In this mouthwatering story-counting book, ten ethnically diverse families make ten different kinds of dumplings for a neighborhood potluck. What could be more fun or delicious?
Dumpling party today in town!Let's all cook and hurry down.
Meera Sriram and Inés de Antuñano invite us to step into ten busy, bustling kitchens to see samosas, apple dumplings, wu-gok, fufu balls, gyoza, bourekas, tamales, shish barak, pelmeni, and ravioli being prepared by enthusiastic and hungry adults and children. Drooling yet?
Spicy samosas point to the sky.
Didi is bringing chutney to try.1 little dumpling on our plate now!
“Everything in nature is a wonderful miracle!/Isn’t the little bird flying through the big sky a miracle?” ~ Amma
Walk barefoot in the sand and curl your toes in the water. Listen to the “winging, singing, whispery sounds” of earth’s creatures. Marvel at a ballet of butterflies, a sky full of stars. Feel the cool air after a fresh rain.
For Every Little Thing: Poems and Prayers to Celebrate the Day (Eerdmans BFYR, 2021), is a joyous love letter to the world and all we hold dear within it, truly a wonderful way to acknowledge nature’s vast bounty of gifts as well as the friends and family who sustain us.
With about 70 child friendly selections carefully curated by June Cotner and Nancy Tupper Ling, this beautifully illustrated inspirational anthology features 51 diverse voices affirming the spiritual rewards of being present and expressing gratitude for wonders large and small.
Young readers are treated to untold delights from morning to night — ordinary moments throughout the day that happily and surprisingly warrant celebration.
How marvelous to wake up with sloppy puppy kisses, greet the sun that’s bouncing on the bedroom wall like a yellow beach ball, and feel God’s presence everywhere, especially within ourselves. It’s empowering to know that as we experience the world through our own personal lenses, we’re validating our place in it.
MY BEAUTIFUL DAY
by Marion Schoeberlein
I borrowed a poem from the sky,
and music from a bird,
I stole a chime out of the wind,
and from the rose a word,
I borrowed a song from the hills,
a psalm from the silver rain,
I took the footsteps of angels
out of a cobbled lane,
from each little thing I fashioned
something in my own way,
with God's help I put in my heart
a wonderful, beautiful day!
Simple, accessible language and an abundance of sensory details engage readers throughout the book, encouraging them to slow down, look closer, savor, and appreciate. Whether a charming two-line snippet of wisdom or a lyrical five stanza blessing, there’s a welcome positivity and reassurance in the soul nourishing words.
Happy September, Mah Bonnie Lads and Lassies. Yes, we’re back!
Hope you had a nice summer doing whatever it is that makes you happiest, and that you’ve stayed safe and well.
Please help yourself to some waffles in celebration of our 14th blogiversary. Did you know the first full week of September is National Waffle Week (not to be confused with National Waffle Day on August 24, or World Waffle Day on March 25)?
When it comes to waffles, the more the merrier. We love that there are so many cool waffle makers out there to ramp up the fun. Mr Cornelius just scored this aqua mini waffler that makes yummy flowers. Pretty cute, no?
So, 14 years of blogging — 4 years at LiveJournal and 10 years here at WordPress. LJ wasn’t so much a platform for public-facing blogs as it was a water cooler environment for writers. I’m glad I started there because it enabled me to gradually find my voice in a very supportive community and connect with like-minded authors, some of whom have become good friends.
Ten years at WordPress has helped me refine the content of Alphabet Soup and expand its reach beyond the kidlitosphere. As long as there is more to learn and interesting people to “meet,” I’ll keep blogging. Besides, what better excuse to play with my toys and dishes? 🙂
1. Hello, super shiny and awesome person! How about a little Allison Strine to propel your week into high gear?
Based in Roswell, Georgia, Allison creates color-filled images with quirky hand lettering for children’s books and products. Her art is inspired by bright minds in history, the miracles of nature, and unusual, educational tidbits of information.
As you can see, she’s all about communicating love and joy with each stroke. In fact, she signs each of her pieces, “Love, Allison Strine.” Love her positivity!
As a big fan of typography and hand lettering, I find Allison’s work irresistible. She’s like Jessie Hartland, Maira Kalman, and Linzie Hunter rolled into one. So fun!
Allison grew up in a 270-year-old farmhouse north of Boston, Massachusetts, and essentially considers herself a Bostonian, even though she’s lived in the Atlanta area for over two decades. She also did graduate studies at the Savannah College of Art and Design.
Wrap me in joy, I’m filled with excitement: Brooklyn-based author/illustrator Melissa Iwai is here to tempt us with her scrumptious new picture book, Dumplings for Lili (Norton Young Readers, 2021) which officially hits shelves today!
You may remember when Melissa last visited several years ago to celebrate the release of Pizza Day, her tasty companion book to the perennial favorite Soup Day. You may also know that in addition to writing and illustrating children’s books, Melissa loves to cook, bake and develop her own recipes, making her the ideal person to spread the dumpling love.
In this deliciously heartwarming story, young Lili is ecstatic when her grandmother (Nai Nai) asks her to help make baos, Lili’s “favorite food in the whole world.” But Nai Nai discovers she’s out of cabbage, which they need to line the bamboo steamer basket. She sends Lili to see whether Babcia, who lives on the 6th floor of their apartment building, has any cabbage.
Since the elevator is down, Lili and her trusty canine companion Kiki skip up the five flights of stairs. After Babcia gives Lili a head of cabbage, she discovers she needs potatoes for her pierogi.
No problem. Lili and Kiki hop down four flights of stairs to see whether Granma has any. Of course she does, but she needs some fresh garlic to make her meat patties.
Lili and Kiki end up racing upstairs and down, from apartment to apartment, dropping off and then borrowing more missing ingredients for several more grandmothers, who happen to be making tamales, ravioli and fatayer.
After Lili and Nai Nai finally finish steaming their baos, they join all their neighbors for a special dumpling party in the garden, where they welcome the best dumpling treasure of all. 🙂
Melissa has lovingly blended just the right ingredients for this fun, flavorful tale that celebrates food, family, friendship, diversity and community. Kids will enjoy tagging along with Lili and Kiki while learning about the different kinds of dumplings being prepared by Nai Nai, Babcia, Granma, Abuela, Nonna, and Teta. Six grandmas with six different dumplings — what could be better?
I love how Melissa wove the Eight Secrets Nai Nai taught Lili for “happy and delicious baos” right into the story (did you know bao dough enjoys catnaps and being hummed to?). Adorable! And of course she included a recipe for Nai Nai’s Baos at the end (after drooling through this story, readers will surely want to try making their own). 🙂
The mixed media illustrations really capture the warmth and personalities of all the characters, and hungry munchkins will want to linger over every spread as they study the delectable details. They’ll love following Kiki’s visual narrative and repeating the grandmothers’ multilingual exclamations in the speech bubbles.
With an engaging storyline that’s part relay, part cooking lesson, Melissa celebrates the humble dumpling as a universally beloved comfort food that joyously brings people together.
Now, let’s hear how Melissa cooked up her new book!