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!
After falling in love with Leo Lionni's classic story Frederick, I knew I had to read more of his books. We've read a few others since then, and Swimmy is definitely among our favorites. I was thrilled to find a copy at our local library's book sale recently, and both of my children request it frequently. Swimmy tells the story of a little fish who is different from all the rest. After he finds himself all alone in the sea, Swimmy discovers some of the ocean's most magnificent and beautiful creatures. "A medusa made of rainbow jelly... an eel whose tail was almost too far away to remember..." and sea anemones who look like "pink palm trees swaying in the wind." Finally, Swimmy discovers another group of little fish and invites them to come out and explore the ocean with him. When they are too scared to leave the safety of their crevice for fear of being eaten by bigger fish, Swimmy comes up with the perfect plan; one that empowers them all, while at the same time celebrating his uniqueness and individuality. I don't want to give away the ending, but it's sweet, clever, and bound to feel empowering to young children. Lionni's descriptions throughout the story are gorgeous, and I love the way his simple words are so vivid and rich in detail. To me, Swimmy is about the importance of always being yourself, and the power one individual has to inspire others and bring about change. At the same time, it's also about the collective power of teamwork; a wonderful reminder that we are far more influential together than we are on our own. If you have not yet discovered the fabulous and beautiful works of Leo Lionni, be sure to look for them the next time you are at your local library. Swimmy, among others, is a classic that is sure to delight you and your child.
As anyone living in New England will tell you, this winter's weather has been particularly brutal. Consequently, my family and I have spent a lot of time cozied up on the couch reading stories and sipping hot cocoa, and have made many trips to our local library. I just love the feeling of discovering a wonderful new story, but often find it is not as easy as it might seem (though perhaps this is because I am usually chasing my 3 year old around the library or trying to keep my 6 month old from chewing on all of the books.) So begins my quest to find a great new book to read to my little ones every day for a year. And I don't mean just any good book. I mean one that I won't mind reading 10 times in a row. One that we'll read so often and love so much that we'll need to go out and get our own copy. My friends have shared their personal favorites with me and I am happy to do the same with you. Thanks for joining our journey!
Busy Mom Disclaimer:
Ideally, my great-book-a-day-for-a-year blog would have one amazing post for each calendar day and be all neat and tidy like that. But I know myself too well. And besides, I'm looking for the best of the best here. I don't want to settle on posting about a book that I don't love, simply to be able to add something new every day. So, my posts will simply be numbered 1 to 365. In the end, we'll still have a year's worth of good books (or so I hope!) Hopefully you'll find my list to be worth the wait. And please, by all means, if there is a book you love that you think should make the list, let me know. Just leave a comment telling me the title and author and I would love to check it out. I'll be sure to give credit where credit is due. Thank you!
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