Archive for the ‘books’ Category

Toss the take-out menus and buy this cookbook

December 7th, 2014

For those who didn’t learn to cook growing up, my friend Becky Duffett wrote “How to Feed Yourself” and filled it with 100 of her favorite go-to recipes, no fancy ingredients or equipment required. This hip foodie worked on Williams Sonoma cookbooks for several years and knows what’s what when it comes to making a great cookbook—from beautiful photos to crystal-clear instructions. While she’s targeting recent college grads and twentysomethings, this fortysomething mom likes it too. My cooking is a bit rudimentary, and I’ve aspired to kick it up a notch for a while now. I can follow a recipe, and Jeff and Carter are psyched that I’ll be trying some of Becky’s weeknight dinner recipes—the bulk of the book. Of course, she had me at one-bowl brownies with hazelnuts and Nutella.

My Klutz book, String Art, is coming out in two days!

November 21st, 2014

I’m so excited. My first Klutz book is coming out in two days. And I didn’t just edit it—I wrote it! And it’s not just a book, it’s a kit with all the kicky materials, like graphic backing paper and bright colored string, included. I had so much fun working on it with the talented team at Klutz, and the projects are totally hip. Perfect for crafty kids and adults. Please consider ordering a copy or two, and if you like it, saying so on Amazon. Thanks!

must-visit gift and paper store in Reno carries “my book” for moms-to-be

May 29th, 2011

Thanks to Ali Z at Designalicious I discovered the Reno, Nevada, city guide at Design Sponge. Thanks to the Design Sponge guide I discovered The Paper Moon, a well-curated paper and gift store with lots of fun girly stuff—all with a distinct design point of view that I loved.

Thanks to the the Paper Moon Facebook page, I got 25 percent off my whole purchase—tie-dyed scarf, patchwork headband, letterpress thank-you notes, glass rings, sticky notes with illustrated stilettos, etc. If you’re in Reno, go visit The Paper Moon. The store is in the shopping center at 550 West Plumb Lane, not far from downtown.

Lesson learned: From now on when I travel, I will check to see if Design Sponge has a city guide for my destination.

A huge thrill for me was seeing that Paper Moon carries my book Parenting magazine’s Pregnancy Planner: Essential Advice for Moms-to-Be, a journal-format book I spent two years editing. (Sorry, the photo I took was too blurry to post.)

Whenever I say a book is “my book,” the inevitable next question, which the lovely store clerk asked: “Did you write it?” The answer is, I’m not the author, but…With the beautifully illustrated books I work on, it’s hard to explain how much creativity and hard work the editorial, design, and production teams invest in a book, how much we collaborate, and how proud we are of the final product. It’s ours. Buy a Pregnancy Planner for an expecting mom, and you’ll see what I mean. And if you’re Reno, you where to find it.

Why every parent should read the book Why Gender Matters

May 15th, 2011

Often to the chagrin of my husband, I’ve been reading (and quoting from) a lot of parenting books lately. One that should be required reading for all parents and teachers: Why Gender Matters: What Parents and Teachers Need to Know about the Emerging Science of Sex Differences by Leonard Sax, MD, PhD. If a teacher tells you your child has ADD, do not pass go, do not fill a prescription, read this book immediately.

Why Gender Matters describes the physiological difference between boys and girls, and how those differences affect children, particularly in how they learn. According to Sax, age and gender are the “two great organizing principles in child development.” For example, boys and girls develop different parts of their brains at different times. “Trying to understand a child without the role of gender in child development is like trying to understand a child’s behavior without knowing the child’s age,” Sax writes.

Boys and girls play, fight, see, hear, speak, think, and learn differently, but that doesn’t mean that nature trumps nurture. Sax helps you understand gender differences and then gives you practical advice about how you can best help your son or daughter learn. Here are a few issues he addresses:

• In school, overly academic kindergartens can set boys up for failure from the get-go, while girls more likely will feel the negatives of “gender-blind” education in middle school and high school.

• If you have a son who’s a daredevil, saying “don’t do that” isn’t going to cut it, so find a safe outlet for that energy. On the other hand, there are ways to encourage your daughter to take more risks.

• A boy, whether 6 or 17 years old (and I’m guessing up to at least 46), may really not know how he feels, much less be able to talk about it, whereas your daughter more likely has the awareness of her emotions and the vocabulary to describe them in detail.

Most important, boys and girls are different—neither are better. As parents, it’s our job to understand that, let go of the illusion of gender neutrality, and embrace the differences.

My friend Robert, who went back and earned his teaching credentials through Stanford University, recommended that I read Why Gender Matters. I’m glad I did. Do yourself a favor and read it. Then do a friend a favor and pass it along.