Michelle Obama is on a roll. First she implements the White House kitchen garden, inspiring who-knows-how-many backyard gardeners to grow their own food, then she launches a childhood anti-obesity program, the likes of which haven’t been seen since Nancy Regan’s commendable “Just Say No” campaign. Now she’s writing a gardening book and has pledged the proceeds to charity.
The first lady just signed a deal with Crown Publishing for a book about the south lawn kitchen garden and healthy eating. Still no word on a title, but the book, which is said to include some of the Obama family's favorite recipes, is set to hit bookstores in April 2012.
Just yesterday, she took to the dirt again to plant the third kitchen garden on the White House south lawn, joined by local schoolchildren, as in years past. So far, the garden has yielded more than 2,000 pounds of produce, the White House says. In addition Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move!” campaign has been widely publicized, with more local schools around the country exploring on-site gardens of their own.
It’s one thing for kids to plant a bean in a paper cup and tend to it on the classroom windowsill until it sprouts – a great project for little ones, by the way – but to cultivate the soil, plant, care for and then harvest produce that they’ll consume themselves, well, that’s a completely different ballgame.
"We've gotten food out of the garden, and we can eat it and it's good," Obama said Wednesday during a brief telephone interview with The Associated Press. "So we wanted to share the story with the rest of the nation and perhaps with the rest of the world, because we get so many questions about the garden: How did we do it? Why did we do it? How do I do this in my own home or community?"
Other first ladies have penned books, as well, most recently Laura Bush and daughter Jenna’s “Read All About It!” and Hillary Clinton’s “It Takes a Village.”