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Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Words Take Wing

I am the oldest of three children. Growing up, my Mom was determined that all of us mature into "well-balanced" individuals.

This was a difficult task for my parents, especially during the 1980's. There were plenty of birthdays that I begged and pleaded for...

...anything remotely Barbie related. (I would have even settled for the Great Shape girls.) Nope. As a testament to my mother's commitment to gender neutrality, she instead chose:


Christmas, circa 1984? What little girl wasn't hoping to find a Cabbage Patch doll under the tree?

I know I certainly was. However, Santa decided to instead tote this down the chimney...

A soft sculpture doll, which came with "adoption papers."

Through it all, my Mom remained steadfast. Each birthday and Christmas brought not only gifts that none of my friends were jealous of, but also books, many, many books.

Today, my Mom works as a lecturer for the UC Davis School of Education. She has managed to turn her lifetime commitment to children's books and reading into an annual event: Words Take Wing: Honoring Diversity in Children's Literacy.

The Words Take Wing series invites notable children's authors and illustrators to share a glimpse into their art of crafting words and images. This year, the series will feature Francisco Alarcón, a Chicano poet, children’s author, and professor at UC Davis, and Maya Christina Gonzalez, a children’s book illustrator, who has collaborated frequently with Alarcón.

I have attended the lecture at the UC Davis Modavi Center for the past several years. The event is geared towards kids and allows both adults and children to interact with the author during the book signing, which takes place after the talk in the lobby of the Mondavi Center.

It is a great way to introduce your kids to the authors and illustrators behind the books that you read together each day.

-Francesca

Event Details:
Date:
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Time: 10:30 am and 7:00 pm
General admission: $10.00; students and children: $7.00

Tickets are available through the Mondavi Center. For information on tickets, visit the Web at mondaviarts.org or phone (866) 754-ARTS.

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40 comments:

Misty said...

At least you got the love of reading!! I was always happy to get books as a kid. And my kids love them now.

Thanks again for the blog love. I still haven't had a chance to post about it on my blog, but it WILL happen.

Erin said...

We love books at our house too. It sounds like you had an enriching life growing up!

blueviolet said...

A love of reading is one of the things I've been most happy to see passed down to my own children. :)

Brooke said...

We love to read, too! The cabbage patch doll brings back memories. I'm sorry you got a "unique" one when you didn't want it! Your mom sounds fun.

Jill (Sneaky Momma) said...

We got hoardes of Cabbage Patch dolls and dollhouses, but also our fair share of dumptrucks and matchbox cars. I love the scripture doll with the adoption papers. :)

peewee said...

HAHAH! Oh...those were funny! I wish I lived there....that's exactly the kind of thing I'd love to go to!

Jillene said...

I LOVE to read!! LOVE LOVE it!! I buy my kids a lot of books too--I'm kind of obsessed!!

Lara said...

I didn't get a real CPK that year, either, but I still have the fake one I got, and I loved her so much.

Books are the best gift. I always give my kids books.

Lori said...

Your mother is a woman after my own heart! God bless her.

Hey, F, if it makes you feel any better, you can buy a Cabbage Patch doll for $14.95 at WalMart. Can you believe that? In 1984, I think they cost $5000, or, you know, something like that.

♥georgie♥ said...

I agree give the gift of books-because it is so much more than a book...so cool

seriously? said...

A gift that keeps on giving. Working with the young children on today in the education field, it is sad how many, many children either do not like to read or don't even have a library card. Good for you for passing that on and fostering it to the future generation.

rachel said...

I always feel so sad when someone says they don't like to read. Your mom sounds like an incredible person. I didn't get a real cabbage patch that year either, but my mom had one handmade and it's the only one I ever needed :)

Kimmy said...

What a great event! My daughter & I love to read!! My hubby loves to read the newspaper :o)

Deb said...

I'm another one that didn't get all of the "fun" toys, but I got much, much more. I think teaching your children to love reading is one of the most important things you can ever do. Congratulations to you and your mother, what a wonderful legacy!

Deb

P.S. Check out my attempt to return your blog love on my blog today.

Debbie said...

I wish I lived close enough to attend. Sounds like your mom did a great job raising you!

Kristina P. said...

I used to collect Cabbage Patch dolls, and even went to the Cabbage Patch in California!

Domestically Disabled Girl said...

I love to read, however, I have to admit, I also had cabbage patch dolls and barbies. Your mom sounds awesome!

TrueLoveIsaMama said...

Sounds awesome, we will be there!

TrueLoveIsaMama said...

You know, I actually don't mind the bratz dolls (call me crazy!) but I do mind the bratz babyz! But judging from my comments apparently everyone does hate all things bratz! How do they stay in business I wonder...

Beth (A Mom's Life) said...

Your friends probably couldn't wait to see what sort of "interesting" gifts you had received from you mom.

But the love of books and reading has to be the best gift of all!

Blogger Dad said...

Francesca - Thanks for stopping by BloggerDad. I left another comment in response to yours. :)

The first part of this post is hilarious. Where did your mom FIND that horrible doll?

Sounds like she got something right, though. Giving the gift of reading is a wonderful thing. And I would say that even if I weren't a writer.

My son LOVES LOVES LOVES books, and he's not even two yet.

Great to meet you, I look forward to coming back here.

Sabrina said...

You would've died and gone to heaven if you were in my family.
Kelly and I refer to the day we got cabbage patch kids for christmas as the
CABBAGE PATCH EXTRAVAGANZA CHRISTMAS!!!!

I guess everything turned out okay though because I work in a Library now. :) I love me some books!

The Blonde Duck said...

Crap! I forgot the wedding story. I'll do it tommorow, I swear.

At least you still smiled! :)

Counselormama said...

That is great that you had a mom like that, in spite of the gifts. It may be a generational thing, as I often got "knock off" things as well. BUT, in my stocking, I actually got a can of "Fix-A-Flat" once. That's right. For my car. I drew the line at that point and said to my mom, "Surely, this gift was meant for someone else?" The next year I think I got batteries, shampoo, Tums, toothpaste. Apparently my stocking if meant for Sundries.

KGW said...

Oh I love it! I really enjoy when children can be exposed to diverse literature at a young age. It is so important to develop a world view at a young age.

Mina said...

My kids always get lots of books. We give friends books, too. It's never the most exciting thing to open at the party, but I really think that over time they endure well. And parents are always appreciative.

Barbaloot said...

See-and my whole life I was inundated with more Barbies than I knew what to do with. Too bad we weren't neighbors---I would've shared with you.

pam said...

Sounds like this is going to be a great event.

Reading to children when young, and then children reading to you is so important.

Your mom sounds like a great mom!

Jo said...

I love to read, I love to read to my kids and I am so proud that all of my children love to read. We have fond memories of meeting Patricia Palaco (sp?) from Just Plain Fancy and getting a book signed. I am in awe of authors, and that your mom does that, is amazing to me! She has met so many great authors. I am swooning. I spent a few years in Winters as a kid, I bet you know where that is!

Yaya said...

Aw, what a great Mom you have!

Heidi Ashworth said...

So, what do you think? Did your mom do good or are you still bitter? Not that it matters, it's too late for my kids, but I might have some grandkids one day . . .

Nana said...

At least you CAN read. Sounds like a great way to spend an afternoon with your children. The doll you got though, she's gotta go. That thing is scary.

Jenni said...

Francesca - thanks so much for stopping by my blog and saying hello. I appreciae your words. And thanks for also introducing me to your blog as well! I look forward to reading through it. :)

Mama Zen said...

That sounds like an amazing event!

MoziEsmé said...

Sounds like a great mom! I remember how I used to beg for store-bought bread as a kid - rather than the homemade stuff my mom packed in my lunch. I'm glad she didn't listen to my complaints...

forever folding laundry said...

I love how the doll says "Stuffing Included"!

Your mom's evil plan did work, though, because you're one well-read gal. And I know you have some deep-down affection for dump trucks too, right?

Laura said...

Oh oh oh. I miss my Dorothy Jane Cabbage Patch Doll. My first dolly that I could have sworn was real and spoke to me. Should we have been concerned about me?

The best was when my younger brother was caught bathing in the bath tub with Dorothy. Ahhh good times.

Omah's Helping Hands said...

Wow, wished we lived near there. What an awesome mom. It's great what she is doing for the community.
Boy do I have some catching up to do. And it is funny how we can wish for something and get what we least expect. ha ha
I have an award at my blog for you. I so enjoy reading the three of yours blog.

Melissa said...

My Grandmother must have believed in the same philosophy for gift giving. Trucks were what we got for most of our childhood birthdays and Christmas's.

Sounds like we need to move closer to UC Davis! That sounds like a great event!

Susan said...

Way to go, to your mom! Although I feel your pain about not often getting the "cool gift". Loved the flashback I got with the Cabbage Patch kids!!