Happy Birthday, Karen Katz - September 16
After much anxiety, I worked up some courage and emailed both authors to ask them to share their birthday with us. Unfortuately, after I sent the email to Karen Katz I realized that I made a cut-and-paste error and left "Doreen" at the top of the message! I was bummed. I assumed she would not email me back. However, on the day I arrived home from the hospital with our third child I had this response from Karen Katz:
"I'm not sure who Doreen is but I think you meant Karen. I am thrilled to hear you like my books and especially that your kids like them. As far as my birthday, it is September 16th. As far as the year...lets say I'm past 50. Have fun reading!"
I wrote her birthday in my planner and hoped for a celebration that September. However, it didn't happen that year or for the next three years! Each year, I regretted not putting together a celebration for the author whose books I have read to my children just as much as Dr. Seuss and Stan and Jan Berenstain. This year, I finally get to share with you how much our family loves books by Karen Katz!
Counting Kisses and Ten Tiny Tickles. Most of Karen's books are published as novelty lift-the-flap books and board books including Where is Baby's Belly Button? and Daddy and Me; both of which I have read at least 100 times! Before Karen Katz created books for parents and babies to enjoy together she was a quilt maker, a costume designer, and a graphic designer. According to her website, it was after she and her husband adopted a daughter from Guatemala that she "was inspired to do a children's book." Her first book, Over the Moon: An Adoption Tale was published in 1997 after an editor viewed paintings in her portfolio that represented a poem that her husband wrote about the adoption of their daughter. (Doodlebugs). Since that first book, Karen Katz has sold millions of copies of her books. These books can be found on bookshelves of most young children, often resting on night stands after parents have fallen asleep holding their babies in their arms, and are frequently at library book sales discarded after being well-loved by little hands. (We still read them even after the lift-the-flaps have been removed!)
|My daughter is doing a great job with the potty. The bathroom door is covered with sticker charts. In this photo she is adding a sticker to a chart I made that featured images from Karen Katz's books.|
We read the book Baby Loves Fall!. In this lift-the-flap book, baby explores and finds many fall things; apple pie behind the shutters and pumpkins behind the scarecrow. The baby also finds acorns behind a rake. This gave me an idea. I said to my youngest two children, "Do you want to go on a nature hunt? Maybe we can find some acorns just like the baby." (I knew of oak tree in our neighborhood that was starting to drop its acorns!)
|My son was super excited to go on a nature hunt. One of his favorite things to do is to gather seeds and leaves. He said, "Can we make a craft out of the stuff we find?" I thought it was a great idea.|
|He showed his sister how to find really cool leaves as they walked. He shared a few of the red leaves that he found. It was important to him that she had a container full of goodies.|
|She found an acorn!|
|What's a nature-hunt collection without some rocks?|
|After our nature hunt my children emptied their containers on the kitchen table.|
|Then, they started their "craft" which they called Leaf Pictures.|
My son said, "Dad, this was a good idea."
|I was so proud of her for gluing all these items on her paper!|
|For my daughter I drew a crown and shoes on a cereal box and cut them out.|
|She painted the crown with glue.|
|Then, she flipped it over onto a plate with gold glitter.|
|Wow! A pretty crown.|
|I pasted the crown and shoes onto a picture of my daughter to make her into the "Princess Baby"!|
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International Day of Peace is coming up on September 21. Check out Karen Katz's book, Can You Say Peace?:
1. Karen Katz's website
2. Karen Katz website from Simon and Schuster
3. Baby Steps with Baby Books: a Parent's Guide - Simon and Schuster
4. Interviews - Up Close, Library Sparks, KarenKatz.com
5. Princess Baby Activity Guide and Resource Kit - RandomHouse
6. Activity Sheets - Simon and Schuster
7. Karen Katz shares her previous occupations before children's books - video