fiar: who owns the sun?

Sep 20, 2011 by

fiar: who owns the sun?

Who Owns The Sun?

Before I started Five In a Row with Fisher, I had never heard of this book. We put it on hold at the library and waited for our name to come up on the list. We were finally able to check it out and we read it yesterday snuggled up on my bed.

Oh. My. Heavens.

I MUST own this book.

I am so in love with it.

The problem? It is going for around 100 buckaroos because of the whole scarcity-grows-demand-grows-prices issue.

If I wasn’t an honest person I would just keep the one from the library and pay the fee…but who knows, maybe even their replacement fee would be in the three digit range? I am just going to have start telling everyone I know to keep their eyes peeled for it at used book stores!

This book was written and illustrated by a fourteen year old girl named Stacey Chbosky. The art work is so lovely. In fact, all of us are going to try to paint a sun like hers this afternoon because Fisher and I are so completely in love with her sun. I guess there is a yearly contest for students to write and illustrate their own books and then if they win their book is published. This book won the contest back in 1988. All of my children want to learn more about the contest and enter their books this year.

This beautiful story is a conversation between a boy and his daddy. The boy asks questions about who owns the sun, the stars, the birds, the wind, and the flowers. The dad gives answers that speak right to my soul, teaching his son that no one can own those things, they are too big and powerful for anyone to own them. They are for everyone to be blessed by. Then, the boy overhears a Mr. Finley saying he owns Big Jim, who is the boy’s father. The boy is angry and hurt and scared at the thought of anyone OWNING a human being when no one can even own a flower or the wind. His daddy teaches him about slavery in such a poignant way I could barely make it through the reading of it.

He says “A man is a beautiful thing, a very beautiful thing. But some men forget this. And sometimes they try to keep other men captive. They buy and sell people, as if human beings are no more than cattle. But only a fool believes he can really own another man, and only a fool will try. Mr. Finley may own my body, but I have a heart and I have a mind, and he can never own these. Inside of me, I’m too powerful to be owned by anyone. Inside, I am like the sun.”

Our family is pretty passionate about freedom for all of God’s children. We talk about different customs, cultures, and government forms often. We discuss which forms create the most freedom and which create the least. We have studied the lives of great men and women who have given everything they have to help others have freedom. This year, Keziah and I are studying American history from the Vikings to the Civil War and I can’t wait to recreate an Underground Railroad experience for her and her friends. I read several books about William Wilberforce during my pregnancy with Annesley and desperately wanted to name the child inside me after him (but she turned out to be a girl and so we named her after Susannah Annesley Wesley instead).

So, when I read this book yesterday, thinking it was just a lovely book about nature and how the world works, my heart soared when I realized it was really about slavery and freedom and the greatness of the human soul. What a great story!

Let’s all write to the publisher and beg them to re-issue it! In the meantime, I will buy it from anyone who finds it at a thrift store and throw in a foot massage as well!

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fiar: papa piccolo

Sep 12, 2011 by

fiar: papa piccolo

Papa Piccolo

This week for FIAR, Fisher and I are reading Papa Piccolo.

Last week we read Madeline (which I had somehow never read before!) and Fisher loved it. He loved counting all sorts of things throughout the book and memorized most of the story well enough to recite it back to me. We have the whole collection, so last night Richard read him a whole host of the other stories. Keziah has had a Madeline doll for several years and Fisher and Annes have had a ball dressing her and playing with her for days on end. They loved the doll’s appendix scar and have had to show it to everyone who has come over. Then our friend, Jennifer, had her appendix removed on Wednesday and while it was sad for Jennifer, it was exciting for Fisher and Annesley who feel like they are now experts on the whole surgical process!

Anyway, this week we are starting Papa Piccolo. We lucked out on Friday and found it at the library book sale for ten cents and Fisher has been begging me to read it to him ever since. But I made him wait until today and I know the minute he wakes up he will be ready for me to read it with him. The magic of making a child wait a little bit never ceases to amaze me!

I have never read this book either, but I know it is about a tomcat who learns to be nurturing to some orphaned kitties. I want my children to know men can be nurturing while also being strong and protective. I am looking forward to some great discussions with my little guy about manhood!

p.s. Now we have read it…and he loved it. We learned about gondolas, Venice, loneliness, family, love, service to others healing our hearts, and papa-hood. Fisher is such a gentle soul, I’m sure he will be a wonderful papa someday…and he has the most wonderful papa to teach him how.

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fiar: mike mulligan and his steam shovel

Jun 6, 2011 by

fiar: mike mulligan and his steam shovel

mike

Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel by Virginia Lee Burton is our Five In A Row book of the week. Today we read it for the first time and Fisher and Annesley thoroughly enjoyed it. Tomorrow we will talk about perseverance and “working a little bit harder and a little bit better.” Later in the week we will discuss the art work and use our watercolors to paint some big machines, talk about other steam powered machines and try to build one of our one, and maybe dig a hole in our yard with our little shovels for the fire pit we are trying to build this summer.

FIAR is such a great program. Fisher loves having his reading time with me each day and by the end of the week he is really fallen in love with the book. If you haven’t heard of FIAR, just search the internet and you will find oodles of information about it.

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book bonanza: the story about ping

May 25, 2011 by

book bonanza: the story about ping

the story about pin

Fisher and I have started a new learning adventure. Today was our first day with Five In A Row, which is an educational program designed around fabulous children’s literature. A parent and child read one book together for five days in a row, falling more in love with it each time. Each day you get to share some special activities together about some aspect of the book..like it’s geography, art, mathematics, history, language, etc.

The Story About Ping is delightful! Ping is a little duck who hides from his master when he is late coming home and ends up lost and all alone. Eventually he makes it back to his family and faces his consequence for being late. So many wonderful life lessons are packed into this book…you will have to find it and enjoy it with your little ones.

I can’t believe I’ve never read this gem of a story before! I can’t wait to read it again tomorrow!

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