I first learned about Jomike Tejido when Mariel introduced me to one of his books, “Ang Pambihirang Sombrero”. This is one of our favorite Filipino read-alouds and we have used it for storytelling in various occasions, complete with a Pambihirang Sombrero prop! In fact, we love it so much that we made a free unit study that you can download here.
Two weeks ago, we attended Jomike’s 8th Solo Exhibit at the Olive Creek Gallery in Makati. We spent about an hour ooh-ing and aah-ing at his beautiful banig (woven mats) art featuring children in a traditional Filipino carnival. His paintings depict the joy and magic brought by the carousel, the cotton candy, and the other sights and sounds in a perya. It definitely brought back memories of the Fiesta Carnival and Payanig sa Pasig days of my youth! I stared long and hard at Mahika, a painting of a little girl on a unicorn, and thought how the Energizer Bunny would love that picture in particular, with its purple and pink hues. Magical, indeed. Sigh. Someday, I will definitely own a Jomike Tejido painting!
In the meantime, I am gladly hoarding all his wonderfully-illustrated children’s books, the latest of which is Ma-Me-Mi-Mumu. Launched at the recent Manila International Book Fair and published by our ultimate favorite Tahanan Books, Jomike’s latest work is about a girl named Sophia who tries to overcome her fear of monsters with the help of her endearing lolo (grandfather). The book features Filipino mythical creatures and puts them in a good light (a less darker light, perhaps) and Lolo Nanding’s suggestions are absolutely hilarious:Pag may kumatok na tikbalang huwag magulantang. Sa halip, bigyan ng damo at tsaa para bumango naman ang hininga.
My three-year-old does not get it yet as she refuses to read anything dark and scary (remember the Un-Princess Princess Book List?) but our friend Tina’s 7-year old son refused to let go of the book the first time we saw it at the MIBF! I recently used it for storytelling in our village Halloween Party and was thrilled to see the children fascinated by the story, too! The bilingual book features Jomike’s wonderful poetry in Filipino and Fran Ng’s equally engaging English translation. Older kids will love the gallery of Philippine supernatural creatures at the end of the book.
What inspired you to write Ma Me Mi MuMu?
Which comes first – the pictures or the words?
There’s a Mumu in your house. What would it be and what would you do?
You’re a Mumu. Which one are you and why?
I would most likely be an aswang because I like how things can be of multiple uses. In my research, the aswang can turn into other forms and not just dogs. I’d like to fly using another form – without getting my body severed in half!
Want to learn more? View this teaser that Jomike made before the launch of Ma-Me-Mi-MuMu.
Or better yet, join our giveaway! We will be giving away a signed copy of Ma-Me-Mi-MuMu and Dindo Pundido, one of Jomike’s earlier works, to one lucky winner! Both books are signed by the author.
Currently reading: The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey by Trenton Lee Stewart, The Absorbent Mind by Maria Montessori Currently reading-aloud: Big Anthony and the Magic Ring by Tomie dePaola, Mr. Putter and Tabby Spin the Yarn by Cynthia Rylant, And So My Garden Grows illustrated by Peter Spier, Is That You, Wolf? by Steve Cox, Tallulah’s Tutu by Marilyn Singer Read All About It is Sanne’s bi-weekly column. Read her welcome post here.