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!

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Day 224: Pictures From Our Vacation

It's February:  that ironic month in New England that seems oh-so-long, despite being the year's shortest.  Naturally, given the weeks of sub-freezing temperatures and sicknesses that always grace our household at this time of year, I'm dreaming of summer.  Sweet, sweet summer, with days spent playing on the beach and swimming in the lake and hiking in the mountains of New Hampshire.  Ahhh….. Alas, warm weather is still a few months away, so I'll have to settle for looking at pictures of sunny places, dreaming about vacation, and drinking coconut coffee.

When we went to the library last week and my children happily picked random books from the shelves, I turned to my trusty list of books to find, hoping to bring home a few new titles I've been wanting to read for a while.  Pictures From Our Vacation was one such title on that list, having been recommended by my fabulous friend Melinda, children's librarian extraordinaire, who hailed it as one of her kids' favorite books last summer.  I was thrilled to find that our library had it available and added it to our pile, eager to bring it home.  Thanks, as always, Melinda, for the fabulous recommendation!

I absolutely love this story! I've never read anything by Lynne Rae Perkins before, but there are many Cynthia-Ryland-esque qualities about this book that I just love.  It's a wonderfully sweet story about a family's vacation to visit relatives and the memories they make along the way.  At the start of the trip, the mother gives each of the children a Polaroid camera and a scrapbook in which to place their pictures so that they can have a nice souvenirs from their vacation.  The kids snap pictures along the way -- of hillsides, the sky, the back of their dad's head as he drives -- but as they are returning home, they realize that the photographs hardly remind them of their vacation at all.  Rather, it's the time spent with family, the laughter, the stories, the cool feel of the water in the lake -- all of the things that they couldn't capture on film -- that were the most memorable. The snapshots, images, and maps with which Perkins illustrates the book are perfect, and I couldn't love the message of this story any more.  This will definitely be a book that we add to our summer vacation collection.

I'll end this post with my favorite excerpt from the book. While I will always take pictures to capture the moments that we spend together as a family, I hope that my children will believe, as I do, that it is the time we spend doing those things together that is the most wonderful of all.

"I looked out the window.  There were big electrical towers alongside the highway.  I took a picture of them.  In my mind they looked like giant robots marching across the earth, carrying the electricity along in their hands.  It's probably hard to take a picture that shows that, even with a really good camera. And it's hard to take a picture of a story someone tells, or what it feels like when you're rolling down a hill or falling asleep in a house full of cousins and uncles and aunts.  There are a lot of things like that.  But those kinds of pictures I can keep in my mind."


Unknown said...

I love this blog. Keep it up! Mia x

Lauren said...

Thank you! So glad you like it! :)

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