There are two things we know for sure about raising babies: you’re going to be wiping some booties, and you’re going to be reading some books that drive you mad. There will be books that you secretly tuck away on the very top shelf, praying your child magically forgets about, because if you have to read about the turtle who falls over ONE MORE TIME you’re going to lose it. But then there are the books that you have dreamed about sharing with your child since the first time you felt them kick in your belly. Maybe that’s just me, but I was such a voracious reader growing up many of my childhood memories are tied to the pages of the stories I was reading at the time.
I wanted to be Anne of Green Gables, I wanted to live in the woods like The Boxcar Children. Just thinking about some of the titles I chose for this post made me tear up with the nostalgia of innocent curiosity. That’s why I’m so happy to partner with Dr. Smith’s diaper rash ointment to celebrate Children’s Book Week with you all! I’ve talked about my love for their products before, and you may remember Issa and I participated in a video shoot with them WAY back when she was just a wee one! They are big proponents of reading early and often as well, so they’ve offered to host a giveaway for Haute in Texas readers! You can win all five of my top book picks, plus a $50 Amazon gift card and some goodies from Dr. Smith’s! Woo! Let’s get reading!
Don’t let the extra long and slightly strange title fool you. This is my all-time favorite book. A pair of siblings run away from home and decide to live at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, sleeping in the vintage beds and bathing in the wishing fountain water. To my young mind, it was a fantastical adventure, and I ordered it for Cora when she was just a toddler. I’ve read the chapters to her now, but I can’t wait until she’s old enough to experience it for herself!
If you can get through one reading of Chicka Chicka Boom Boom without shaking your tush a little, I will be impressed. This book is definitely for the younger crowd, but it is jazzy and hilarious, and Cora has it memorized by heart. THIS, however, is a book that I never get tired of reading to her. It’s so much fun!
I’m suddenly noticing a theme that a lot of my favorite books involve independent main characters on some sort of lone adventure. I’m sure a psychologist would have a field day with that. Ha! Corduroy is a slightly damaged bear in a huge department store that just wants a friend to call his own. A little girl suddenly comes into his life, and I’d be lying if I said I don’t tear up at the ending to this day.
This is a book for the older kiddos in your life, but it’s one I read and re-read a thousand times. If you’ve ever been asked the question, “What would you do if you were alone on a deserted island?” this book will give you plenty of ideas for survival and adventure. Our heroine is a young girl who is left behind by her tribe and must fend for herself in a wild environment. This chapter book inspired many make-believe adventures on my childhood farm in Indiana, and I hope it will someday do the same for my girls.
Shel Silverstein has to be one of the most incredible human beings ever. His poetry gripped my imagination as a child, and the whimsy and creativity with which he writes inspires me even today. If you want your children to develop a wicked sense of humor or just enjoy a wonderful daydream, his collection is a must for your library. Here’s just one example in conclusion:
LISTEN TO THE MUSTN’TS
Listen to the MUSTN’TS, child,
Listen to the DON’TS
Listen to the SHOULDN’TS
The IMPOSSIBLES, the WON’TS
Listen to the NEVER HAVES
Then listen close to me—
Anything can happen, child,
ANYTHING can be.
Now I want to go cuddle up with a blanket on a cozy couch and lose myself in a good book! I wish I had the time to read that I did when I was younger, but I can tell you that even to this day, when I pick up a great read it is difficult for me to walk away. I simply want the same for my daughters, because I know reading opened my mind, taught me invaluable lessons, and shaped my education and career in ways I am still discovering.
P.S. I received compensation in exchange for this post. Don’t worry though, all opinions are my own!
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