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Friday Evening Book Review

August 18th, 2006

Hello everyone. I find myself with a large stack of review copies here and thought I should maybe, you know, at least open a book this summer.

(A book other than Lu and the Swamp Ghost, that is. Wacky Boy gives this book, by political guy James Carville, two big thumbs-up. It comes with a CD so you can figure out how to pronounce the French. I appreciated this.)

Let’s start with travel, then move right into the health and classic Biblical names section, shall we?

First on the shelf:

Fodor’s Walt Disney World with Kids 2006 (a whopping 444 pages; $16.95 U.S.). We couldn’t have made it through Disneyland in one piece without The Unofficial Guide to Disneyland, and I highly recommend taking one or more of these tourbooks along if you’re brave enough to brave that which is Disney. Even if you’re just going to the Disney store take a guidebook along. You’ll need all the tricks you can find. Fodor’s also covers Universal Orlando and SeaWorld in this edition. You can check out Fodor’s Disneyland and Southern California with Kids, as well.

If you’re going, have a frozen lemonade for me, would you? Next time I’m sneaking in a flask of Absolut and baby, I will go on It’s A Small World as many times as you’d like me to.

Fodor’s also has a series of books geared toward families cruising with kids. You can learn more about the Disney Cruise Line, Carnival, Royal Caribbean International and Norwegian.

Interested in the waterways of New York? Say, the Hudson or the East River? Check out Fodor’s Around New York City with Kids (pages unnumbered, but 68 attractions are included; $11 U.S.) Toronto, London, Sydney and Auckland have their own books. “These books are the best cuz they’re flipbooks in the corner,” says Wacky Girl. So there you have it.

Now she and her brother want to know why we never take them anywhere. I (heart) New York THIS MUCH and am hoping for a trip there this fall. Cuz autumn in New York? It’s like Billie Holiday sang, “It spells the thrill of first-nighting.” There is nothing like autumn in New York. And I want my kids to eat a real bagel, and go to the Stage Deli and see the Alice in Wonderland sculpture in Central Park, and visit our old friends, and all that.

Now, on to matters of health. The American Academy of Pediatrics has released its 2006 guide for birth through age 5 (extremely whopping 864 pages; $20 U.S.). In English and in Spanish! Damn, it’s about time. Oh, wait — my Spanish is not so great, but I can translate “second edition” on the cover of the Spanish version. Well, good job, guys. Where the hell were you when WB was choking last week and I didn’t know what to do? He was crying, so was getting air, so you don’t Heimlich then? Right? Panic. Shit, yeah, that’s what you should always do in an emergency: Panic. Fwaaa fwaaa fwaaa. Hockey God folded him in half over his leg, WB freaked, struggled and got away, choked and gasped some more, then threw up the hard candy I’d given him.

Hard candy.


Do I seem like the kind of mother who would give her four-year-old hard candy? I am not, I promise you. It was a stupid, almost life-threatening, idiotic mistake.

I’m so grateful he is OK I’m going to go kiss his head right now. Wait a second, would you? OK, back. Go take a First Aid class would you, if you haven’t already? I’ve taken several but obviously none of it took. Rambling now, sorry. Anyhow, the guide is useful and so is their website, which has tons of information and is fairly easy to navigate. Less useful is Classic Biblical Names by Judith Tropea. (317 pages; $12 U.S.) From Aaron to Zorah, they’re all here. Everyone that is except Pilate. I’m sure this was an oversight that will be corrected in future editions.

All for now,


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