Thursday, January 31, 2019

The World According to Bella

Losing Your BFF

I am sad. I lost my BFF Mulligan last week.  His owners, Mrs. S's sister and husband had to put him to sleep because he had a twisted colon that could not be fixed. We all are sad and Mulligan was well loved by all. We were the same age and adopted at the same time.   
I will always remember the fun times we had. At the lake and at the park he set the record for carrying the most tennis balls in his mouth. 
We liked to play in  the yard
and here we're waiting for next ball toss.
Both of us are what Mrs. S calls food driven. We are hoping with our saddest pleading look we will get an early meal.   
We often got rides to the dog park because it was too far to walk. 
But the very best for me were my sleepovers at his house on a real people bed with all day TV privileges.
Mulligan will be missed. 

To cheer me up Mrs. S suggested we do something fun and send out Bella Grams just in time for Valentine's Day. We have been working on them all week, a happy message for you complete with a paw print. Let us know at the end of this posting in the comment box if you'd like to receive a Bella Gram or email Mrs. S.

Love, Bella

P.S. Stay warm 
 

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

World Read Aloud Day

CELEBRATE THE PROFOUND POWER OF THE READ-ALOUD
For 10 years World Read Aloud Day (WRAD) has called attention to the importance of sharing stories by challenging participants to grab a book, find an audience, and read aloud together and share stories to advocate for literacy as a human right that belongs to all people. The global effort is now celebrated in over 173 countries and counting!


Some suggested ideas from litworld.com include: Virtual Resources, How to Host a Read Aloud Day and How to Spread the Word.  

And more resources from jumpinotabook.com  
A link to some wonderful PDF with all sorts of activities and ideas on how to celebrate World Read Aloud Day.
Great Books to Read Aloud

Taco Bar Party Part Three





Loaded Beef Nachos a snack great for a party, game day or even a cheat night dinner. 
Cook's Notes: I adapted the original recipe from averiecooks.com. The recipe called for baking the nacho dish on baking sheet lined with parchment paper for 15 minutes @350 degrees. I found the microwave worked fine on HIGH at 20 second intervals until cheese was melted. 
I also shortcutted the original recipe by using fewer ingredients and substituting what I call a secret weapon Traders Joes Cowboy Caviar
If not available any corn, black bean pepper salsa will do. I substituted with this salsa.
Options for toppings include sour cream, olives, green onions and guacamole. 
Loaded Beef Nachos
Ingredients:
  • 1 TB. olive oil
  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1 jar salsa e.g. Cowboy Caviar or any thick black bean, corn, red pepper salsa
  • Shredded Mexican 4 Cheeses
  • Diced Grape Tomatoes
  • Shredded iceberg lettuce
  • Tortilla chips about 8 cups (try the Hint of Lime Chips) 
  • 2 green onions,diced  
Directions:
  • Brown hamburger in olive oil. Crumble ( use a pastry cutter) and wipe pan free of grease. 
  • Add in a jar of salsa and cook on low until heated through.
  • On a plate (microwavable) add crushed chips, hamburger mixture and grated cheese. Microwave until cheese is melted. 
  • Add lettuce, diced tomatoes and any other desired toppings.
It's a fast and yummy treat sure to be a hit with family and guests.
While waiting for a warm up
but do wait until closer to 0 degrees to avoid danger of frostbite try some of these fun cold weather science experiments. 
  • Blow bubbles and experiment on different surfaces to find the best places to freeze a bubble. Bubble wands are ideal, because you can really watch and observe what happened as it froze.

How to Blow Frozen Bubbles

  • Go outside when the temperatures are below freezing 32 degrees.
  • Allow your bubble solution to cool before blowing bubbles.
  • Find a place outside that is cold and protected from the wind.
  • Blow a bubble and catch it on the bubble wand.
  • Wait. The bubble won’t freeze immediately. Depending on the temperature outside, it may take a few seconds to a few minutes to freeze.
  • When the bubble is frozen, touch it lightly and see what happens.
  • Try making frozen bubbles in other places. What would happen if you carefully put a bubble in the freezer? Or blow it onto dry ice?

a link to more cold weather science experiments to keep you entertained when trapped inside. 
https://www.bustle.com/articles/15358-11-cold-weather-science-experiments-to-keep-you-entertained-while-youre-trapped-inside

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Taco Bar Party Part Two

Beat the Cold. You don't need a birthday for an excuse to throw a Taco Bar Party. 
A Taco Bar Party (Potluck) is an easy fun way to entertain. There's plenty of options to choose from with something to please everyone's palate. Guests are always eager to bring an item so I am listing some possible items  below. It's all about choices.
Mini flour and Corn Tortillas (appetizer size)
Shredded Mexican 4 Cheeses (prepared package as a time saver)
Diced grape tomatoes
Salsa
Guacamole Dip and Chips
Guacamole Dip 
Cooking tip: Mashing avocados can be a bit of a pain depending on their ripeness. But I found a little trick in my utensil drawer that does the job just right. I use my pastry blender. It keeps the avocados chunky and mashes super quick. Give it a try. The dip is best made the day it's served. Recipe inspiration is from Cathy I.
Ingredients:

  • 4 ripe avocados (they should be a little soft and outer shell darkish in color) 
  • 1 cup Roma tomatoes,. diced and drained on a paper towel 
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, minced 
  • 2 TB. lime juice 
  • 1/4 cup red onions, diced 
  • 2 TB. prepared chunky salsa mix 
  • Salt and pepper to taste 
  • Dash of Tabasco sauce or Worcestershire sauce
  • Squirt of Sriracha
Directions:
  • Use a medium sized bowl and scoop out avocado mixture. Use a fork to mash avocados and blend rest of ingredients. Don't skip the sriracha as it gives the dip a good punch of flavor. 
  • Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate several hours before serving. 
Mexican Rice Dish -3 box choices as a time saver
 
Cowboy Caviar Salad (vegetable and gluten free)
https://cafedelites.com/chili-lime-texas-caviar/
Beef-Chorizo Topping
Cook's notes: This recipe was made in a large fry pan a day ahead and refrigerated. The mixture was then transferred to a crockpot for serving. 
The recipe serves 12-14 people with a little left over for another posting Beef Nachos. You can easily halve the recipe and was adapted from Food Network Magazine January/February 2019
Ingredients:
  • 1 TB. olive oil
  • 1-/2 cups each onions, mini sweet red,yellow and orange peppers
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 lbs. lean ground beef
  • 1- 9 oz. beef chorizo
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 TB. tomato paste
  • 2 TB. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. each cumin and regular or smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. each ground coriander and espresso powder (deepens the flavor) 
  • 2- 8 oz. cans tomato sauce
  • 1 tsp. sugar (to balance the acidity) 
  • 1-1/2 cups water
Directions:
  • Heat olive oil and saute peppers, onions and garlic. Remove and set aside. In same pan brown ground beef and chorizo with salt and pepper. Crumble meat with a pastry cutter. Wipe pan clean. 
  • Add onion mixture back into fry pan with rest of ingredients. Mix well and cook on low uncovered 30 minutes. Stir occasionally. 
  • To reheat cover and cook on low.
And last but certainly not the least every gathering needs a good Margarita 

Ingredients:
  • 6 shot glasses of plain ( no alcohol) margarita mix ( I like to use Jose Cuvero) 
  • 2 shot glasses of Tequila
  • 1/2 shot glass Cointreau
  • 1/2 shot glass Grand Marnier
  • 1 tray of ice cubes
Directions:
  • In a blender crush ice cubes.
  • Add rest of ingredients and blend till smooth.
  • Dip rim of glass in lime juice and then into salt.
  • Recipe serves 2-3


Monday, January 28, 2019

Taco Bar Party

Part One Dessert
This quote attributed to Jaques Torres and no one says it better. 


A friend's birthday was the inspiration for a Potluck Taco Bar Party. So starting backwards  today's posting begins with the most important course-dessert.  Some ideas found on Pinterest for serving cupcakes was recently posted. 
https://sockfairies.blogspot.com/2019/01/weekend-round-up_20.html
This is my birthday take on the idea below. 
Ingredients:
Birthday crown
Candles
Plastic champagne glasses found at Party City. I found the ones at Dollar Tree not the right size and didn't have an opening in the stem for the candies. 
M&M's
Cupcake recipe (your favorite one or use the one below posted) 
Sprinkles

Directions:
Add candies to the plastic stem before placing cupcake in.
Bake cupcakes. I added a clean paper liner to the other cupcake liner before frosting.
 

Mocha Cupcakes with Espresso Spiked Buttercream Frosting
Cook's notes: These cupcakes are coffee and espresso-infused, with a subtle chocolate flavor, and topped with an espresso-spiked buttercream frosting. Even if you aren't a coffee lover there is lots to love about these cupcakes, especially the buttercream frosting. The recipe is low maintenance in terms of preparation. I used my hand mixer and had these cupcakes into the oven less than 30 minutes after I got started. The texture is so incredibly soft and tender, with not even a hint of dryness. And the flavor will make you think of a Cafe Mocha. Optional Chocolate Covered Espresso Beans
(Cupcake recipe adapted from My Baking Addiction) and makes 12 regular size cupcakes.

Ingredients:
Cupcakes:

  • ½ cup brewed coffee, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp. espresso powder
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 TB. Kahlua
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1⅓ cups all-purpose flour
  • ⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp.baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 1 egg, at room temperature
Espresso Buttercream Frosting:
  • 3 TB. butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. espresso powder
  • 1 TB. Kahlua 
  • 2 TB. milk
Directions:
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a standard-size muffin tin with paper liners.
Cupcakes
  • In a measuring cup, whisk the espresso powder into the brewed coffee until completely dissolved. Add the milk, Kahlua and vanilla extract; set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  • With an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter and both sugars until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg and beat until combined. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with two additions of the coffee mixture, mixing each until just combined. Using a rubber spatula, give the batter a final stir to ensure everything is incorporated.
  • Fill each muffin cup about two-thirds full with batter. Bake for 17 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack before frosting the cupcakes.
Frosting: 
  • In a small bowl, whisk the espresso powder into the vanilla and Kahlua until dissolved. beat in powdered sugar add only enough milk to attain right frosting consistency. 

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Weekend Round-Up

Like Emily Dickinson I also dwell in possibilities with recipes that are only limited by one's imagination.
Certainly Skillet Scramble is one of those recipes with infinite possibilities. Be creative. And one of the best parts Skillet Scramble is all done in one pan. Prepping ahead makes assembly go smoother as eggs do not need a lot of cooking time. 
Basic Skillet Scramble Recipe serves 4. I halved the recipe and perfect for 2. Recipe inspiration from BHG One Pan publication.
Ingredients:
  • 8 eggs (slightly beaten)
  • 1/2 cup milk (I used 2%) 
  • 1/2 tsp. parsley flakes 
  • 1/4 tsp. dry mustard
  • 1-2 TB. butter
  •  3 cups vegetables/meats of your choice 
  • Seasonings
  • Stir-Ins & Toppers
Directions:
  • In a blender combine milk, eggs, parsley flakes and dry mustard. 
  • Melt butter in a medium sized fry pan. On a medium high heat add in Seasoning choices and 3 cups of Vegetable/Cooked Meat choices. Saute until veggies are crisp tender. Reduce heat to medium low and add in egg/milk mixture. Cook without stirring until mixture starts to set.  
  • Using a large spoon or heatproof spatula lift and fold partially cooked egg mixture. Continue cooking 2-3 minutes until eggs are still glossy and moist. 
  • Remove from heat and sprinkle with Stir-Ins and/or Toppers.
Another way to serve Skillet Scramble-Go Mexican
Heat in oven a whole wheat tortilla encased in tinfoil for 3 minutes @ 375 degrees. Add egg mixture on half of tortilla and then fold. Serve with your favorite salsa.    
Vegetables/Meats
Sliced zucchini
Broccoli florets
Chopped asparagus
chopped mini yellow, red and orange peppers
Thawed frozen corn
Thawed frozen edamame  
Canned drained and rinsed black beans, cannellini beans
Chopped sausage
Bacon bits

Seasoning (can be found in spice containers at store or online)  
Cajun
Italian
Garlic Pepper
Mexican

Stir-Ins &Toppers
Grated or shredded cheese
Torn spinach leaves
Sliced green onions
Snipped fresh herbs
Crushed Croutons
Crushed tortilla chips


Taco Bar Party with posted recipes 
Baked Salmon with Wild Rice Side Dish 
Tex Mex Casserole

Friday, January 25, 2019

Multicultural Children's Book Day

Today is the day when reviewers posted their reviews of books that covered a wide range of diverse literature from board books to picture books to YA novels. MCBD's mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in homes and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators. 

I waited until the end of the day to post so you could get an idea of the wide range of books reviewed. As of this posting 339 have been posted so far and its still going live for reviewers to link-up. Check out this link
https://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/the-mcbd2019-diverse-book-link-up-is-open-readyourworld/
Click on a book title that interests you and it will take you right to the review of the book. Be sure to check out the three Ever Ready posted #91 #93 and #94.    
As a reviewer it was such a worthwhile experience being involved in this awesome event! I appreciated the opportunity to explore new book titles.  
#91







#93
#94

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Thai Basil Chicken Bowls

It's cold everywhere even in parts of Arizona
Warm up with a satisfying meal Thai Basil Chicken Bowls  
Cook's Notes: As always prepping ingredients ahead makes assembly go so much faster. 
This 30 minute meal is less than 400 calories per serving. The recipe was quick to whip up, budget friendly and SO GOOD. Recipe adapted from damndelicious.net and serves 4 in medium sized bowls.
Ingredients:
  • 1 lb. ground chicken
  • 1 TB. olive oil
  • 3/4 cup each minced onions, mini sweet red, yellow and orange peppers
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced 
  • 1/3 cup chicken broth
  • 2 tsp. cornstarch
  • 3 TB. low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 TB. fish sauce
  • 2- 1/2 TB. brown sugar
  • 2 TB. lime juice
  • 1-1/2 TB. hoisin sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 handful of torn basil leaves
  • Squirt or two of Sambel Oelek or Sriracha 
  • Optional crushed nuts
Directions:
  • Saute onions, peppers and garlic for 2 minutes. Cover and sweat 3 minutes more to soften. Set mixture aside.
  • In a bowl whisk cornstarch and chicken broth and add to soy sauce, fish sauce, brown sugar, lime juice, hoisin sauce and sesame oil. Mix well and set aside.
  • Cook meat until browned. Use a pastry cutter to crumble cooked meat. 
  • Add to the cooked chicken peppers, onions and garlic. Add in sauce and cook until thickened. Stir in basil leaves and cook until leaves wilted. Add in a squirt of hot sauce taste test before adding more.   
  • Cook jasmine rice to serve 4 following box directions. I used Minute Jasmine Rice that cooks in 5 minutes.  
A side note and don't laugh )
I may be the only one you've heard of who would bring their Asian/Thai supplies in a cooler all the way from Minnesota to Arizona so I wouldn't have to rebuy here. 

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

National Pie Day

Celebrate National Pie Day with a savory ham and cheese hand held pie so hold the fruit!  
History of National Pie Day
National Pie Day was born in 1975 in Boulder, Colorado, thanks to a school teacher named Charlie Papazian. On January 23, his birthday, he declared that this day would be forever remembered as National Pie Day. Why did he do that, you ask? Well, for one good reason: Charlie really loved pie. In fact, he loved it so much he would have a “birthday pie” instead of a birthday cake. Since then, his idea for a National Pie Day has spread all over the United States.
Delicious Pie Facts

  • Pumpkin Pie wasn’t served at the pilgrim’s first Thanksgiving in 1621
  • Originally, fruit pies were a breakfast food in the United States
  • 20% of Americans have admitted to eating a whole pie by themselves
  • 186 million pies are sold just in supermarkets and grocery stores each year
  • In Kansas, it used to be illegal to serve ice cream on cherry pie
  • “American Pie” was the name of the plane Buddy Holly died on
  • Key Lime Pie is the official pie of Florida
  • Peach Custard Pie is the official pie of Delaware
  • Pumpkin Pie is the official pie of Illinois
  • Sugar Creme Pie is the official pie of Indiana
Ham and Swiss Cheese Hand Held Savory Pie
    Cook's Notes:These savory pies have lots of possibilities. Change the meat, cheese or add a vegetarian filling to add variety to these hand held pies. When I say easy I really mean easy as it all came together in 15 minutes. I had to be a little creative to come up with the pie shape. I cut out a pattern and laid it right on the pie crust. I used a knife to go around the shape but a pizza cutter would work too. 
    The paper pattern is 8 inches long and 4 inches wide. I folded it in half and rounded off the corners. Then lay pattern out flat  on the pie crust dough.  I used both piecrusts from this box which made 4 hand held pies. If you roll pie crust scraps you can eek out one more. 
    Ingredients:

    • 1 box Pillsbury Refrigerated Pie Crusts
    • Ham slices
    • Swiss Cheese slices
    • Dark Brown Spicy Mustard

    Directions:

    • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
    • Using the paper pattern trace out 2 pie shapes from each pie crust dough. Be sure the surface is lightly floured.


    • Transfer to a baking sheet line with parchment paper or a silicone pad. 


    • On lower half of pie dough spread mustard to 1/4 inch of edge. Along edges moisten with water. Add cheese slice and ham slice and fold top half down. Moisten pie crust with water and crimp edges with a fork. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. In middle of pie make an x for steam to escape.  
    • Bake 18 minutes or until browned. 





    The Length of a String

    Multicultural Children’s Book Day January 25, 2019 is in its 6th year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Their mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in homes and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators.

    I am honored to participate again in this wonderful event as a book reviewer for The Length of a String by Elissa Weissman.

    The Length of a String is historical fiction YA novel told in two parallel narratives from the perspective of Imani in 2014 and Anna in 1941. The book is extremely well-written and an engrossing novel that connects the past to the present. The story is told with heart and genuine emotion. Readers can easily relate to the characters who are placed in realistic situations. It was one of those books you wished wouldn't end.
    Elissa Brent Weissman is an award-winning author of novels for young readers. Best known for the popular Nerd Camp series, she and her books have been featured in Entertainment Weekly, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, The Huffington Post, NPR’s “Here and Now,” and more. Named one of CBS Baltimore’s Best Authors in Maryland, Elissa lives in Baltimore City, where she teaches creative writing to children, college students, and adults. This is Weissman's first attempt at writing historical fiction. At first she was intimidated by the amount of research involved but in the end it was one of her favorite components of writing the book. Anna's story is based on Weissman's own family history.  Alternating between two stories and time periods required extra attention to balance, pacing and voice for Weissman and she successfully created a very satisfying story. 

    Twelve year-old Imani was told she could have anything she wanted for her bat mitzvah gift. And she knows just what she wants, but she's too afraid to ask for it. Imani is adopted and wondering who she is and who are her biological parents. It's especially important to her since she is a young black girl adopted by a white Jewish couple. Her brother, Jaime from Guatemala, also adopted, shows no interest in knowing who his biological parents are.

    As part of preparation for the Bar/Bat Mitzvah year, Imani’s Hebrew school class,is involved in a special project that involves genealogy and exploration of family roots. It's 2014 and Imani’s beloved great grandmother, Anna, has died.  A diary she wrote as a child is discovered in her apartment, tucked away on a crowded bookshelf. Anna has promised the books to her great-grandchildren, Imani being one of them.

    Anna's story unfolds through the pages of her diary. She is 12 and World War II is unfolding with the Nazis starting to invade Luxembourg. With only enough money to cover the cost of sending one child to possible safety, her parents chose the resilient and determined twelve-year-old to not only cross the Atlantic on her own but also settle with a new adopted family. Anna chronicles this journey from Luxembourg to America as she wants to document the experience for her beloved twin sister, Belle, whom she had to leave behind. As Imani reads Anna's diary she shares many of the diary entries with her best friend Madeline. They learn Anna is sent to live with a family in the Bensonhurst section of Brooklyn. Not only does Anna have to adapt to life in a new country, new school, new language and culture, but also cope with lack of news of her family's safety or well being following the Nazi invasion of her tiny homeland. 


    As Imani continues to read through Anna's diary she begins to develop a kinship with her ancestor since both of them are adopted. The novel is also a coming of age story for Imani as she begins to think about searching for her biological family's roots and the impact that search might have on her adoptive family. Imani fears if she brings up the subject it will hurt her parents' feelings. The simultaneous searches for clues into the fate of Anna's family and Imani's birth parents intertwine into a fascinating story.

    I thought the author used a clever storytelling technique using modern technology as part of the story for young readers to make more of a connection with the characters. When there was information we the readers needed that wasn't available from Anna's diary perspective, Imani would then Google a topic or ask an older family member to get the answer. Also she and Madeline would text each other over everyday happenings and new developments in diary entries. Making a technology connection and employing current research techniques was a good way to bridge two stories, one from the past and one in present day.

    Weissman expertly describes Imani's conflicted emotions as she feels a part of her family, yet strangers are often quick to judge the situation given that she is black in a family of white relatives. At times during the story I wished the author had spent more time developing Imani's thoughts on being black in a relatively white world.

    I would highly recommend this book for readers ages 10-14. The book inspires young readers with more questions than answers by thinking about their past, ancestors and who they are.

    The title The Length of a String refers to a unit of measurement, but also suggests there are connections between past and present, across an ocean, onward into the future and perhaps not all measurable. In the story Anna compares her connection to her sister Belle to the way you tie string between paper cups and whisper secret messages. Once they are separated Anna wonders how long that string can go.
    Check our Elissa Brent Weissman's website for more about the author, her books and upcoming events. http://ebweissman.com/ 


    Thanks to Elissa for her input for this review. 

    Some suggested classroom activities include:
    1 Discussion questions for Length of a String can be found at 
    http://ebweissman.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Length-of-a-String-discussion-questions.pdf
    2. Research and construct a Genealogy/Family Tree can be found at
    http://ebweissman.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Length-of-a-String-family-trees.pdf
    3.  Research a site e.g. ancestry.com   looking at your family roots.
    4. Creative Writing- Give each student a different length of string. Have them write a list of the properties of it e.g. it's cotton string, is _______long, it's cream colored and some uses for it are a string for a balloon, to hang decorations, tying up a package 
    After the list is completed develop the list into a poem or write a creative piece starting with the words of the book title The Length of a String. 
    5. Interview a grandparent or an older family member on their experiences being a middle schooler/preteen/ highschooler.
    6. Explore immigration and refugee and the home front during World War II topics. 

    MCBD 2019 is honored to have the following Author Sponsors on board
    Honorary: Julie Flett, Mehrdokht Amini,
    Author Janet Balletta, Author Kathleen Burkinshaw, Author Josh Funk, Chitra Soundar, One Globe Kids – Friendship Stories, Sociosights Press and Almost a Minyan, Karen Leggett, Author Eugenia Chu,CultureGroove Books, Phelicia Lang and Me On The Page, L.L. Walters, Author Sarah Stevenson,Author Kimberly Gordon Biddle, Hayley Barrett, Sonia Panigrah, Author Carolyn Wilhelm, Alva Sachs and Dancing Dreidels, Author Susan Bernardo, Milind Makwana and A Day in the Life of a Hindu Kid, Tara Williams, Veronica Appleton, Author Crystal Bowe, Dr. Claudia May, Author/Illustrator Aram Kim, Author Sandra L. Richards, Erin Dealey, Author Sanya Whittaker Gragg, Author Elsa Takaoka, Evelyn Sanchez-Toledo, Anita Badhwar, Author Sylvia Liu, Feyi Fay Adventures, Author Ann Morris, Author Jacqueline Jules, CeCe & Roxy Books, Sandra Neil Wallace and Rich Wallace, LEUYEN PHAM, Padma Venkatraman,Patricia Newman and Lightswitch Learning, Shoumi Sen, Valerie Williams-Sanchez and Valorena Publishing, Traci Sorell, Shereen Rahming, Blythe Stanfel, Christina Matula, Julie Rubini, Paula Chase,Erin Twamley, Afsaneh Moradian, Lori DeMonia, Claudia Schwam, Terri Birnbaum/ RealGirls Revolution,Soulful Sydney, Queen Girls Publications, LLC

    We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive Co-Host Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also works tirelessly to spread the word of this event. View our Co-Hosts HERE.

    Co-Hosts and Global Co-Hosts
    A Crafty Arab, Agatha Rodi Books, All Done Monkey, Barefoot Mommy, Biracial Bookworms, Books My Kids Read, Crafty Moms Share, Colours of Us, Discovering the World Through My Son’s Eyes, Descendant of Poseidon Reads, Educators Spin on it, Growing Book by Book, Here Wee Read, Joy Sun Bear/ Shearin Lee, Jump Into a Book, Imagination Soup,Jenny Ward’s Class, Kid World Citizen, Kristi’s Book Nook, The Logonauts, Mama Smiles, Miss Panda Chinese, Multicultural Kid Blogs, Raising Race Conscious Children,Shoumi Sen, Spanish Playground

    TWITTER PARTY Sponsored by Make A Way Media: MCBD’s super-popular (and crazy-fun) annual Twitter Party will be held 1/25/19 at 9:00pm.E.S.T. TONS of prizes and book bundles will be given away during the party. GO HERE for more details.

    Cinnamon Apple Muffins

    GET TO KNOW YOUR APPLES Pink Lady , great balance of sweet and tart. Granny Smith , maybe the most popular baking apple. A little more tart ...