Monthly Archives: February 2011

Connecting at Bologna Children’s Book Fair 2011

By Rana DiOrio, Founder
Last year, I attended The Bologna Children’s Book Fair (which is the largest children’s book fair in the world) for the very first time as an observer, a sponge. This year, I will be attending the fair as a participant, a doer, and to forge connections to take Little Pickle Press to the next level of growth and expansion. Here’s what I hope to accomplish:
Identify foreign rights partners for our titles. We have selected Foreword Reviews to represent our five titles. They have hired Sylvia Hayse of Sylvia Hayse Literary Agency, LLC to host meetings with prospective rights buyers. Sylvia just happens to also represent Little Pickle Press in ordinary course and has landed foreign rights deals for us in Korea and China. If you are a publisher or co-agent interested in pursuing the foreign rights to print our award-winning titles, please set up a time to meet with Sylvia Hayse by sending her an email.
Identify titles published in other geographies and/or languages that we may wish to acquire foreign rights to publish in the United States or all English-speaking countries. We will be on the hunt for high quality children’s books for which we can acquire the rights to publish. Specifically, we’d be seeking children’s picture books or middle grade chapter books that convey meaningful messages to children. Themes of particular interest include fiction or nonfiction stories about: adoption, altruism, divergent (vs. convergent) thinking, entrepreneurship, fostering creativity, forgiveness, and health/wellness. Award-winning content would be our first choice. If you have a title or titles for us to consider, please contact me at [email protected].
Identify digital applications partners for our content. We are developing world class content for children. We are seeking innovative technology partners to extrapolate our content into best-of-breed applications for mobile devices and computers. For example, we have forged a partnership with MagicBlox, a subscription-based, online, digital library, and we showcase our e-books and audio books in their library. We are about to ink a deal with SachManya, a state-of-the-art SAAS mobile publishing platform.  Their product, Yapper (Your APP makER), is an easy-to-use, web-based service for publishers and authors to build mobile applications and to derive revenue by selling their books, magazines, and other premium content within the apps. If you are a purveyor of technology or if you have a platform that needs high quality children’s media content, please let me know via email.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Don’t forget that today is the last day of our February 25% off all our award-winning books – use code LPPLOVE at check-out. Click here for the shopping cart to see these and more titles.

Connecting at Bologna Children’s Book Fair 2011

By Rana DiOrio, Founder
Last year, I attended The Bologna Children’s Book Fair (which is the largest children’s book fair in the world) for the very first time as an observer, a sponge. This year, I will be attending the fair as a participant, a doer, and to forge connections to take Little Pickle Press to the next level of growth and expansion. Here’s what I hope to accomplish:
Identify foreign rights partners for our titles. We have selected Foreword Reviews to represent our five titles. They have hired Sylvia Hayse of Sylvia Hayse Literary Agency, LLC to host meetings with prospective rights buyers. Sylvia just happens to also represent Little Pickle Press in ordinary course and has landed foreign rights deals for us in Korea and China. If you are a publisher or co-agent interested in pursuing the foreign rights to print our award-winning titles, please set up a time to meet with Sylvia Hayse by sending her an email.
Identify titles published in other geographies and/or languages that we may wish to acquire foreign rights to publish in the United States or all English-speaking countries. We will be on the hunt for high quality children’s books for which we can acquire the rights to publish. Specifically, we’d be seeking children’s picture books or middle grade chapter books that convey meaningful messages to children. Themes of particular interest include fiction or nonfiction stories about: adoption, altruism, divergent (vs. convergent) thinking, entrepreneurship, fostering creativity, forgiveness, and health/wellness. Award-winning content would be our first choice. If you have a title or titles for us to consider, please contact me at [email protected].
Identify digital applications partners for our content. We are developing world class content for children. We are seeking innovative technology partners to extrapolate our content into best-of-breed applications for mobile devices and computers. For example, we have forged a partnership with MagicBlox, a subscription-based, online, digital library, and we showcase our e-books and audio books in their library. We are about to ink a deal with SachManya, a state-of-the-art SAAS mobile publishing platform.  Their product, Yapper (Your APP makER), is an easy-to-use, web-based service for publishers and authors to build mobile applications and to derive revenue by selling their books, magazines, and other premium content within the apps. If you are a purveyor of technology or if you have a platform that needs high quality children’s media content, please let me know via email.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Don’t forget that today is the last day of our February 25% off all our award-winning books – use code LPPLOVE at check-out. Click here for the shopping cart to see these and more titles.

Have a Marvelous Weekend Friends

We hope you’ll be someplace very special with castles and everything.

Having fun with the coolest friends in the whole world.

Visiting with family and making big smiley faces.
Or just being your fun and silly selves, you cutie patooties!
May the chief and her little pickles have a wonderful time at Walt Disney World Resort. Thanks for sharing pictures with us! Be sure to say hi to Goofy.

Have a Marvelous Weekend Friends

We hope you’ll be someplace very special with castles and everything.

Having fun with the coolest friends in the whole world.

Visiting with family and making big smiley faces.
Or just being your fun and silly selves, you cutie patooties!
May the chief and her little pickles have a wonderful time at Walt Disney World Resort. Thanks for sharing pictures with us! Be sure to say hi to Goofy.

Encouraging Your Children to Read

By Kara Petersen, Little Pickle Press Sales Associate, Southern California

I am still shocked to find that there are some people who may not enjoy reading.  Both of my parents are avid readers and fostered this pastime within my sister and me from an early age.  However, I do have a few friends, who shall remain nameless, that don’t necessarily enjoy this hobby as much as I do, and an even shorter list of friends who would join me in calling it a passion.
Parents and teachers are constantly looking for new ways to encourage children to read, especially in our digital age with television, video games, and the Internet vying for children’s time. Sometimes, it may just take finding the right book to hook in a young reader and start a lifelong love of the written word.  Other times it may take more persuasion.
My friend Bunni Lesh, librarian for Canalino Elementary School in Carpinteria, CA, was the first person who introduced me to Renaissance Learning’s Accelerated Reader Program.  With points and prizes earned by taking reading comprehension quizzes, it’s like Oprah’s Book Club for kids.  Ms. Bunni told me it’s the only way she can get some of her students to read.  But then again, it’s the “getting children to read” part that is important.
How It Works:   
Librarians and teachers help to drive the selection of books by recommending titles to Renaissance Learning on their website. Books are considered for quizzes based on awards, national reviews, recommending reading lists, and requests from a number of different schools.  After reading a title students can take a number of different quizzes to measure their literary, comprehension, and vocabulary skills. Quizzes are available individually or as textbook quizzes for teachers to use in the classroom.  They are available for individual or teacher-lead reading activities.
According to Renaissance Learning’s website, yesterday students read 1,468,153 books and 11 billion words.  That’s a good thing in my book!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Kara Petersen was born and raised in Santa Barbara, CA.  She loves traveling, reading, yoga, watching ice hockey, and going to the beach.  When she isn’t sharing Little Pickle Press with Southern California she is writing her own stories and hopes to publish some of them for big and little pickles someday.

Encouraging Your Children to Read

By Kara Petersen, Little Pickle Press Sales Associate, Southern California

I am still shocked to find that there are some people who may not enjoy reading.  Both of my parents are avid readers and fostered this pastime within my sister and me from an early age.  However, I do have a few friends, who shall remain nameless, that don’t necessarily enjoy this hobby as much as I do, and an even shorter list of friends who would join me in calling it a passion.
Parents and teachers are constantly looking for new ways to encourage children to read, especially in our digital age with television, video games, and the Internet vying for children’s time. Sometimes, it may just take finding the right book to hook in a young reader and start a lifelong love of the written word.  Other times it may take more persuasion.
My friend Bunni Lesh, librarian for Canalino Elementary School in Carpinteria, CA, was the first person who introduced me to Renaissance Learning’s Accelerated Reader Program.  With points and prizes earned by taking reading comprehension quizzes, it’s like Oprah’s Book Club for kids.  Ms. Bunni told me it’s the only way she can get some of her students to read.  But then again, it’s the “getting children to read” part that is important.
How It Works:   
Librarians and teachers help to drive the selection of books by recommending titles to Renaissance Learning on their website. Books are considered for quizzes based on awards, national reviews, recommending reading lists, and requests from a number of different schools.  After reading a title students can take a number of different quizzes to measure their literary, comprehension, and vocabulary skills. Quizzes are available individually or as textbook quizzes for teachers to use in the classroom.  They are available for individual or teacher-lead reading activities.
According to Renaissance Learning’s website, yesterday students read 1,468,153 books and 11 billion words.  That’s a good thing in my book!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Kara Petersen was born and raised in Santa Barbara, CA.  She loves traveling, reading, yoga, watching ice hockey, and going to the beach.  When she isn’t sharing Little Pickle Press with Southern California she is writing her own stories and hopes to publish some of them for big and little pickles someday.

A Few More Days of Love

Friends, just a reminder that our special 25% off for the month of February ends soon. You can still order any of our books by going to our shopping cart here, choosing your books, and entering the coupon code LPPLOVE at check-out. Don’t miss out on this tremendous value!

A Few More Days of Love

Friends, just a reminder that our special 25% off for the month of February ends soon. You can still order any of our books by going to our shopping cart here, choosing your books, and entering the coupon code LPPLOVE at check-out. Don’t miss out on this tremendous value!

A Typical Tuesday at Little Pickle Press

By Dani Greer

Recently in an interview, our chief executive pickle, Rana DiOrio,  gave this response about the LPP team:

I think that in-person meetings optimize collaboration. We have a weekly all-hands meeting that our remote team members participate in by phone. It represents the single most valuable growth driver for our company. The exchange of ideas during that brief weekly gathering is truly remarkable. Everyone walks away from the call/meeting with action items and is inspired to do their tasks to move the company forward.
 

I’m one of the old dills around here who can remember manual typewriters, mimeograph machines, and the exorbitant expense of a long-distance phone call. I can also recall a short stint with the telephone company where I had to program telephones for conferencing call features and train executives to use these “gang hot-lines”, and I’m here to tell you that in many ways, life has improved and has become much simpler. Let me publicly state how grateful I am for technological changes like emails and conference calling services that allow us to be in touch on a regular basis and at little or no charge… and without requiring an advanced degree or extremely high IQ to use them!

So what does a conference call with the Little Pickle Press team look like on any given Tuesday? Here’s a peek at the LPP HQ office as the California team members chat with the rest of us around the world.

How about you? What technological advancements have made your daily life easier?

A Typical Tuesday at Little Pickle Press

By Dani Greer

Recently in an interview, our chief executive pickle, Rana DiOrio,  gave this response about the LPP team:

I think that in-person meetings optimize collaboration. We have a weekly all-hands meeting that our remote team members participate in by phone. It represents the single most valuable growth driver for our company. The exchange of ideas during that brief weekly gathering is truly remarkable. Everyone walks away from the call/meeting with action items and is inspired to do their tasks to move the company forward.
 

I’m one of the old dills around here who can remember manual typewriters, mimeograph machines, and the exorbitant expense of a long-distance phone call. I can also recall a short stint with the telephone company where I had to program telephones for conferencing call features and train executives to use these “gang hot-lines”, and I’m here to tell you that in many ways, life has improved and has become much simpler. Let me publicly state how grateful I am for technological changes like emails and conference calling services that allow us to be in touch on a regular basis and at little or no charge… and without requiring an advanced degree or extremely high IQ to use them!

So what does a conference call with the Little Pickle Press team look like on any given Tuesday? Here’s a peek at the LPP HQ office as the California team members chat with the rest of us around the world.

How about you? What technological advancements have made your daily life easier?

Hail to the Chief

By Dani Greer
Today is Presidents Day in the United States. Or is it Presidents’ Day? Or maybe it should be President’s Day because, in fact, what was once termed Washington’s Birthday, is still Washington’s Birthday. Though the Uniform Monday Holiday Act created numerous three-day weekends, it never passed to include more than one president on this particular day. It was actually a term coined by department store advertisers who discovered that the generic-sounding holiday sold more inventory than the father of the country! Sadly, many Americans may enjoy an extra day off and get a bargain at a sale, but few will really honor the intent of the holiday.
I’ve been thinking a lot about presidents lately, mostly because of the remarkable turmoil surrounding a few of them in recent years. I grew up the child of an Army officer, and learned early to respect the Commander-in-Chief. It didn’t matter who that person was, or of which party — respect for the office was built into my upbringing. It was tacitly understood that a strong Army depended upon a strong leadership, and that meant the troops acted respectfully and so did their families. It was as simple as that.
There was a time in our history when leaders, especially presidents, were held in such high esteem that families put photographs of them on their living room walls, as though they were part of the family. I always thought that was a bit curious, until the last election when for the first time in my life, I felt a sense of connection with the Obama family that really was akin to a kind of love and admiration one might assign to a dear friend or family member. The election was a marker event in my life. It was the first time a black man and a woman were both considered viable presidential candidates. As a woman who grew up during the civil rights and women’s liberation movements, this moment in time was historic for me. It was a first in the country’s history and I fully realized the enormity of it.
I’m not the only person who was thus impacted by the 2008 election. Novelist, Susan Wittig Albert, penned a personal memoir to mark her 69th year.  The book juxtaposed the astounding events of the election against her own life as a writer and conservationist in the Texas Hill Country. When the University of Texas Press published An Extraordinary Year of Ordinary Days, no one could have guessed what a fascinating historic record it would eventually become. Click here to read an excerpt.
Rana DiOrio, founder of Little Pickle Press, was inspired by the election in a profound and positive way, too. When asked for a reaction to the election results, she simply states, “I cried.” But it also gave her the impetus to write her first children’s book in order to share conversations about the world and events with her own children. This is how What Does It Mean To be Global? was inspired and eventually born, and along with it a publishing company.
Discussing world events and politics and, yes, even presidents, is an important part of teaching our children to be good citizens. How do you model proper behavior to them? Do you bandy about insults about politicians, thinking your kids aren’t paying attention? Or do you use the news to create informative conversation at the dinner table, discussing current events and weaving them into discussions of your own views and values? 
I would urge you to think about the example you set for the youngsters in your family. It’s vital that young people learn the interpersonal skills that allow them to become strong citizens. It’s equally important that they learn the importance of strong leadership to the success of a nation. Please think about these things, and consciously plant the seeds that will grow your little pickles into good citizens. It starts in your home and ends in a better world for us all.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 Don’t forget to take advantage of our February discount on all books with the coupon code LPPLOVE at check-out. Please visit our website to order by clicking here.

Hail to the Chief

By Dani Greer
Today is Presidents Day in the United States. Or is it Presidents’ Day? Or maybe it should be President’s Day because, in fact, what was once termed Washington’s Birthday, is still Washington’s Birthday. Though the Uniform Monday Holiday Act created numerous three-day weekends, it never passed to include more than one president on this particular day. It was actually a term coined by department store advertisers who discovered that the generic-sounding holiday sold more inventory than the father of the country! Sadly, many Americans may enjoy an extra day off and get a bargain at a sale, but few will really honor the intent of the holiday.
I’ve been thinking a lot about presidents lately, mostly because of the remarkable turmoil surrounding a few of them in recent years. I grew up the child of an Army officer, and learned early to respect the Commander-in-Chief. It didn’t matter who that person was, or of which party — respect for the office was built into my upbringing. It was tacitly understood that a strong Army depended upon a strong leadership, and that meant the troops acted respectfully and so did their families. It was as simple as that.
There was a time in our history when leaders, especially presidents, were held in such high esteem that families put photographs of them on their living room walls, as though they were part of the family. I always thought that was a bit curious, until the last election when for the first time in my life, I felt a sense of connection with the Obama family that really was akin to a kind of love and admiration one might assign to a dear friend or family member. The election was a marker event in my life. It was the first time a black man and a woman were both considered viable presidential candidates. As a woman who grew up during the civil rights and women’s liberation movements, this moment in time was historic for me. It was a first in the country’s history and I fully realized the enormity of it.
I’m not the only person who was thus impacted by the 2008 election. Novelist, Susan Wittig Albert, penned a personal memoir to mark her 69th year.  The book juxtaposed the astounding events of the election against her own life as a writer and conservationist in the Texas Hill Country. When the University of Texas Press published An Extraordinary Year of Ordinary Days, no one could have guessed what a fascinating historic record it would eventually become. Click here to read an excerpt.
Rana DiOrio, founder of Little Pickle Press, was inspired by the election in a profound and positive way, too. When asked for a reaction to the election results, she simply states, “I cried.” But it also gave her the impetus to write her first children’s book in order to share conversations about the world and events with her own children. This is how What Does It Mean To be Global? was inspired and eventually born, and along with it a publishing company.
Discussing world events and politics and, yes, even presidents, is an important part of teaching our children to be good citizens. How do you model proper behavior to them? Do you bandy about insults about politicians, thinking your kids aren’t paying attention? Or do you use the news to create informative conversation at the dinner table, discussing current events and weaving them into discussions of your own views and values? 
I would urge you to think about the example you set for the youngsters in your family. It’s vital that young people learn the interpersonal skills that allow them to become strong citizens. It’s equally important that they learn the importance of strong leadership to the success of a nation. Please think about these things, and consciously plant the seeds that will grow your little pickles into good citizens. It starts in your home and ends in a better world for us all.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 Don’t forget to take advantage of our February discount on all books with the coupon code LPPLOVE at check-out. Please visit our website to order by clicking here.

A Day at Frenchtown School Part 2

By Maria Mostajo

At the Frenchtown School presentation we talked about yesterday, Rana also read her books, including What Does It Mean To Be Global, which gorgeously illustrates children trying all types of foods, celebrating different religions and cultures and encourages a greater sensitivity to other people’s experiences.  She then shared photographs of children from all over the world playing in their environments in an effort to show the Frenchtown schoolchildren that they are different yet very similar to their counterparts around the world.  The images were breathtakingly beautiful, had uplifting messages, and left the children with vibrant images to enhance their already open and creative minds.  
My favorite Little Pickle Press book in the series is What Does It Mean To Be Present? and when I read it I often think of yet another person, usually an adult, that could benefit from its message.  Rana described her inspiration for writing this book in a sincere and self-deprecating manner.  She admitted that, like so many adults, she is attached and addicted to her Blackberry and most importantly, how it was bothersome to her own children.  When asked if they knew anyone who had a Blackberry or I-phone, almost every hand went up. 
As she read the beginning of the book and asked them what it meant or didn’t mean be “present” they volunteered remarks, but as she softly read the words that described the “feeling of family, friends, savoring a delicious food or a snuggle or the warmth of the sun or the sound of the rain and the sand between your toes or the taste of the ocean’s salty spray…” the children’s peace was palpable.  I could hear the rhythm of each child’s breath as she read, “breathe… in and out, in and out… to make you peaceful… closing your eyes and being still enough to hear your inner voice.”  And for a moment I was reminded of how important it is for our children to settle down enough from their over-scheduled lives and activities to share with us what is inside of them; and for us parents to take the time to listen.
Rana and I left Rhode Island, which happens to be where she was raised, and marveled at the wonders of childhood and were so very thankful to have had the opportunity to partake in the Frenchtown’s effort to cultivate open minded and socially responsible little people.
***********
To purchase a copy of What Does It Mean To Be Present, written by Rana DiOrio and illustrated by Eliza Wheeler, please go to our shopping cart here.

A Day at Frenchtown School Part 2

By Maria Mostajo

At the Frenchtown School presentation we talked about yesterday, Rana also read her books, including What Does It Mean To Be Global, which gorgeously illustrates children trying all types of foods, celebrating different religions and cultures and encourages a greater sensitivity to other people’s experiences.  She then shared photographs of children from all over the world playing in their environments in an effort to show the Frenchtown schoolchildren that they are different yet very similar to their counterparts around the world.  The images were breathtakingly beautiful, had uplifting messages, and left the children with vibrant images to enhance their already open and creative minds.  
My favorite Little Pickle Press book in the series is What Does It Mean To Be Present? and when I read it I often think of yet another person, usually an adult, that could benefit from its message.  Rana described her inspiration for writing this book in a sincere and self-deprecating manner.  She admitted that, like so many adults, she is attached and addicted to her Blackberry and most importantly, how it was bothersome to her own children.  When asked if they knew anyone who had a Blackberry or I-phone, almost every hand went up. 
As she read the beginning of the book and asked them what it meant or didn’t mean be “present” they volunteered remarks, but as she softly read the words that described the “feeling of family, friends, savoring a delicious food or a snuggle or the warmth of the sun or the sound of the rain and the sand between your toes or the taste of the ocean’s salty spray…” the children’s peace was palpable.  I could hear the rhythm of each child’s breath as she read, “breathe… in and out, in and out… to make you peaceful… closing your eyes and being still enough to hear your inner voice.”  And for a moment I was reminded of how important it is for our children to settle down enough from their over-scheduled lives and activities to share with us what is inside of them; and for us parents to take the time to listen.
Rana and I left Rhode Island, which happens to be where she was raised, and marveled at the wonders of childhood and were so very thankful to have had the opportunity to partake in the Frenchtown’s effort to cultivate open minded and socially responsible little people.
***********
To purchase a copy of What Does It Mean To Be Present, written by Rana DiOrio and illustrated by Eliza Wheeler, please go to our shopping cart here.

A Day at Frenchtown School Part 1

By Maria Mostajo
 

As the parents of bi-racial children my husband and I agreed many years ago that we would raise our children in New York City where we could easily expose them to culture, diversity, and the world beyond themselves.  I grew up in a suburb just outside Boston and my husband was raised in Manhattan and we both had close ties to our communities.  I have to admit, in the end we chose Manhattan as we were both a bit hesitant to live in a suburb of New England out of the fear that a homogenous environment wouldn’t offer us the experience that we wanted for our family.
My best friend of over thirty years, and someone who I consider to be the most open-minded, worldly, and sensitive human being, chose to raise her four children in East Greenwich, RI.  While I have visited her many times over the years and have met her friends and neighbors, I hadn’t really given much thought to the opportunities available to her to stimulate and encourage her children to see and understand her view of all people living on our precious earth.  I assumed that it would be mostly her and her husband’s responsibility to teach their children to appreciate and respect other people’s traditions and cultures.  When I asked Elizabeth if she would be interested in helping me promote Rana DiOrio’s What Does It Mean To Be…? series of books, she immediately saw the opportunity for her community to explore the meaningful topics of the books and offered to sponsor an author visit at the Frenchtown School, where her youngest two still attend.  The Frenchtown School is a public elementary school and houses approximately 350 kids ranging between kindergarten and third grade.
On January 31, 2011 we joined Elizabeth Atalay and her friend and President of the Parent Teacher Group at the Frenchtown School, Julie D’Amico, who introduced Rana and me to the Frenchtown student body.  It was magical from the start.  The books we had brought for display and sale were piled high on a table in front of a colorful poster at the entrance to the library where the children came to meet Rana in groups of a couple of classes at a time. While the children briefly stopped to look at the display, they were clearly there to hear what Rana had to say.  They marched in with their teachers and sat in a semi-circle around Rana, who captured their attention and imagination with her interactive, stimulating, and beautifully colorful images of children from all over the world doing things that they do but in environments vastly different than their own.
Rana opened with a discussion about the environment and within minutes the children were engaged in a conversation that had us moms watching behind the scenes in awe.  These four, five, and six year olds “get it”.  This is their earth and they care about it.  Their parents, teachers and friends have educated them about the issues and they are conversant and have ingenious ideas to offer about ways to conserve energy, protect the environment, and to continue the educational process.  Some have even written stories or books about the subject.  Building these types of conversations into their curriculum can only enhance their already caring and optimistic nature.
*********


See all our posters and books at http://www.littlepicklepress.com

Join us again tomorrow for more about our visit to Frenchtown School!

A Day at Frenchtown School Part 1

By Maria Mostajo
 

As the parents of bi-racial children my husband and I agreed many years ago that we would raise our children in New York City where we could easily expose them to culture, diversity, and the world beyond themselves.  I grew up in a suburb just outside Boston and my husband was raised in Manhattan and we both had close ties to our communities.  I have to admit, in the end we chose Manhattan as we were both a bit hesitant to live in a suburb of New England out of the fear that a homogenous environment wouldn’t offer us the experience that we wanted for our family.
My best friend of over thirty years, and someone who I consider to be the most open-minded, worldly, and sensitive human being, chose to raise her four children in East Greenwich, RI.  While I have visited her many times over the years and have met her friends and neighbors, I hadn’t really given much thought to the opportunities available to her to stimulate and encourage her children to see and understand her view of all people living on our precious earth.  I assumed that it would be mostly her and her husband’s responsibility to teach their children to appreciate and respect other people’s traditions and cultures.  When I asked Elizabeth if she would be interested in helping me promote Rana DiOrio’s What Does It Mean To Be…? series of books, she immediately saw the opportunity for her community to explore the meaningful topics of the books and offered to sponsor an author visit at the Frenchtown School, where her youngest two still attend.  The Frenchtown School is a public elementary school and houses approximately 350 kids ranging between kindergarten and third grade.
On January 31, 2011 we joined Elizabeth Atalay and her friend and President of the Parent Teacher Group at the Frenchtown School, Julie D’Amico, who introduced Rana and me to the Frenchtown student body.  It was magical from the start.  The books we had brought for display and sale were piled high on a table in front of a colorful poster at the entrance to the library where the children came to meet Rana in groups of a couple of classes at a time. While the children briefly stopped to look at the display, they were clearly there to hear what Rana had to say.  They marched in with their teachers and sat in a semi-circle around Rana, who captured their attention and imagination with her interactive, stimulating, and beautifully colorful images of children from all over the world doing things that they do but in environments vastly different than their own.
Rana opened with a discussion about the environment and within minutes the children were engaged in a conversation that had us moms watching behind the scenes in awe.  These four, five, and six year olds “get it”.  This is their earth and they care about it.  Their parents, teachers and friends have educated them about the issues and they are conversant and have ingenious ideas to offer about ways to conserve energy, protect the environment, and to continue the educational process.  Some have even written stories or books about the subject.  Building these types of conversations into their curriculum can only enhance their already caring and optimistic nature.
*********


See all our posters and books at http://www.littlepicklepress.com

Join us again tomorrow for more about our visit to Frenchtown School!

Eco Lips

By Cameron Crane

At Little Pickle Press, we know how important it is to keep our planet and the people in it as healthy and happy as possible. Our children’s books are printed and distributed in an eco-friendly manner, using recycled paper, soy inks, and green packaging to help reduce our impact. For every book sold, we donate 10% of the purchase price to Starlight Children’s Foundation in hopes of improving quality of life for children with illnesses. When we find a company with values in congruence with ours, we simply must share!

Recently, we discovered Eco Lips, an amazing series of lip products made with certified organic and natural ingredients, produced by solar power! My personal introduction to the product line was through Eco Lips Gold, which is a standard every-day lip balm. I tried the product in hopes of healing my lips, which were dry and red from the wind. I applied the product when I first bought it and again before I went to sleep. The next morning my lips had significantly improved, so I went online to Ecolips.com and back to the store to see what else the Eco Lips line had to offer. Amongst their medicinal lip balms, tinted lip balms, vegan lip balms, and fruit-based lip balms I found my next purchase, the Dagoba Roseberry lip balm. It tasted delicious and had the same moisturizing effect. I was hooked!

As if the luscious variety of treats for my lips wasn’t enough, I found out that Eco Lips has a line of products called Cause Balm which contributes $1 per balm purchased to a choice of 9 wonderful non-profit organizations. Their motto is, “Help us change the world, one set of lips at a time.”

Their children’s line is called Honest Kids, and comes in flavors children will love like Goodness Grapeness and Berry Berry Good Lemonade.

The bottom line is – I love Eco Lips for all the same reasons I believe people like Little Pickle Press – great products created and produced with an environmental and social conscience. It’s because of this synergy that Eco Lips has offered to give a 20% discount to our customers when they order product from Ecolips.com: 20% off entire order, Coupon Code: ECO20. Little Pickle Press would like to also extend a 20% discount to all Eco Lips customers: 20% off entire order, Coupon Code: LPPECO20. 
It was exciting to find a product that not only makes a difference in my lips, but makes a difference to the world.
Enjoy!

Eco Lips

By Cameron Crane

At Little Pickle Press, we know how important it is to keep our planet and the people in it as healthy and happy as possible. Our children’s books are printed and distributed in an eco-friendly manner, using recycled paper, soy inks, and green packaging to help reduce our impact. For every book sold, we donate 10% of the purchase price to Starlight Children’s Foundation in hopes of improving quality of life for children with illnesses. When we find a company with values in congruence with ours, we simply must share!

Recently, we discovered Eco Lips, an amazing series of lip products made with certified organic and natural ingredients, produced by solar power! My personal introduction to the product line was through Eco Lips Gold, which is a standard every-day lip balm. I tried the product in hopes of healing my lips, which were dry and red from the wind. I applied the product when I first bought it and again before I went to sleep. The next morning my lips had significantly improved, so I went online to Ecolips.com and back to the store to see what else the Eco Lips line had to offer. Amongst their medicinal lip balms, tinted lip balms, vegan lip balms, and fruit-based lip balms I found my next purchase, the Dagoba Roseberry lip balm. It tasted delicious and had the same moisturizing effect. I was hooked!

As if the luscious variety of treats for my lips wasn’t enough, I found out that Eco Lips has a line of products called Cause Balm which contributes $1 per balm purchased to a choice of 9 wonderful non-profit organizations. Their motto is, “Help us change the world, one set of lips at a time.”

Their children’s line is called Honest Kids, and comes in flavors children will love like Goodness Grapeness and Berry Berry Good Lemonade.

The bottom line is – I love Eco Lips for all the same reasons I believe people like Little Pickle Press – great products created and produced with an environmental and social conscience. It’s because of this synergy that Eco Lips has offered to give a 20% discount to our customers when they order product from Ecolips.com: 20% off entire order, Coupon Code: ECO20. Little Pickle Press would like to also extend a 20% discount to all Eco Lips customers: 20% off entire order, Coupon Code: LPPECO20. 
It was exciting to find a product that not only makes a difference in my lips, but makes a difference to the world.
Enjoy!

War and Peace

War and Peace. It’s the name of a famous literary classic by Leo Tolstoy. The two words and their respective actions also connect humanity throughout its existence. It’s fair to say our presence on this Earth has been shaped by both.

Today we continue to experience war and peace throughout the world, and more than ever our connections through telecommunications bring the events to our very living rooms. Most recently, we experienced the relatively peaceful change of leadership in Egypt, a historic event fueled and supported by Internet and other connections. It proved to be a vital and dramatic marker of the power of yet another living system of our times – telecommunications.

Peace has always been the goal in civilized societies, and this month we mark the anniversary of America’s own Peace Corps. 50 years ago, President John F. Kennedy gave his famous “ask not” inaugural address. The country and the world were in a time of turmoil and the Cold War was in full swing, even as Kennedy preached unity and service. This message of service led to the founding of the Peace Corps on March 1, 1961.

Since then, more than 200,000 Americans have volunteered abroad through the program in 139 countries. Students at the University of Michigan were the first to serve their country in the cause of peace by living and working in developing countries. From that inspiration grew an agency of the federal government devoted to world peace and friendship.

The Peace Corps’ mission has three simple goals:

1. Helping the people of interested countries in meeting their need for trained men and women.
2. Helping promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served.
3. Helping promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans.

Today’s Peace Corps is more vital than ever, working in emerging and essential areas such as information technology and business development, and contributing to the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief. Peace Corps volunteers continue to help countless individuals who want to build a better life for themselves, their children, and their communities.

We congratulate the Peace Corps for its decades of service to so many worthy countries and encourage each of you to consider donating to them to further their goals. Please visit their website to learn about their history and services and to give to the 50th Anniversary Fund.

Perhaps you have a Peace Corps experience during your college days or know someone who participated as part of their experiential education. Share with us your memories and how it shaped the person you are today. We look forward to reading your comments.

Don’t forget it’s not too early to instill a global consciousness, especially as related to peace and understanding, in your little ones. What Does It Mean To Be Global?, written by Rana DiOrio and illustrated by Chris Hill, is just the book to start your children off right. Click here to view the video about it and to buy a copy.