As warm rays of sunshine and perfect 75 degree weather come back to the norm here on the West Coast, one of the most iconic and popular spots for tourists and local families alike is the Santa Monica Pier.
We at Milk+Bookies love to partner with local businesses, and often find amazing community treasures in our own backyard. The Albright, located on the Santa Monica Pier boardwalk, has undeniably become one of our favorite local finds.
The Albright’s decor reflects the nautical theme of its name, and creates a cozy, modern, and family friendly atmosphere. The restaurant offers a variety of dishes ranging from classic fish and chips, to crabs and lobsters served right from their own saltwater tank! Milk+Bookies’ favorites include The Albright’s beer battered fish tacos and New England clam chowder. The menu also includes plenty of items perfect for kids. With fresh and delicious produce, an extensive selection of beer and wine, and picturesque scenery famous of the Santa Monica beach, this amazing restaurant is one that locals and visitors alike can enjoy all year long.
Here at Milk+Bookies, we do more than give books, we also read them too (just call us your self-proclaimed book worms)! And since Story Time Celebration is just around the corner (April 27), here’s a list of some important reasons why books should be loved by all!
1. It’s an adventure every time!
It’s always magical every time you open the pages of a book. Just read books like Journey by Aaron Becker, and you’ll understand why you’ll never feel bored when you read!
2. You learn something new about yourself.
The beauty of reading is that it’s a chance to not only explore a world you’ve never experienced before, but also to discover something about yourself. You’ll know what makes you laugh and cry, or makes your heart hammer on the edge of your seat.
3. They make great gifts!
Stumped on what to get for a birthday or Christmas present? Books are always the best solution! The Man in The Moon by William Joyce is an all-time classic gift book for people of all ages!
4. They’re great for small-talk.
You can literally talk for hours about your favorite books to someone you’ve barely met. Brownie points for being a reader and for making new friends!
5. You establish a personal connection with the characters.
If you’ve read a book long enough, you’ll start feeling like you know these characters. That’s how they come to life! Books like Boy + Bot by Ame Dyckman and the Library Lion by Michelle Knudsen are amazing books that make you feel as if the characters are practically your best friends.
6. You can revisit the story again and again.
With books, there’s no such thing as saying good-bye. Sure you may finish a book, but that doesn’t mean you can’t reread it. The magic will still be there when you open the book again! The books I find myself coming back to are Are You my Mother? by P.D. Eastman and anything by Judy Blume!
7. Builds vocabulary.
Studies show that reading books outside of school increases word knowledge! Get ready to impress your friends and family with your fancy vocabulary!
8. Relieves stress.
Feeling like you can use a pick-me-up? An energizer? Reading books are always useful since it helps you relax by lowering your heart rate and relieving tension in your muscles. Now that’s real magic!
9. Passes the time away.
One moment you’re picking up a book, ready to read it, and the next thing you know half the day is gone! Just make sure that you don’t have extra plans for the day, or else you’ll be completely absorbed with your book and don’t want to let go (because honestly, who wants to let a book go? That’s crazy talk)!
10. Helps escape reality.
Books are your little time transporters that will help you with whatever you’re going through. Sometimes we don’t want to stay in the real world and need something to take us somewhere else. Books, my friend, can help you with all of that and more!
As you can see, Milk+Bookies loves books! Inspired to stock up on new stories for your family? Check out our list of favorite books HERE!
The Story Time Celebration is our annual fundraiser held each spring in Los Angeles, California.
The 5th Annual Story Time celebration will take place Sunday, April 27th. This SUPER BLOW OUT version of the “host your own” book-raiser features dozens of fun activities for the entire family. At the event, families can enjoy arts & crafts made from recycled book pages, story time with costumed characters and our celebrity guests, and of course, plenty of delicious cookies!
The decor is all made from salvaged books and celebrates the magic of our favorite stories. A nine foot tall polar bear, flocks of birds, a life-size house – all just a sample of the amazing pieces made from recycled book pages on display at the Milk+Bookies Story Time Celebration.
Our FAVORITE part of the Story Time Celebration is of course the GIVING! At the event, we provide books on-site from which children choose, inscribe and donate to one of our local recipient groups. We love watching hundreds of young future philanthropists pick out their favorite storybooks and donate them to other kids right here in Los Angeles. By the end of the day, nearly 3,000 books will be donated to underserved families in the community!
At the Milk+Bookies Story Time Celebration, children are given the chance to spend the entire day giving back to their community while celebrating the fun and magic of story time. Tickets are first come, first served by invite only – please email us at email@example.com with your home address to receive an invitation.
Unable to join us for the big day? Follow us on Instagram to watch the magic unfold on April 27!
As Walt Disney once said, “You can design and create, and build the most wonderful place in the world. But it takes people to make the dream a reality.”
Milk+Bookies would like to recognize some of our sponsors and partners that have been such an enormous help in making our 5th annual Story Time Celebration become a reality on April 27!
Tiny Prints is well known for their eye-catching, custom-made invitations and announcements for any occasion -and we are so lucky to have had them create our Story Time invitations! Tiny Prints always pays particular attention to paper quality and uses a variety of printing techniques such as digital press, thermography, and even letterpress to produce beautiful, high-quality products. In addition, they have a specialized team of designers that provide a review service so that invitations are fully catered to one’s needs.
If you’re planning a birthday party, baby shower, graduation, or any sort of occasion, Tiny Prints has got you covered! It’s easy to order your own personalized invitations or announcements. All you do is select the quantity, trim option, and paper type. Once that’s finished, just type in the information you want on the card and Tiny Prints will do the rest for you! You can also order a sample to see how the cards will look before you make a decision. If you’re having trouble choosing a design out of all the beautiful options Tiny Prints has to offer, here’s some of our favorites!
If you’re looking for gifts, you can browse their gift shop where you can find an assortment of iPhone cases, mugs, personal stationary, mounted prints, and so much more! Tiny Prints also has their own blog where they post DIY projects, inspiration boards, contests and promotions.
We are so excited to be sending out these beautiful Story Time Celebration invitations from Tiny Prints! We are truly grateful to them for helping turn our dreams of celebrating books and giving into a reality!
How adorable are these amazing future philanthropists, Channing & Emory?
Read below for details about their Milk+Bookies Book-raiser benefitting the United Way!
Names: Channing & Emory
Ages: 2 & 2 months
Total books raised: 137
Donated to: United Way of Greater Greensboro – Raising a Reader Program
From: Greensboro, NC
“We started a tradition on our oldest son’s first birthday to have a party dedicated to giving back to kids in our area. I needed an idea that would simplify party planning.
The Milk + Bookies kit helped everything run smoothly from collection of books at the party to drop off. Kids loved inscribing/scribbling in the books, getting an “I Donated” sticker and enjoying milk and cookies!
Our boys are too young to understand the joys of giving, but we hope that by hosting the Milk + Bookies party and helping the United Way’s Raising a Reader program we are also Raising a Giver (or better yet, two).”
As we prepare for our 5th annual Story Time Celebration on April 27th (we’re so excited!), we want to take the time to recognize some of our amazing sponsors and partners that are so very essential in helping us put on this amazing event!
The Land of Nod specializes in children’s furniture, bedding, and accessories that combines both the playful innocence and creativity of childhood with the guarantee of quality and safety. One of the many things that sets The Land of Nod apart is that all of their products are handmade and crafted by real artisans from all over the world. From Africa to India to our own backyards in the US, The Land of Nod partners with artisans who have spent years of hard work and dedication in providing the best products for their customers.
One of our favorite bookcases from LandofNod.com!
In addition to these artisans, The Land of Nod also works with artists from all over the world, many found via blogs, Etsy, and Pinterest, in an effort to constantly innovate and find new sources of inspiration and creativity.
If that wasn’t enough, they also have a fun and informative blog on family life, crafts, recipes, and everything in-between! M+B is so excited to see what The Land of Nod comes up with next and the amazing products and decorations that they’ll be displaying at our Story Time Celebration!
Photo courtesy of Glamour magazine.
We are thrilled to announce that the incredibly talented Lena Dunham has joined the Milk+Bookies 2014 Honorary Committee!
The Girls star joins the ranks of Jack Black, Kate Bosworth, and many more esteemed champions of our work on behalf of children’s literacy. With support from these Honorary Committee advocates, we hope to take our 2014 programming to new and exciting heights by doubling the amount of book-raisers and books donated nationwide!
Dunham has spoken often about her favorite childhood stories and her love for the powerful messages behind them. Along with her dedication to literacy organizations like ours, this fondness for children’s books is also evident in her array of tattoos which include illustrations from Eloise, The Giving Tree, and Ferdinand the Bull. Lena’s talents as a writer are inspiring to many, and we are honored to have her as a supporter of our program.
Please join us in welcoming Lena to the Milk+Bookies Honorary Committee in the comments below.
We can’t wait for the year ahead!
Check out the rest of the Milk+Bookies Honorary Committee HERE!
This month, get ready to “March” into Literacy! And if you’re not ready, here are some reasons why you should be: According to DoSomething.org, 1 in 4 children in American grow up without learning how to read, and the ratio of children to books in low-income neighborhoods is 300 children to 1 book, while in middle-income neighborhoods there are 13 books to 1 child. Two-thirds of students who cannot read proficiently by the end of 4th grade will end up in jail or on welfare. Over 70 percent of America’s inmates cannot read above a 4th grade level.
These facts may be alarming; however, never fear! By Hosting your own book-raiser you can be part of the solution! Participating in the Milk+Bookies program is one huge step to marching into literacy! Here are some other tips to help increase literacy:
- Have lots of books in the house!
- National Education Association says, “The more types of reading materials there are in the home, the higher students are in reading proficiency, according to the Educational Testing Service.”
- Having lots of interesting books will also spark children’s interests and make them more prone to pick them up when they see them lying around at home.
- Go to the library!
- If you don’t have access to a lot of reading material at home, go to your local library! It’s a wonderful resource for not only books for your reading leisure, but also for computer access, educational games, events, and classes! All you’ll need is a library card and you’re good to go!
- Have someone tutor you!
- redOrbit says 72% of students improve their scores between one and two full letter grades after just 10 hours of private tutoring according to a study in 2011 from WyzAnt.com
- Most find it beneficial to have that one-to-one connection and support.
- There are plenty of people who are willing to help with reading and writing skills! Tutors are accessible in after-school programs or in libraries. They can even be an older brother or sister!
- Read, read, read!
- Mom and dad, read to your kids! “Twenty-six percent of children who were read to three or four times in the last week by a family member recognized all letters of the alphabet. This is compared to 14 percent of children who were read to less frequently,” according to the NEA.
- Reading Is Fundamental also says, “Reading aloud to children at an early age is the most effective way to help them attain critical skills they acquire as they grow and develop.”
- Also encourage children to read on their own in the summer! RIF says, “Children who do not read over the summer will lose more than two months of reading achievement.”
- Write, write, write!
- Writing is a great tool to increase literacy! It allows children to explore their imagination, and also encourages them to read more to spark that creativity.
For this special month, it’s important to know how low-literacy rates affect our nation and to learn how you can improve literacy today! Milk + Bookies encourages you to take initiative beyond hosting your book raiser and to spread the word about literacy!