A SUMMER TREASURY OF RECIPES, CRAFTS, AND WISDOM

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A table of contents and welcome message offer up the scope of summer activities held within. The word homestead is never defined, but it is implied that it is a state of mind inclusive of the reader. Efforts are made to render the recipe or activity instructions simple, but some spreads are visually busy with headings, graph-paper backgrounds, and numbered steps that do not always flow left to right. Two unnamed children, one with dark skin, the other with light skin, appear in most activity instructions, demonstrating the topic in action, such as playing with a homemade bubble wand. Both have rosy cheeks, contributing to the vintage paper doll illustration style. A range of projects—from planting a “three sisters” garden to mixing up homemade shampoo—ensures many interest levels are met, including those of children who may not be outdoorsy. Recipes as simple as a raw melon pizza are complemented by the challenge of baking a summer solstice cake. The solstice cake seems a bit out of season, as few may want to fire up an oven in June. However, the earnestness with which both information and ideas are presented outshines the blemishes overall. Almost all the activities require adult supervision, developed motor skills, and multiple items, some of which may need to be purchased. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

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