☕ CUPPA OF CHOICE: For mornings my fav is Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee with a splash of Amaretto cream…yum, yum, yum! You can’t beat this drink for kick-starting the day. After 3 pm I love Red Zinger or Camomile tea, sipped hot with honey from my Grandmother Viola’s fancy teacup. This reminds me of both my grandmothers who introduced me to the idea of having “high tea” in the afternoon.
☕ HOT OFF THE PRESSES:Songs I Love to Singby Cheryl Willis Hudson, illustrated by Laura Freeman (Marimba Books, 2015); Hands Canby Cheryl Willis Hudson, illustrated by John-Francis Bourke (Candlewick, 2013), and My Friend Maya Loves to Dance by Cheryl Willis Hudson, illustrated by Eric Velasquez (Abrams Books for Young Readers, 2010).
☕ COMING SOON FROM JUST US BOOKS/MARIMBA BOOKS:
AFRO-BETS Book of Shapes (to be re-issued by Just Us Books, Fall 2016)
AFRO-BETS Book of Colors (to be re-issued by Just Us Books, Fall 2016)
I’m a Big Brother Now by Katura J. Hudson, illustrated by Sylvia Walker (Marimba Books, a new picture book for Fall 2016)
Book of Black Heroes: Political Leaders Past and Present by Gil L. Robertson (Just Us Books, a new book of biographies for Fall 2016)
Sights I Love to See by Cheryl Willis Hudson, illustrated by Laura Freeman (Marimba Books, Spring 2017)
☕ FAVE FOODIE CHILDREN’S BOOK: Aunt Flossie’s Hats (and Crab Cakes Later) by Elizabeth Fitzgerald Howard, illustrated by James Ransome (HMH, 1995). I love the focus on family memories that are demonstrated so lovingly in this picture book. I grew up in the Tidewater region of Virginia where crabbing is a popular summer pastime and eating crabs (by the bushel) is part of an annual family reunion tradition. My grandmother Viola Brown made her own beautiful Sunday hats and also cooked wonderful crabcakes. Although they are never as delicious as my grandmother’s, I can’t resist ordering crabcakes whenever they appear on a restaurant menu. Aunt Flossie’s Hats always reminds me of my own happy childhood.
☕☕ JUST ONE MORE SIP: Don’t miss Cheryl’s must-read guest post at The Brown Bookshelf (part of their 28 Days Later showcase for 2016). She discusses her passion for children’s books, her personal publishing journey, as well as how and why she and her husband Wade established Just Us Books in 1988.
☕ FAVE FOODIE CHILDREN’S BOOK: I can’t think of any particularly food themed books off the top of my head. But in MY BOOK ABOUT ME [a fill-in-the-blanks baby book by me at age 4 with some help from my “friends” Dr. Seuss and Roy McKie], I list my favourite food as Pronutro, a South African cereal of sorts. It also says I like ice cream and apples and cherries. And then it says, “And please don’t give me any vegetables. I can’t stand it.” This book also claims that “I eat like a boy.” Of course this book also claims my nose looks like this… which is a blatant lie as you can see from that photo of me, so I’m not sure if this food information can be trusted. I love apple pie.
☕ HOTTEA IN THE FLESH: I will be launching HUNGRY BIRD at the upcoming Telling Tales Festival in Rockton, Ontario, on September 18, 2016.
☕ CUPPA OF CHOICE: Tea, tea, glorious tea. Tea for you and tea for me! My favorite decaf is Teatulia’s Lemongrass tea. That’s often what I drink in the afternoons. In the mornings, I switch it up with various kinds. But no Earl Grey. Ewwww. I occasionally splurge on a soy chai latte, but never drink coffee because it gives me a headache.
☕ FAVE FOODIE CHILDREN’S BOOK: I love the way food is played with in Alice in Wonderland and how it’s used as a metaphor in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and I love how it’s used to define and motivate Winnie the Pooh. But since I’m a picture book guy, I’m going to go with The Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog by Mo Willems (Disney-Hyperion, 2004). The story is even more delicious than the hot dog!