The book Ask Mr. Bear by Marjorie Flack has been read by children and their parents for many generations. It was written in 1932!

It’s about a little boy named Danny who is trying to find the perfect gift for his mother’s birthday. On his quest, he consults various animals for ideas. I love the eye-catching illustrations and the non-material values reinforced in this story.

Our week with this book was simple, but greatly enjoyed.

Ask Mr. Bear

Gluing together an Ask Mr. Bear craft.

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I’ve already given you a sneak peek of our Blueberries For Sal week with posts about our blueberry picking field trip, baking a blueberry pie, and making a blueberry julius. It’s taken a while for me to get to the rest of it, but here’s the post on what else we did to go along with the book!

First, a bit of background on the story. Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey is one of my favorite books from the entire Before Five In A Row reading list. We check out most of the books from the library, but this one we’ve owned before we even started with BFIAR. I love everything about it- the blue-black art (it won a Caldecott honor for the illustrations), the choice of descriptive words, and of course- the story!

It’s about a little girl named Sal who goes with her mother out to Blueberry Hill to pick blueberries so that they’d have food to can for the winter. At the same time, a mother bear and her cub are also out on the hill eating blueberries so they’d have food stored up for the winter. How differently bears and people store their food!

As the moms work away at gathering and eating berries, the young’uns somehow get switched up- now Little Sal is with the mother bear and the cub is with Little Sal’s mom! The lost children are not afraid about being with parents of a strange species. The parents, on the other hand, are concerned. Two lines of the book that made me smile:

Describing the mother bear, “She was old enough to be shy of people, even a very small person like Little Sal.”

Describing Little Sal’s mom, “She was old enough to be shy of bears, even very small bears like Little Bear.”

By the end of the book, everyone goes home with the right mother.

This is one of those timeless classics that should be on the bookshelf of every serious lover of children’s literature.

Blueberries For Sal

Creating blueberry bushes with leaf confetti and blue paint on wine corks.

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Cooking With Toddlers: Blueberry Julius

by Melanie on June 27, 2014

When we went to Bryant’s Blueberries to pick fresh berries, I bought a small blueberry cookbook they had for sale. I felt good about supporting their business with this extra purchase and let’s face it, they knew what to do with 3 and a half pounds of blueberries better than I did.

In addition to the amazing blueberry pie we made from this cookbook, the Blueberry Julius recipe jumped out at me. It looked simple enough for a toddler to do most of the work and sounded absolutely scrumptious. It was!

blueberry julius

Blueberry Julius

I first gathered up the ingredients before calling Rocket into the kitchen.

blueberry julius

The ingredients needed for the Blueberry Julius were 1 cup of blueberries, 1/2 cup of milk, 1/2 cup of water, 1/4 cup of sugar, and 5 ice cubes. The recipe actually also listed 1 Tbsp. of vanilla instant breakfast. I had no idea what that was, so I left it out and it still tasted absolutely delightful.

blueberry julius

Once everything was set up, Rocket was ready to mix it all together.

blueberry julius

Pouring the sugar. We rarely use sugar in our cooking, but when we do it’s organic brown sugar. Rocket doesn’t have much of a sweet tooth. His dad, on the other hand…

blueberry julius

Carefully pouring the water. To get all the ingredients in this narrow cup, Rocket had to be attentive and precise.

blueberry julius

Can’t forget the blueberries!

blueberry julius

The blender we use is called a Ninja and it does a fantastic job at handling ice.

This beverage was easy to make and a perfectly refreshing summer drink.

Needless to say, we thoroughly enjoyed blueberry week in this house!

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