This spring I got one of the best surprises. My brother, my older very annoying but endearing brother, was expecting a baby! I was going to be an Aunt to an adorable little niece or nephew. And boy was I excited (not as much as my mother was though)! A while ago they had their reveal party to which I found out I was getting a little niece. And as the baby shower approaches this got me thinking. . . Much like my childhood I wanted her to grow up around books that she could love just like Stephen and I did. So down below I have compiled a list of my five most favorite children’s books.
1. GUESS HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU by Sam McBratney
The Little Nutbrown Hare tries to show how much he loves his daddy by spreading his arms out wide and hopping as high as he can. But the Big Nutbrown Hare who can spread his arms wider and hop higher loves the Little Nutbrown Hare just as much if not more.
This one is at the top of my list mainly because of sentimental value. Everytime I read this short little book I’m reminded of my mother. She and I are fairly close and she would always tuck me into bed at night. Even now I distinctly remember those nights.
2. VELVETEEN RABBIT by Margery Williams
A stuffed rabbit sewn from velveteen is given to a little boy as a Christmas present. The boy instead plays with his other toys who snub the considerably old-fashioned velveteen rabbit. One night to help him sleep the boy’s nana gives him the rabbit in place of a lost toy and soon after the rabbit becomes the boy’s favorite toy. Time passes and the rabbit becomes shabbier he meets some real rabbits learning that he is not real. The boy comes down with scarlatina (scarlet fever) and his taken to the seaside and his room disinfected leaving the velveteen rabbit out in the trash. He cries as a tear drop lands on the ground a flower appears along with a magic fairy. She claims that she can make him real and takes the rabbit into the forest to be with the others. The next spring the rabbit returns to look at the boy, and the boy sees a resemblance to his old velveteen rabbit.
This makes it at number two because of the lesson it teaches. This story teaches life lessons like loving who you are and loving unconditionally. In the end I believe that is what makes this story so special.
3. THE GIVING TREE by Shel Silverstein
There was once a tree who loved a boy. Every day the boy would come to the tree and eat her apples, swing from her branches, or slide down her trunk. As the boy grew older he wanted more and more from the tree. And the tree, well she gave and she gave until there was no more.
At number three is the Giving Tree (sorry I just had to rhyme). Again this childrens book teaches some very important life lessons about giving but also receiving in turn.
4. GOODNIGHT MOON by Wise Brown
In a great green room where a little bunny is tucked away in bed he says “Goodnight room, goodnight moon.” He says this to all the things in his softly lit room; to the picture of three little bears sitting in chairs, and to the clocks, the socks, and the mitten and kittens. He says this one by one until the little bunny says goodnight.
I just feel like this book is a wonderful bedtime story to read. And while it’s repetitive it’s also short and sweet.
5. OH, THE PLACES YOU’LL GO by Dr. Seuss
This is an ode to life where Dr. Seuss addresses graduates of all ages and gives them the get-up-and-go to move mountains.
Even as I get older I will always have a love for Dr. Seuss which why I had to put this book on the list. Part of loving this more came more from when I was older. When I graduated High School last year my parents used this as my guest book to my graduation party. It’s a neat little momento for me and it was truly awesome to see how some of the guest would use the story and images to write their messages. You could really tell who put some thought into it.
See ya in the A.M.
“I have a lot of respect and love for children’s books.”
-Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni