Here is more from my interview with Rae:
SK: What has been the most rewarding part of creating these books?
Rae: There are so many new and interesting people I have met as a result of making these books. Becoming exposed to the huge craft and home based communities through the blog world has been nothing but fun and inspiring.
SK: How does living in Manhattan inspire creative living for your family? What limitations does city life pose for the creative family?
Rae: We are always able to walk or scoot everywhere and see and do so many things. Just the other day we were walking home from a museum and passed by a small church on a side street. We noticed these amazing carvings on the exterior and stopped to look at them and take photos (I still have to download them for my blog). Living in the city offers art experiences like that all the time.
On the other hand, I am an outdoor person by nature, so the quiet of the country is something that I miss a lot. Central Park has an oasis of land where we can go for walks or bike rides anytime, and the Hudson River is also a magnificent body of water that helps bring nature into the everyday here. There are also great farmers markets that offer local produce and flea markets for some great vintage thrifting.
Lately I’ve been getting the urge for a small farm lifestyle thanks to all those bloggers who post about their lives in the country. They are pulling on my heartstrings! But I think I will still probably call Manhattan home for the time being.
Thank you again, Rae, for taking time to share more about yourself and your books with the SK community!
My daughters and I have thoroughly enjoyed picking out timely and seasonal projects from the Crafting Fun book, but I have to confess that I have a particular affinity for Rae’s Cooking Fun book. Not only does she include recipes for dozens and dozens of classic American recipes for beverages, sandwiches, simple suppers, yummy desserts, and more, but she also devotes the first several pages of the book to carefully explaining all manner of cooking terms and equipment.
I think I have such fondness for this part of the book because it reminds me of my grandmother mentoring me in her kitchen. Rae writes in a way that is simple and easy-to-understand, but not at all patronizing or dumbed-down. She shares “Kitchen Basics” for the beginning cook, including reminders such as
“Don’t hurry through the recipe. Take your time, and stay organized as you work. It’s more fun this way and cuts down on what I call “kitchen distress” (eggs rolling off the counter and flour spilling on the floor).”
Wise words for the cook, whether the cook is four or thirty-four!
The opening pages of Cooking Fun contain everything the beginning or intermediate cook needs to know – measuring equivalency charts, cooking terms, measurement instructions, even how to “reduce, reuse, and recycle” in the kitchen. Throughout the book, Rae’s vintage-inspired illustrations guide and inspire both the novice and the master in the kitchen.
The recipes are – in a word – delightful. Charming titles (such as Can’t Sleep Hot Milk and Honey, Pigs in the Poke, Sunny Day Cheese Biscuits, and Rainy Day Rice Pudding) invite the preparation of beverages, snacks, and meals that rely on nutritious whole foods. In fact, you probably already have most of the ingredients stocked in your kitchen! Favorites from the book for our family include Spicy Sweet Potato Wedges, Easy Cheesy Broccoli Soup, Avocado Toast, and Everday Cupcakes.
Two other big hits in our home were the Spaghetti and Turkey Meatballs:
and the Chocolate Sauce, which was particularly fun for my four-year old and makes for chocolate milk that is remarkably delicious:
Check out CookingFunForKids.Com and click on “Recipes to Try” for more examples of recipes included in this book.
These books come with my highest recommendation. They would make a great gift or a wonderful addition to your own home’s library. I’m excited to offer you the chance to win a copy of each of these books!
To enter this giveaway, simply share one favorite crafting or cooking experience from either you own childhood or one that you have enjoyed creating with your own children. Giveaway will run from October 8th until October 14th at 8 AM CST. Winner will be notified by email. Giveaway open to residents of US addresses only (with many apologies to international readers!)
(And how about one more chance to win this pair of books? Jamie of Steady Mom is also running a giveaway of Cooking Fun and Crafting Fun that ends Friday, October 9th, at 8 PM EST. Click on over to Steady Mom for one more chance to win!)