Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Run, Turkey, Run...

far away from most Thanksgiving books.

I was with Parker at the library this weekend to quickly pick something up while Rob, Josie, and Dema were waiting outside. We were in the children's section of our favorite library and I said under my breath while walking past the Thanksgiving book display (which happened to be across from the librarians' desk) "There are no good Thanksgiving books" (shaking head sadly). Well, two or our friendly librarians were not going to let me get away with that comment, even if it wasn't directed at them.

Librarian 1 (friend of Parker and Dema's...they love to chat even when we run into her outside of the library): What type of book are you looking for. (very cheery, let me help you tone)
Me: Well, we're vegan see and so most Thanksgiving books are, well, not for us.
Librarian 1: Oh, yeah, right. (muttering under her voice and typing on her computer)
She mentioned a couple books and since I was trying to be nice, I asked her to write them down and I thought we could still get out of there. Then she asks Librarian 2 about vegetarian themed Thanksgiving books.
Librarian 2: I'm vegetarian so I'm sure I can find something. (She had the cheerful tone now since it was all gone from Librarian 1's voice.)
A long time went by and both librarians were working hard for us so I had to take the books. I didn't even get into the political/historical reasons I don't like most Thanksgiving books...I'll save that for next year.

Here is what we walked out with:

Run, Turkey, Run by Diane Mayr
I've seen this one in book stores and I wasn't super impressed. The boys like the presumably vegetarian daughter who wants the turkey to get away, but being vegan they weren't happy with the cheese sandwiches the farmer's family ended up eating for Thanksgiving. I really think they could have done better with this one.

Thanks & Giving All Year Long by Marlo Thomas and friends
There are some vegan friendly stories in this one and some not. Overall, the kids really enjoyed it and it was fun for me to read what the celebs had to contribute. Point of View by Shel Silverstein is always a good one. I also liked What Nana Told Her by Deepak Chopra and others. There were some stories/poems I didn't like and although Rob and I laughed at the end of Teeny Meany by David Slavin, I can understand some parents not wanting to read this one to their kids. Overall, I'm glad we checked this book out. The royalties from this book are donated to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

The Ugly Pumpkin by Dave Horowitz
We've checked this book out before and the kids liked it. It is an ugly duckling story with vegetables. I don't understand why they had to use a skeleton on one page, I guess for Halloween, but some of the illustrations are a little scary and I had to explain things to Dema. I never know what Dema is going to be sensitive about and he didn't like the trees throwing apples at the "ugly pumpkin". I have issues with the illustration at the end where the squash is sitting down to eat and there is turkey on the table. This ending kind of ruins the story for me.

Giving Thanks A Native American Good Morning Message by Chief Jake Swamp
A book about giving thanks for everything around us which gives us life. At the end of the book the words are given in the Mohawk language. Parker reminded me when we returned home from the library that we already own this book. We also own the next book which is nice because I liked both of them.

Giving Thanks by Jonathan London
Similar to the book by Chief Jake Swamp. A father and son walk through the day giving thanks for everything around them. I like books about giving thanks which aren't necessarily about Thanksgiving the holiday.

Of course, we've had our old standby for years...

Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving by Dav Pilkey
This is my favorite vegan-friendly Thanksgiving picture book. Obviouisly, there aren't a lot to choose from though. We've had this book since Parker was very little and it is still a favorite. I like the message and the illustrations. I've given this book many times as a gift. Although Parker still enjoys any book, even picture books, I need to spend time looking for Thanksgiving books which are aimed at an older audience.

We are striving to be more mindful of what we are thankful for throughout the year. I am extremely thankful for my family.


P Girouard said...

Why on earth would you ever expect a book about Thanksgiving to support a vegan lifestyle? That's like reading a book about ocean life and complaining that there weren't any camels. your choice to pursue a vegan lifestyle is just fine, but to expect the rest of the world to cater to it is silly and unrealistic.

VeganLinda said...

Because I'm a selfish, unrealistic vegan b*@%# who wants to take over the world one children's book at a time. Yahhahahaha!

No seriously, watch my blog for a real answer to your question in a later post. (I know you are just tingling with excitement over what I might possibly have to say.)

Go Hoosiers, I lived in Portage, IN a lifetime ago.