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Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin is one of those magical books that resonates with you long after the book is closed
From the moment we picked up this book we embarked on a journey through a magical China with a girl named Minli who was looking to change her families fortune.
Minli is a girl whose family is very poor. Her mother is very bitter about their lack of fortune. Her father tries to cheer the family up with his nightly tales. All day the three work in the rice fields and barely eek out enough to survive on, only one bowl of rice a day. A gift of a gold fish, a talking gold fish, steers her in the direction of finding the Old Man of the Moon. It is he who holds the book of fortune and can not only tell you of your future, but he can change it.
On her journey to Never Ending Mountain to find the home of the Old Man of the Moon, she encounters a wingless dragon who cannot fly. He has lived years in the forest all alone. During their journey together they meet the very rich and the very poor, learning lessons from all about herself, her family, and her fortune.
Told by the characters they meet, and interwoven into the story are Chinese folk tales. They are the string which connects this story to it’s place and destiny just like the strings of fortune the Old Man in the Moon ties on to the people living here on earth.
The author Grace Lin has not only written the story but is a very talented artist and illustrated the book as well. This very engaging story is on the top shelf of our bookcase and will be read again and again.
Something to Do: Chinese Fortune Sticks
In Chinese culture it is said that a person’s future becomes his/her past through the present. According to Chinese tradition, the successful person is the one who understands well what has happened in the past, experiences actively what is happening now to understand and create the future.
There are no guarantees that these fortune sticks will bring you good luck, but you can have a lot of good fun doing them.
- Use or make multi-colored stir sticks
- Write out 10 different fortunes on strips of papers. You will need multiples of the same fortune in each cup.
- Ten little cups,box,baskets, number them one to 10
- Place the sticks in a cup and hold them at an angle in front of you, parallel to the ground.
- Shake until some sticks poke or fall out.
- Count the number of sticks, this is your number
- Go to the cup with your number on it and read your fortune.
Here are some fortune examples but have fun and make up funny ones on your own.
- The beginning of wisdom is to desire it.
- You find beauty in ordinary things, do not lose this ability.
- It takes more than good memory to have good memories.
- Plan for much fun ahead.
- Something you lost will turn up soon.
- Make two grins grow where there was only a grouch before.
- Don’t forget, you are always on the hearts of those who love you.
- A friend is a present you give yourself.
- You will step on the soil of many countries
- A single kind word will keep you warm for years.
- If you want the rainbow you must put up with the rain.
****Some of these links are affiliate links. That means if you click and buy, I may get a very small commission. This money goes towards postage and supplies to keep books and ideas in the hands of young readers!
FREE Gift! Free 180 Multicultural Book Ideas ebook to inspired fun Summer Reading!
School is out and our youngsters are settling into a new summer routine of sleeping in and hopefully doing some exploring and discovering. With the hectic days of summer just beginning, oftentimes one of the first habit to go by the wayside is the habit of daily reading.
Reading is always an important part of our children’s lives no matter what time of year it is so I decided to wrap my knowledge of fun kidlit books and activities up with my experience as one of the co-founders of the very successful Multicultural Children’s Book Day and create a unique resource for parents who are looking for creative ways to keep their kids reading this summer. Reading is important, but so is helping our young readers learn about other cultures, religions and traditions through the pages of these books. Here are some great booklists and resources that I have created over the years at Jump Into a Book that will not only give parents and readers great ideas on diverse kids’ books, but fun activities related to books that will bring stories to life!
Sign up below for quick and free access to 180 Multicultural Book Ideas: World Travel through Kidlit Summer Reading!