Being that now I am a Mom and reading is fundamental for Charlotte's development, I want to be sure to foster an early love of reading. I want her to get excited for our weekly trips to the library for story time. I want her to be like my best friend, Emily, who would read in her walk-in closet with a flash light after her mom tucked her in at night. :) Yes, I want my Charlotte to be a book worm. I know in our face paced world with everything becoming digital and online the ability to "unplug" and immerse herself with a good book in the future will be challenging but hey I'm always up for a challenge!
Pulling all the books off the shelf and then selecting the perfect one.
*This photo wasn't staged, I pinky promise
Because I knew the value of reading was something I wanted before Charlotte even arrived the hostesses of my baby shower had everyone bring a book as part of their gift. Translation - instant, well stocked library. It was / is awesome because everyone brought their favorites and I don't think I got duplicates of anything! And as you may recall my college roommates also supplied Charlotte with books and videos of themselves reading the books which I blogged about here. From Dr. Seuss to the Velveteen Rabbit to Everyone Poops (thanks, Kel) - we started with a solid foundation which now we have enjoyed adding to. Speaking of adding, this week we found two books that I was wanting for our home library at Goodwill for 50 cents each; you can't beat that and I highly recommend checking your Goodwill for books too!
One of many books we received at my Hoptown shower
But what's even better than a bargain book is a FREE book once a month for five years. Let me share! Back to my best friend, Emily - it will come as no surprise that she was the one who introduced me to a book program called, "Dolly Parton's Imagination Library." I laughed when she said Dolly Parton because she isn't the first person who comes to mind when I think about reading, the guy from the show Reading Rainbow is. However, Dolly Parton created a foundation which provides FREE, you read that right, FREE books once a month to your child from birth to 5-years-old. Almost too good to be true! So here's the rub - it isn't offered everywhere but thankfully it is offered in our town. Another minor rub - for our county you can't register online and had print off a form and mail it in yourself. Easy peasy for FREE books in my opinion. After I mailed it in I was a little skeptical and after a month plus of no book in our mailbox I emailed the lady in charge to check on our book status. Then TA-DA our first book arrived last week and is "The Little Engine that Could" in hardback. To learn more about this awesome program visit here: https://imaginationlibrary.com/
But let me be honest folks, reading with a 13 month old a couple times a day can be challenging. Girlfriend is easily distracted and rarely wants to sit still but we keep at it every.single.day. Because it is the moments when she excitedly crawls to her bookcase and hands me a book to read or when she points to the right animal when I ask "where is the dog / cat / bunny?" or giggles when she turns the page all by herself of her favorite pop-up book that lets me know that it is happening. Beginning to love reading is happening and what I've learned is that it takes intentionality, patience and having books in every room, car and purse to do so.
So what's your favorite children's book? Please share, I want to be sure we have it in stock.
A wanna be book worm