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Imagination Library

Some of the Imagination Library books we have received so far

Did you know that if you live in the United States and have a young child, your child may be able to receive a brand spankin’ new book every month until they turn 5? Absolutely FREE! Just go to ImaginationLibrary.com to see if your community participates in the Imagination Library. And whose brain-child was this wonderful project? Why none other than the buxom bombshell herself, Dolly Parton.

I first heard about the Imagination Library while watching the wonderful (now defunct) webcast, CNN.com Live. Reggie Aqui interviewed Dolly Parton (and dueted to “Islands in the Stream”). Dolly talked about this program she created to get age-appropriate books into the hands of pre-school children. She has always loved children, even though she has none of her own. But through this program, all kids are sort of her kids.

The first time I heard about Imagination Library, I looked at the website and I don’t think our county participated. The second time I heard about it, I told my sister-in-law so she could sign up my niece (my poor nephew was already too old). And then I completely forgot about it.

Everyone’s first book


Just before I had my son, my sister-in-law told me about the program and suggested I sign up. My son has been getting a book a month since shortly after he was born. Some are better than others. Everyone starts with The Little Engine That Could. This comes in handy because one of the few things my son says is “toot-toot”.

The letter that comes inside The Little Engine That Could (I think it is beautiful)


He also really likes one called All of Baby Nose to Toes. We point at the parts of the body as we read it. I think he might be catching on. He likes ABC Look at Me, because it shows other babies facial expressions. He also likes One Foot Two Feet An Exceptional Counting Book, because the pages have a square cut out, like little windows. He thinks that is neat.

All of Baby Nose to Toes


I kept a few books from my own childhood and I worked for a bookstore (although however briefly after my son arrived), so we are probably not quite as needy as some families. But my son does enjoy books. I think daddy is more excited when a new book comes in the mail than my son is. I love that it has the child’s name on the mailing label, so it comes right to him. Some of the earlier books we got were hardcover, but now it seems like they are all softcover. Must be the rising cost of postage is getting the better of them. What I find ironic is that they are shipping books to kids, addressed to kids, wrapped in plastic wrap with a warning that says “Warning! Plastic bags can be dangerous. To avoid danger of suffocation, keep this bag away from babies and children.”

One Foot Two Feet An Exceptional Counting Book


The program is sponsored in part by the Dollywood Foundation, in partnership with local sponsors who cover the cost of books and postage. This all seems like some sort of fabulous secret. I mean, there are never any public service announcements promoting it. Dolly mentions it in interviews, but I don’t think I have ever seen it mentioned on her Facebook page. I have been to my local WIC office . They don’t have any signs or brochures about the program. But it isn’t really being kept quiet, either.

Last winter, our local mall had a community day, which included some organizations for kids and literacy. There was a booth of people asking everyone if they knew about the “Imagination Library” and signing them up if they had not.

So tell your family and friends to look into the fabulous program. When your kid out grows the books, pass them on. Send people the website link (http://www.imaginationlibrary.com/). Feel free to pass on this post, since it contains boundless amounts of information and the link. If anyone knows Dolly Parton, pass along my thanks and appreciation to her. And let her know that I would love to meet her;)

I’m not stalking you. is NOW ON FACEBOOK! “Like” that I’m not stalking you and get an update when there is a new post to read. (It is sort of like YOU are stalking ME.)

Casey Anthony Trial

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I could never serve on the jury of the Casey Anthony trial. I have believed she was guilty from the beginning. I have followed this case from the beginning. I used to hear about it on the CNN.com Live webcast (I miss you Reggie, Naamua, and the rest…..), as I live in Michigan, not Florida, & do not have CNN on my cable plan. They used to show clips from the Nancy Grace show (I still am not clear on her motives). And I was watching CNN.com Live live when they found Caylee’s remains in the swamp in Florida. Heart-breaking.

I watch parts of the trial daily on CNN.com, from the jury selection up til today’s testimony by Casey’s brother. So far, everything I heard on the news is what I am hearing as testimony in court. Over & over, you hear what seems like proof of Casey’s lying. I loved Tuesday when they asked the mom about people/things Casey talked about all the time–the nanny, friends, boyfriends, jobs–who under police investigation have been proved to never have existed.

Casey seems like a smart girl, if most likely an habitual liar. So, why, if her daughter went missing, would she “conduct her own investigation”? And just when was she conducting this search, if she was busy living at her boyfriend’s apartment & going out to clubs. Oh right, maybe the 8hrs a day that she lied & said she was at work. If you were really conducting such a search, even if you didn’t tell people, wouldn’t you search like 16 hours a day? The people near Casey at the time have testified that she seemed happy, not worried or scared, never said anything about her daughter being missing. She told everyone Caylee was at the nanny’s. The question everyone forgot to ask was: How does a party girl in her early 20’s afford a nanny?

All the phone calls I have heard between Casey & her mother sound like me & my mother. A strained relationship. I believe that Casey felt that her mother loved Caylee more than her. Which, could very possibly have been true. It seems really easy for me to believe that Casey wanted to party, wanted her mother off her back, wanted her mother to love her more than Caylee, and did something about it. If it isn’t the true story, it sure makes for a very obvious one. Unlike….

The Defense, where she was molested as a child & it scarred her so bad now that when her daughter dies in a drowning accident, she tells no one? Anything is possible, but I can’t bring myself to believe that one. During the month Caylee was missing & only Casey knew, she said Caylee was happily with the nanny. Then the story was that the nanny kidnapped her. Now she drowned in a pool? Being proven in court as a liar, it makes it very hard to believe any of her stories.

To watch daily yourself, go to http://www.cnn.com/video/flashLive/live.html?stream=stream1

Or

http://www.cnn.com/video/ then click on Live on CNN.com

I can’t wait to see how this one comes out. Actually, I can. If Casey Anthony gets off, I will be one p*ssed puppy.

It is also good to watch the trail to see how court actually is conducted, unlike on Law & Order or Judge Judy.

Oh, and I frickin’ love this judge! He is a jolly African-American fellow with a southern drawl. He really makes the trial!

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