One of my favorite things about being a librarian is that I get to read and check out amazing books and count it as work. WORK people. I have the best job ever. This week I’m heading over to Eastern Washington to the Washington Library Association conference where I get to talk about some of my favorite new books with other amazing librarians. I’m pretty excited, I’m also crossing my fingers that the sun will be out on the other side of the mountains. Before I leave I wanted to put on my librarian hat for a minute to tell you about my new favorite book. Because, well, it’s all about locally produced food, has amazing pictures and it feels like a good thing to do on a April Wednesday morning.
If you aren’t familiar with local Olympia artist Nikki McClure, you should go here, here, and here to check out some of her amazing paper cuts. An Evergreen graduate, McClure uses an X-acto knife to create amazingly intricate paper cuts. In 2009 McClure teamed up with Newberry Medal-winning author Cynthia Rylant to create the picture book All in a Day. In 2010 she released Mama is it Summer Yet? a sweet story inspired by her son. This year she has outdone herself, once again, with To Market, To Market.
To Market, To Market is my favorite so far. (I’m sensing a yearly tend here, which I intend to say on top of!) It follows a boy and his mother as they head to the Farmers Market to do the shopping for dinner. As they check things off their list McClure alternates between story and fact showing how each item is made or grown and who brings it to the market. How the kale is grown and where it is harvested, how the salmon is smoked by Steve in his old, salvaged smoker. Featuring the Olympia Farmers Market, and the farmers and producers of the market, this book is especially lovely for local Olympians who frequent the market and know the folks from Rising River Farms and Blue Heron Bakery, and others.
Knowing the process by which our food reaches our table is so important and Nikki McClure does such a lovely job in showing that with this book, and thanking the farmers, producers, and crafters for their hard work and passion. When we sit down to eat, so often, we forget the many hands and hearts that brought the food and people together. I strongly encourage you to get your hands on Nikki McClure’s new book. While you are at it, share a meal with some amazing people and together, thank all the hands and hearts that brought you together.
If you happen to live in Olympia, the Farmers Market opens tomorrow! 10 am – 3 pm, Thursday – Sunday. I’ll be stopping by on Saturday after I get back over the mountains. Yea Spring!!!