Whether you’re looking for a gift for a vegan friend or family member or are a looking to treat yourself to something cruelty-free, this is the perfect guide for you! I put together my ultimate vegan gift guide including cruelty-free beauty products, plant-based cookbooks, delicious dairy-free chocolates, chic vegan fashion, gifts that give to sanctuaries and so much more! My gift ideas are grouped into five categories:

1. Cruelty-Free Kitchen
2. Plant-Based Beauty
3. Rescue, Shelter & Sanctuary Support
4. Vegan Fashion
5. Peaceful Yogi

Keep reading and click on the links beneath each item to start some feel-good shopping!

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Theodor Seuss Geisel was born on March 2, 1904 in Springfield MA- 111 years ago today! His children’s books, written under the pseudonym Dr. Seuss, are unlike any others, filled with completely unique stories and characters, always delivering timeless, inspiring messages.  Here are 10 of my favorite quotes to read and share in honor of his special day.  Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!

1. “Today you are you, that is truer than true.  There is no one alive who is you-er than you.”

2. “A person’s a person, no matter how small.”

3. “Only you can control your future.”

4. “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on your own, and you know what you know. And you are the guy who’ll decide where to go.”

5. “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”

6. “Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.”

7. “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”

8. “You’ll miss the best things if you keep your eyes shut.”

9. “If things start happening, don’t worry, don’t stew, just go right along and you’ll start happening too.”

10. “And the turtles, of course…all the turtles are FREE. As turtles and, maybe, ALL creatures should be.”


Ernest Hemingway was born on July 21, 1899- 115 years ago today! I compiled a list of 10 of my favorite Hemingway quotes and life lessons in honor of his special day.

The world breaks everyone and, afterward, many are strong at the broken places.
(A Farewell to Arms)

The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them.

Never mistake motion for action.

Always do sober what you said you’d do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.

I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen.

Courage is grace under pressure.

It’s none of their business that you have to learn how to write. Let them think you were born that way.

Worry a little bit every day and in a lifetime you will lose a couple of years. If something is wrong, fix it if you can. But train yourself not to worry: Worry never fixes anything.

There is nothing else than now. There is neither yesterday, certainly, nor is there any tomorrow. How old must you be before you know that? There is only now, and if now is only two days, then two days is your life and everything in it will be in proportion. This is how you live a life in two days. And if you stop complaining and asking for what you never will get, you will have a good life. A good life is not measured by any biblical span.
(For Whom the Bell Tolls)

We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master.
(The Wild Years)


1. This Jazz Man by Karen Ehrhardt (author) & R.G. Roth (illustrator)
ages 4-8 view on

2. When Louis Armstrong Taught Me How to Scat by Muriel Harris Weinstein
ages 5-9 view on

3. Before John Was a Jazz Giant: A Song of John Coltrane by Carole Boston Weatherford (author) & Sean Qualls (illustrator)
ages 5-9 view on

4. Jazz Baby by Lisa Wheeler (author) & R. Gregory Christie (ilustrator)
ages 4-8 view on

5. Duke Ellington: The Piano Prince and His Orchestra by Andrea Davis Pinkney (author) & Brian Pinkney (illustrator)
ages 5-9 view on

6. Charlie Parker Played Be Bop by Chris Raschka (author & illustrator)
ages 4-8 view on

7. Jazz ABZ: An A to Z Collection of Jazz Portraits by Wynton Marsalis (author) & Paul Rogers (illustrator)
age 9-12 view on

8. The Jazz Fly by Matthew Gollub (author) & Karen Hanke (illustrator)
ages 4 and up view on

9. Ella Fitzgerald: The Tale of a Vocal Virtuosa by Andrea Davis Pinkney
ages 5-9 view on

10. Jazz by Walter Dean Myers (author) & Christopher Myers (illustrator)
ages 8 and up view on

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby was published on April 10, 1925- 89 years ago today! It’s one of my favorite books and had me entranced with New York City long before I moved here. In honor of its birthday, I gathered some of my favorite quotes from the novel.

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These are 10 of my favorite children’s books about New York City. #4 is one of the most popular on our bookshelves at TLB! Click on the links to view each Big Apple book on Amazon.

1. 123 NYC: A Counting Book of New York City (2-6 years) View on Amazon
Author: Joanne Dugan
2. B is for Brooklyn (2-6 years) View on Amazon
Author: Selina Alko
3. This is New York (3 and up) View on Amazon
Author/Illustrator: Miroslav Sasek
4. Subway (3 and up) View on Amazon
Author: Anastasia Suen Illustrator: Karen Katz
5. Larry Gets Lost in New York City (3-7 years) View on Amazon
Author/Illustrator: John Skewes Author: Michael Mullin
6. New York, New York!: The Big Apple from A to Z (4-8 years) View on Amazon
Author: Laura Krauss Melmed Illustrator: Frane Lessac
7. Balloons Over Broadway: The True Story of the Puppeteer of Macy’s Parade (4-8 years) View on Amazon Author: Melissa Sweet
8. A Walk in New York (4-8 years) View on Amazon
Author/Illustrator: Salvatore Rubbino
9. The House on East 88th Street (5-8 years) View on Amazon
Author: Bernard Waber
10. New York City History for Kids: From New Amsterdam to the Big Apple with 21 Activities (9 and up) View on Amazon Author: Richard Panchyk

(click here to enlarge image)

At TLB, the dinosaur books are some of the most popular books on our bookshelves. From generation to generation, dinosaurs never go out of style, always finding their way into public fascination and popular culture! Some examples: Gertie the Dinosaur (1914), The Lost World (1925), The Flintstones (1960-1966), The Land Before Time (1988), Dinosaurs (1991-1994), Barney & Friends (1992-2009), and Jurassic Park (1993). Here’s a list of 10 of my favorite books about dinosaurs for you to share with your children!

1. Oh My Oh My Oh Dinosaurs! 2 and up | view on
Sandra Boynton
2. How Do Dinosaurs Clean Their Rooms? ages 3-5 | view on
Jane Yolen/Mark Teague
3. My Big Dinosaur Book ages 3-7 | view on
Roger Priddy
4. Harry and the Bucketful of Dinosaurs ages 3-7 | view on
Ian Whybrown/ Adrian Reynolds
5. Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs ages 4-8 | view on
Mo Willems
6. How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight? ages 4-8 | view on
Jane Yolen/ Mark Teague
7. National Geographic Little Kids First Big Book of Dinosaurs ages 4-8 | view on  | Catherine D. Hughes/ Franco Tempesta
8. Dinosaur Roar ages 4-8 | view on
Paul Stickland/ Henrietta Stickland
9. The Dinosaur Museum: An Unforgettable, Interactive Virtual Tour Through Dinosaur History
ages 6-9 | view on  | National Geographic/ Sebastian Quigley
10. National Geographic Kids Ultimate Dinopedia ages 7-10 | view on
Don Lessem/Franco Tempesta

1. Beach Day! 1-2 years | view on
Anahid Hamparian (author), Kristin Sorra (illustrator)

2. Commotion in the Ocean 3 and up | view on
Giles Andreae (author), David Wojtowycz (illustrator)

3. Over in the Ocean: In a Coral Reef 3 and up | view on
Marianne Berkes (author), Jeanette Canyon (illustrator)

4. Ladybug Girl at the Beach 3-5 years | view on
David Soman (author/illustrator), Jacky Davis (illustrator)

5. I’m the Biggest Thing in the Ocean 4 and up | view on
Kevin Sherry (author)

6. Pete the Cat: Pete at the Beach 4-8 years | view on
James Dean (author/illustrator)

7. Beach Day! 4-8 years | view on
Karen Roosa (author), Maggie Smith (illustrator)

8. Science in Seconds at the Beach: Exciting Experiments You Can Do in Ten Minutes or Less
ages 9 and up | view on
Jean Potter (author)

We put together a list of 10 favorite children’s books in Spanish. Whether you’re raising a bilingual child or simply would like to introduce your kids to the Spanish language, these books are a great start to your biblioteca.
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Our clients at TLB Music are always asking us to recommend books about music for their children.  We’re always happy to introduce them to a selection of our favorites from our bookshelves.

Here’s our list of 10 great books about music for kids:
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Just Like You is a children’s book by Robert Kroupa and illustrated by Hannah E. Harrison that teaches children about acceptance.  When we heard that 100% of the profits of Just Like You are donated to charity, we knew we had to share it with you!  The Just Like You Foundation‘s mission is to teach children the values of universal acceptance.
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The bookshelf in the front lobby of our music studio and playroom is always surrounded by young children reading and exploring our book collection.  We have picture books, board books, bilingual books, books about music, books about science, and much more!   Here are five of the most popular board books for young children on our shelves. Continue reading

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