ten cool things on a tuesday

1. Is it lunch yet? “Let’s taco bout how cute this lunch tote is.” Yep, cute cute cute. I wonder, do you have to be a kid to actually use this thing? 🙂

Well, let me just say that if I did take my lunch to work every day, I wouldn’t hesitate for one second. Of course, this makes an adorable gift for the munchkin(s) in your life. I’m sure it would make anything you pack extra yummy. The tote is insulated and hard-walled on the inside to keep edibles fresh and protected. Available now for pre-order from the Foodiggity shop, ships April 14.

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2. Heads up, poets! Terrapin Books is now accepting submissions for a new Donut Anthology to be published this Fall! Yes, I said DONUTS.

Guidelines:

We will consider up to five published or unpublished poems about any kind of donut, e.g., jelly donut, sugar, powdered, glazed, Boston cream, donut holes, cruller, long john, fritter, pączki, oliebollen, ponchik, fánk. 

Send us your poems about making donuts, eating donuts, donuts and family rituals or traditions, your love or fear of donuts, your first donut, a memory associated with donuts, cops and donuts, a fight over donuts, a dream or a nightmare about donuts.

We will consider previously published poems provided the author is able to grant permission for Terrapin Books to republish the poems. 

I imagine if you plan to write about donuts, you’ll need to eat one, three, or fifty-five for optimum inspiration. 🙂 Deadline for submissions is May 31, 2017. Visit the TB site for all the lipsmacking details. What are you waiting for?

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3. Longtime Alphabet Soup readers know I’m a big fan of London-based artist Emma Block. Love her fresh, sprightly, feminine paintings. Who can resist this wonderful Cake Alphabet print? She’s included some of my favorites: linzer torte, Victoria sponge, devil’s food, and Battenburg. Yum!

Emma recently revamped her website — it’s such a lovely feast for the eyes, a wonderful showcase for her book and editorial illustrations, branding work, greeting cards, etc.

I thoroughly enjoyed our interview a few years back and reviewing Anne Michaels’s book The Adventures of Miss Petitfour, which Emma so charmingly illustrated. Check out her Etsy Shop for available prints.

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4. Since it’s Easter Week, here’s a little Beatrix Potter fix. These cakes were created for last Fall’s Cake and Bake Show in Manchester, England, in celebration of Beatrix’s 150th birthday. I think my fave is Mrs. Tiggy-winkle. Just too pretty to eat!

**Beatrix Potter cakes at The Cake and Bake Show, Event City, Manchester, United Kingdom. Credit: Steve Searle/WENN.com

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5. Uber-talented picture book author/illustrator ashley wolff has created a series of prints to illustrate Resistance to the Regime of 45, and so far they all feature BEARS! She says:

My resistance prints are designed to emphasize the joyful, civilized and positive qualities of living in the USA, qualities that I feel are threatened by the attitudes and policies of the regime of the 45th president.

These are signed and numbered, and printed on 100% cotton rag archival watercolor paper. Half of the proceeds will be donated to social and environmental causes such as the ACLU, Nature Conservancy, Planned Parenthood and Sierra Club. Get some gorgeous art and help a good cause!

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6. New Book Alert! It’s official release day for Ella WHO?, written by one of our favorite picture book authors, Linda Ashman, and illustrated by Madrid-based artist Sara Sanchez!! Hooray!

It’s moving day—and look who slipped in the door: an elephant! But when a little girl tries to tell her family about their unusual guest, the distracted grown-ups just say, “Ella WHO?” Even as children giggle at the girl’s adventures with the smallish pachyderm, and at the fun, recurring refrain, they’ll relate to the poignant theme about making—and sometimes letting go of—new friends.

Must mention that I love elephants and have a small collection of them in the living room. Mind you, they don’t follow me around like the little elephant in this book, but they’re still very sweet. Looks like a darling story and a thoroughly enjoyable Springtime read. Congratulations, Linda and Sara!

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7. Leave it to the Japanese — KitKat Sushi! Apparently they’re nuts about KitKats in Japan (who knew?) and have something like 300 different flavors available. They even have specialty shops devoted solely to KitKats. Uh-huh.

Back in February, a new Chocolatory shop opened in Tokyo’s Ginza, and to mark the occasion, they offered a limited edition set of three different KitKat Sushi flavors which sold for about $26.

Check out the different flavors:

Tamago (egg): pumpkin-flavored KitKat atop puffed rice covered in white chocolate and wrapped with seaweed.
Maguro (tuna): raspberry-flavored KitKat atop puffed rice covered in white chocolate.
Uni (sea urchin): Hokkaido melon and mascarpone cheese KitKat wrapped in seaweed.

Currently there are 9 (?) Chocolatory shops in Japan; KitKat has been Japan’s favorite chocolate brand since 2012. Apparently some flavors are only available in certain regions, as they are made from ingredients local to those areas (Cinnamon Cookie, Purple Potato, Kobe Pudding, European Cheese, anyone?).

Talk about taking something simple and running with it. Did you ever think KitKats would attain gourmet status?

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8. So many of us in the children’s book world and beyond were deeply saddened to hear of Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s death from ovarian cancer on March 13, 2017. She was definitely one of a kind and will be sorely missed.

Recently, children’s author Kirby Larson started a Facebook Group (#MoreforAKR) to honor Amy’s memory in this special way:

This group was created to celebrate the birthday and, sadly, the memory, of the effervescent and hopeful writer Amy Krouse Rosenthal. On April 29, 2017, the members of this group will do #More — more kindness, love, more fill-in-the-blank and will share their intentions/actions here to beckon the lovely to spring forth in others. Because who doesn’t need a yellow umbrella once in a while?

So far over one thousand Amy fans have signed on, and anyone else, anywhere in the world, is welcome to join. On April 29, people are planning to read and share Amy’s books in venues large and small, donate books to libraries and shelters, etc. Amy exemplified goodness and was a light in this world, and we will keep it burning. Click here to sign up if you haven’t already done so, and invite your friends!

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9. Here’s a bit more Springtime loveliness to brighten up your day: check out the beautiful work of Australia-based artist Gabby Malpas:

My work could be interpreted as purely decorative. By using allusion and symbolism, I weave stories into my work based on my experiences as trans-racial, Asian adoptee: joyful and chaotic assemblage of blooms and fruit displayed with a collection of ceramics from anywhere and everywhere but with a narrative that draws the viewer in for a second look.

The result is a collection of pictures combining unexpected elements to create strangely familiar images. There are stories to each of my works that lift them from the purely decorative into a narrative piece.

I admit the inclusion of china pieces in her paintings is what first caught my eye. Love that the flora and fauna depicted were grown and/or viewed in NSW Australia. See more of her work, which can be purchased as prints, stationery, on homeware items or fashion accessories at her website shop!

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10. Finally, check out this cool Indiegogo project launched by writer friend Bridget Magee and her family. Following Carrie Fisher’s advice to “Take Your Broken Heart and Make It Into Art,” the Magees designed and trademarked this 12″ Tyrannosaurus Rump plushie, as a way of embracing hate and replacing it with LOVE.

Your $25 donation will help them cover manufacturing costs, and if they meet their goal, you will receive a T-Rump plushie, and $5 will be donated to the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, or the Union of Concerned Scientists — you choose. You can also back the project without receiving a plushie (20% donated to your choice of organization).

Watch this video to meet Bridget’s family and learn more:

Please help to spread the word — they only have a couple more weeks to meet their projected goal. Click here to make a donation!

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🐇 HAPPY EASTER WEEK!! 🐁


Copyright © 2017 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

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21 thoughts on “ten cool things on a tuesday

  1. Boy, I really had to take a long look at that sushi! Not sure about seaweed + KitKat. I’m interested in mascarpone cheese in KK, though. I’m going to Gabby’s and Ashley’s sites after this. I’m also tempted by the Tacotastic lunchbox — awesome!

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    1. The seaweed with KitKat gave me pause too — but thinking about it a little more, I can see how it might be good. After all, I like mixing the salty with the sweet (as in salt caramels). 🙂

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  2. Each part is a delight, Jama. I know about Bridget’s family project & support them! All the art is wonderful, hard to choose a favorite, but the detail in Gabby’s work is amazing. Kit Kat’s are not a favorite, but I love the creativity shown in the love for them. And I didn’t know about that FB site for Amy K-R. How wonderful to continue her bright message. Like always, grateful to you for brightening my day! I hope yours is a bright one, too.

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    1. Thanks so much, Linda. It always brightens my day when you stop by and leave such nice comments. The MoreforAKR community is steadily growing. She’s inspired so many to spread her message of love, kindness, connection, serendipity and optimism.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Jama, your posts make me pause, smile, and just delight in all the creativity you capture. Thank you for brightening my Tuesday. I am off to work on a donut poem or five!

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  4. Love your Tuesday posts, Jama!! Those resistance posters are perfect!

    And I can’t wait to read Ella Who! I love Linda’s books :).

    I’ve been following Paris Rosenthal’s tribute to her mother on IG, continuing the 123 project that Amy began of posting images every day at 1:23 for 123 days in a row. Amy made it to 61 :(, and Paris is continuing the project for her. It’s very moving. I’ll check out the FB page too. I’m sure that there will be memorial awards in her name, like they did for Anna Dewdney, which will be another way for her to live on, in addition to her books.

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  5. So many delightful things, I don’t know where to begin! So pleased to find ELLA among Ashley’s and Bridget’s resistance efforts (I hadn’t seen these; so fantastic!), and all the other creative, heartwarming and quirky (Kit Kat sushi!) things you’ve highlighted here. Thank you for brightening my Tuesday. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I did hear about Paris continuing her mom’s project. I need to check in more frequently — I keep forgetting because I’m not on Instagram. I think you’re right about the AKR memorial awards. She already leaves a lasting legacy with her books, but this would be an additional way to honor all her contributions.

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  7. I am honored our family is listed among the ‘cool’, Jama! So much goodness here – tacotastic lunch box – a must have here in Tucson! And Ashley’s resistance prints are TOO perfect. Just joined the AKR FB page – April 29 will be HER day.
    You do a lot of good in the world, Jama, spreading the love. Thank you. =)

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    1. Your family is definitely on the perpetual cool list, Bridget! I’m glad you joined the AKR FB page. I’m looking forward to all the goodness and kindness that will be shared on April 29.

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