For those who love singing along with their kids, reading (and/or singing) My Aunt Came Back from Louisiane adapted and illustrated by Johnette Downing, will be a treat. This colorful picture book is wonderfully illustrated with photographs of craft-like images depicting goodies brought back from different parts of Louisiana. There's filé gumbo from Thibodaux, a French baguette from Lafayette and crawfish stew from 'ti Mamou!
"My aunt came back from
and she brought me back a meat pie dish.
My aunt came back from ol' Ruston,
and she brought me back some peaches, yum!"
Touted as the "Musical Ambassador
to Children" and the "Pied Piper of Louisiana Music
Traditions," Downing is a local star who has won many awards for
her children's books and songs, among them eight Parents' Choice
Awards, four iParenting Media Awards , two Parent's Guide To
Children's Media Awards; and was also selected as one of "The Women
of the Year 2008" by New Orleans CityBusiness Magazine, "Thirty
People to Watch in 2000" by New Orleans Magazine and "Forty Under
Forty" by Gambit Weekly Magazine.
Downing has written and performed many other Louisiana-inspired folk songs like Down in Louisiana, How to Dress a Po' Boy and Today is Monday in Louisiana. You can catch her performing at local events like the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and libraries all over the state, as well as internationally in far-off places like Egypt, Morocco, Kuwait, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates just to name a few. Her emphasis on education that also entertains and her desire to share local culture with the rest of the world is as impressive as it is heartwarming.