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Archive for December, 2014

Where was Santa on December 13, 1961?

Friday, December 12th, 2014
From Wishing for a Snow Day by Peg Meier

From Wishing for a Snow Day by Peg Meier

What was Santa doing in Minneapolis fifty-three years ago? Why spreading cheer in the Sky Room at Dayton’s in Minneapolis, of course! Here he is at the store’s children’s breakfast on December 13, 1961.

This photograph, along with many other charming images of children in Minnesota, is featured in Wishing for a Snow Day : Growing Up in Minnesota by Peg Meier. Digging through letters, diaries, reminiscences, newspaper columns, and plenty of photographs, Meier unearthed a wealth of material left by Minnesotans who took the time to write, whether as children in the moment or as adults looking back.

Also by Peg Meier: Bring Warm Clothes and Too Hot, Went to Lake.

Crafty Kids

Thursday, December 11th, 2014

9780873519199Do you have a crafty kid on your holiday gift list? Keep them busy with our new craft book for kids:

Making History: Have a Blast with 15 Crafts

The book features projects that celebrate Minnesota’s history and people. It includes crafts at four different skill levels, step-by-step instructions, free templates, and 180 color photos.

Imagine soldiers on the Civil War battlefield as you assemble a “housewife” sewing kit like those made by wives and mothers. Re-create the drama of a midwestern tornado when you build an automaton that actually spins, and celebrate the invention of water-skiing with a boat and skier that really glide.

Step-by-step instructions carefully guide you to make your own marionette, but it’s up to you to stage the puppet show. The playful miniature scene of a Day of the Dead nicho offers a way to honor a loved one. A woodland hike will provide the twigs and leaves to make a troll. A walking stick in the tradition of folk artist Maurice Carlton inspires you to create art out of what you can find.

These projects and more generate hours of fun, not to mention useful pieces you’ll want to share with your family and friends.

north-woods-troll-from-making-history-have-a-blast-with-15-crafts twister-tornado-from-making-history-have-a-blast-with-15-crafts paul-bunyan-action-toy-from-making-history-have-a-blast-with-15-crafts minnesota-trapper-hat-construction-from-making-history-have-a-blast-with-15-crafts minnesota-trapper-hat-from-making-history-have-a-blast-with-15-craftsmetal-foil-repousse-pendant-from-making-history-have-a-blast-with-15-crafts

Calling all rock hunters!

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

9780873519502 Rhoda’s Rock Hunt by Molly Beth Griffin with illustrations by Jennifer A. Bell explores a child’s first experience of camping in the the north woods and hiking with her aunt and uncle. Rhoda wants to bring home every beautiful rock she finds. But soon, her pack gets too heavy. Rhoda has to decide what to keep and what to leave behind, if she ever wants to see her soft bed again.

The book recently made the Pioneer Press’s list of best picture books by Minnesota writers! Here is what others have to say about Rhoda and her dilemma:

“Young nature lovers and hikers will celebrate Rhoda’s creative solution.”
Kirkus

“The resolution that she arrives at independently (building cairns) speaks to the importance of memories over materials, a message Griffin delivers with a light touch.” Publishers Weekly

“There are surprisingly few picture books in which a girl goes hiking, and this is a particularly nice one. The story is not only told with a winning combination of empathy and humor, it also acknowledges that backpacking involves effort as well as enjoyment. The expressive illustrations clearly depict Rhoda’s shifts from energetic and cheerful to tired and crabby to unburdened and happy again. Suitable for reading aloud, this picture book depicts a resourceful child who creates a problem but solves it on her own. ” Booklist

“Young children will love the woods and water illustrations, the fast-paced text and Rhoda herself, with whom all of us lake-loving rock pickers can identify.” Lake Superior Magazine

Molly and Jennifer will be signing copies of the book this Saturday, December 6, from 1:00 to 2:30 pm at the Minnesota History Center Museum Stores. (MNHS members receive a double discount in the stores this Thursday-Sunday!)

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