Since our kids average about 20 months apart (closest space is 14 months, longest space is two months shy of three years), there hasn't been a time when I haven't had little people.
Life with littles can be a challenge; it's definitely an adventure and it can often seem draining.
Little people make big messes, chatter incessantly, seem hungry at every time other than meal time, and are nearly always on the move.
They are finding and asserting their independence, vacillating between wanting to do everything by themselves (even the things you wish they wouldn't try on their own, like pouring from a full pitcher of milk) to feigning helplessness on things you know they can do independently (like using a stool to reach a cup from the cupboard).
What I am thinking about today, though, is how much little people LOVE to be read to. Nothing draws a crowd of littles faster than reading a story. I believe it's so important to have and read good books. I thought I'd list here some of our favorites--feel free to comment and tell me some of yours!
This list is in no way exhaustive, just a sampling of my favorites for younger ones.
The Little House
Virginia Lee Burton won the Caldecott Medal in 1943 for her memorable picture book The Little House, a poignant story of a cute country cottage that becomes engulfed by the city that grows up around it. The house has an expressive face of windows and doors, and even the feelings of a person, so she’s sad when she’s surrounded by the dirty, noisy city’s hustle and bustle: “She missed the field of daisies / and the apple trees dancing in the moonlight.” Fortunately, there’s a happy ending, as the house is taken back to the country where she belongs. A classic!
Farmer Dillo Paints His Barn
Farmer Dillo (an armadillo) loves to work. He built a brand new barn, but can't decide what color to paint it. He finally gets it just right. This is a fun one for little ones because they can easily participate by guessing what comes next. We are on our second copy because our first one fell apart from so much lovin'.
Katy is a brave and untiring tractor who pushes a bulldozer in the summer and a snowplow in the winter, making it possible for the townspeople to do their jobs. There is a lot of information about heavy equipment in this book made easily memorable for little folks (and mommies).
Since 1933, The Story About Ping has captivated generations of readers. Ping is a spirited little duck who lives on a boat on the Yangtze River. Ping's misadventures one night while exploring the world around his home form the basis of this timeless classic, which is brought to life by Kurt Wiese's warm and poignant illustrations.
The “Little Mommy” in this story is an adorable little girl. We spend the day in her charming company as she cares for her dolls, treats their ills, gives them a tea party, feeds them dinner, and puts them to bed. Beautifully illustrated, this book has a timeless feel. Definitely a story loved by our little girls! Ruby and Ivy have it memorized.
A modern classic that no child should miss. Since it was first published in 1939, Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel has delighted generations of children. Mike and his trusty steam shovel, Mary Anne, dig deep canals for boats to travel through, cut mountain passes for trains, and hollow out cellars for city skyscrapers -- the very symbol of industrial America. But with progress come new machines, and soon the inseparable duo are out of work. Mike believes that Mary Anne can dig as much in a day as one hundred men can dig in a week, and the two have one last chance to prove it and save Mary Anne from the scrap heap. What happens next in the small town of Popperville is a testament to their friendship, and to old-fashioned hard work and ingenuity.
A little girl and a bear wander away from their blueberry-picking mothers and each mistakes the other's mother for their own. This story and it's illustrations are so, so cute!
A daddy bunny plays with his baby bunny and says, “What will our baby be when he grows up?” Everyone, from the baby’s mother to big sister to Great Aunt Bunny, seems to know: a clown, a policeman, a candy store owner. But the baby only nibbles on his carrot and looks wise . . . for he knows he will grow up to be a nice daddy bunny!
I'd love if you'd tell me about YOUR favorites for little people!