Kelsey Banfeld, The Naptime Chef

I love cookbooks.  I like to browse through them for new ideas, I like to try new recipes, and I like to use them as inspiration for creating my own recipes.  I wanted to share one of my favorites.  It’s called The Family Calendar Cookbook: From Birthdays to Bake Sales, Good Food to Carry You Through The Year and it’s unlike any other cookbook I’ve ever read.  I find myself reaching for it when I need to make a dish for school, a meal to take to a friend or even menu inspiration.

This cookbook is designed for families and although anyone who likes to cook will enjoy it, parents will particularly appreciate it.  It follows the seasons offering suggestions of recipes, menus and kitchen crafts families can create. In the”Fall” chapter you’ll find easy dinner and breakfast ideas to create a delicious back- to-school transition, and entire menus and planning advice for an apple picking weekend and party, Rosh Hashanah and Thanksgiving.  Allergy sensitive classroom treats, teacher’s luncheon meals and lunchbox ideas round out the fall season section. Take a peek inside the book here.

In the summer months, you’ll find recipes and menus to make the most of farmer’s markets, Father’s Day, July 4 and campfire cooking.  And throughout the book you’ll find ideas for easy crafts and entertaining, along with whimsical illustrations. The clever layout helps you plan dishes that are in-season and timely. I’ve made the ginger-ale with my kids, and her vanilla cupcake recipe has become my go-to cupcake. I have a small shelf of favorite cookbooks that sit on my counter, and this one lives there so it can be easily accessible and inspire my kitchen.

Kelsey Banfeld is better known as the Naptime Chef.  A self-described mom and foodie, she helps people fit great food into family life and the book allows you a fun glimpse into her family and how they eat.  This is her second cookbook, and you can follow her blog at