This House Needs A Mouse: A Book Review

We love books in our family!

Reading has always been one of my favorite pastimes and before either of my children were born, they had a ready and waiting library of childhood classics. Now reading together before bedtime is sometimes the best part of our day. We snuggle up together with a pile of books, with firm instructions to “read them in the order on your lap” and I try out different accents and change my voice as the characters do and we giggle and talk about the illustrations. At five-and-a-half, Lucas is starting to read now and hearing him read to his little sister, Lola fills my heart with so much joy.

We especially love new books and new titles find their way into our house several times a month thanks to three different libraries we frequent and a mom who has way to much access to Amazon Prime!

To receive a book in the mail is quite the thrill. Brand new and/or new to us books must be read right away!

Since its arrival, This House Needs A Mouse by C. Jeffrey Nunnally has been enjoyed many, many times.

This delightful book follows a mouse on a mission to find a house and escape the pet store he’s confined to and through a stroke of good timing, quick thinking and a family that needs a mouse to help with all the crumbs in their house, the mouse finds himself full of purpose and happy.

Soon the poor mouse’s life is turned upside-down by an unfortunate chain of events involving traps, rat poison and one unmotivated cat, but this seemingly ordinary mouse comes to grips with his new situation and his true purpose in life.


Lucas loves the repetitive language, rhyming and darling illustrations by Tamara Z. Brink. Every time we read it together he points out something different about the three families featured in the story and always giggles at the surprise ending. I love the underlining lesson that even ordinary things and people (and pets) can be extraordinary!


Lucas posing with his goldfish, Chocolate and his favorite page of This Mouse Needs A House.

Treat a child you love to a copy of this adorable book and I promise it will soon be a favorite for you too.

This House Needs A Mouse is available now on the book’s websiteAmazonBarnes & Noble, and Big Tent Books. You can also find This House Needs A Mouse on Facebook and tweet with the author, C. Jeffrey Nunnally on Twitter.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of This House Needs A Mouse to assist in my review. No other compensation was received. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Loss Is Loss Is Loss: A Book Review Of Rare Bird

As soon as Anna Whiston-Donaldson’s book, Rare Bird: A Memoir of Loss and Love arrived in my mailbox I started reading it. I literally ripped it out of the manila envelope it arrived in as I walked up to my house and started with chapter one entitled, You’re Braver than You Think.

Something stopped me.

I knew full well what the book was about; Anna’s son Jack died in a flash flood while playing with neighborhood friends in the rain. It is a tragedy that is almost inconceivable to consider. Parents should never have to bury their children. Ever.

There was a part of me that wondered if maybe I wasn’t in the right frame of mind to begin such a heavy story, one that was sure to cause me to draw parallels to my own grief and loss and pull me into a depression I didn’t have either the time or inclination to revisit. I wasn’t ready to go to that place in that moment.

grief feels like shame

That was the end of July.

By September, I had somehow successfully managed to avoid reading any reviews on Rare Bird or discussing the book with anyone who had already read it.

I picked it up again and finished two days later, on the third anniversary of Jack’s death. Ironic, right? I e-mailed Anna immediately to tell her how much I loved her memoir, how much I appreciated her tender words, full of wisdom and grace, beauty, love, pain and hope.

reluctant pupil of grief

I wanted her to know that I learned something about grief by reading Rare Bird. I realized that the thing about grief is once you’ve experienced that kind of loss it’s always with you and takes very little to conjure. It could be a quote, a piece of music, a passage in a book, walking by a stranger in the supermarket that smells like someone you lost or simply sharing your grief story with others. It can happen at any time and without any warning.

Through my personal grief journey I have discovered that grief is a tricky beast and everyone experiences it differently. So much of what Anna shares I felt when I lost my parents in a tragic, fluke accident way too soon. As Anna says, “loss is loss is loss”.

Rare Bird isn’t just a memoir. It is a beautifully written handbook for anyone who is grieving, who will grieve, or who will be there for someone who is grieving, but don’t just take my word for it, her book has already been praised by The Washington Post and Publishers Weekly.

Listen to Anna tell you about her book in her own words:

loss is loss is loss

Disclaimer: I received a copy of Rare Bird: A Memoir of  Loss and Love to assist in my review. No other compensation was received. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Mommy Time Well Spent

Lucas goes to preschool 18 hours a week.

Six hours, three days a week.

Those 18 hours are precious as hell to me but also busy as hell.

If I’m not sitting in a doctor’s office or being seen by a doctor, which eats up a lot more of those 18 hours than I care to report, I am running around like a chicken with it’s head cut off.

I typically have a ‘To Do’ list a mile long consisting of phone calls to make or return, groceries to purchase and dry cleaning to drop off and pick up.

I use those three days to walk the dog, tackle mounds of laundry, attempt meal planning and/or cooking, keep our home in order and if there is any me time left over, I catch up on my shows, blog, get my nails done, shower and wash my hair or enjoy the company of a friend over lunch, but every once in a while, I forgo the busy morning and appointment driven days and take myself to breakfast.

This is what that looks like:


Just me, a pot of green tea and a book. It’s a rare but lovely treat.

Where do you find your bliss?

Linking up with Sarah of The Sunday Spill and Greta of Gfunkified for their #iPPP weekly meme. Photo was taken with my iPhone 4s.


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