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Ciao a tutti! Hello Everyone!

Today we’re happy to be celebrating the official release of Spaghetti Smiles by Margo Sorenson and David Harrington (Pelican Publishing Co., 2014).

This playful, lip-smacking story has been cooked up with just the right ingredients: a book lovin’ boy, a crazy-fun uncle, lots of savory, tomato-y, kiss-your-fingertips Italian food, the joys of reading with family, and the importance of a close-knit community.

But more about the book in a minute.

First, a few party accoutrements. :)

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if the shoe fits, eat it

various

Here’s the scoop:

Now you can have your cake and wear it too, thanks to the Shoe Bakery. :)

This Orlando-based company, founded by designer Chris Campbell, creates custom, handmade ice cream and cake shoe designs. None of them are edible, but apparently very wearable. I’ve seen shoe sculptures before which pretty much live in art galleries and are for ogling only. But these heels, flats, and wedges like to go out on the town and make unforgettable fashion statements at weddings and other special occasions. Fun!

Enjoy this little dessert tray to get your week off to a sweet start. :)

wedding

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It’s here, it’s here! My favorite season of the year!

Happy Autumn, Cutie Pies!

To celebrate, I’m sharing four haiku from that delectable harvest of foodie goodness, Yum! ¡MmMm! ¡Qué Rico!: Americas’ Sproutings by Pat Mora and Rafael López (Lee & Low, 2007).

This mouth-watering collection features fourteen familiar foods native to the Americas (corn, blueberries, chiles, tomatoes, pecans, pumpkins). With choice sensory details, touches of whimsy, and a generous sprinkling of joy, Ms. Mora captures their very essence, illuminating how these foods have enriched our lives for centuries (hello, chocolate!). :)

Each of the haiku is paired with a sidebar brimming with fascinating tidbits about the food’s origin, history, cultural significance and/or current uses.

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Ahem. It’s time to sit up straight, place our napkins in our laps, and make polite conversation at the table.

Or, we can fling meatballs at each other.

I leave it to you to decide which would be more fun and/or politically correct. :)

To help make up your mind, why not take a bite or two of Dinner with the Highbrows: A Story About Good (or Bad) Manners (Henry Holt, 2014) by Kimberly Willis Holt and Kyrsten Brooker?

Bernard could hardly wait until next Saturday. He was invited to eat dinner with Gilbert Highbrow’s family. Bernard had never eaten at a friend’s house.

Bernard’s mom is all a-fluster. The Highbrows live in “a fine house” and only the best manners will do for such posh people. She coaches Bernard all week on the essentials: compliment and thank the hosts, say a blessing, no elbows on the table, don’t talk with your mouth full, no singing!, help clear the dishes. Bernard practices and practices, hoping he’ll be able to remember all the rules.

Illustrations © 2014 Kyrsten Brooker

On Saturday, he’s excited but nervous. When he finally gets to the Highbrows’, he’s greeted by shouts and cheers and quickly whisked off with the family to Antonio’s restaurant in a white limousine.

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mr darcy picks a winner!

My Dear Friends,

Please allow me to thank you for ardently admiring and loving me. I trust your parents are in good health?

I’ve been summoned by a certain Monsieur Random Integer Generator to announce the winner of the Goodnight Mr. Darcy Giveaway.

Before I proceed, may I be so bold as to convey my deepest appreciation to Miss Coombs and Miss Arnold for their splendid portrayal of my hot hook-up fortuitous assignation with one Elizabeth Bennet?

I confess I would have addressed you sooner, but I have been meditating on the very great pleasure which a pair of fine eyes in the face of a pretty woman can bestow.

Can you blame me? She’s hot, right?

There was also the dilemma of selecting just one recipient amongst a bevy of bosom-heaving broads an impressive coterie, all in possession of sizable fortunes and enviable connections.

As an honorable man, I assure you I employed all means at my disposal to arrive at a fair and impartial decision.

I wrote to esteemed colleagues for advice.

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