Helping children develop their American and native cultural identities together.

Archive for November, 2009

Spending the Day with Milka Duno, Indy Racecar Driver

Posted by bububooks on November 23, 2009

For the weekend of November 13-15, Jacey and I headed down to Miami for the annual Miami Book Fair International.  We were excited to participate in such a popular annual event and to spread our mission of bilingualism to the wonderful South Floridians!

On Saturday and Sunday of that weekend, Milka Duno joined us to sign her book and take photos with fans.  We truly enjoyed spending those two days with her (an awesome and dedicated woman!)

Milka’s book, Go, Milka, Go!/¡Corre, Milka, Corre!, highlights her life and the importance of studying hard to succeed.  She spoke with children about the importance of education and her foundation, Milka Way. The program’s mission is to inspire children and young adults to “Aim for the Stars” and achieve academic excellence.

I personally felt inspired by how she brightened up the day and spoke words of encouragement for so many children, families and fans who got to meet and speak with her.  Indeed, one fan even drove two hours just to meet her and get his copy of her book autographed!

We were honored to have Milka join us because her passions are so closely aligned with ours and because she is such a great person.  We share our focus on education and literacy not bound by language.  We’ll be sure to let you know the next time Milka will visit our booth!

Milka’s first book is bilingual in Spanish and English and at the reading level for ages 8-12.  We brought back a limited number of autographed copies. Buy yours now before they’re gone!

Check out some of the photos below. Thank you Milka!

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A Cool Resource for Parents: Mamapedia

Posted by bububooks on November 10, 2009

mamapediaMamapedia and its predecessor, Mamasource, are two online options for parents with children at all ages and types. Parents share with each other their questions, concerns, answers and advice about every topic imaginable.  It is quite extensive, easy to use, updated daily and collaborative (other parents answer questions by parents).  If you are a parent, be sure to check it out!  Ask a question, meet other moms, or browse all the information.

We at bububooks are happy to be a part of this awesome parenting tool.  Mamapedia recently launched a new item called “Lists.” List covers a specific topic and parents can take a look at the list, vote for items on the list and even add their own items to the list.  We’ve started a list called, “Raising your child to be bilingual.”  Be sure to check it out, vote and add your items!  Here is the link: http://www.mamapedia.com/lists/18153777016128733185

About Mamapedia (taken from their webite):

Mamapedia connects moms at every stage of their children’s lives to compelling content from the source they trust most: other moms. Each month, nearly one million moms come to Mamapedia for advice on everything moms need: parenting, health, family, finance, pregnancy, nutrition, and travel; and on children of every age from infant to adult.

Launched in May 2009, Mamapedia gets all of its content from the questions and answers posted to Mamasource, a network of local communities for moms across the US. CEO Artie Wu founded Mamasource in 2004, when, as new parents, he and his wife were scrambling to find resources. Mamapedia followed to put all of those answers on one place to be easily searchable and accessible. Today, Mamapedia.com and the Mamasource communities reach more than two million moms.


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Remembering the Fall of the Berlin Wall

Posted by bububooks on November 6, 2009

This Monday, November 6, will mark the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.  I was ten years old and living in Europe. My father, an Army soldier, was stationed at Schweinfurt, West Germany, not far from the border with East Germany.  I was in Mr. Ike’s fifth grade class in a Department of Defense school.  I can’t say I remember the day the wall fell, but I certainly remember the trip my family took to Berlin the following February.

Growing up in Germany as a military brat, we were all acutely aware of the Cold War and its implications. Sort of. I thought the Iron Curtain was a real, physical wall between Western and Eastern Europe.  So when we crossed into East Germany on our drive up to Berlin, I was a little surprised to find our entrance so easy and with no wall keeping us out.  I had expected long and scary inspections only to find the entrance so easy that I don’t even remember it.  I also expected East Germany to be a very poor place. Yet on the drive to Berlin, it didn’t look all that different from West Germany (we were driving through rural areas and not through any towns).  I don’t know if that road was designed specifically for Westerners heading to Berlin and if that is why we didn’t see much on our drive.

Once we arrived in Berlin, I remember being struck by the differences on each side of the wall…literally.  The western side was covered in graffiti and already had vendors selling bags fill with chunks of the wall (who knows if they were even real pieces).  The eastern side was pristine, as if it had never been touched.  We didn’t have a hammer and chisel to break off a piece of the wall. We did pull off some crumbs from a hole that had already been created.  Through the hole, I saw the steel bars still in place, holding the wall strong all those years. And I saw an East German guard in his full uniform. My initial reaction was the fear that had been ingrained in me. He was tall (towering to a ten-year-old) and broad-shouldered. He wore his full winter gear including the well-known hat. I looked at him, a little nervous, as I pulled off the crumbs. But he didn’t do anything, just looked at me. He wore no expression on his face, but at that moment, I knew life as we knew it had changed.

Later, my father pointed out Checkpoint Charlie and how it had closed. People could go in and out freely. We headed into East Berlin.  All I really remember from that was our loads of shopping!

Later, because Schweinfurt was so close to the East German border, many East German cars—distinguishable by their size and features—popped up in our town.  While the changes in Germany appeared sudden and drastic, the Cold War would last for several more years. Indeed, during that summer of 1990, we flew to South Korea to spend the summer with my mother’s family.  At that time, however, Korean Airlines did not fly over the Soviet Union.  We had to fly around the world in what would be a 23-hour flight, which included a brief stop in Anchorage to refuel the plane.

Even though the flight was exhausting, I am grateful I got to experience these moments in history first hand. It has affected my outlook on life in that I know the American view isn’t the only view.  The world has changed a lot since fall of the Berlin Wall, but its message still rings true.  The will of the people, at some point or another, will find a way to prevail.

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Celebrate El DÍa de los Muertos

Posted by bububooks on November 2, 2009

Many of you have probably heard of the Day of the Dead, celebrated in Mexico, and more and more in the United States, this time of year.  It is a holiday for family and friends to gather and remember friends and family who have passed away.  Not a somber event, the celebration includes cleaning the house, building an offering, or ofrenda, that includes candles, flowers, their favorite items while alive and other items to help them on their journey and visiting their graves. This holiday also coincides with the Catholic holidays of All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day.

Holidays like the Day of the Dead are celebrated throughout the world and in various cultures, where families come together to honor the dead.  In Korea, for

Celebrations Cover

example, a large feast is cooked. Fruit is placed on the table in odd numbers with the top of one cut off. Chopsticks are placed upright in a bowl of rice. The front door is left opened during the ceremony. These actions allow for the dead to enter and enjoy the food!

Many in the United States have embraced the Day of the Dead holiday. One town in Texas, for instance, held a shoebox ofrenda competition.  There are free processions tonight in San Francisco and Oakland, etc. Check your local area for events!

For more information on ofrenda, check out: http://www.inside-mexico.com/ofrenda.htm and for information on the Day of the Dead holiday, visit http://www.dayofthedead.com/

In the meantime, enjoy the fall and upcoming holidays!

I also would like to use this holiday to highlight a bilingual book we carry at bububooks called: Celebrations / Celebraciones: Holidays of the United States of America and Mexico / Dias feriados de los Estados Unidos y Mexico. In it, author Nancy Tabor explains major holidays in the US and Mexico and how they are celebrated. Be sure to check it out!

Inside Peek to Celebrations


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