Stuff I’m Getting my Kids for Christmas

November 29, 2012

Ok, here it is! After juggling 6 catalogs, 12 browser pages, and a super-secret piece of paper with notes and circles and arrows on the back, here is the World of Julie rundown for this holiday. (Forgive me for the lack of pictures, but I’m compiling this post with kids in the house, and I don’t want them to see anything.)



CATEGORIES: holidays

Make City! Destroy City!

November 23, 2012

List makers breed more list makers. Here is Henry’s list for today.

Note: I am now redoing everything, so this can be my daily list too.

Can I even tell you how much I love this?

My 9-year-old's list for the day | World of Julie


New review: hello! hello!

November 14, 2012

Oh, boy, is this book amazing. You may remember my intense love for Matthew Cordell’s Another Brother. I was so excited to read Cordell’s new book, hello! hello!

This book…oh, this book. I’m kind of speechless about how awesome it is (well, not THAT speechless, since my review today on Brain Burps is one of my longest ones ever). It’s a beautiful book, visually, but it’s also timely and, frankly, very very important. It’s a book about lifting your head up from all those electronic devices and really seeing the world again. Remember trees? Remember people? Real people, in front of you? Remember your kids? Hello!

I will also say that I recorded this review at 8:00 pm on election night, as an effort to get myself to stop maniacally refreshing twelve different web pages of election results. So if there’s a slightly crazed, hysterical edge to my voice in this review, that’s why. Another little funny thing for you to listen for is that I inexplicably didn’t start gesturing until halfway through, and you can hear me start talking a lot more animatedly. Yes, I even talk with my hands when I’m all alone recording reviews for you to hear.

Check out the review on the latest Brain Burps podcast, which is an interview with the amazing Tony DiTerlizzi, who is an incredible illustrator, and co-author of the Spiderwick Chronicles, which are my favorite kidlit chapter books set in Maine.

One last (important!) thing. If you buy hello! hello! by November 30, 2012, Matthew Cordell will send you ALL KINDS OF STUFF. He’s so cool. Check out his blog post here about all the cool art and things he’ll personally send you if you have a receipt that proves you bought the book!


Nerdy Book Club (+ book recommendations)

November 11, 2012

How do you raise a reader? Head on over to the Nerdy Book Club to read my post about what I’m doing to get my children to love reading. By request, here is a list of the books I mention in the post:

Board books and picture books:

Easy Reader and Chapter books:

Note: the above are Amazon affiliate links. Please visit your local independent bookstore whenever possible!



Newbery Interview over on Colby Sharp’s blog

November 9, 2012

I’m so honored to be the guest over on the magnificent Colby Sharp’s blog today. Go over and read about how Bridge to Terabithia was the first book that made me cry. And leave a comment saying what your favorite Newbery book is!


CATEGORIES: books, Julie

Piggy Bunny, Adam Rex, PiBoIdMo, and my knee

November 8, 2012

Did you catch my review of Piggy Bunny on Brain Burps last week? You’ve got to read this book. If anything because it has now inserted the phrase, “This is a problem that’s called fixable” into our lives. Ok, reading that sentence, that doesn’t sound that earth-shattering. But once you read the book, you’ll see how great that phrase is. C’mon: it’s a pig who wants to be the Easter Bunny! Even though his family doesn’t even believe in the Easter Bunny! You can hear my review on Episode 118, here.

What else? On Halloween Adam Rex, Genius, had a Twitter contest to write a Halloween poem that fits in a tweet (140 characters). In a fit of chocolate-fueled madness I wrote a few, and tweeted the best one. And: I won! Or, well, was a runner up. We’re getting two signed Adam Rex books as a prize! The kids were super psyched. I’m totally thrilled, even though one of the books, Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich, is the earwormiest book that ever did earworm (meaning, you’ll get songs stuck in your head for days). I’m still so completely giddy over this win.

And congratulations to my pal Carter Higgins, who was also a runner up! (And make sure you check out Carter’s astoundingly awesome trailer for Picture Book Month, which is also happening right now in November and you should go play around on the Picture Book Month website for a few hours right now.)

November is the month for Tara Lazar’s PiBoIdMo (Picture Book Idea Month). I participated last year, and I got a huge batch of ideas. My favorite part is how the whole idea of writing down one book idea a day primes me to see ideas everywhere. I got a dedicated PiBoIdMo notebook this year, so I’m hoping I can keep that inspired-by-the-world vibe going way past November, and fill that notebook.

Ok, last thing, for now: knee. Getting better. I can almost walk like a normal person. Though I still go up and down stairs like a toddler (one step, one step, one step, one step). However, I got yelled at by a physical therapist because my knee is not as straight as it should be by now. Scary. Like, if I don’t get it straighter asap, it’ll NEVER BE STRAIGHT AGAIN. Yikes. Never mind the fact that I can’t bend it very much either. But straight is more important at this point. So I work a lot on getting it straight, which, frankly, hurts like the dickens.