Since yesterday WAS my birthday, I thought this would make a good choice for this week’s Perfect Picture Book Friday. Also, it is my dream to have Helen Oxenbury illustrate one of my books someday — call it my very own birthday wish! 😉

It’s My Birthday

Written and illustrated by Helen Oxenbury

Candlewick Press, August, 1994

Suitable for: Ages 2+

Themes/Topics: Birthdays, Friendship, Baking, Sharing, Teamwork

Opening/Synopsis: From Kirkus: “A sweet young epicene sets out to bake a birthday cake. The little one is aided by a parade of animal friends–a chicken, a cat, a bear, a pig, a dog, a monkey–all of whom scurry about to pull together the various ingredients and then lend their expertise to the baking. The odd company gather on the last page to share and celebrate in typically cheerful Oxenbury (Tom and Pippo on the Beach, 1993) style.

Activities:  The most obvious one is to bake a cake, of course! You could also use it as a cooking discussion in general and talk about ingredients and how they work together to make a dish. Having kids set up a birthday party with stuffed animals is a fun idea too.

Why I Like This Book: What’s not to love about a book where a child bakes a cake and then shares it with animal friends? And it’s illustrated by Helen Oxenbury!

For more fantastic picture books and resources please visit author Susanna Leonard Hill’s blog and find the tab for Perfect Picture Books.

Categories: Birthdays, Perfect Picture Book Friday, Picture Books · Tags: , , , , ,



  1. Looks like a fun one, plus I need to study the baking angle. (A topic of my February 12x draft). My son helped me mix up my first bath of Gluten Free cupcakes. I get all the credit for the rocks I produced. I’ll try again.

    • I’d love to take a bath in cupcakes. 🙂 Good story there even though I know it was a typo.

  2. This looks wonderful, Julie, and a perfect choice for you this week 🙂 I’m really glad to have another birthday-themed book to add to our list because I think there’s only one other so far – definitely not very many! – and birthdays are an important topic for kids! 🙂

    • Is there a more important topic to a kid? My kids are already gearing up for their HALF birthdays in July – LOL.

  3. Sounds like a lovely book. I hope you had a wonderful birthday. 🙂

  4. I’m running a little late, but happy birthday!

    We never need much excuse to bake a cake at our house. My daughter loves scraping the bowl…

    Thank you for visiting my blog too – and sharing my news. 🙂

  5. Sounds like a charmer — what’s not to like about baking a cake for friends! (And now I must educate myself about Helen Oxenbury…) Wonder of wonders, our library actually has it, so I’ll get to have it in my hands SOON!

  6. Yum! Perfect picture book choice this week. I hope your special day was yummy, too – now I’m hungry!

  7. I so relate to your Helen Oxenbury dream! That cover is gorgeous! I so want little animal friends to help ME with my baking!

    • I NEED animal friends to help me bake. I’m a good cook but a terrible baker. My cakes always collapse in the middle.

  8. I love the soft colors of the illustrations. Celebrating a birthday with this book looks perfect!

  9. Sounds like a treat! I love creative birthday books 🙂

  10. I am a Helen Oxenbury fan too. And a cake fan.

    happy birthday


  11. I love Helen Oxenbury. That is all.

  12. This book sounds and looks cute! I would love to read it! 🙂 The cover art reminds me of Winnie the Pooh.
    Happy (late) Birthday!

    • It is kind of like Winnie the Pooh Erik. Hadn’t seen it that way before, but you’re right.

  13. Happy birthday, fellow May baby! 🙂 Don’t you just LOVE having a birthday at a holiday weekend, and in one of the best months of the year, too. Mine is on Monday (5/28). When I was young, I used to think everyone celebrated my birthday with BBQs and parades. I hope you get your birthday wish to have Helen Oxenbury illustrate one of your picture books! Her illustrations are so perfectly lovely. My wish? Jane Dyer. Or Ruth Sanderson. Oh, what the heck, it’s a birthday wish, so I say BOTH! lol

    • I DO love having a birthday in May. Happy early birthday to you to!

      I’d love Jane Dyer too. Or Marla Frazee. Or Peter Sis. This list could go on and on – LOL.

  14. Happy BIRTHDAY Julie!! Since May is nearly done celebrate all of June as well. Heck – go for the rest of the year. May this year bring you many many contracts!!

  15. Hi Julie,

    I just wanted to let you know that I nominated you for The Versatile Blogger Award!

    Thanks for everything,


  16. Oh I hope you had a lovely birthday, Julie! This looks a very cute book to celebrate.

  17. Hi Julie. Hope all your birthday wishes come true. Helen

  18. oooohhh I hope I am not to late in wishing you a Happy Birthday. Love baking cakes myself and the thought of little critters helping sounds awesome….lol.

  19. Happy Birthday, Julie…we will just keep this going on and you will have birthday wishes every day till next year. 🙂 As long as you don’t get a year older with every B-day wish, I guess that wouldn’t be bad at all…and if you did, you would be living up to the guess of the pupils at your last school visit. 🙂 🙂
    What a lovely story idea…and yes, the illustrations look charming! And baking a cake is ALWAYS a great activity…as well as eating it. 🙂

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