Tuesday morning I was frazzled. Frazz.led. I woke late, for some reason the wee person decided to sleep past 6. Hmpf. Why when I can sleep in does he wake with the first rays of sunlight, but if I've got somewhere to go he sleeps in? That little trickster!
My eyes puffy, I raced about getting ready. One of those mornings where you reach for one thing on the shelf and everything crashes down. The culmination of which was the quick destruction of my new MAC Studio fix as it flew from my hand (of it's own free will!) and shattered into a million NC15 pieces on the newly mopped kitchen floor.
Next up I was stymied by the ticket machine at the Metro. Seriously, have I been Yo Gabba-ing so long that I have forgotten how to buy a simple ticket? S'okay. I'm good at other things (I console myself). I had a taste of what life is like for TOTT (I'm dropping the first T.) morning in D.C. is loverly and I felt tres importante as I headed into the National Press Club.
Moments earlier I had tossed my beret in the air a la Mary Tyler Moore.
I was there because:
a. I was offered free coffee and muffins.
b. I was going to meet Dave Barry. I big puffy heart surrounded with little puffy hearts Dave Barry.
c. I was asked to come to the launch of the brainchild of The Pearson Foundation and Penguin Books; a new website. And I honestly, truly, thought it was cool.
I never miss a chance to slather on some lipsgloss and scarf some free muffins. Do you? I thought not. Plus it's just freaking cool to get to go places like the National Press Club. Yes, I took pictures of the napkins.
I am not a dork at all!
As much as I have tried to keep my munchkin away from the 'push' (computer) he is drawn to it like Oprah is to putting pictures of herself on the cover of O. He cannot resist. We play on PBS, we visit Memo, I try to keep it to educational hist, but I do admit to one desperate 20 minutes post toddler-noggin bash America's Funniest Home Video's baby compilation. Mr. Max thinks it's way funny when babies fall over.
I'm a big reader, in fact the whole fam damily is, so when I was approached to check out this site I was like heck yeah y'all! Sign this girl up.
(Did I mention the free coffee and muffins? And Dave Barry? And oh! Amy Tan? AMY TAN, PEOPLE!!)
The premise is so simple it's utterly brilliant. Go to We Give Books, read a book with your kid on the site and a book is donated to a child who needs one. You even pick the place you want the book to go! The books are right there in front of you, fully illustrated, click to turn the page and when you finish a book is donated. Even without the free muffins and coffee I would be excited about this.
Dang, I think is a great idea. Teaching my son to read, and to love reading is one of my top priorites and raising a child who is caring and understands how his actions both positively and negatively affect others is tops too. wegivebooks.org does both of those.
While I was sitting amongst some of my very favorite local blogging women - a powerhouse room to be sure- I was thilled and fascinated at the study they had done about rasing 'good' kids. Good Kids. I want Max to be a good kid. We were provided with the top ten key findings for parenting skills for raising good kids, philanthropic kids.
1. Explain how they can help other people by their actions
2. Encourage them to speak up in family discussions
3. Speak to them about the colunteering and charity that you do, and why.
4. Support them on things that they care about.
5. Tell them why we are proud of them when they do good things.
6. Encourage them to be their own person
7. Set goals for them to achieve
8. Talk to them about the way their actions make other people feel.
9. Talk to them about always considering other people's views.
10. Explain the importance of giving to others.
And most importantly, to walk the walk. Behave as you would like your child to behave.
Did you hear that? It was the sound of me patting myself on the back because this jibes perfectly with my child raising philosophy, which is of course modeled after the way my mother and my husband's parents raised us. I have already set into action many of these, age appropriately af course!
Max is still so small now, but when he is older I can see how empowering it will be for him to choose each day who he wants to give a book too! We're reading Spot's Day Out adnauseum these days anyway, how lovely it will be to give another child a book! We read, enjoyed, and donated three books that evening. Mr Max sitting on my lap happily crying "puppy!" every time we turned a page.
Today he's already asked for "book push!" So I introduced him to one of my favorites, Corduroy. He loved it. I can already tell we will be using this site a lot!
More and more content will be added, the site is still brand new and books for older kids are being added very soon. It's such an easy way to help, you can even set up book clubs for your children's classrooms that are PRIVATE. wegivebooks.org is very concientious about online safety and protecting our children. The site is easy to use and set up so that children, who are freakishly tech savvy, can navigate the site on their own as well as with a parent.
Listen, I can blah blah blah all the livelong day about this. But I'm asking nice, go check it out. Give a book to a school library, to Haiti...choose any of the campaigns you like and you can select a different one every time you log on. It's such a worthwhile cause, and honestly? It's super cool, and honest and for reals Mr. Max and I had a lot of fun reading together. So go check it out, and tell em Minky sent ya!
Carrie Bradhaw? P'shaw! Minky in the City.
I really enjoyed being in the city, grabbing coffee and chatting with interesting people over the age of 2. But man, I missed that sweet baby. I talked to him on the phone and experienced his two toddler sides in two seconds. The sweetest 'hi mommy!' followed by baby dictator commanding 'abu both sides!' For those who don't speak Max, that means "Nurse me woman! And don't be stingy! Both sides!" He's really pretty Stewie about the whole sitch.
I swoon for him. And I swoon for Dave Barry too.
Someone needs to learn to stand up straight, and it isn't Dave Barry.
So I ask you, pretty please to head on over to wegivebooks.org and join Minky's Readers! I've got a challenge for you! Join the group,subscribe to my little blog and fan me on Facebook, then post a comment here telling me you've accomplished these incredibly difficult tasks with your wegivebooks.org username and the reader (and thus giver) of the most books by June 1st will win a present from little old me! Now this gift is not affiliated in anyway with MomCentral, The Pearson Foundation, or Penguin Books. It's just from me to you, to thank you for participating in a cause I truly believe in. Trust me, no gift is needed...you and your child will enjoy reading and giving books for years to come, but who doesn't love a present?
Think I gave you guys the link enough times? Check it out!
* I was honored to attend through Mom Central, I was given breakfast, tickets to see The Rockbottom Remainders and a gift certificate for attending and for writing about We Give Books, but ya know what? I would have done this for nada. It's an incredible site and cause.