Today I am delighted to introduce you to a gifted children’s author and fellow mom, Laura Sassi. Laura’s new book, Goodnight, Ark, is a beautifully illustrated and lilting tale of bedtime on Noah’s Ark. Using clever rhymes that practically dance off the page, Laura invites children (and their parents) to imagine the scene in Noah’s sleeping quarters as the animals join him two by two in his bed—because they’re afraid of the storm!
My kids were captivated by this story and its whimsical illustrations by Jane Chapman. They quickly asked me to read the book again (and again, and again). Goodnight, Ark is a fun look at a classic Bible tale, which just might spur your kids to explore more about Noah’s life and times. So now, please welcome Laura with a special message about quality family time, and a chance to WIN a copy of Goodnight, Ark!
Five Things That Float My Family’s Boat (and a GIVEAWAY!)
By Laura Sassi
RUMBLE! BOOM! If your family is anything like mine, life can be stormy, what with the winds of busyness blowing us this way and that. And even if we’re not in the midst of truly stormy times, I find, as a mom, that it’s necessary to be intentional about finding creative, loving ways to stay afloat above the sea of activities and responsibilities of family living. Indeed one of the themes I hope readers (and their parents) will take away from Goodnight, Ark (Zonderkidz, 2014) is that sometimes a little extra TLC is just what’s needed to make things okay, even in the midst of a storm!
Here then, in celebration of the release of Goodnight, Ark are five things that help keep my family afloat (and happy).
1. Morning Hugs—From the moment they came home as babies, we’ve started our mornings with what we now call the “morning hug”. Indeed the first sentence out of my daughter’s mouth each morning is, “Time for my morning hug.” And mine: “Me, too.” My son, age 13, now gives more of a morning shrug, but we still all know that the morning wouldn’t be quite the same without it.
2. Special Breakfasts—These are pretty self-explanatory. I mean isn’t any day extra special if it begins with pancakes and bacon, or warm-out-of-the oven blueberry muffins? The extra, extra special twist is that these breakfasts are often a group effort. Who wants to stir?
3. Family Dinners—Eat together. Talk together. Be together. Need I say more?
4. After Dinner Sillies—This is our family’s favorite time to let loose and be silly. We’ve done foot puppet shows, dance numbers, stand-up comedy, you name it. Anything goes, really, in this delightful post-dinner moment of relaxation before dishes are cleared and the evening routine of finishing up homework, cleaning up after dinner, taking showers etc. resumes.
5. Pillow Ponderings (and Prayers)—There’s something about the cozy comfort of bedtime that brings out a reflective spirit in each of my children. And I love nothing better than talking with my kids about what’s on their mind and then wrapping it all up in prayer, before giving each that last goodnight kiss and turning out the light. Even when I’m tired to the core, like the Noah in my story must have been when he finally settled those animals down, I wouldn’t miss these special bedtime moments.
HAPPY FLOATING, ALL!
Now it’s your turn! What floats your family’s boat? Leave a comment to be entered in a drawing to win your very own copy of Goodnight, Ark! You can also snag additional entries using the handy checklist below. The winner will be announced next week!
For more chances to win, visit another of the blogs on Laura’s Goodnight, Ark tour. Click here for the full schedule.
Laura’s poems, stories, articles and crafts have appeared in many publications including Highlights for Children, Cricket, Ladybug, Spider, Focus on the Family’s Clubhouse and Clubhouse Jr., FamilyFun, and Pack-O-Fun. She has a passion for playing with words and rhyming and is delighted to announce that her first picture book, GOODNIGHT, ARK, published by Zonderkidz, a HarperCollins Company, and illustrated by Jane Chapman is out this month. She is represented by Lara Perkins of the Andrea Brown Literary Agency.
Laura writes from her century-old home in New Jersey where she lives with her awesome husband, two adorable kids, and a black cockapoo named Sophie. You can also find her on her blog, Facebook, and Twitter.