Wig in the Window: Spy Training Workshop !

Imagine witnessing a scary event... Then afterwards, imagine getting followed by cars, cracking codes, and meeting strange, mysterious people! If you can’t imagine a spy lifestyle like this, then you should definitely read Kristen Kittscher’s The Wig in the Window. To summarize, this novel is about two spies: Sophie Young and Grace Yang, witnessing (spying) a bloody scene in the kitchen of their middle school counselor, Dr. Agford. They call the cops and discover that Dr. Agford was actually making her famous pickled beets! Soon after, Dr. Agford starts acting strange and they: start receiving strange codes they need to solve, get followed by a mysterious blue car, and meet with people who have Texas accents and u n i b r o w s! Step into Young and Yang’s great spy adventure, and try solving the clues along with them!

Her story sounds too cool! But I want to write my own spy story like Kristen!   

Don’t worry! Luckily, we here at Babesta can teach you! Kristen has visited Babesta yesterday to teach thirteen 8-12 year olds who wanted to learn how to write a great spy story. She has such a bright personality, joking around with the children, and it was such a great event! When introducing her novel, children pointed out that her picture was on the inside cover; her response? “Maybe that’s not actually me…that might be another woman with a wig…who knows?”

Kristen answering questions about her novel

Kristen answering questions about her novel

She taught our little spies different steps to creating their own spy story! Babesta provided a mini goody-bag with: spy glasses, a mustache, a yin and yang necklace, a mini notepad, and a pen.

  1. She made our little spies break a code to learn the first step of writing a great spy story. It took a few minutes, but codes were no match for our little spies! They solved that the first step was thinking of characters! That’s right! In order to create the best story, you must come up with different characters.
    Our code. Can you solve it out, too?

    Our code. Can you solve it out, too?

     

    Agent Agford cracking the code!!

    Agent Agford cracking the code!!

     

  2. The next step was discovering the traits of the character. Age, favorite color, scared of, lives in, etc.

    All our spies deep in thought!

    All our spies deep in thought!

  3. Third, you come up with a case and an enemy, if they have one! Kristen has stated that it was a bit easier to come up with different traits because during her childhood, she and her friends were part of their own spy group. She has always been interested in spy stories!

    Kristen's spy group!

    Kristen’s spy group!

  4. After a few brainstorming sessions, our little spies came up with the character Lily Lin who lives in Beijing, China. She is 8 years old, is scared of shadows and strangers. Her case is to capture different thieves.

    Our brainstorming board!

    Our brainstorming board!

Kristen showed a mini clip about her novel during the brainstorming session to inspire our spies! She also held a raffle at the end of the workshop. The lucky winner was Agent 722 who won a signed The Wig in the Window novel! Yin and Yang cookies were served at the end with yummy pink lemonade and water.

 

Kristen handing the winner her gift!!

Kristen handing the winner her gift!!

 

Refreshments! YUMMY!

Refreshments! YUMMY!

But why so much Yin and Yang themes? In the novel, the two spies, Young and Yang, run into different conflicts and have two different personalities like Yin and Yang. They receive too much pressure from all the codes and mysterious, which puts a strain on their friendship. Do they grow apart? Do they get closer? That is for you to find out!

Babesta truly thanks Kristen for her visit! She definitely inspired our little spies to grow their imaginations and write! Maybe Young and Yang will be the next Harry Potter! We wish more, greater success on you, Kristen!!

You can read further details of her novel here ! It is definitely a great read!

 

Here are some more pictures to enjoy!

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Spy Fashion: what’s your frame?

Today, July 8, we are hosting a Wig in the Window Spy Workshop at Babesta Cribz! Kristen Kittscher will teach a group of young boys and girls how to create the best spy story! Inspired by this event, we wondered, “What would a great spy outfit be?” Using all our resources here at Babesta, we tracked down a few clothes and accessories that will be great for our adorable Spies!

Great for both boys and girls, these spy outfits will help our spies look stylish while tracking down who ate the last cookie ! The adorable tees remind us of spies, while the fedoras really compliment the outfit. These cute Sons and Daughters Sunglasses really complete the outfit, and the spy kit and notebook can help our little spies look for and write down clues!

spyfashionFrom left to right:

Goodie Two Sleeves’ Panda Square Tee found here.

Goorin’s Tad Bewell Jr. Stingy Fedora found here.

Goodie Two Sleeve’s Hipster Kitty Snaptee found here.

Sons and Daughters’ Bobby Sunglasses- Liquid Metal found here.

Sons and Daughters’ Hunter Sunglasses- Blue found here.

Bobo Choses’ Mixed Shapes Skirt found here.

Seedling’s Top Secret Spy Kit found here.

Blatomat’s Organic Beige Leggings found here.

Munster Kids’ Snow Leopard Jeans found here.

K & Company’s SMASH Folio found here.

Gorin’s Lil Hagar Plaid Fedora found here.

Wild and Wolf’s Pinhole Camera found here.

 

Definitely read A Wig in the Window by Kristen Kittscher to enter the spy adventure of Sophie Young and Grace Yang! This is a must read filled with funny dialogues and intense spy action! They must discover what really went down in Dr. Agford’s house that night they discovered a bloody scene in her kitchen! (Dr. Agford was actually making her famous pickled beets!) It will be great for children, and reading this book with this outfit can maybe trigger awesome spy activities!

Be sure to come back tomorrow for pictures of today’s events!

 

A Little Bit of Summer Yumminess

We were looking for some foodie inspiration & stumbled upon some recipes on Pinterest that made our tummies growl!  S’Mores Pudding cake, refreshing fruit popsicles, and sandcastle sandwiches. Yum! Fun to do together!

Turn up your Babesta Tunes to full volume, and enjoy your fun BBQ time while donning your favorite summer tees !

Recipes:

First: S’mores Pudding discovered on Miss James’ Pinterest site via Food52.

S'mores Pudding

  • S’Mores Pudding Cake
    • 4cups (1 batch) Rich Chocolate Custard (recipe below)
    • 4 sleeves graham crackers
    • 3cups mini marshmallows
    • 1 (13-ounce) jar marshmallow crème
  • Rich Chocolate Custard
    • 6ounces semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
    • 3tablespoons cornstarch
    • 1/4teaspoon salt
    • 1cup cream
    • 3 large egg yolks
    • 1/2cup sugar
    • 2cups whole milk
    • 1teaspoon pure vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Smear a thin layer of chocolate custard in the center of a 9×13-inch baking dish. Cover the bottom with a layer of graham crackers and spread 1/3 (about 1 1/4 cups) of the chocolate custard on top of the crackers. Sprinkle 1 cup of mini marshmallows over the custard, and torch them lightly with a kitchen torch, until soft and browned. (You can also put them under an oven broiler for 45 seconds.) Repeat two more times and top with a final layer of graham crackers. (There will be four full layers of crackers, and three of pudding).
  2. Warm the marshmallow crème in the microwave or in a saucepan. Spread over the top of the icebox cake and spread while still warm. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or until the crackers have softened to a cakelike texture (test by inserting a thin knife along the side and bringing up a few crumbs). (This can be made up to 24 hours ahead of time, but it is best consumed with a day or two as it will get soggy if it sits too long.)
  3. When ready to serve, brown the top of the cake until tan and toasty with a kitchen torch or under the broiler.
  4. FOR THE CHOCOLATE CUSTARD Prepare the chocolate: Place the chopped chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl.
  5.  Make a cornstarch and egg slurry: Put the cornstarch and salt together in a medium bowl and whisk to make sure there are no lumps. Slowly whisk in the cream, making sure there are no lumps. (To be really sure, reach into the bowl and gently rub out any lumps between your fingers.) Whisk in the egg yolks.
  6.  Warm the milk: In a 3-quart (2.8-L) saucepan over medium heat, whisk the sugar into the milk. Warm for 3 to 5 minutes, until the sugar dissolves, bubbles form around the edges, and the entire surface of the milk begins to quiver. Turn off the heat.
  7.  Temper the slurry: Pour 1 cup (240 ml) of the hot milk into the bowl with the slurry, whisking constantly. The mixture should come together smoothly, with no lumps. If you see any, add a little more liquid and whisk them out. Pour it back into the pan, counting to 10 and whisking constantly as you pour.
  8.  Thicken the pudding: Turn the heat back on to medium and bring the mixture to a simmer, whisking frequently and vigorously, working all the angles of the pot and scraping the bottom. Continue whisking for about 5 minutes, until the custard becomes very thick and starts to boil, with large bubbles that slowly pop up to the surface. Boil for 2 minutes, whisking constantly.
  9. Flavor the pudding: Turn off the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Stir the chocolate into the pudding and let sit for 2 to 3 minutes. Whisk gently until the pudding is smooth and glossy and has fully absorbed the chocolate.
  10. Chill the pudding: Immediately pour the hot pudding into a shallow container. Place plastic wrap or buttered wax paper directly on the surface of the pudding (if you don’t like pudding skin). Cover and refrigerate.

SECOND: Fruit Popsicles via Christi Steckel

 

fruit popsicles!

Ingredients & supplies needed:

    • any fruit you desire that can be cut big enough (watermelons, mangoes, cantaloupes, honeydews, etc.)
    • popsicle sticks, non-separated chopsticks, or skewers

1.  Cut up your fruit into a triangle or any shape you desire (1 1/2 – 2 inch width) ! You can also use cookie cutters to create cute shapes!

2. Center a popsicle stick on the bottom of the fruit and insert midway.

3. Put it in a pan or plate and refrigerate for 30 minutes or more (if you like) to chill it!

4. Serve it with cool whip or just serve it with different decorations!

5. Enjoy!!

 

Third: Sandcastle Sandwiches via rustsunshine!

sandcastle sandwiches

Ingredients needed:

  • bread slices
  • ham
  • cheese
  • mayo
  1. “Start with two plain ham and cheese sandwiches” without the mayo!!
  2. “Using round cookie cutters, or glasses in various sizes, cut three circles.”
  3. Apply the mayo or any spread you love to the cut bread!
  4. We will use everything! Put the left over crust into a coffee grinder or food processor to make the breadcrumb sand!!
  5. Arrange the cut sandwiches from largest on the bottom to smallest on top (or any order you desire!).
  6. Sprinkle the breadcrumb over to make it look like a genuine sandcastle!!
  7. ENJOY!
    • Note: rustsunshine created mini flags to add on top to show an even more realistic sandcastle!!

These were our top three recipes that we really loved! Babesta feels that it will be a great way to enjoy summer BBQs! You can also get popsicle molds and pour in your favorite drinks and fruits to create juice popsicles!

These recipes can be found on each website! Do you have any fun recipes that is different from the norm yet yummy to eat?

 

Sandcastles Galore!!

Any fun beach ideas? Swimming in the beach. Mhmm sounds good. Tanning. Hmm. Collecting shells. Ooo. Building Sand Castles?! O.M.G.!

While looking through our awesome Pinterest site, we came across a sand castle and decided, “Why not search and look for more followers who created their own sand castles!?” We discovered so many sand castles that were created by young children, adults, to professionals. All we can say is, “WOW!” At Babesta, we love summer and everything that makes summer fun– from BBQs to pool days, to Water parks to Lemonades. We can see that making sand castles are definitely a fun way to spend your time at the beach!! We created a fun slideshow filled with sandcastles that were posted by some of our social media websites’ members!

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Next time you visit the beach, be sure to bring your shovel and pails, your awesome beachwear, your sunglasses, sunblock, and your creativities! Game on, show us your handiwork!!

Thank you to:  kirill_lopatin (Instagram), Raddus (Tumblr),  Jayla Rodri (Pinterest), the Sane Mom, Ashley Bennett (Pinterest), and Jon-e (Flickr) for showing us your bizarre sandcastle creations!

 

 

Let’s visit the Statue of Liberty!

Grab your sunglasses, cameras, and sunblock!

The Statue of Liberty has stated that she wants to allow visitors! On July 4th, she re-opened the doors to all to come visit and get tours. After Hurricane Sandy, she had stopped accepting visitors because she had to renovate and fix all broken pieces. Now, she is even allowing visitors to enter her crown, since it was closed in 2011.

Be sure to visit her!The beautiful Lady

 

Thank you to timeout for your updates on NY Events!

 

 

Red, White, and Blue! Fourth of July Fashion at Babesta

While you’ve been lighting up the bar-b-que, we’ve  been cooking up a few summer outfits that proudly represent our Red, White, and Blue! These products are created by our lovely designers: A for Apple, La Minatura, Bobo Choses, Sons and Daughters, Mini Rodini, and more. We put together different shirts, denims, and accessories that will all go beautifully together for a hot, summery Independence day! Please look through them and feel free to comment or to explore more on our Babesta website or in-stores!

July 4 Fashion Calls!

July 4 Fashion Calls!

 

Greetings to NY, from the beach

Greetings to NY, from the beach

 

Fireworks fashion!

Fireworks fashion!

Fun Fact: According to Bankadvisor.com,  ”It was not until 1804 that the White House celebrated the first public Independence Day event.” And I thought it had been going on since 1776! LOL.

Wrong? Right? Left?

Dear our lovely UK followers!

Golly Gee! Remember the time you dropped the “clanger”? Or remember that embarrassing moment you felt “dim” or created a “dog’s dinner”? To all our lovely British friends over in the UK, you should all visit the funniest event that will take place on the 5th of July from 19:00-23:00 (9 PM- 11PM). It will be located in Wellcome Collection on 183 Euston Road, London NW1 2BE. Check out this site for directions via the tube, train, car, etc.

The Wrong event is free and is based on a first come first serve seating arrangement. There are 7 different sub-events that are listed here.

To shorten it, this Wrong event basically teaches us, humans, that being wrong is sometimes funny and is very acceptable. Everyone is wrong once in a while; people all make mistakes! “You, me, your doctor, a great politician on the telly” all are prone to making mistakes! You can come to confess a mistake you had made, learn about visual illusions and the way our brains work, discover different clown play, compete in games, listen to comic songs, etc. ! There will also be special featuring guests such as: Nish Kumar, Lee Hathaway, Jo Stephenson, Psychologist Amina Memon, director John Wright, and more! It will surely be a night filled with fun and excitement. There will be food and great music all night! How much better can it get?!

Throughout the night, they will surely tell funny stories that people have confessed ahead of time via the internet. You can submit yours here before the event if you would like it to be announced! (If you need a little kick before you submit your funny stories, you can also check out this site which ahs previous confessions!)

This event will be “Blinding” and  hilarious! Be sure to check it out!!

OMG! summer baby essentials!

Summer has begun, which means that there will be a lot of traveling to be done! Our stylists at Babesta have whipped together a few essentials that are perfect for “on the road” with baby!

  • The Chevron Blue Diaper Bag (found here) that fits most of these items comfortably!
  • Pronto Chevron Blue (found here) that is a to-go changing station that goes well with the bag too! (stylish!)
  • Ugly Dolls  that come in different sizes and fun colors!
  • Bento Mealtime Kit that will make it easier for mommies/daddies to store snacks and mini meals for our cute babies!
  • Mini Rodini Sunglasses (found here) for the stylish kid to block away the strong sunlight!
  • Maileg’s Rattles to keep company and to amuse the cute kid!
  • Thumbprint Masterpiece (found in-stores) that can be used for of ease artworks!
  • Skip Hop’s Monkey & Bee Bib (found here) for the quick eaters that tend to splatter everywhere!
  • MD Moms’ Sunblock & Lotion (found here) to keep our children’s skin softer and safer from the UV rays!

Have a stylish summer!

Beach bag essentials including Jonathan Adler for Skip Hop diaper bag, Skip Hop bib and more!

Beach bag essentials including Jonathan Adler for Skip Hop diaper bag, Skip Hop bib and more!

Cleaning up Copenhagen

 

Vipp-Mega-Bin-1

As part of Copenhagen’s commitment to be the cleanest city in Europe by 2015, and – since big goals require huge measures – a giant (it’s constructed in 8:1 scale!) Vipp pedal bin has been installed as a reminder to Danes to think about where their garbage goes.(As seen in Design Milk)This mega pedal bin weighs in at 1763.7 lbs. with a volume of 3,800 liters.  That’s enough to hold 25,000 broken bottles or 478.8 dirty diapers.  Americans, on average, go through 7.6 billion lbs. of diapers per year, which translates to 3.45 billion liters; so it would take 907,869 bins of similar volume to hold all the diapers we go through per year.

These Danes are definitely excited about keeping garbage like that off the streets…

Vipp-Mega-Bin-1a

Image source.

You can find Vipp’s classic pedal bin – albeit on a much smaller scale – at Babesta here.