From Me to Them – My Childhood Reads

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#openbook What is your favorite childhood book?

Ugh. It is so hard to name a favorite anything, especially for something like childhood, which involves an expanse of time and stages of development. My favorite thing to read when I was in fourth grade was not the same as in kindergarten. Just like shoe sizes, my favorite reads grew along with me.

It is difficult for me to scour my memory and pinpoint one favorite book. I was surrounded by them as a child. We had so many books that I would set them up in a circle in the middle of our living room and read them one by one.  I carried them with me whenever possible and always had a healthy stack next to my bed.  So, I won’t be naming one favorite book.

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Instead, I will list a few books from my childhood that I read to my children. These books left an impression on me when I was younger. So, I plucked them from the library shelves or searched for them on Amazon to share with my kids.

The Snow Day by Ezra Keats

 There are a lot more books featuring Black characters now than when I was a child. Most of the books in my little library centered White characters. There wasn’t even one Black Disney princess. When I first read Keats’ book, I remember flipping through the pages over and over. I loved seeing the little Black boy make his way through the snow.

I made sure my little ones read this book, adding it to their library at home.

Madeline by Ludwig Bemelmans

This was one of those books that I would rush to in the school library during reading time.  When I came across it at a second-hand store (we buy a lot of used books), I grabbed it for my daughters.

Ira Sleeps Over by Bernard Waber

Ira’s problem reminded me of my older sister, who had a doll that she brought with her EVERYWHERE. I also had a cousin who kept a baby blanket for so long that she used to wrap the last little strip left of it around her neck before going to sleep. She was eighteen. It’s a pretty cool book about when a child is ready to let go of something.

The Little Red Lighthouse and the Great Gray Bridge by Hildegarde H. Swift

I just found this book while rearranging the house. It is my husband’s copy from when he was a child. While I didn’t have the chance to keep much due to my transient childhood, he got to keep a lot.

His mother gave this to me after our oldest was born. He loved the book because he and his younger brother saw the real Jeffrey’s Hook Light (Little Red Lighthouse) and the George Washington Bridge (the Great Gray Bridge) whenever they visited his grandmother, who lived in Washington Heights.

My kids read newer books as well. They have the opportunity to engage in more diverse reading, with characters representing an array of backgrounds. But I still like to have them connect with the stories my husband and I read as children.




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5 thoughts on “From Me to Them – My Childhood Reads

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  1. I love stories about parents reading cherished books to their children. I’ve never heard of the Little Red Lighthouse. I’ll have to check that one out someday, thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. These are different books from what I’m familiar with and I love that. I remember seeing “The Snowy Day” on a shelf somewhere. My kids had lots of snowy days, so it wouldn’t have appealed to them. “Mom, why are you giving me books with skiing? Think about that!” Gestures toward the window. “Not escapism, right?” Paraphrasing my daughter. She might have been 12, maybe 13.

    But I think that book about the George Washington Bridge is one my mother-in-law told me about. She couldn’t remember the name of the book, but she’d read it when she was young and then she checked it out of the library for my husband. He seemed interested when she was telling us about it. Now I’ll have to see if he remembers it. Because they were always moving too, he’s got very little from his childhood. If that’s the right book, I know what to get him for his birthday.

    Liked by 1 person

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