December
13

Story Time Celebration Tickets NOW AVAILABLE!

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YOU are invited to the 8th Annual Story Time Celebration!

 

When: Sunday, February 26th, 2017, 11am-2pm

Where: HD Buttercup – Culver City

3225 Helms Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90034

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Join us for a day of family fun featuring celebrity readers, story-inspired arts & crafts, books to donate, a scavenger hunt, the chance to meet your favorite literary characters, a giant bookstore, yummy snacks and, naturally…milk & cookies! Come and celebrate your love of reading and philanthropy with your friends and family.

We hope you can join us!

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SPECIAL PRESALE PRICING AVAILABLE ONLY UNTIL JANUARY 1st!*

$75 per ticket (children 24 months and younger are free)

*(after January 1st tickets will be $100 each excluding children under 24 months)

To purchase your tickets or a sponsorship package, please visit: conta.cc/2dj2KrK.

 

Check out previous Story Time Celebrations by watching our videos HERE!

Any questions? Please email us at info@milkandbookies.org or contact our Event Coordinator, Traci Hoffberg, at Traci@tracihoffbergevents.com.

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by Alesha Dailey
October
10

The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party Recap!

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We had SO MUCH FUN at the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party on September 24th! A HUGE thank you to The Grove and everyone who came out for an afternoon of crafts, snacks, balloons, face painting, and – of course – story time!

Many thanks to Teak & Lace for the beautiful decorations, Magic Characters for bringing The Mad Hatter and Alice to life, Clementine for the delicious goodies, Pottery Barn Kids for supplying the tea party sets, Elizabeth and James for generously donating a portion of profits to the event, and the lovely Paget Brewster (Criminal Minds) for coming out to read stories to us!


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“I could tell you my adventures — beginning from this morning, but it’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”

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“Yes, that’s it! It’s always tea time.”

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“And what is the use of a book without pictures or conversation?”

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“Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”

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“If I had a world of my own, everything would be nonsense; nothing would be what it is, because everything would be what it wasn’t.”

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“I can’t explain myself, I’m afraid, Sir, because I’m not myself you see.”

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“You’re entirely bonkers. But I will tell you a secret: all the best people are.”

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“Everything’s got a moral, if only you can find it.”

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“Alice had begun to think that very few things indeed were really impossible.”

See you all next time in Wonderland!

Interested in partnering with Milk + Bookies for charity events at your store, retail complex, community event, etc.?? Email us at info@milkandbookies.org to find out more info!


by Kristen Wood
July
26

Book-Raiser Spotlight: Juliana’s 3rd Birthday!

This week’s Book-Raiser Spotlight goes to
Juliana!

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For her 3rd birthday, Juliana’s mom, Sandra, knew that she wanted to teach her daughter to appreciate her birthday, not by receiving, but by giving.

After discussing that not all children have books of their own, Juliana decided to host her own Milk + Bookies book-raiser so that she could collect and donate books to children in her local community that didn’t have access to quality reading material. When they went to drop the books off, Juliana really began to understand the true meaning of giving back to others!

Juliana ended up raising 100 books for the Boys & Girls Club of Conejo!

CHILDREN WHO PARTICIPATED: 25

TOTAL BOOKS RAISED: 100

DONATED TO: Boys & Girls Club of Conejo

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“What I learned as a parent, is that it’s never too early to start planting the seed of learning how to give.”

– Sandra, Juliana’s mom

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Great work Sandra and Juliana! This family truly teaches us that it’s never too early to learn the joys of giving. We love hearing about the success of #FUTUREPHILANTHROPISTS like Juliana and can’t wait to see where their love of reading and giving takes them!

To find out how you can Host Your Own Book-Raiser and start making a difference to children in your community, click here.

And don’t forget to purchase your Bookies Box full of all the materials you will need to make your Book-Raiser a success!

READ! GIVE! GROW!


by Kristen Wood
May
31

We Love Warner Bros.!

WBTV_Logo_ColorWith summer quickly approaching, all of us here at Milk + Bookies are sad to see some of our favorite television shows wrapping up for the season. A great number of these shows are brought to us by one of our very own sponsors, Warner Bros. Television! Warner Bros. Television produces and distributes programming to major networks such as ABC, NBC, CBS, TNT, FOX, and The CW, as well as HBO, Netflix, and Hulu.

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An all-around favorite of just about everyone in the office is The CW’s The Vampire Diaries, a young-adult fantasy drama about a girl who has to choose between two vampire brothers and the chaos that ensues. Season 7 of The Vampire Diaries just ended and we CAN NOT wait for new episodes! If you’re not caught up, don’t worry, you can stream the latest five episodes on cwtv.com or binge watch up to season 6 on Netflix!

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A new Warner Bros. Television hit is Netflix’s Fuller House, a reboot of the popular 90s sitcom Full House. DJ is all grown up with kids of her own and has to readjust to life after the loss of her husband with the help of her friends and family. People of all ages love the show, from young families to millennials who grew up watching the original! If you haven’t seen it yet, check it out exclusively on Netflix now!

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All of us at Milk + Bookies would like to offer a special thanks to our partners at Warner Bros. Television for their wonderful support of our 7th Annual Story Time Celebration that took place on April 17th in DTLA!

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Check out a recap of our 7th Annual Story Time Celebration here!

 

READ! GIVE! GROW!


by Shannon Dailey
May
13

Hooray For Bru’s Wiffle!

brusWiffleAndMore_tShirtBreakfast is the most important meal of the day, and no one does it quite like the folks at Bru’s Wiffle. Our love for their amazing waffle creations runs deep! With so many incredible options, like the Churro Waffle topped with cinnamon ice cream, how can anyone order just one (we certainly can’t!)?

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Chocolate Waffle Party is the breakfast of champions! via bruswiffle.com

If you’re feeling especially adventurous, take a bite out of the Chocolate Waffle Party, a chocolate Belgian waffle stuffed with fresh butter cream and topped with Oreos and chocolate sauce! In addition to they’re famous waffles, Bru’s Wiffle offers a hearty selection of lunch and dinner options guaranteed to keep your hungry tummies satisfied all day!

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All of us at Milk + Bookies would like to offer a special thanks to Bru’s Wiffle for supplying an amazing breakfast for our volunteer staff at the 7th Annual Story Time Celebration!

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These volunteers love the buffet of fresh waffles, fried chicken, and mac n’ cheese!

We couldn’t have done it without all of our outstanding volunteers who came out to help, and they couldn’t have done it without Bru’s Wiffle!

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Harry Potter approved! If only house elves could make waffles like the folks at Bru’s Wiffle!

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Willy Wonka LOVES Bru’s Wiffle!

 

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Check out a recap of our 7th Annual Story Time Celebration here!

 

READ! GIVE! GROW!


by Shannon Dailey
April
26

Recap: 7th Annual Story Time Celebration!

Another Story Time Celebration has come and gone, and, as always, we are so THANKFUL to everyone (celebrities, sponsors, donors, volunteers, and guests!) that came out to support our cause and make this day a HUGE success!

We owe it ALL TO YOU!

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“This event is a SUPER BLOW OUT version of the “host your own” book-raiser. We provide books on-site from which children choose, inscribe and donate to a pre-chosen recipient. We have arts & crafts all made from recycled book pages, costumed characters from your favorite classic tales plus a celebrity story time and yummy treats!”

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It was great to see everyone gathered together at the
California Market Center and spend a few magical hours with us. We were able to donate over 3,000 books to support our summer reading program at Boys & Girls Clubs throughout Los Angeles with the help of our friends at Discover Books!

We would like to take this opportunity to recap some of our favorite moments from our special event!

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This year we had amazing celebrity readers John Cho, B.J Novak, Lena Headey, Tamara MowryDave Koechner, Miranda Cosgrove, Jay Mohr, and Henry Winkler! The Story Time lounge was full of your favorite celebs like Julie Bowen, Selma Blair, Dan BucatinskyCharlie Day & Mary Elizabeth Ellis, Justin Baldoni, Busy Philipps and MANY more! Thank you to everyone that came out to support us!

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The wonderful Magic Characters brought fairytales to life! The kids were so happy to be around their favorite storybook characters and made sure to capture the magical moment. We want to thank our friends Tinkerbell, Robin Hood, Captain Hook, Waldo, Alice in Wonderland, Harry Potter, Willy Wonka, Max from ‘Where the Wild Things Are,’ and Little Red Riding Hood!

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Our volunteers enjoyed a hot brunch provided by Bru’s Wiffle and our guests enjoyed delicious treats from our food sponsors Krispy Kreme, CookieGoodLA, CheeboStuft Cookie, Bakeology, RalphsCalifornia Pizza Kitchen, McConnell’s Ice Cream, 1915 Juices- Bolthouse Farms, The Albright/Cast Iron Catering, and Organic Kids LA!

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Thank you to TOMS, Honest Company, Oven Mitt Cookies, Band-Aid Brand, Yoobi, Rise Up Coffee, Pair of Thieves, Pipsticks, Clare V., and Circle of Friends for filling our VIP guest room with wonderful goodies!

We also had great raffle prizes for our guests to enter to win from our wonderful sponsors, including: 5 Class Sessions with Soul Cycle, Kid’s Pizza Party with California Pizza Kitchen, A Pamper Yourself Package from Dry Bar, The Ultimate Gamer’s Weekend with Riot Games, a Weekend Retreat at Lake Arrowhead donated by MomStamp, a Deluxe Toy Basket from Quinnie & B, Two Weeks of Camp at Steve & Kate’s Camp, a Luxury One Night Stay at The Langham Huntington Pasadena, a Family Portrait Session from Halper Fine Arts, and an Ultimate Story Time Gift Basket with TONS of goodies!

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One of the highlights from our Story Time Celebration, and the most talked about, are our unique decorations found all around the event! A house, flowers, animals, and floating clouds with our recipient organizations names all made out of recycled book pages! We owe these beauties to our AMAZING design team at Dutch + Finn!

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Our crafts corner was a HUGE hit with all the kids! From decorating their own fairy tale wings to making their own Milk + Bookies bookmark, they let their creative minds run wild! A HUGE thank you to our longtime Creative Director and crafting genius, Courtney Collins from little junebugs!

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Story Time would not have been possible without all of our AMAZING sponsors and donors!

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Thank you to everyone for your continued support and for helping us make this event the BEST yet!

We hope to see you all again next year!!

 

READ! GIVE! GROW!


by Wendy Paniagua
April
14

Go Krazy for Krispy Kreme Donuts!

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Follow @krispykreme to see more donuts and cuties like this guy!

Here at Milk + Bookies, we go nuts for donuts! Especially Krispy Kreme Donuts! Since 1937, Krispy Kreme has been serving up their piping hot, fresh donuts. With over 1,000 stores worldwide, it’s easy to find these delicious treats.

There are so many new delicious flavors just in time for spring. The limited edition Cookie Jar inspired donuts are sure to put a spring in your step!

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One place you’ll find them for sure is at our 7th Annual Story Time Celebration!! We are so excited to have yummy donuts to enjoy as we read, craft, and give at our event April 17th!

As a long time sponsor and supporter of Milk +Bookies, we can always count on Krispy Kreme to satisfy our sweet tooth!

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To purchase tickets for our Story Time Event, click here! We hope you join us for donuts and stories and so much more!!


by Abigail Wordin
March
25

Make Your Easter Holiday Delicious with Ralphs!

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Here at Milk + Bookies, we love the low prices and specials that Ralphs has to offer! They provide digital coupons, community updates and even simple recipes to try at home!

With Easter right around the corner, we are currently obsessing over their Easter Recipes E-Book! To help make your holiday a delicious success, here are a few of our favorite recipes, we can’t wait to try:

Spinach Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette

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Bacon & Potato Pancakes with Fresh Fennel & Citrus Slaw

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Smoked Salmon Benedict with Pickled Onions

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Prime Rib with Roasted Garlic & Horseradish Cream Sauce

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Naked Carrot Cake

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For you DIY-ers out there:

Flowers in a Crate

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Exterior photo of Ralphs Trabuco & Alicia store in Mission Viejo.

Exterior photo of Ralphs Trabuco & Alicia store in Mission Viejo.

Ralphs Grocery Company was founded in 1873 and currently operates 204 supermarkets from its headquarters in Los Angeles. Last year, Ralphs contributed more than $6 million to support education, hunger relief, women’s health and local nonprofit organizations in the communities served by the company’s stores.

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Did someone say “free samples?”

 

 

Ralphs always provides its customers with fresh produce and great deals! They are committed to helping communities grow and prosper.

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milk bookiesWe would like to give a BIG shout out to Ralphs for being such a HUGE supporter of Milk + Bookies and for providing various items for our Story Time Celebrations over the years! We are thrilled to have Ralphs back again to sponsor this year’s 7th Annual Story Time Celebration!

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For more information on our 7th Annual Story Time Celebration and to purchase your tickets, click here! We hope to see you there!

 

READ! GIVE! GROW!

 


by Wendy Paniagua
September
16

Author Champion of the Week: Michelle Staubach Grimes

Our Author Champion of the Week is Michelle Staubach Grimes! This author of newly penned children’s book Where is Pidge? is a true lifelong learner! After receiving her B.A. in History and then her J.D. in 1994, Michelle found herself lured back to learning once her children grew older. She enrolled in an SMU Creating Writing program and drafted a women’s fiction novel; on the side, she began “Where is Pidge?”.  She currently lives in Dallas, where she grew up, with her husband and 3 children: Jeffrey, Gracie, and Emma.  We recently had the delightful opportunity to interview Michelle, who offered us insight into creative writing, military families, and affirmatory parenting.

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What drew you to study creative writing?

I was drawn into the world of creative writing because I love to journal. Years ago I drafted a non-fiction short book and wanted to move forward with it so I enrolled in the SMU Creative Writing Continuing Education Program.  I fell in love with creative writing and continued taking classes while drafting a fiction novel. On the side, I began writing the story of Pidge, which I started at my kitchen table one evening and couldn’t stop.

Many people have asked since the publication of my book– “Weren’t you writing a novel? How did you end up writing a children’s book?” I tell them, that if I hadn’t studied creative writing for two years, I wouldn’t have been able to write the children’s book. While the story of Pidge is 736 words vs. my 90,000 word novel, both are stories with a beginning, middle, and end. A person must go through something and change for a story to be complete. As Mark Twain said, “A tale shall accomplish something and arrive somewhere.

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How long did it take for you to see “Where is Pidge?” through to completion?

From the day I put pen to paper, to the day I held the book in my hand, was approximately eighteen months. However, I prefer to say about three years as I began learning the elements of story writing in the SMU Program in August of 2011. I launched my book in March of 2014.

Michelle with her illustrator Bill DeOre

What’s been your favorite part of writing this children’s book?

My favorite parts were finding my voice and core story, and sharing the story of Pidge with children and adults. While it’s a work of fiction, there are many truths in the story. In the beginning of the book, Pidge thinks her family doesn’t care about her. As the story develops, she experiences numerous emotions from mad to angry to scared to happy.

When I talk to children about Pidge’s journey, I tell them that I, too, as an adult have these same feelings. I’m sad and lonely at times. And my all time favorite is when a child’s face lights up and they make the connection between their feelings and Pidge’s feelings. One girl raised her hand one day and said “while I’m not a middle child, I feel like Pidge because my mom is getting remarried and I’m going to have new siblings and I feel left out.” I hope Pidge begins a conversation among kids and adults about emotions, and how we can learn to cope and work through the tough times and enjoy the good times.

 

How did you get the idea to start #pidgepromise? How has the reception been?

As I prepared for the launch of my book, it was very important that I promote literacy.  I knew I would read my book and talk about the process of writing. However, I wanted my appearances to be more than just about Pidge; we must ensure that children are exposed to books from the minute they are born, and educate adults on the importance of reading aloud to children. When I visit schools, I try to make reading and storytelling fun and encourage children to read more books than they’re assigned in class by making a “Pidge Promise” (#pidgepromise).

I ask the children and even adults to pledge to read more: read more themselves, read to a young child, or someone who can’t read. The reception has been fabulous. Sometimes schools will have their students make a #pidgepromise before I visit the school. When I returned to my grade school Prairie Creek Elementary, where I learned to read, they had the walls covered in #pidgepromise’s.

We heard you have also been popular amongst military families on bases – what commonalities do you think can be drawn between Pidge’s experience and those of children in military families?

First, I must say I’m very proud to have been born on the military base in Pensacola, Florida during my father’s service. However, my father’s military service ended when I was a little over one-year old. While I didn’t grow up as a military child, I can only imagine how tough at times it can be for military children as they move often, which requires them to adjust to new schools and cities more than many of us. In addition, they are physically separated from their mom or dad for extended periods of time. I know they must feel unloved, unimportant at times, or just “lost” like Pidge feels in her own home.

I visited Barksdale Air force Base recently and I’m looking forward to spending September 12th at Fort Hood. I’ll be travelling to military bases in San Antonio and California this fall to share the story of Pidge with military families. These families make the ultimate sacrifice for our country and I want to give back to them. If I can put a smile on the children’s faces, especially a child who is missing his or her parent, I can’t think of a better way to spend my day.

We love that your book emphasizes the importance of affirming children in our lives-what do you think are ways that both parents or siblings can demonstrate gratitude towards children who may not feel valued?

Affirming children and validating their emotions is crucial to developing a child’s confidence and sense of being. As parents, we may not agree or understand their emotions, but to our child, it’s their “truth.” One of my kids may say – “So and so is so mean. She hates me. I don’t want to go to school.” As a parent, it’s easier for me to respond, “It’ll get better. Of course she doesn’t hate you and school is fun.” But I try to listen to their concerns, affirm their feelings, and help them work through the problem. Sometimes it is best not to say anything at all, but to assure them that I understand they are hurting. Kids must be able to express their emotions, and we as parents must listen; and just because we validate their emotions doesn’t mean we’re in total agreement with their position. I tell them their voice matters, they are loved, and that they are an important member of the family.

I grew up with four siblings so I know firsthand that siblings fight and don’t always treat each other with respect. But I also know it’s important to talk to children about how they treat their siblings. It’s hard to know when to intervene or let your children work it out themselves; when I hear screaming and slamming doors, I want to walk upstairs right away and punish all of them. Sometimes I let them work it out, but when they’ve crossed the line, I pull them aside individually and let them know how I believe they’ve really hurt their sibling’s feelings. I hope my children see the love I have for my siblings today, and how important they are to me.

My oldest is a boy (age 16) and then I have two girls (ages 14 and 12). I’ve told my son as the oldest and as a boy, his sisters will be heavily influenced by how he treats them and how my husband treats me. While I know his sisters drive him crazy at times, he must give them the respect he’d give any other girl or woman. And, that I believe he learned from how my husband treats me. A few years ago, my youngest daughter travelled alone with my husband. They had a great time, but she said to me after the trip – “mom, you know Gracie (her older sister) drives me crazy at times, but it’s just not fun without her.” 

 Can you share a favorite memory with Maverick?

Maverick gives unconditional love. He’s a big dog so he can’t crawl up in your lap. My favorite memory of Maverick is more than one memory. It’s the memories of every time I lie on the floor next to him. He takes his leg and paw, places them over my body and gives me a big bear hug. When I take him to school visits, the kids can’t get enough of him.

 

Thank you Michelle for not only sharing your story with us, but also teaching us how children and parents both can benefit from emotional awareness in “Where is Pidge?”

Get your copy of “Where is Pidge?” here and make a #pidgepromise today!

 READ! GIVE! GROW!


by Betty Fang