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Children’s books the present that keeps on giving

Submitted by on Thursday, 18 December 2008 No Comment

A version of this post was originally written for another site a year ago, when the guys were 4 and 2. Their book preferences have shifted since — Big Guy’s more interested in “Your Favorite Seuss” now, but the sentiment remains the same.


Tonight’s regular episode of Simple Gifts is being preempted so that we may bring you the following special presentation. Cornhusk Christmas: The Guys’ Take. Fed up with mom’s embarrassing parsimonious ways, they’ve hijacked the computer. They are disappointed, though, that I insist the text be black. Big Guy loves to type in green.

You know what we kids really want for Christmas? We want just a bit of your uninterrupted attention. We want you to take your fingers off the stinkin’ keyboard, put down the coffee cup and let us curl up on your lap for a good read.

So if there’s a new mom or dad on your Christmas list, here are some of our favorites. Trust us: You big people will love them too. Mommy doesn’t mind reading them again and again and again, unlike some books that we know she hides from us. Whatever happened to that “10 Little Rubber Ducks” book we know you hate, Mom?

Put them in a basket if you want, Mom – we’re all for it if it will help you clean out Little Guy’s closet. But break down and let loose of a few bucks – it’s a great investment. And it’s not about spending the money anyway. It’s about spending the time.

Big Guy’s picks:

“If Kisses Were Colors” “If kisses were colors, you’d see every one of the bands of a rainbow that shines in the sun.” This was the first book I fell in love with. In fact, we’re on our third copy, because it took me a while to get that not all paper is for tearing. It’s the perfect combination of cute dancing animals and serious cuddle time. Come to think of it, we haven’t read this one in a while Mom! Can we tonight? Please, please, please!

“Chica Chica Boom Boom” Has a great beat, you can dance to it – I give it a 10. “A told B and B told C, ‘I’ll meet you at the top of the coconut tree. Chica chica boom boom, will there be enough room?” A funky story about all 26 letters and their misadventures trying to climb the tree. No great message here, but, read with the right rhythm, it’s a lot of fun. .

“Guess How Much I Love You?” This one might be controversial, but not in our house. It’s a sweet story that’s led to one of our favorite routines. Mommy whispers in my ear, “I love you right up to the moon and back” each day as she goes to work. And I say, “I love you right up to God.” Hmmm … maybe this book does encourage competition.

Little Guy’s picks:

“Only You” This was my first favorite book. “I love your mouth, your ears, your eyes” – I love all the stuff this book has in it that encourages Mom to play around with me. And it’s full of lots of different people, boys and girls of all different colors.

“Goodnight, Moon” They tell me this one is a classic. I’m not sure what a classic is, but I know that I get the point that it’s bedtime after we say good night to the moon, the stars, the air, noises everywhere. I like this writer so much that I’m also recommending …

“The Big Red Barn”“By the big red barn in the great green field …” I’m on my third copy of this one, too, and it’s a board book. Do you know how many times I had to thumb through a board book to dismantle it?

Copyright 2008 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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