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Posted to Campbell Unclassified on December 17, 2021 at 10:48 AM by Genesis Gaule
A lovely cup of hot tea and a good book: Perfection, especially on a cold day as winter moves through our area!
I don’t recommend eating peanut butter and jelly toast while reading. Certainly, don’t try Cheetos and a library book. Please, never eat mashed potatoes and gravy while enjoying your favorite story. But a cup of tea can be managed nicely.
There are so many kinds of teas and ways to enjoy them. I have a cupboard full and I’m always ready to try a flavor that is unfamiliar. If I’m reading something that requires some concentration, I’ll go with either a nettle tea (yes, stinging nettle) or Turkey Tail Astragalus made with the Turkey Tail mushroom and the root of astragalus. It’s thick enough to be a robust coffee but without the caffeine. Just right, for focusing in the evening.
If the day is stressful, chamomile cannot be beaten. It is a weaker tea, but with a longer steep time it is delicious. A lovely cup of green tea after lunch hits the spot to continue a work day.
The library has a few titles with some nummy tea recipes: The Healing Herbs by Michael Castleman, The Folk Remedy Encyclopedia by the Editors of FC&A Medical Publishing and our newest, Vibrant by Dr. Stacie Stephenson.
The history of tea includes like Cloud Tea Monkeys by Mal Peet. One of my favorite stories. I read it many times. It tells of a little girl who tries to harvest tea leaves in her mother’s place when she became sick. She was too tiny to do it, but the monkeys helped. Oops, already told you too much but the story gets even better from there.
Teas are intertwined with communities in many parts of the world. Sharing a cup with family or in a special ceremony is part of tradition and a memory-making event. Tea has had great value throughout history in the social aspect and the economic world. Remember the Boston Tea Party? It was an initial act of defiance by American colonists.
Traditionally, oolong is drunk with someone who you want to share an extended period of time. You steep it for only a minute and then enjoy. Steep the same leaves for a minute and a half, pour the second cup and visit a little more. Again the same leaves are steeped for 2 minutes while visiting with your dear friend.
Kids enjoy tea, too or at least the tea party. There are many children’s books where tea is central to the story. Even a song, remember I’m a Little Teapot? We have a book with that same name by Iza Trapani. While you’re looking for good tea books in the Easy Section, be sure to check out Tea with Grandpa by Barney Saltzberg.
I do believe it’s time for me to fill my cup again.
Tag(s): tea, recommendations, picture books, nonfiction, natural medicine, junior fiction, integrative medicine, home remedies, history, health and wellness, food, easy fiction, Charlotte Helgeson, article
Posted to Campbell Unclassified on December 2, 2021 at 4:05 PM by Genesis Gaule
Need a little emotional pick-me-up? Something to melt away the winter blahs? If so, pull your little one close and snuggle up to these comforting and uplifting picture books. Like a cup of hot chocolate and a fluffy fleece blanket, they are sure to leave you feeling all warm and cozy inside.
Want to rediscover the wonder of winter? Try these heartwarming reads!
by Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen
After she finds a skein of colorful magic yarn, an unassuming little girl quietly transforms her community’s cold winter world into something beautiful. It’s a charming, beautifully illustrated story of generosity triumphing over greed that has a modern look but reads like a classic folk tale. // Ages 4-9 Years
by Uri Shulevitz
In a dull gray town, a boy and his dog spy a single snowflake and rush outside in gleeful anticipation of a wintry wonderland--despite predictions to the contrary by skeptical and grumpy grown-ups. The sparse words are perfectly chosen and compliment the charming illustrations depicting the joy and wonder of the first snowfall. // Ages 3-7
by Grace Lin
Ever wonder where snow comes from? This simple yet imaginative tale offers a fanciful explanation through a precocious little boy and his new feather bed. // Ages 3-5
by Jane Yolen
A little girl and her father go looking for owls late one night. When you go owling, sometimes there isn't an owl, but sometimes there is--all you need is a little hope. Wrapped up in familial bonds and traditions, this sweet and poetic story vividly takes you on a journey through the winter woods. // Ages 5-9
Need an escape from winter? These books are a perfect pick any time of year!
by Ilima Loomis and Kenard Pak
Tired of the cold and snow? This cumulative rhyme book will transport you to sunny Hawaii! Join the 'ohana, as they farm taro for poi to prepare for a traditional luau. Includes author’s notes about the significance of poi in Hawaiian culture. // Ages 3-6
by Sara O'Leary and Kenard Pak
Though warm vignettes of cherished sleepovers with her grandmother, Maud’s love and adoration for her “Grand-Maud” shine through every page of this gentle story. It’s a beautiful look at intergenerational relationships and it makes a great choice for a snuggly, bedtime read. // Ages 4-8
by Laura Gehl and Christopher Weyant
An enterprising little dog infiltrates its way into the home of an unsuspecting nearsighted man who is out shopping. It’s a delightfully silly case of mistaken identity and found family sure to bring a smile to your face. // Ages 3-7
by Sarah Kurpiel
Fluffy Pineapple’s comfortable kitty routine is upended by small, sleek newcomer Kiwi. Kiwi mimics Pineapple, following him everywhere--much to Pineapple’s annoyance. A familiar story of pet rivalry with a happy ending, it’s a purr-fectly cozy read for cat lovers. // Ages 3-7
by Cori Doerrfeld
Focusing on the gift of presence when things are rough, this lovely book feels just like a warm hug. When Taylor’s block tower falls down, they’re distraught and don't know what to do. One by one, all the animals try to tell Taylor how to get over it with no success. Then the rabbit arrives. All the rabbit does is listen--which is just what Taylor needs. // Ages 3–5
by Oliver Jeffers
Notes for Living on Planet Earth // A dad's witty handbook to the world and its inhabitants for his new baby. The tongue-in-cheek text takes you on a quick “scientific” tour of earth--perfect for parents with a dry sense of humor. While the colorful illustrations are peppered with cheeky jokes and silly details to keep kids entertained and engaged. It’s loaded with positive messages without feeling preachy and ends on a heartwarming, hug-inducing note. // Ages 3-7
Tag(s): winter, traditions, snow, recommendations, picture books, Genesis Gaule, families, emotions, easy fiction, dogs, cozy, cats
Posted to Campbell Unclassified on November 4, 2021 at 4:32 PM by Genesis Gaule
In a perfect world, children would never be exposed to difficulties and hardships. They would never have to grow up too soon or feel unsafe. They could simply be kids. Unfortunately, life doesn’t discriminate. When these struggles arise, it can be difficult to find a way to answer questions or work through their feelings in an age appropriate way.
Books can be a great tool to help children (and adults!) find the words for their feelings and cope. Whether it is for more common obstacles like bullying and divorce or other sensitive issues like, poverty, domestic violence, immigrating to a new country, or death of a loved one, books can help provide advice and comfort. Picture books are also a great way to encourage empathy for others in children that may be living these situations.
These books are best read together with plenty of time afterwards for questions. With books that deal with sensitive subjects, it is always good practice for a grownup to read the book beforehand, and determine if there is a struggle that you or your child is facing, there is a book to help.
Tag(s): Vanesa Gomez, secrets, picture books, parenting, immigration, grief and loss, finances, families, easy nonfiction, easy fiction, domestic violence, divorce, disabilities, death, bullying, adoption