PPBF: Bitter And Sweet

Today I'm excited because I'm traveling home to Wisconsin, to visit family and take in the beauty of Autumn. I get this longing for Fall every year, because I miss the magic of my favorite season; lately, my longings turn toward my season with these beautiful kindness advocates.

Life is like that, I suppose; 

we yearn for the seasons we've passed through and no longer have,
rendering our move forward into something new bittersweet.

Who wouldn't miss this joyfully-colorful chaotic mess?

Enter today's PPBF; a moving tale about change 
that totally connects to what I've been 
thinking, feeling, experiencing.

Title: Bitter and Sweet
Author: Sandra V. Feder
Illustrator: Kyrsten Brooker
Publisher: Groundwood Books
Birth Date: October 1, 2018
Suitable for: ages 4-7
Themes: moving, feelings, culture
Brief synopsis: As Hannah gets ready to move to a new town, she only feels the bitterness of what she'll  have to leave behind; will she learn to savor the sweet among the sour?
Opening Page: Hannah didn't want to move. She loved her house with the wide porch, her neighborhood with the flat streets that were perfect for bike riding, and her school with all her friends.


Check out the author's webpage {here}.
Read all about it at the IndieBound site {here}.
Useful tips for helping kids adjust to a new home.

Why I like this book: This beautiful newcomer details Hannah's experience as she prepares to leave behind what she loves to the unknown: a new house, a new town, a new school, new routines, and new friends. Noticing Hannah's hesitation, her Grandmother shares that her own move from the Motherland was "definitely some bitter but even more sweet," encouraging her to find the sweet in the bitter, the blessings in the burden, the silver in the lining. Hannah's not so sure, but she gets a glimmer of hope when she finally meets a friend in the frenzy, receiving a gift she won't soon forget.

Leaving my school family has been so bittersweet.
While I'm loving my new role consulting and mentoring, 
I do miss my superheroes something fierce.
We ran in to one of them the other day, a fifth-grade girl, 
who leaned in and quietly told me, "We miss the puppets." 

We did, indeed, enjoy that season with those furry friends a lot,
which is why it has been so tough to let that passion of my journey go.

Use this treasure for a springboard for discussing something that 
your students have experienced that was bitter and then sweet.
You might even try a Venn diagram;
are there things that overlap as at once bitter and sweet?

As a bonus, there's also a note from the author about the significance of bitter and sweet in the Jewish culture, fostering hope and encouraging a desire of
"celebrating the good and being part of something sweet."

Want more PPBF picks? Head to Susanna Hill's blog next.



  1. Two PPFB books shares that would pair well today. I love the theme of life having both bitter and sweet moments. And it involves a grandmother to help put things into perspective. Even though you miss your classroom, you have a wonderful opportunity to help other teachers and schools implement character programs. You are spreading your wings!

  2. Change is so hard, especially when you leave behind good things. So much uncertainty about what lies ahead. Thank you for this recommendation. It's a timeless subject, and this looks like a beautiful new book that will help kids talk about change.

  3. This sounds poignant. Helping kids recognize both the bitter and the sweet in a move is a great strategy. Thanks for sharing!

  4. This one is new to me. Thanks for sharing it. Sweet wishes to you.


I really enjoy hearing from my readers; thanks for sharing your reflections with us!