Butterfly Show!

By Shawna I almost hate to let you in on this little secret, because I’m afraid of it getting too crowded, but as a faithful Kids in the Capital contributor, I cannot keep it to myself: Carleton University’s Department of Biology hosts a free butterfly show in their greenhouses every fall, and it’s on right now, right now, right now!

That’s right, every day from September 29 to October 8 inclusive, from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, you can bring your kids to see a fluttering, flittering, flapping display of gorgeousness free, free, free!  (Donations, however, are appreciated of course).  It’s also a great chance to grab some pictures of exotic, colourful butterflies that aren’t native to the area.  Or some pictures of your kids.  Or, best of all, some pictures of your kids interacting with exotic, colourful butterflies!  I went last year with the kids, and it was a big hit.  Sage in particular was utterly thrilled when a butterfly landed on her.

Here are the details!

You’re welcome.  Now don’t tell too many people…

Shawna is mom to 4-year-old Sage and 2-year-old Harris.  She has  been writing online since 2003, and her latest project is a fledgling photography blog.  She plans on visiting the butterfly show twice this year: once with her kids and camera, and once with just her camera.

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Spring book recommendations from the Ottawa Public Library!

Thank you to Margaret Mary Conlon from the Alta Vista branch of the Ottawa Public Library for these book suggestions for May!

Kitten’s Spring – written & illustrated by Eugenie Fernandes

Children will enjoy exploring spring through the inquisitive eyes of Kitten. A simple, charming tale of new beginnings and discoveries, set off to advantage by the unique, inimitable style of Eugenie Fernandes’ artwork. Invite your child to join Kitten as she sets off to meet other animals and their young!

A Bloom of Friendship: The story of the Canadian Tulip Festival – by Anne Renaud; illustrated by Ashley Spires

A Bloom of Friendship is more than a book on the Tulip Festival. Using the much appreciated scrapbook style, Anne Renaud succeeds in making the history of it accessible and exciting, as well as putting the story into the historical context surrounding it. Everything from key events to notable people of the Second World War, such as Anne Frank, is highlighted without becoming overwhelming. A deftly written book with a distinct Canadian twist for those curious to learn more about this well known festival.

Quiet in the Garden – written & illustrated by Aliki

A splendid book that celebrates the inherent beauty of nature, Quiet in the Garden encourages children to see the exquisiteness of life right in their own backyard. From birds to spiders, a young boy and his bunny learn about other creatures and finally host a picnic for their wild friends! Aliki’s gentle words and realistic, mixed media illustrations are sure to charm everyone. You may even find yourself being quiet in a garden!

Ten Little Caterpillars – by Bill Martin Jr.; illustrated by Lois Ehlert

This book is much more than a counting book! Well known Bill Martin Jr. and Lois Ehlert have succeeded in creating a book that can be enjoyed on many levels. Young readers will enjoy counting the caterpillars and seeing what they do. Older readers will enjoy learning to identify the plants and animals featured. The caterpillars are mainly local, and are pictured at the end with the butterfly and moth species they become, enabling budding naturalists to go explore and perhaps find a caterpillar like one of the ten little caterpillars.

Explore Spring – by Maxine Anderson; illustrated by Alexis Frederick-Frost

This is the perfect book to accompany older children on their quest to turn their knowledge of the seasons into science. A mix of demonstrations, activities, science experiments and crafts, this book has something to interest everyone. Would you prefer to make a thunderstorm, build a wind chime, start a science journal or construct a bird nest? With this book, the choice is up to you!

Muncha! Muncha! Muncha! – by Candace Fleming; illustrated by G. Brian Karas

Mr. McGreely had always wanted a vegetable garden. One day, he planted lots of yummy veggies, but he was not the only one who thought them yummy! Join the three hungry bunnies as they outwit Mr. McGreely, and teach him that things really do taste better when you share. Muncha! Muncha! Muncha!

Everything Spring – by Jill Esbaum; pictures compiled by National Geographic Kids

Vivid pictures and simple text combine to show children young life, including wild and domestic plants, birds and animals. A special page allows them to follow along with a tadpole as it transforms into a frog! Featuring the close-up, high quality photography associated with National Geographic, this ‘sneak-peek’ is sure to fascinate children.

Butterflies in the Garden – written & illustrated by Carol Lerner

What plants do butterflies like? How do you attract them to your garden, balcony or window box? Written like a story and beautifully illustrated by the author in striking watercolour, this book is both an engaging read and a good starting point for those looking to attract northern North American butterflies to their home!


Grow It, Cook It: Simple gardening projects and delicious recipes – edited by Sonia Willock-Moore

A fantastic visual guide to growing and cooking your own food for you and your children! No garden? No problem! This unique guide features tips on container gardening various vegetables and herbs. Everything from growth time and conditions required, to recipes featuring your home-grown produce is available at your fingertips. A great way to celebrate spring!

Backyard Birds – Jonathon Latimer & Karen Stray Nolting; illustrated by Roger Tory Peterson

The perfect bird guide for young birders from well known Peterson Field Guides! This edition features common birds that children are likely to see in cities and suburbs, rather than focusing on birds that are uncommon, thus encouraging the would be bird watcher. Clear pictures combined with close-up drawings to highlight identifying characteristics render this book invaluable to anyone who loves birds. A must-have for spring!

What are you reading this spring!?

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