Anzac Day

The privilege of a life untouched by war is a rare and precious thing—and it has been our experience and that of our children. We have been surrounded by war in the way of all people in this modern age, but never have we felt its endemic depravations, nor has it taken anyone near and dear to us.

Every Anzac Day we reflect on that privilege—unearned but gratefully received.

Today we’ll be attending services to remember the fallen and all who served. As always, we’ll hear a sprinkling of their stories and we’ll feel more connected, more grateful, more determined to do the best we can with their legacy. And more aware that preserving and telling stories is the surest way we have to connect generations, nations, and peoples.

We hope our readers in Australia and New Zealand have much to be thankful for on this special day, and we add our thanks to those who serve.

P.S. If you’d like to read some Anzac stories, this is a wonderful resource.

5 Anzac Day favourites to honour one of Australia's most important days

ANZAC Day is named after the day the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps landed at Gallipoli in World War 1—the 25th of April 1915. 

In Australia and New Zealand the day is commemorated each year and has become one of our most important national days. It’s a day replete with stories of valour, courage, kindness, and good natured shenanigans.

These five are by no means the only lovely books to read around Anzac Day but they are exceptional. Not just for Anzac Day, they're wonderful for any time and for any country. You might also like to visit our War & Peace category for a growing list of other thought-provokers.

Click on the images for our reviews except for Gallipoli which links Book Depository—but I'm sure the books would all be available at the library.

KPtheBaby cuteness overload and a great music compilation

KPtheBaby cuteness overload and a great music compilation

Just a little quickie here—because this video came to me this morning and I have to pay it forward! There are >1.7m views on youtube (and counting) but I'm pretty sure many would be return visits. I did my bit!

First, here's the star of the show—KPtheBaby.....

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a special collection of chapter books that little kids* can manage

a special collection of chapter books that little kids* can manage

Every so often, one of my prep (4 to 5-year-old) students brings me the dictionary, a huge encyclopaedia, or a chapter book akin to Lord of the Rings and requests that I read it to them. The mystery of a chapter book is so enticing: the wonder of what a story with so many words might tell is magical. It is so wonderful to read a chapter book to a child, but to start with Lord of the Rings can often lead to frustration.

However, there are many chapter books that are great for younger listeners!  Here's what I look for:

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Anna Quindlen on bookshelves—home to an infinite number of worlds

Anna Quindlen on bookshelves—home to an infinite number of worlds

"I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves."

Love that quote from The New York Times Opinion by author and journalist Anna Quindlen—maybe you’ve seen it? Two things though:

1.     Is there really such a thing as ‘enough’ bookshelves?
2.    The line that follows the quote is even better, I think. Here it is:

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a lift-the-flap Easter surprise + fun activities

a lift-the-flap Easter surprise + fun activities

ages 0 to 6 years
All my brain space has been taken up by our coming-up-fast big move (to Tasmania), so this year's Easter activities have been on the back burner. Thankfully, Ivy found this cute book at the library—it’s managed to kick-start us into our usual Easter fun mode. We’re Going on an Egg Hunt is the story of 4 bunny friends that set out on an egg-hunting adventure (think We’re Going On A Bear Hunt):

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