"The Apple Cake", by Nienke van Hichtum
This lovely book makes me sigh and smile every time I read it. It's one of those books that leaves you feeling like you just did a good thing just by reading your child this one book.
It's about a lovely old woman who fancies eating an apple cake, but doesn't have any apples. SHe has all the other ingredients, just no apples. So she sets off with a basket of plums hoping that maybe she'll find someone who'd like to trade her plums for some apples.
Along the way she meets many people and trades many times, but not for apples...
" A bag of feathers for a basketful of plums, a bouquet of flowers for a bag of feather, a gold chain for a bouquet of flowers, a little dog and a blessing for a gold chain - all giving and receiving, giving and receiving. and who knows, I may yet come home with some apples." That was what the old woman said to herself as she trotted along.
The illustrations are stunning. The story inspiring and ever so gentle and kind. And when you're done reading you're pretty much guaranteed to be in the mood to make some apple cake! Better make sure you've got some apples in the house......or better yet - go off to trade for some ;)