Exploring the Inspiration Behind ¡Numeros, Baby! – Part II

¡Números, Baby! – our upcoming release introducing little ones to numbers in Spanish is vividly inspired by the authors’ own travels to Latin America and Spain. In the second part of this 3-part blog post, co-author Golzar Kheiltash shares her travel adventure that brought a distinct flavor to Baby Ventures’™ newest board book!

PART II: Co-author Golzar Kheiltash gets a taste of Spain

Before my family immigrated to California from Iran in the 80’s, I had already lived on two continents, across 6 cities. I was bilingual – in Persian and English – and felt the singular childhood excitement that comes from hearing different languages, seeing smiling new faces, and exploring vibrant new locales across the globe.

Happily, this excitement carried into my adulthood, starting with my last summer at university when I traveled across Europe on my own. During my trip, I visited Barcelona, Spain, not once but twice! ¿Por qué? Because one trip wasn’t enough to take in Barcelona’s lively energy, welcoming residents, rich cultural landmarks, and…seriously delectable eats (even on my student budget)!

Barcelona Gaudi

Whether you’re a tourist or native to Spain, one thing is for sure: food – and gathering to eat it – is an integral part of life here. Geography also plays an important role in the fresh and diverse flavors of Spanish cuisine: Located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula, most of Spain’s borders are with water, namely the Mediterranean Sea, the Atlantic Ocean, and the Bay of Biscay (it also shares land borders with Portugal and France). This coastal landscape plays a key role in Spanish food, with distinctive culinary elements ranging from region to region.

In Barcelona (located in the region of Catalonia), I started my foodie adventure with a visit to the bustling, 800-year old Mercat de Sant Josep de La Boquería. With an abundance of fresh meats, seafood, fruits, vegetables, and much more (including some tapas bars), La Boquería was a veritable feast for the senses, and the perfect place to get acclimated to tasty Spanish eats. The universally recognized Spanish dish – paella – was what I was keenest to try, and locals assured me that this beloved, saffron and olive oil infused dish was best homemade (though some top-notch restaurants do their best to compete).

Barcelona market

Despite traveling alone, I didn’t eat alone – often a table of friendly locals, or even the restaurant owners themselves – would keep me company as we spoke in Spanish and enjoyed our meal. On my second visit to Barcelona, I was lucky enough to have homemade paella (with a Catalan twist). Paella originated from the neighboring region of Valencia as a hearty dish prepared by farmers. A proud symbol of this region, paella is also enjoyed throughout Spain, particularly at family gatherings and holidays. Traditionally shared right out of the wide pan it’s prepared in, paella depicts the essence of coming together over a delicious meal.

Barcelona restaurant

I hope little ones enjoy our taste of Spain in ¡Números, Baby! as they learn to count from uno a diez!

Speaking of counting – we’re also counting on YOU to help us ensure that fresh food with local flavors gets to communities affected by natural disasters. We are deeply proud to announce that proceeds from the sale of every ¡Números, Baby! book will go to World Central Kitchen, a non-profit organization reaching vulnerable families from Puerto Rico to Guatemala and beyond. Founded by renowned Spanish chef and Washington, DC resident, José Andrés, WCK is at the forefront of providing comfort and sustenance with homemade, locally-inspired meals to communities in need.

Next spring, I’m returning to Barcelona – this time with mi marido y mija (both of whom also happen to be HUGE Barça fans). I can’t wait to venture to this beautiful, historic, and lively metropolis with my family to revisit old haunts and discover new ones. I especially can’t wait to have my little one try paella and practice her números en español!

De mi familia a la suya,

Golzar

 

Join us for Family Funday at the Gaithersburg Book Festival: May 19th!

Calling all bookworms, big and small! We’re excited to announce that Baby Ventures has been selected for the second year in a row to participate in the Gaithersburg Book Festival on May 19, 2018! Since its founding in 2010, this Festival has become a top literary event for the whole family in the greater Washington, DC region, attracting hundreds of award-winning authors, poets and songwriters. From author readings to story time and sing-alongs for children, the Festival is the perfect outing for bookworms of all ages! Continue reading Join us for Family Funday at the Gaithersburg Book Festival: May 19th!

Guest Interview Part II: Mary Grace Otis, Host of The Global Mom Show

In this week’s blog, we continue our conversation with Mary Grace Otis, Host of The Global Mom Show! The Global Mom Show is a weekly podcast that connects moms around the world who want to live globally-minded lives and teach their kids to do the same. Below is Part II of our interview with Mary Grace where she discusses the importance of multicultural children’s books, and how parents can inspire an expanded worldview in their children early on. Continue reading Guest Interview Part II: Mary Grace Otis, Host of The Global Mom Show

Guest Interview: Mary Grace Otis, Host of The Global Mom Show

At Baby Ventures, we encourage children early on to explore all the places, cultures and creatures of our diverse, wonder-filled world. How can parents foster a globally-minded worldview from a young age? We asked Mary Grace Otishost of The Global Mom Show! The Global Mom Show is a weekly podcast that connects moms around the world who want to live globally-minded lives and teach their kids to do the same. Below is Part I of our interview with Mary Grace. Continue reading Guest Interview: Mary Grace Otis, Host of The Global Mom Show

“C” is for Cherry Blossoms!

No ABCs of Washington, DC book would be complete without a colorful ode to DC’s iconic spring blooms: cherry blossoms!

Even before writing and illustrating the ABCs of Washington, DC board book, Baby Ventures authors and illustrator Lisa Hall and Golzar Kheiltash knew the letter C would represent cherry blossoms – those gorgeous, ephemeral blooms that bring our nation’s capital to life each spring and most famously, line the banks of the Tidal Basin overlooking the Jefferson Memorial. Continue reading “C” is for Cherry Blossoms!

Resolution: More Adventures in 2017!

Happy New Year! As we venture into 2017, our hearts are filled with gratitude for an incredible 2016. Thanks to YOU – our inspiring followers, customers, and small business retailers for making this past year an absolutely amazing one! 

What are our resolutions for 2017? Top of the list is more adventures! At Baby Ventures, we aim to inspire little ones everywhere to seize the adventure that is CHILDHOOD! And this year, we’ll have even more exciting tips, tools and activities to help your tots discover their wonder-filled world. From adventure maps to “out of this world” exploration (hint, hint), stay tuned for more Baby Ventures!

How are you inspiring childhood adventures in your little ones? Share in the comments section below.

Here’s to many happy adventures in 2017!

Hold on, Fall – It’s Still Summer’s Turn!

It’s hard to believe that summer is coming to an end – it seems like just yesterday that we kicked off the season with our little ones, summer bucket lists in tow and eager to check off beach days, camping trips, and all the ice cream we can eat. Now school is starting, and Halloween feels like it’s around the corner (or so we’re told upon entering every retail store these days). Continue reading Hold on, Fall – It’s Still Summer’s Turn!

The Adventure Girls: Spotted on the National Mall!

This summer, our Baby Ventures Adventure Girls made their debut in our ABCs of Washington, DC board book: They popped up on the National Mall on page “V for Visitors!”

The greater National Mall area in Washington, DC offers a world of educational fun for little ones! Looking for some family adventure ideas? Here are some of our tot-approved favorites: Continue reading The Adventure Girls: Spotted on the National Mall!

Adventures in DC Photo Contest Winner

Congratulations to the Afshar family for submitting the winning photo in our Adventures in DC contest, and receiving a free copy of our ABCs of Washington, DC board book! We love this vibrant shot of winter holiday fun at the DC National Zoo!

A big thanks to everyone who submitted their adventures in DC family photos. Stay tuned for more contests coming soon!

DC Photo Contest: Win a Free Book!

Looking for one-of-a-kind board books to introduce your little ones early on to the wonder-filled world around them? We were too: creating vibrant, adventure and diversity-inspired board books was the impetus behind our family-owned company, Baby Ventures!

We’re thrilled to kick off our book series with our new ABCs of Washington, DC board book, set to arrive this June! In this distinctly native take on our nation’s capital, your tots can explore the A to Z of DC with bright colors, cool shapes, and lots of adventures (Boat tours, anyone?).

Have some of your own DC family adventures to share? Whether you live in or have visited the nation’s capital, email us a pic and a brief description for a chance to win a free copy of the ABCs of Washington, DC, and be featured on our sites! Submissions must be received by June 1st.

Happy DC adventures, Baby!