry black kids." (p. 57)

This sets the stage for the slow reveal.  The story is one of family, of politics, of race and friendship.  Williams-Garcia has seemingly effortlessly woven in the feel of the time period (1968), and allowed a window into Oakland and the reality of the Black Panther movement; whether it be senseless arrests or educating children.  There are enough jumping off points to bring on a study of the time period, but the story never veers into message territory.  Delphine is the epitome of the 11 year old.  She's a responsible first born who is trying to figure her mother out, while finding her own self at the same time.

I was amazed upon finding the reality of Cecile's existence.  All of the characters in this book are multifaceted, and remind the reader to look a little deeper.

A must read.

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14. The Boys' Second Annual Backpacking Trip

This summer (which is insanely almost over!!!), the boys (excluding Y) went on their yearly backpacking/fishing trip. It looks like a lot of fun, doesn't it? On the way home, Robby called, and when I asked how it went, he said, "Ohhhh. It couldn't have been a more perfect trip."

I'm glad they had such a fun bonding experience.

Next up, I get to bond with Robby. He's planning to take me on a backpacking/fishing trip sometime soon. I'm excited (and a little nervous....) He says I have to leave my books at home because we are going to be doing some serious fly fishing.

I'm pretty sure I'll be able to sneak one in, though.

I'll let you know how it goes.

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15. Summertime...



Made for Sueños.

Unless, of course, you have Deadlines.

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