Thursday, April 21, 2011

Good Night, Little Sea Otter by Janet Halfmann [Book Review and Giveaway] plus a Sea Otter Craft

Getting the kids to bed on time sometimes seems like an impossible task. By the time we eat, finish with the baths, brush teeth and read a few books, it's already time for bed. Then the creative delays begin. "I need a drink of water. I need to say good night to the cat." Both kids have even tried to hide their blankies in an attempt to postpone bedtime. We're pretty firm parents and stall tactics don't work long here, but the minutes still add up and invariably time sneaks by. Author Janet Halfmann, with four kids and four grandkids, knows about all the bedtime tricks. In her newest book, a cute little sea otter tries to delay his bedtime, but eventually he drifts off to sleep.

Good Night, Little Sea Otter by Janet Halfmann, illustrated by Wish Williams. Star Bright Books (September 2010); ISBN 9781595722546; 32 pages
Book Source: Review copy from publisher

"Then it was bedtime, but Little Sea Otter wasn't ready to sleep."

Against a colorful sunset sky, Little Sea Otter and his mama prepare for bedtime. But before he falls asleep, Little Sea Otter must say goodnight to all the creatures above and below the ocean. First he speaks to the harbor seals, sea lions and a seagull and then he dips his head below water and wishes fish, sea urchins and others a good night. As the stars twinkle above and the sea sings a soft lullaby, Little Sea Otter says his final "Good Night" while his mom wraps them both in ribbons of kelp, anchoring them safely for the evening.

Reading this gentle and sweet story to a child is the perfect way to end the day. Little Sea Otter's pleasant waves of goodbyes, one after one, will relax and comfort readers like the murmur of sea waves. Wish Williams surrounds Little Sea Otter in a dreamy rainbow of sea colors. At one point, kids get a chance to point out orange, yellow and purple fish. His illustrations provide a lovely backdrop for the story. The beautiful sunset sky gradually darkens and eventually stars appear. The sea looks quiet and calm. I especially love that Janet Halfmann briefly mentions how Sea otters use kelp as anchors while sleeping. The brief educational moments paired with images of the adorable mama and baby sea otter make this a worthwhile and enjoyable bedtime read perfect for toddlers to early elementary-aged children.

Related Links:
Janet Halfmann - Author Website
Sea Otter Facts, Video and Sound on

♈ ♈ ♈ ♈ Sea Otter and Kelp Craft ♈ ♈ ♈ ♈

Earth Day is a good time to consider the consequences of our daily actions and to learn about ways we can live greener so that we can lessen pollution, including the pollution in our oceans, lakes and waterways. Did you realize that sea otters are a federally listed threatened species? Heavy hunting almost wiped out the species and now their health is threatened by various illnesses possibly caused by ocean contaminants. organizes a Sea Otter Awareness Week every year in September. We used the Sea Otter - Fact Sheet and Coloring Page from Defenders of Wildlife in today's Sea Otter and Kelp Craft.

I thought we'd repurpose a small piece of bubble wrap by using it for a craft. I've been meaning to make bubble wrap prints with my kids for a while now. The bubble wrap print makes a nice ocean background. To make a print my son painted a piece of bubble wrap and then pressed a piece of paper on top of the paint. After the ocean print dried, he colored a picture of a sea otter, added some google eyes and then he glued the picture to the ocean print. He also glued on a few tissue paper kelp leaves around the sea otter. Sea otters wrap themselves in kelp when resting to keep from drifting away.

abc button Shibley Smiles

A Mommy's Adventures hosts the "stART" meme (Story + Art) each week. Add your kids craft post to the Kid's Get Crafty linky at Red Ted Art's Blog. Join in Read Aloud Thursday at Hope is the Word. Show off your ideas at ABC & 123 Show and Tell. Wrote a post about play? Join the It's Playtime party! Find more great book tie-ins at JDaniel4's Mom Read, Explore, Learn link-up.

Janet Halfmann and Star Bright Books have kindly offered to giveaway a signed copy of Good Night, Little Sea Otter.

To enter this contest, visit either Janet Halfmann's website or Star Bright Books and leave a comment with the name another book that you'd like to read.

• For contact purposes, if you are a non-blogger or your email is not accessible in your blog profile, please leave a valid email address within the comment section.
• Contest is open to US
• Contest ends on Monday, May 9th, 2011 at 11:59 PM CST.
• Winner will be chosen at random and sent an email notification.
Three ways to gain extra entries (Maximum total entries is 4; please leave a separate comment for each entry):
1st extra entry: Blog about this contest then post your link in the comment section.
2nd extra entry: Follow me on twitter (iambrimful) and tweet about the contest.
3rd extra entry: Follow Me! or subscribe by email or RSS reader

I am an Amazon affiliate and may receive a very small commission for products purchased through my Amazon links. (View my full disclosure statement for more information about my reviews.)


RedTedArt said...

Now THAT, is CUTE!! We love bubble wrap printing and that is a really nice way to do it!! It is SO going in "Water Get Crafty" On the 1st May

Thank you for linking up to Kids Get Crafty!


Kristie said...

I love the craft you did!! How creative!

Another book that looks cute is:

khmorgan_00 [at] yahoo [dot] com

Janet Halfmann: said...

What a wonderful otter craft! Thanks so much for your review and for hosting this giveaway. Happy Dreams to All!

Bridget R. Wilson said...

Fur and Feathers looks like it would be a great book.


Bridget R. Wilson said...

I follow you through Google Reader.


Bridget R. Wilson said...

P.S. The craft is great. I love otters...they have river otters at the Knoxville Zoo in TN.

Natalie PlanetSmarty said...

Only one book? Hmmm :) I think the permanent favorite in this house is What Do People Do All Day by Richard Scarry. The otter craft looks great. And I am intrigued by the title "Anna and Natalie" that someone recommended :)

Unknown said...

I love the effect of bubble wrap printing! So simple yet striking. Thanks so much for linking up to It's Playtime!

Unknown said...

The pictures in this book are GORGEOUS! Also, I really like how you made the water with the bubble wrap paper- again, why do we EVER throw anything away when you KNOW we will somehow use it in a craft with the kiddos?

P.S. I just realized i have never officially "signed up" to follow your blog, which is CRAZY since I have been unofficially following you for a while now...well, I've "subscribed" now! :0)

Shelly Leatham said...

following on twitter and tweeted

Tracey M. said...

Didn't even realize this was a giveaway, just loved seeing your post about Good Night Little Sea Otter. We recently found a book called Otter Play at the library, which my son just loves. I haven't found Good Night..Otter at our library yet :(

So, I think the books I like would be a tie between GIDEON and OH NO, WOOLY BEAR.

Thanks for this giveaway!
email: lanty tracey @

Tracey M. said...

Second entry, I follow you on Google Connect.

lanty tracey @

Katie said...

I would also love to have Fur and Feathers.
Your craft is adorable by the way!


Laurie said...

Little Skinks Tail for sure! Although they all look adorable.

I love the otter picture- even my 7 yo would have fun with that.

Laurie said...

I did not leave my email. Mom7 _06 at yahoo dot com
Sorry about that.

Wehaf said...

I'd also love to read Fur and Feathers.

urchiken at gmail dot com

Joanna said...

love the sea otter picture your son made. they are some of my favourite creatures, in fact I am writing a story about one now. Love how you added some craft to the story.
I follow through Google reader.

Anonymous said...

I subscribe by email. Thanks for the chance to win!

Anonymous said...

I went to Janet's website and I found another book I think my preschool class would love: Star of the Sea.

Danielle K said...

I'd also love to read The Cats of Mrs. Calamari

danielleaknapp at gmail dot com

JDaniel4's Mom said...

There are times JDaniel says he isn't ready to sleep. I will have to encourage him to take time to say good night to all the toys in his bed. That should take awhile.

Thanks for linking to Read.Explore.Learn.

Happy Easter!

Ticia said...

Twilight Hunt looks pretty.

I love this idea for your craft, it looks like so much fun.

Anne said...

Great re-purposing of bubble wrap! The illustrations of the book really look beautiful. From the website I think B would enjoy Plant Tricksters - it's a little above his age range but he would think it was so cool!

Anne said...


Cakeblast said...

I would also like to read BARNABY BENNETT from Star Bright books

Cakeblast said...

I follow you on GFC as "Cakeblast"
cakeblast [at] gmail [dot]com

Nichole said...

I'd like to check out Little Skink's Tail.

nichole {a t} justchildrensbooks dot com

Kathleen said...

i'm following on twitter and i tweeted:!/heyfrugalmommy/status/61879874805182464

heyfrugalmommy at hotmail dot com

Domestic Diva said...

Fur and Feathers looks great.

lovelydomesticdiva (at) gmail (dot) com

Gretchen said...

I love reading books with my granddaughter. Look out Lion Cub by Michele Coxon looks like a fun book to read and then using the story we can act out the book over and over.

Gretchen said...

I follow on Google Friend Connect and subscribe using google reader.

Leah said...

We'd love, love, love to read all 8 books in the Bugbooks series! They look so very magical especially as we love bugs! : )

BTW.....your crafty creation is so adorably cute! : )

Thanks so much for this fabulous give~away! : )


Leah said...

I so love being one of your subscribers via e~mail! : )


bitt said...

I'd also love to read "eating the rainbow"

sarahjunie said...

I'd love to share "Urban Animals" with my kiddo!

sarahjunie at gmail dot com

Jenn C. said...

I'm following you on twitter as @JennLikesIt. I also tweeted about this giveaway.

♡♥♬ Raven In A Blue Room ♬♥♡ said...

Google Friends Connect - following your blog publicly as Louis

schnitzomage {at} gmail {dot} com

Rebecca Reid said...

I'd love to be entered for the giveaway. and what a creative craft idea!


Rebecca Reid said...

sorry forgot to leave the name of the other book.

How Do You Get a Mouse to Smile? sounds very cute.

Miranda Ward said...

What Do People Do All Day by Richard Scarry

Books4Learning said...

I added your giveaway to my giveaway list:

RedTedArt said...

PS have featured you on "Water Get Crafty"

Thank you!


Teresa Young said...

We have Pelican's Catch & it's one of our favorites

tmyoung at rochester dot rr dot com

Teresa Young said...

Twitter follower @tmy56 & tweeted!/tmy56/status/65133756511563777
tmyoung at rochester dot rr dot com

Meredith said...

followu on twitter @luvmy_babygio
wuera_mermaid22 at

The1stdaughter said...

Wow! Love this review and I love the crafty part as well! You are so incredible, I don't know how you do it all. Wow! Great review.

PS...guess who won the Picture Book Challenge during the month of April? :o) You did! Could you send me your addy and I'll get Chalk out to you? the1stdaughter at gmail dot com


Swati said...

I love the Fur and feathers book. Such a cute idea!

I can be contacted at - this way I don't have to leave my email address in the public domain and can still be reached :)

MeRMaiD! said...!/luvmy_babygio/status/66626308267982848
wuera_mermaid22 at

Deborah said...

I'd like to read "Star of The Sea" with my grandson. asthenight at gmail dot com

Deborah said...

I follow you on twitter;!/AsTheNight/status/67308526279737344.

Erin E said...

I would like to read Fur and Feathers. Thank you for the lovely giveaway.
sewmuchstuff at ymail dot com

Erin E said...

I follow you on twitter (@sewmuchstuff) and I tweeted
sewmuchstuff at ymail dot com

Erin E said...

I subscribe via google reader (RSS)
sewmuchstuff at ymail dot com

Mary said...

The kids like Have You Fed The Cat?


nicolesender said...

I like the book Fur & Feathers and I'm sure my grandson would also like to read it.

nicolesender said...

follow you on twitter @minibea

Annika said...

I would like to read Baby, Come Out

annikahays at gmail dot com

Mama Swears said...

I'd like to read "Little Skink's Tail" to my children.

mamaswears at gmail dot com

Mama Swears said...

I follow you on Twitter as @mamaswears

mamaswears at gmail dot com

Mama Swears said...

I'm following you via GFC as krishackney.

mamaswears at gmail dot com

Lindsay said...

I think her upcoming book "Eggs, 1, 2, 3" would be right up my son's alley-he eats hardboiled eggs like they're the only food left on earth. lol.
Sea Otters are my favorite animal though so I think I'd love this book the most of possibly any kids book ever. :)

susansmoaks said...

i would love to read fur and feathers
susansmoaks at gmail dot com

babytrees said...

I would love "Star of the Sea"

theresa _ heppner at yahoo dot com

AEKZ2 said...


Erin Cook said...

I would love to get Star of the Sea: A Day in the Life of a Starfish

tina reynolds said...

I think BACKPACK BABY thanks for the chance to win

tina reynolds said...

i follow/subscribe thanks thanks for the chance win

Nancye said...

I would like to read "Barnaby Bennett" It sounds like a cute book!

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

I follow you on Twitter and I Tweeted this giveaway

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net