We went to Barnes and Noble today. This is always dangerous. I nearly bought a $26.00 book, but managed to stop myself with thoughts of trying the library first. Sadly, I cannot remember the title. :-P I did, however, succumb to The King in the Window. "For the children." The idea is intriguing, the writing, so far as I saw, is well-done, and I like that there are little bites of French sprinkled throughout. I'm going to start reading it to the kids at bedtime, since we are still working through the Pure Dead____ books in the morning (alternating with a history book, and thus drawing things out.)
I tried to find a decent picture book for the Prawn, but the sad fact is that all that seems to come out in the picture book realm these days is tripe. There are plenty of and then. . . and then. . . and then. . . books, and more than enough it was like a banana but moldy and green, I learned with surprise that the thing was my spleen books (OK, well, even that is more creative than what I saw today,) but nothing in the way of depth or beauty; nothing I could be prevailed upon to read even twice (or once!) let alone a hundred times. I know, I know, "Stop whingeing and get off your butt and make some good ones!" you say. And you're right. As much as I loathe the submission process, I need to suck it up and launch some more of my babies out there into the cold, harsh world of uncaring publishing houses once again. But the cynical side of me -- the part I try to keep locked in the small, dark compartment under my lower left rib (though this part requires, with increasing frequency, bribery in the form of chocolate and baked goods in order to stay put) -- says that this predominantly television-dependent age consists largely (though not completely) of parents who don't want picturesque and meaningful; who prefer something they can read with three quarters of their brains tied behind their backs and in the minimum possible time. I suspect that they desire books that will never present a word that calls for a moment's pause for explanation, books that are composed of trite rhymes (or almost-but-not-quite rhymes) and splashed with garish, unrealistic stick-figure drawings.
Clearly I need more chocolate.
On that note, I was looking for an appropriate dessert recipe to try today. MuNKi speculated that vanilla cupcakes might be nice, but was met by a resounding chorus of disgust. (Clearly, I've taught my children well.) So I pulled out my Culinary Arts Institute Encyclopedic Cookbook (purchased at one of those "fill a bag for $2" library sales -- mine once beonged to "Rosemary" which I take as a good sign) and began thumbing through it for the first time. Much to my interest and amusement, I've found a Libby's label with a pumpkin pie recipe, an old strip of check stub (the kind from those big ledger-style business checks) with some ingredients listed on it, and an old (I almost said ancient, but it's not quite that) Farmington Community Library bookmark/information strip explaining the new barcode system in very comforting and reassuring terms. ("We call it the Zebra.") Section headers are printed in an amazingly nerdy computer font. Oooooohhhh! Obviously, all this is designed to disguise the fact that the system is Satanic.
I obviously got sidetracked by all that. Now I'm going to look for an actual recipe. I suppose a fool would be approriate, but I doubt that's going to happen. I'll let you know if I find anything else of interest, like recipes from the 1800s or pressed flowers/pickles/lapdogs.