Story time is the best time of the day. Whether we're snuggled up on the couch or cozy in our pjs before bed, reading stories with my little ones is one of my favorite things to do. Everyone has a favorite book they remember from their childhood, and every day, parents and kids are discovering new classics of their own. There are many fabulous children's books out there, some of which everyone knows about and others we would have never discovered had my son not simply pulled a random book off a library shelf. I created this blog to share some of these wonderful stories with you. Think of it as a year's worth of the best children's books around, since no day should be without a great story. In the end, I hope we'll all have discovered at least a few new titles that will have made their way onto our list of family favorites. Enjoy!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Day 66: Miss Rumphius

My youngest brother is graduating from high school this week, which is kind of hard for me to believe.  It feels like only yesterday I was reading this book to him.  I'm looking forward to heading to Connecticut to see him graduate later this week, and am even more excited to see what wonderful things he will go on to do with his life. Since my husband and I are both teachers, there have been several other graduations we've attended recently, as well.  The first class of seventh graders I taught at my current school just graduated from high school last week, and the principal actually mentioned this book in her address to them; quite fittingly, I think.  This beautiful classic by Barbara Cooney tells the story of Alice (aka Miss Rumphius, aka the Lupine Lady) and her quest to fulfill her life's dreams:  to travel to far-away places, come home to live by the sea, and make the world a more beautiful place. 

Although I don't think the story ever mentions the location of her house by the sea, I always imagine Miss Rumphius settling down on the coast of Maine (another reason I love this book.)  I find this story particularly beautiful for both its imagery and its message, and simply put, I LOVE it.  It is definitely one of my all-time, absolute favorites.  After all, traveling, the ocean, and nature are three of my favorite things.  What's not to love?   It's a longer story, so is better suited for preschoolers or grade school aged children than toddlers.  I was actually surprised that my son loved the book as much as he did when I first read it to him a few months ago.  Even if you think your child might be too young to fully appreciate it, read it anyway.  It's a wonderful book for children and adults, alike. After reading this story to my son one night before bed, I asked him if he was going to do something to make the world more beautiful.  "Yes," he replied, "but I can't right now because it's too dark outside."  I can't wait to see what that thing will be.  May we all take the advice of Miss Rumphius and her grandfather to heart and make the world a more beautiful place.


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