FREE online books

This is one of the more exciting things that I’ve come across in quite a while. For individuals who have not downloaded or purchased an e-reader to receive free e-books, this is a great alternative (or addition). I recently stumbled upon TWO sites that have free books online. Truly the internet is a marvelous tool.

  1. Online Storytime at Barnes and Noble: Here you will find a nice selection of books read BY THEIR AUTHOR in a quasi-animated video. (The video pans in and out on the book’s illustrations.) Not only does it include some all-time and seasonal favorites (in December they’re spotlighting The Polar Express, Strega Nona, and Where the Wild Things Are, just to name a few), but I think it is especially neat that the authors are reading the stories. How many times have you read a children’s story and wondered where the emphasis would be placed if the author was reading it? Exactly. Not to mention, it might be a nice alternative to the TV when you need about 10 minutes to get your life in order with small children around.
  2. We Give Books: This site features online books that you actually read. You can click through the pages full-screen and zoom in and out on the pictures. It requires more attention by the adult, but it can be set up nicely with one switch for students with special needs. I think it truly is a great way to allow students to “flip” through a book, who might otherwise be entirely dependent upon others to turn the pages. (Also, it expands your personal library in a matter of seconds.) They have a number of popular titles (The Little Engine That Could, The Tale of Peter Rabbit) as well as some new books, too (Llama, Llama and Goodnight iPad). Added bonus? If you sign-up (it’s free, so why not?), for each book that you read, they donate a book to a literacy charity of your selection – until January 2012. SO. GREAT.

Happy reading!


Mass Journal

I first heard about this idea from a CD by Matthew Kelly (from Lighthouse Catholic Media), titled: Our Lives Change When Our Habits Change.

Basically, he suggests that instead of complaining about what went wrong during Mass or why you couldn’t focus, bring a journal and take notes. Allow the Holy Spirit to move in and through you, and you’ll find that you learn a lot more than you think during Mass (even with the off-key singer or the screaming child … lol – even if it’s YOUR screaming child … )

Here’s a link to some printable pages to get you started (dated from now until the end of January): Mass Journal printables.

Or, you can order an “official” Mass Journal through Matthew Kelly’s website¬†for free. I might suggest also, if you’re being serious about this, to get a super cute journal from Target, Walmart, Barnes & Noble, or the like. I’m always much more inspired to write if I have something I like to write in. (And, while you’re at it, bring your favorite pens!)

Start the change today.

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