Monday, August 10, 2009

Lions & Tigers & Cupcakes? Oh my!

With my two nephews in tow, I recently journeyed to the fantastic San Fransisco Zoo & decided to pick up the zoo's new historic piece of literature, San Fransisco Zoo by Katherine Girlich. Chronicling nearly 80 years of history since it's prestigious grand opening in 1929, this beautiful full spread of sepia photographs detailing park construction & the building of it's noteworthy animal habitats has become my favorite piece of tourist memorabilia! Did you know that the original park had a "Elephant" shaped train that ran for around .30 a person instead of the "Little Puffer" miniature steam train that runs there today? Or that the zoo was originally created as an adult play field & massive pool for San Fransisco residents designed by renowned businessman Herbert Fleishhacker before it was turned into a wildlife conservatory? No? Then you will love delving into the fascinating bits of history that grace the pages of this historical little gem like scenes from an old fashioned movie! I certainly do!

My baking extraordinaire co-worker, Jane just recommended me one of her favorite guides to baking. Not just any & all forms of baking either. This baking is all about the mastering of cupcakes! Like her, I've recently been exploring my love for baking & decorating cupcakes & I must confess, this is the BEST cupcake book I've run across thus far! With detailed, easy to comprehend information ranging from Ingredient suggestions to Frosting recipes (Cream Cheese frosting is my favorite!) to full on decorating styles for every type of occasion you can think of, A Bakers Field Guide To Cupcakes by Dede Wilson is perfect for both beginner and experienced bakers alike! Feeling adventurous? Try the Lemon Meringue Cupcake recipe on page #56. Your tummy will thank you!

Whenever I host my store's weekly story time, I always try to pick out a group of themed picture books that would appeal to my toddler aged audience. So when this new picture book, I Need My Monster by Amanda Noll caught my eye a few weeks ago, I knew that I had to do a monster themed book reading! I truly ADORE this picture book! Why? Because this little boy is not your typical scared-of-the-dark kind of kid. In fact, you might be surprised with how very UNAFRAID of anything he is, including monsters! With hilarious illustrations & a charming cast of would be monsters, this is one of those rare picture books that I will treasure for a very, very long time! What's under your bed?

Happy Reading Mates!

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