Next Saturday 9 August is National Bookshop Day, which celebrates bookshops in the community. Bookshops around the country will be hosting events, book readings and a wide range of other fun activities.

Find out what’s going on in your nearest independent bookshop via Facebook.

Here’s what happening in some of Melbourne’s best children’s bookshops:

The Little Bookroom, 759 Nicholson St, Carlton North – Book launch for Hasel and Rose – RSVP here. Plus facepainting and balloons in both shops (Degraves St, Melbourne).

The Younger Sun, 9 Ballarat Street ,Yarraville – storytime and special guest booksellers.

Readings Hawthorn, 701 Glenferrie Rd, Hawthorn – story time with the Gruffalo. There will be growls and songs, cuddles and stickers, photo opportunities and giveaways.

Readings Carlton 309 Lygon St, Carlton – Damon Young will read from his bestselling picture book My Nanna Is A Ninja. At midday authors Damon Young and Emily Gale will read Julia Donaldson’s The Gruffalo, accompanied by a very large cuddly Gruffalo and a very wise Mouse.

Readings St Kilda 112 Acland St, St Kilda – story time with the Gruffalo. There will be growls and songs, cuddles and stickers, photo opportunities and giveaways.

Dymocks Melbourne 234 Collins St Melbourne – Meet your favourite book and comic characters with cosplayers from The Melbourne Costume Group, enjoy a visit from Spot the dog and Peter Rabbit, all day craft session, Gem Theatre Company joins us for the day with readings, poems and performances, and don’t miss Rolling Readings with Sir Topham Hatt of Thomas The Tank Engine fame!

Fairfield Books 117A Station St Fairfield – author visits, storytime, cupcakes!


melb festival

Tickets for the 2014 Melbourne Festival go on sale tomorrow Friday 1 August at 9am!

One of Australia’s best international arts festivals is happening between Friday 10 October and Sunday 26 October 2014 and it includes special programs for kids.  There’s theatre, music, circus and outdoor events to choose from.

Here are my picks for the best shows for under 5s:

Carrousel Des Moutons (Fri 10 Oct – Sun 12 Oct) – Wordless and filled with wonder, Carrousel des Moutons is a spellbinding mix of circus, acrobatics, illusion and piano music from world-renowned performance duo Dirk Van Boxelaere and Fien Van Herwegen, who return to Melbourne on the heels of their 2012 hit show Oh Suivant!

Pepper the Monkey and the Rainbow Circus (Fri 24 Oct) – Aurora Orchestra presents a magical blend of storytelling, theatre and classical music in this special series of performances for children under 5.

Primo  (Wed 15 Oct – Sun 19 Oct) – Imagination and wonder take centrestage in PRIMO, an underwater spectacle created especially for the creative minds of 2–5 year olds.

Grasslands (Sat 11 Oct – Sun 23 Nov) – Melbourne artist and Library Fellow Linda Tegg orchestrates Grasslands, a grand meditation on nature versus culture at the State Library of Victoria. Working with experts at Burnley Agricultural College, Tegg selected a plethora of specially grown native plants and grasses with which to restore the imposing stone forecourt of the Library to an imagined primordial wilderness. FREE.

The Way of Gunqin (Fri 17 Oct – Sat 18 Oct) – The Salon of the Melbourne Recital Centre transforms into an exhibition and workshop space, as the Jun Tian Yun He Ensemble share the artistry and aesthetics that lie at the very heart of Chinese culture. FREE.

Framed Movements (Fri 10 Oct – Sun 26 Oct) –  an intriguing investigation into the potential that lies at the shifting boundaries between art forms. FREE.

Golden Mirror Carousel  (Fri 10 OCt – Mar 2015) the spectacular life-size Golden Mirror Carousel offers visitors to Federation Court a powerfully different physical and mental encounter than its traditional fairground counterpart. FREE.

Pick and mix 3 or more events and save 15% off tickets.


Think Ahead Scienceworks

Get out and about in the first week of August with these special activities and events. (Photo from our recent trip to Scienceworks, one of the events this week)

CBD / Docklands

  • Docklands Winter Fireworks (Fri 4 Jul – Tue 29 Aug) – Happening every Friday night at 7pm during July and August. There’s music and fun to keep everyone entertained before and after the fireworks, along the NewQuay Promenade and Piazza.
  • Pirate Sunday at Polly Woodside (Sun 3 Aug) – Dress as a pirate and come help us search for hidden treasure, play tug of war and have your face painted.


South / South-East / Bayside





too hot for spots

Too Hot for Spots is the latest book by Melbourne based award-winning author and illustrator Mini Goss. The book is the second in the series which features her knitted literary creations, Barry and Stella.

too hot for spots

Until Sunday 17 August, ArtPlay at Birrarung Marr are holding a free exhibition of Mini Goss’ work. In the exhibition you’ll see working drawings, editorial comments and final images as well as some of the costumes and props photographed for Too Hot for Spots.

too hot for spots

For adults and older kids it’s a fascinating insight into the thought and effort behind a seemingly simple children’s story book.

too hot for spots

Younger children like Lady AB will probably be more interested in the craft table. Children are encouraged to use Mini Goss’ characters and scenes as inspiration to create their own stories using card, wool and fabric. There are also several copies of the book for an impromptu story time session.

too hot for spots

Too Hot for Spots, ArtPlay, Birrarung Marr, Melbourne

Wednesday 9 July to Sunday 17 August (open Wednesday to Sunday)


HOT: Fairy Door by My Fairy World

July 29, 2014

My Fairy World is an online store with everything that little ones need to create a magical world – and all the things fairies need to lead a happy life. At Piccadilly Market Lady AB was given a fairy door to try out. You should have seen the look of wonder when she saw the […]

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Weekly diary: I can feed myself

July 28, 2014

This week Baby 2.0 learned to feed himself using cutlery. With a little help of course and with a LOT of mess. But this milestone is particularly significant because it means that I’m now (almost) able to eat with my kids at the same time. I don’t have to go hungry so that I can […]

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