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A new children’s book just came out with the same title as my book only this story sees the night before Christmas Eve from the elves’ point of view. Get both books and compare what people and elves are doing to get ready for Christmas.
I want to shout it out to the world, I LOVE THE ILLUSTRATIONS IN THIS BOOK!
When Blake Ross’s youngest child asked, “Daddy, why doesn’t Santa use elephants?” the question sparked an idea. What if Santa had different animals try out for the position of sleigh puller?
In Daddy…why doesn’t Santa use ELEPHANTS? Ross has published a hilarious take on why Santa had to rule out other animals before deciding on reindeer to pull his sleigh. He sets this book up as an alphabetical tryout of animals and why they weren’t suited to help Santa. For example, monkeys drove Santa bananas. Giraffes were a pain in the neck. And skunks…
Because the illustrations are so clever and full of energy and humor, I can almost forgive him for not including an animal from every letter of the alphabet, missing the mark of marketing this as an alphabet book as well as a Christmas book. Still, kids will love the silliness and adults will get the hidden humor. The large format of the 40-page book (10″x12″) is wonderfully suited to the dynamic art that seems to burst from the page.
Ross is a graphic designer who has ventured into self-publishing children’s books. I would love for him to illustrate one of mine! His work has a child-like sensibility that naturally brings a smile to one’s face. Plus he’s great at playing with the borders of the physical book. This book begs to be read before Christmas and would prompt a fun art project for kids by having them draw different animals pulling Santa’s sleigh. I wonder how a Pushmi-pullyu would do?
To purchase a book click here.
Review of my friend’s book, Dash.
When I was a kid growing up in Connecticut, Thanksgiving was spent in Massachusetts either at my grandparent’s farm in Littleton or at my Aunt Loe’s house. I loved the excitement of traveling up to the farm, passing open fields where deer were grazing, and stopping at the Hebert candy mansion for some toffee and fudge. But most of all I couldn’t wait to see my cousins.
My mom comes from a family of seven children so I had a lot of cousins. While the turkey cooked, we played Risk or Hide ‘n’ Seek or rummaged in my grandpa’s barn that was filled with antiques, tools for anything needing fixing, and old cars. When it was time for dinner, the cousins all sat at the kids’ table while the grownups sat together at the big table. Then in Norman Rockwell fashion, Grandpa, standing at the head of the table, carved the turkey and the feast began.
There are many scenes in The Night Before Thanksgiving that were inspired by childhood memories.
That night we were nestled
all snug in our beds,
while visions of turkey legs
danced in our heads.
The turkey legs were coveted among our family, perhaps because there are only two. I always hoped that there’d be some dark meat left by the time the platter made its way to the kids’ table. Then I’d plop a big blob of mashed potatoes on my plate next to the turkey meat, press an indent in the top of the mound with my spoon, and fill it with gravy. After saying grace, I’d slice the side of the potato crater with my fork and gravy would spill down onto my turkey like lava.
All were assembled
except Uncle Norm,
who called us to say
he was stuck in a storm.
Every once in a while there’d be a snow storm either the night before or on Thanksgiving day that inhibited a family from attending, or made for a long drive to get there. Usually it was my cousins in Pennsylvania. But I can remember driving up in snowstorms and all of us being super anxious about making it.
The very next morning -
Thanksgiving – yippee!
We got up and watched
the parade on TV!
We kept the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade on in the background while the dinner was being prepared and oh! The pageantry! The floats! And Santa Claus!
When Mom wasn’t looking
we stuck olives on fingers,
said they were puppets
and grand opera singers.
What kid hasn’t stuck olives on their fingers? In the book the kids have green olives, but we had black. Mom always scolded us for doing it, but we thought it was hilarious.
We ate and we ate,
yet last but not least…
the very next day
was a leftovers feast!
Our family didn’t wait until the next day. The cousins went outside to play football while the uncles smoked cigars and watched football, and soon people were helping themselves to a turkey sandwich and another slice of pie.
I hope you make lasting wonderful memories of this holiday that you can pass down to your children.
Enjoy your Thanksgiving feast.