In a book that is. It's one of my favourite things to do, and thankfully my little ones seem to feel the same way. Heaven knows they didn't get the reading bug from their dear father who has never picked up a book to read for pleasure in all the years I've known him...though credit where it's due, he dutifully reads aloud to Lila every night before he tucks her in so maybe we can still convert him yet. On our weekly library visit, we always come home laden down with armfuls of new selections to add to our already heaving book shelf. Funny thing is, until I had children I never used my local library. However over the past few years, every time we've moved somewhere new, one of the very first things I've done is to seek out our nearest one and join it. We often go along to the storytimes and aside from all the childrens books, I also come back with plenty of books, magazines and dvds for myself.
I'm still trying to figure out Lila's criteria when it comes to choosing books, as she likes to mix it up with some pretty random choices but I admire her commitment to being interested in anything and everything. She is equally drawn to stories about knights and dragons as she is those princesses and fairies. Which is just as well, as there are only so many stories about fairy princesses a person can read aloud without wanting to bang their head against a brick wall. When it come to childrens picture books, I am first and foremost drawn to the ones with beautiful illustrations, every time. If they also have a slightly unusual or inspiring story or subject matter then I love them even more. Here are some recent discoveries that have become big hits around here.
All Through the Year by Jane Godwin & Anna Walker
Precious Little by Julie Hunt, Sue Moss & Gaye Chapman
Cinnamon Baby by Nicola Winstanley & Janice Nadeau
Little Blue by Gaye Chapman
During the past month, Lila has actually made the big step to having a chapter from a book read out to her at bedtime, rather than just a story from a picture book. We have begun with The Enchanted Wood by Enid Blyton (the first book in the Faraway Tree series). This was one of the first books I ever read and I may have been a little obsessed with it. I have been beyond excited for her to be ready for this, mainly so I get to re-read all of my old favourites again, and of course in the hope she may love them too. I've already started gathering together copies of all the childhood classics I adored. Although we are nowhere near ready to retire the picture books yet, here's to a new chapter.