CM . . .
. Volume XIX Number 36. . . .May 17, 2013
Elliot is hungry for a snack. He is hoping for some delicious candy, and he is disappointed when Carmen, his neighbour and after-school sitter, offers him an apple to eat instead. But Carmen reveals a secret, that the apple is special. She asks Elliot to very carefully look at the apple, smell it, feel it, listen to it, and slowly taste it bite by bite. As Elliot follows her instructions, he experiences a host of sensations, some familiar and others brand new. He realizes that the apple is special after all; it is the best apple he’s ever eaten because he’s taken the time to eat it mindfully. Before Elliot goes home, Carmen tells him he can try this new kind of eating with all foods, those that are his favourites, and even those he may not think he likes.
No Ordinary Apple, by Sara Marlowe, shows readers how easy it is to slow down and to take the time to understand and appreciate food. Elliot does not like some healthy foods like apples, and instead only wants candy to eat. But, by taking the time to taste, smell, feel, listen, and examine his food before and while he eats it, he experiences unique sensations and tastes, showing him a whole new side to a food he’d previously discarded as boring and tasteless.
This story is a wonderful introduction to the concept of eating mindfully. While Carmen urges Elliot to try new foods and to give healthy options careful consideration, this book does not push readers into thinking that only certain food choices are worthwhile. Instead, No Ordinary Apple explains how all foods can be eaten mindfully, and that by taking more time to think about what is being eaten, new foods may be enjoyed as well. In fact, this concept of being mindful can be expanded beyond the realm of food. Readers can learn from this tale that slowing down and experiencing the small sensations of every day can lead to a greater appreciation of the world as a whole.
Meredith Cleversey is a librarian in Cambridge, ON. She loves to read, write, and live in a world of pure imagination.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.