Little One Books Review & Giveaway - Once Upon a Potty: Boy (Alona Frankel)

~ Posted on Friday, October 15, 2010 at 12:01 AM ~

I have the privilege of reviewing a children's book by Alona Frankel (illustrated by her as well) called "Once Upon a Potty: Boy".

Author & Ilustrator: Alona Frankel
Publisher: Firefly Books
ISBN: 978-1554072835
Hardcover: 40 pages
Dimension: 7.2 x 7.3 x 0.4 inches

Product description from Little One Books website:

"In 1975, Alona Frankel wrote and illustrated her first book, especially for her son Michael, on how to use the potty. Thirty-two years later, Once Upon a Potty -- Boy and its companion Once Upon a Potty -- Girl are the classic books on potty training. These children's books help parents everywhere deal successfully with an often vexing challenge for the whole family. Thanks to its timeless words and beloved images, Once Upon a Potty -- Boy is being discovered and used by a new generation of parents. "

This book is provided by Little One Books for my review. Now, a brief introduction to them:

"We specialize in quality books, music, and video, for children birth through age five, and have personally reviewed and selected each and every item in our store. You'll find detailed information on why we prefer a particular product in our "Why We Chose" section of each product page.
At Little One Books, we match each product to what we believe is the youngest appropriate age group. However, our carefully selected items can and will be used for many years to come. As children develop they often find pleasure in revisiting illustrations from old favorites, and eventually learning to read them on their own.
"

Honestly, we've been getting hints and well-meaning advices from people around us that Ben should be potty trained already at this age (he's 19 months old btw)! I don't know how others did it but hubby and I felt that we should let nature takes its course, I mean, Ben will be ready when he's ready.

But that doesn't mean that I can't read any information pertaining to potty training right?

So, I requested this particular book the moment I saw the cute illustrations on the cover of this book. I've always been very much geared to separated gender books, meaning if there are books that are generalised for both boys and girls, and books that are for boys only, I'll definitely go for the boys books. I find it easier for my son to relate himself to the story when it's illustrated and told from their point of view.

Check out Ben's reactions as he flips through the book...

Ben with Once Upon a Potty: Boy book

Checking out the cute cover...

Ben with Once Upon a Potty: Boy book

Looking at the main character...

Ben with Once Upon a Potty: Boy book

Studying how the boy sits on the potty

One thing I don't like about this book is how the potty is being potrayed. Honestly, it looks like a vase (with a handle) to me. I find myself subtly covering the handles when I go through the book with Ben, maybe it's just me, but I don't want him to go around seeing anything (such as a vase with handle) and think that's a potty! I also flipped through the pages where the little boy initially wonders what is the object (potty) given to him by his grandma. For example, he wears it on his head  wondering whether it's a hat (no, I don't want Ben doing that!).

As for illustrations wise, I totally love it! It's cute and doesn't seem gross at all! The paper quality of the book is good as well, thick enough for easy handling. I don't mind the terms used to represent peeing ('Wee-Wee' in the book, I used 'Pee-Pee') and pooping (both the book and I used 'Poo-Poo').

Now, I just want to highlight that the moment I received the book, I went through 1 round with Ben (just make up my own story as we go along) and I can immediately see some results, albeit a small one, but it is very exciting to see my boy approaching the potty and trying to sit on it (of course, he's still wearing his diapers and pants), but the point is he approached the potty without us coaxing him into doing that! It happened so fast that I don't have enough time to grab my camera to snap this memorable moment!

Pictures below taken 2 days after we received the book:

Ben with his potty

Ben with his potty

Picture on the left of Ben sitting on the potty (with his pants on) when I asked him to show me how the little boy sat on the potty. Please note that prior to this book, Ben never approach nor even touch the potty at all (it's in our bathroom to get him to familiar himself with) and now, he's sitting on it!

Picture on the right of Ben passing back the potty to me when I asked him how the boy gives the potty back to his mummy when he's done with his poo-poo and pee-pee.

Amazing milestones I would say! I'm still very happy and glad I chose this book! It'll definitely be used again and again until Ben is potty trained successfully. In the meantime, I'm already a very happy mummy seeing the mini milestones achieved by my boy within such a short span of time!

Overall, I give this book a 9 out of 10.

You can get this book from Little One Books and many more.

But wait!!!

I'm not going to leave you reading this long review of mine without something right? Now hear me out, ONE of my lucky awesome blog reader/visitor will be able to win a $25 gift certificate from Little One Books! Yup! You read that right!

Your awesome bloggy pal here has got the greenlight to hold a giveaway for a gift certificate worth $25! Woohoo!!

* Eligibility: OPEN WORLDWIDE!

* Giveaway expires on 15th November 2010 (Malaysia time)

* You must fulfil the mandatory entry 1st (which is to provide your valid email address & answering the question), else you will be disqualified.

* Winner will be randomly drawn using Random.org and will have 48 hours to respond to  my email notification or a new winner will be drawn.

* Winner will receive their prize sent directly by Little One Books.

To enter the giveaway, kindly click at the link shown below and the entry form will appear in a new window:

* $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway Entry Form *

(Link has been disabled as entry closed at 12midnight past 15th Nov 2010)

It'd be great if you could leave me a comment once you have submitted your entry so that I can check and ensure it's safely tracked into my database.

So what are you waiting for?!! Hurry up! You have 1 month time from now to join in the fun and try your luck!

I received no monetary compensation for this review, I was provided with a copy of the book by Little One Books in order to facilitate my review. All opinions expressed in this post are my own. Please do your own research when purchasing products, as your opinions may differ from mine.

And if you'd like to read my previous book reviews, you can do so by reading this post of mine called "My Book Reviews"

Book Review - The Gourmet Cookie Book

~ Posted on Friday, October 8, 2010 at 9:09 AM ~

This is my 4th ebook I get to review, a gourmet cookie book by Gourmet Magazine called: "THE GOURMET COOKIE BOOK".

Author: Gourmet Magazine
Publisher:  Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
ISBN: 9780547328164
Hardcover, Paper over boards ; 176 pages
Dimension: 8.50 x 8.50 inches

Description from the product page:
"For this stunning collection, the editors of Gourmet delved deep into their archives and selected the most delicious cookie for each year of the magazine’s sixty-eight-year existence. After marathon testing sessions and winnowing from thousands of recipes—many sent in by readers—they chose an amazing array, from the almond-scented French-style Cajun Macaroons, from the magazine’s beginnings in 1941, through Mocha Toffee Bars (1971), to the contemporary Glittering Lemon Sandwich Cookies. The enticing assortment includes:

* Cookies of every type and description, from the homey (Aunt Sis’s Strawberry Tart Cookies) to the exotic (Grand Marnier-Glazed Pain d’Epice Cookies), including balls, bars, refrigerator cookies, drop cookies, even deep-fried cookie confections.

* Cookies from around the world: from Dutch Jan Hagels to Irish oatmeal sandwich cookies filled with cream and Irish whiskey, to Scandinavian Rosettes.

* Dozens of Christmas cookies: Old-Fashioned Christmas Butter Cookies, star-shaped Moravian White Cookies, Chocolate Peppermint Bar Cookies.

Printed exactly as they originally appeared in the magazine, with abundant tips and recipe notes from Gourmet’s test kitchen, and with headnotes describing their cultural context, the recipes present a fascinating bite-by-bite history of how our appetites evolved. "

Cookies! Who would want to turn down the opportunity to review a cookie book? What more a compilation of the finest and best cookie recipes from 1941 to 2009?

I love the way how each recipe has a brief note at the bottom which explains in clearer terms on measurements and steps taken - especially for recipes that goes way long ago (where people normally goes by a cup of this and a pinch of that or when oven is hot). Each recipe came with the pictures of the cookies, which makes you drool even more and wanted to attempt to make each and every one of it!

I think this book is a good choice for cookie lovers and those who are interested in dabbling with cookie making (like me...) I personally note down a couple of recipes which I'll attempt when I get braver with my cookie adventure.

You can purchase The Gourmet Cookie Book: The Single Best Recipe from Each Year 1941-2009 book from Amazon.

I received no monetary compensation for this review, I was provided with a galley proof of the book via my association with netGalley as a reviewer in order to facilitate my review. All opinions expressed in this post are my own. Please do your own research when purchasing products, as your opinions may differ from mine.

And if you'd like to read my previous book reviews, you can do so by reading this post of mine called "My Book Reviews"

Book Review - One Hand, Two Hands (Max Lucado)

~ Posted on Friday, October 8, 2010 at 12:03 AM ~

As part of the BookSneeze Blogger Reviewer program, I'm always on the look out for good children's books, particularly good Christian books for children. When I received the early invitation to review the latest books from Max Lucado, I'm immediately jump at the chance and monitored the time when the opportunity is available. I requested this book along with 1 other (still waiting for it sigh...) and here is my review of the latest book from Max Lucado entitled "ONE HAND, TWO HANDS"

I'm a full-time mummy

Author: Max Lucado
Illustrator: Gaby Hansen
Publisher:  Thomas Nelson (September 14, 2010)
ISBN: 978-1400316496
Jacketed Hardcover: 32 pages
Dimension: 10.1 x 9.9 x 0.4 inches

Excerpts taken from Booksneeze page:

"A delightful way to show little ones how their hands are a blessing from God that they can use to do help others. Written in rhyming text and illustrated with the charming art of Gaby Hansen, this simple message of God’s blessing of hands not only entertains . . . as it teaches what wonderful things our hands can do from scratching, latching, and petting a pup to washing dishes with mommy and putting toys in a box . . . but it also conveys the important message: We can use God’s gift of hands to show our love for Him by helping others. The book ends tenderly with a prayer of thanks to God for hands and asks Him to use them again:

One hand, two hands,
Five fingers, ten.
God, thanks, for my hands.
Please, use them again.
"

I'm a full-time mummy

Firstly, I've almost given up hope on receiving this book.It has over a month already and just when I totally forgot about this book, it arrived and got me all excited and brings back my hope and faith in the delivery & custom services in Malaysia. I can clearly see the stamp on the parcel that the book has been shipped out on 5th September and was only approved for release by the Malaysian Custom on 4th October.

Anyway, that aside, my first impression of the book: They should do away with the French flap (or the jacketed cover for the book). I've never been the fan for flaps like this and I find it a waste of paper and annoying that I have to either tape it up or totally removed it away to prevent tearing from my 19 months old toddler.

Curious Ben flipping through the book Ben showing me how he combs his hair

I like the way they show us how we can make use of our hands, and the fact they incorporate how our little ones can help out with the cleaning, washing and all.  I would have preferred if they show both little boys and girls in the illustrations instead of only the little girl as the main character. That way, both little boys and girls can relate themselves with the story.

Ben showing me how he washes hands
Ben amazed at the sight of doggy praying...

I do however find it a joy to see Ben showing me things he do on daily bases when he saw the similar actions from the book, like washing and cleaning up and combing hair. I'm not a fan of soft and blurry illustrations like this though I do enjoys the pastel and light toned colors used in the illustrations. Overall, I give this book a 7 out of 10.

I'm a full-time mummy

You can get the One Hand, Two Hands from Amazon or from Max Lucado's website store itself.

I'm a full-time mummy

I received no monetary compensation for this review, I was provided with a copy of the book by Book Sneeze in order to facilitate my review. All opinions expressed in this post are my own. Please do your own research when purchasing products, as your opinions may differ from mine.

And if you'd like to read my previous book reviews, you can do so by reading this post of mine called "My Book Reviews"

I'm a full-time mummy