With summer just around the corner, or already here for some, our book recommendations this week will help keep the kids busy, reading, learning and having fun. The first two are about creating a garden with the kids. Once you put the garden in, feed it, weed it, water it and watch it grow. Once all vegetables are grown, harvest them and then cook them up for great fresh healthy meals. Our last book suggestion gives you some ideas how to do that, too.
American Grown: The Story of the White House Kitchen Garden and Gardens Across America for the whole family. “In April 2009, First Lady Michelle Obama planted a kitchen garden on the White House’s South Lawn. As fresh vegetables, fruit, and herbs sprouted from the ground, this White House Kitchen Garden inspired a new conversation all across the country about the food we feed our families and the impact it has on the health and well-being of our children.
Now, in her first-ever book, American Grown, Mrs. Obama invites you inside the White House Kitchen Garden and shares its inspiring story, from the first planting to the latest harvest. Hear about her worries as a novice gardener – would the new plants even grow? Learn about her struggles and her joys as lettuce, corn, tomatoes, collards and kale, sweet potatoes and rhubarb flourished in the freshly tilled soil. Get an unprecedented behind-the-scenes look at every season of the garden’s growth, with striking original photographs that bring its story to life. Try the unique recipes created by White House chefs and made with ingredients just picked from the White House garden. And learn from the White House Garden team about how you can help plant your own backyard, school or community garden.
Mrs. Obama’s journey continues across the nation as she shares the stories of other gardens that have moved and inspired her: Houston office workers who make the sidewalk bloom; a New York City School that created a scented garden for the visually impaired; a North Carolina garden that devotes its entire harvest to those in need; and other stories of communities that are transforming the lives and health of their citizens.
In American Grown, Mrs. Obama tells the story of the White House Kitchen Garden, celebrates the bounty of gardens across our nation, and reminds us all of what we can grow together.” Review from Amazon.
Roots, Shoots, Buckets & Boots: Gardening Together with Childrenby Sharon Lovejoy is for kids in grades 1 – 4 but, with parent involvement can be for any age, older or younger. “Green thumbs and non-green thumbs alike will fall in love with Roots, Shoots, Buckets, & Boots, a remarkably fun and informative introduction to the wonderful world of gardening–and more specifically, gardening with children. Learn how to make everything from a pizza garden (pizza-pie-shaped, with herbs and vegetables for a fabulous pizza at harvest time), to a sunflower house (a secret hideaway with stately sunflowers and lovely creeping morning glories), to a moon garden (“Fragrance is the color of night”). Chock full of helpful hints, clever and artistic touches, and intriguing “recipes” (Moth Broth and Compost Sandwich, to name a few), this idea book will spark creativity and a lifelong fascination with gardening. Nine concepts for theme gardens are presented in a clearly defined yet non-rigid manner that is just right for encouraging young gardeners. Sharon Lovejoy … understands how quickly young people will be turned off by inflexible rules, and instead encourages budding green thumbs to experiment and explore, while providing them with useful guidelines and helpful information. Wonderfully earthy watercolors make this cozy book even more welcoming–Emilie Coulter” Review from Amazon.
Stir It Up: A Novelby Ramin Ganeshram is for the ‘tween set but can be read to younger children and enjoyed by older ones too. “Thirteen-year-old Anjali’s life is rich with the smell of curry from her parents’ roti shop and an absolute passion for food. More than anything, Anjali wants to be a chef who competes on a kids’ cooking reality TV show. But Anjali must keep her wish a secret from her family, who thinks Anjali’s passions are just a hobby and beneath her. Thank goodness for Deema, Anjali’s grandmother, whose insight and love can push past even the oldest family beliefs.” A heartwarming story that includes delicious recipes that will entice the reader out of their reading nook and into the kitchen.” Review from Amazon.