I was recently contacted by the Marketing and Social Media Coordinator for Quirk Books and she asked if I would be interested in receiving a review copy of Yum-Yum Bento Box: Fresh Recipes for Adorable Lunches, by Crystal Watanabe and Maki Ogawa. I quickly wrote back and let her know that I would love to receive the book BUT that I wanted to offer that book to one of my readers as I had already purchased a copy, loved it and wanted to share the love. I have been a long time follower of Crystal's blog and a more recent follower of Maki's blog and as I can't get enough of their bento ideas and instruction on how to make super cute, fun and nutritious bentos, I couldn't wait to get my hands on the book.
I was thrilled when my book arrived (the one that I ordered and actually paid for!) as it is filled with over fifty photos of completed bento boxes, each with an ingredients list, step-by-step directions and even recipes. The pictures teach the reader how to simply craft their food into an array of fun shapes from chicks, octopi, caterpillars, walruses, cars, and frogs to flowers, princesses, angels, bumblebees, kitty cats, ladybugs and even Little Red Riding Hood and bears. There's a wonderful section on the boxes, tools and accessories needed and used to make the bentos as well as a shopping guide. One of my favorite little things in the book is a two page spread on the ingredients for happy faces. Basically it's pictures and descriptions of ingredients, shapes and what to use to create the heads, eyes, noses, mouths, cheeks, ears, hair and even accessories for all the adorable food people and animals anyone might want to add to their bento.
Crystal and Maki put together a great book for anyone who likes playing with their food, wants to learn how to make adorable lunches for both children and adults and even those who just need some new ideas and inspiration. I think one of the best features of the book is that it's simple, well laid out, with plenty of step-by-step photos and you don't need to be a cook or an artist to re-create the bentos.
* For one entry, leave a comment on this post along with a way to contact you. (One comment per person please.)
Ways to get extra entries for the book giveaway:
* For one additional entry, become a follower of Maisie Eats Bento. Please leave a separate comment letting me know that you became a follower.
* For one or two additional entries, become a follower of one or both of my two other blogs: Moments with Maisie and/or Cook Lisa Cook. Please leave a separate comment letting me know that you became a follower and of which blog(s).
* And finally, you can get 2 extra entries by creating a new blog post on your blog about this giveaway with a link back to this blog post. Again, please leave a separate comment letting me know that you created the post and include in the comment a link back to your post.
As I said, easy-peasy and a possibility of 6 chances to win!!. I will be verifying all entries and removing any that don't follow the rules.
Today was Maisie's first day of regular gymnastics camp and since she'd be at the gym from 9am-3PM she needed not only her lunch but a snack too. Her best buds K & A are attending camp this week with her so I had to include some extra treats for them too, thus the two extra marshmallow ice cream cones.
Snack today consisted of raisins and Whales. For lunch Maisie had cheese pizza, grapes, jelly and a marshmallow ice cream cone. The additional marshmallow ice cream cones were for K & A.
Maisie ate all of her lunch except for a bit of the pizza crust. For snack she only ate her raisins but said that Coach Lenny shared some of his crackers with her so she didn't eat her own. She started eating the Whales on the drive home but she was tuckered out and fell asleep. She had an awesome first day of camp and can't wait to go back again on Thursday.
Another day of Elite Gymnastics Camp so a snack and a bento. Snack consisted of peanut butter crackers & raisins and lunch was a grilled cheese on wheat flower sandwich with a peanut butter, marshmallow and fairy sprinkle center as well as grapes and a jelly.
Maisie finished everything but about half of the crackers and she said that she really didn't care for them.
Today Maisie attended her gym's Elite Team Camp so I had to send in her lunch bento as well as a snack. Her snack was the bag of Whales and the raisins. Her lunch included cheese pizza, mango jelly and a marshmallow ice cream cone.
Maisie finished every bit of her lunch and snack, she was one hungry little gymnast!
Today was a two bento day, the first was for lunchtime at school and the second was for Maisie's gymnastics practice. Her practices are now three hours long so they take a break for a snack and Maisie has said that she's been hungry and wants more than I was giving her and asked that I pack her a bento.
Mac & cheese with a ham & cheese flower with a broccoli center, grapes, an I love you chocolate and a jelly.
Maisie did well with all this food, returning home with only about two tablespoons of macaroni uneaten.
Peanut butter on wheat heart sandwich, fig bar & raisins,
Maisie said that she enjoyed having a bento at gymnastics but said that she didn't have enough time to eat. She's not the fastest eater and she loves to talk so we talked about in the future having less talking and more eating. Maisie did eat half of her sandwich and the fig bar and then in the car on the drive home finished everything else and then ate dinner too!
After a week of spring break followed by our wonderful two week transatlantic cruise, it was time to get back in the groove of packing bento for Maisie. Unfortunately my good camera is back in the shop so I'm using my point & shoot but I'll make due.
Today Maisie had chocolate peanut butter on wheat heart sandwiches, raisins, half of a clementine and a strawberry jelly.
Maisie is not always fond of citrus and sure enough only one segment of the clementine was eaten but she did well with everything else, finishing all the other food.
Today Maisie's class celebrated Easter so I did a bit of an Easter themed bento with a bunny shaped grilled cheese on wheat sandwich, carrot sticks, broccoli, lite ranch dip in the Hello Kitty container and even a double helping of treats with a gummy bunny and chick.
One piece of broccoli, a carrot stick and about two bites of her sandwich returned home uneaten but overall she ate well.
And just because she's adorable, here's my little over excited bunny at her class party eating one of the bunny cookies that we made for the party.