Pulse: Teen book, Grammy nominations, Elf and tree donation

Will Ferrell (right) stars as Buddy the Elf in New Line Cinemas " Elf. "  (AP Photo/ Alan Markfield/New Line Productions )
Ravina Thakker, 13, of Plainfield, will present her book, "The Adventure of a Lifetime" Sunday, Dec. 8 at Anderson’s Bookshop in Naperville.  |  Submitted
Ravina Thakker, 13, of Plainfield, will present her book, "The Adventure of a Lifetime" Sunday, Dec. 8 at Anderson’s Bookshop in Naperville.  |  Submitted

Warm welcome

13-year-old to sign book at Anderson’s

Ravina Thakker started writing “The Adventure of a Lifetime” when she was 8 years old. On Sunday, she plans her first book signing at 1 p.m. at Anderson’s Bookshop, 123 W. Jefferson Ave. in Naperville.

The 13-year-old did have a little help publishing it from the Make-A-Wish Foundation and Naperville-based Sourcebooks, which hopes supporters will give Thakker a warm welcome. Thakker has cystic fibrosis but writing helps her cope with the disease.

The book features 9-year-old Betty Hilmar who thinks her life couldn’t possibly be more boring until she receives a book that puts her in the middle of a top secret mission.

Thakker, of Plainfield, won first place in the Plainfield Great Reads writing contest as an 11-year-old.

Grammy time

Signature School semifinalists named

It was a musical trifecta last month for three area high schools when the Grammy Foundation announced their Signature Schools semifinalists on Nov. 20.

Metea Valley, Waubonsie Valley and Naperville North are among the 123 schools nationwide that have been selected.

Created in 1998, the Grammy Signature Schools program recognizes top U.S. public high schools that are making an outstanding commitment to music education during an academic school year. You may recall, in 2012 Neuqua Valley was recognized by the foundation as the top music program the country.

Stay tuned, the finalists will be announced in mid-March, and the selected schools will receive a Grammy award and a monetary grant ranging from $1,000 to $15,000 to benefit their music program.

Now that’s music to our ears.

Tastes like Christmas

Miss Joan’s Cupcakes celebrates ‘Elf’

We’re getting so close to Christmas, you can practically taste it. Well, that’s if you stop by Miss Joan’s Cupcakes in Naperville on Saturday.

“One of our favorite holiday movies is ‘Elf,’” said Miss Joan’s owner Joan Selitzky. “Last year we decided to devote an entire day around the movie. We had so much fun, and our customers really enjoyed it too, that we decided to repeat it again this year.”

Fresh from the oven and inspired by the movie, Miss Joan’s will be offering a special array of sweets crafted after Buddy the elf’s four major food groups: candy, candy cane, candy corn and syrup.

“It’s just an event for people to share their love of the movie ‘Elf’ together,” said Selitzky. “It’s a great way to celebrate a kick off to the holiday season.”

The shop is decorated for the event, and there will be an opportunity for customers to enter a drawing for prizes. In addition, free hot chocolate will be on tap throughout the day.

For more information, visit www.missjoanscupcakes.com

Gift of love

Family shares tree they grew from sapling

Naperville residents Michael and Wendy Sadler grew the tree that now stands near Santa House from a sapling.

They planted the blue spruce 19 years ago. They hope their donation will delight the many children who will see it this year near the Dandelion Fountain on the Riverwalk at the corner of Jackson Avenue and Webster Street.

The tree will remain there through the holidays.

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