My goddaughter turns ten this week. Amazing and frightening at the same time! What kind of present do you get for a ten year old girl? A smart, funny, slightly tomboyish one?
My Listography: My Amazing Life in Lists is a journal. Sort of. It's kind of a journal for people who don't necessarily like to keep journals but like to compile lists. Featuring spaces for almost every kind of list you could imagine, plus witty illustrations, it's the ideal precursor to a writer's journal or artist's sketchbook and one that doesn't make you feel guilty for skipping a day. I would have loved My Listography as a kid and it would be great to be able to see the lists now, too. I think it's the perfect mix of personal and private and cool without trying too hard…
D.I.Y. Kids, which was published last year, is another great gift idea for pre-teens. It includes a bunch of craft projects that, miraculously, do not suck or even pander to the lowest common denominator. Like all Chronicle Books titles, the design and layout is just as smart and inspiring as the content.
Two other Chronicle releases worth noting if you have younger kids on your gift-giving list are The Toddler Café and Kitchen Playdates. These books are absolutely gorgeous and usable, featuring food that they will actually eat and that adults can even enjoy. I really appreciate the concept that you don't have to be sneaky or dumb things down for kids.
I haven't actually seen this last book yet but Kids in the Holiday Kitchen looks like a fantastic resource, with recipes and craft projects for kids to make gifts and entertain during the holiday season.