I just did a book purge in both our upstairs and downstairs bookshelves to make room for some new, big-boy books. It was not easy for me. I think I have a touch of the hoarding. I just get really attached to toys and books. I rationalize it by saying things like, “Well, he might play with it again!” or “He loved this book; he’ll love it again.” And while I actually believe that’s true for some things, it’s not true for everything. Yes, we loved those chunky Baby Einstein books and yes, we read them every night from the time he was 3 months old. But he hasn’t looked at them in a year and, let’s be honest: he couldn’t really care less about them.

So, what we’re left with now is this dense collection of awesome. Every book on the shelf is a keeper (for now.) We love all the books, but we — well, I — love some more than others. Here are a few of my current faves:

The Mommy Book by Todd Parr. First of all: dude. Todd. Parr. Is. The. Shit. The illustrations are pretty and fun, the topics are current and age-appropriate, and he’s hilarious. C’mon — Underwear Do’s and Don’ts. Funny, right? Anyway, The Mommy Book is a series of things that mommies can be. Short hair, big hair, working at home, working in big buildings, shopping, fishing…you get the picture. It was a no-brainer for our family and we got it when I was pregnant. We have a slew of Todd Parr books in regular rotation. The Underwear one lives in my car. The Who loves to page through it on his own.

Hello, Boston by Martha Day Zschock. Another no-brainer. Of course if this book exists, I am going to have it in our collection. What I super love about it, though, is the rhyming. Despite the fact that we don’t have any Dr. Seuss that we read, I really like rhyming books. I like the cadence. It’s fun for me.

And, speaking of rhyming books, our entire family is a fan of Bee-Bim Bop by Linda Sue Park. This is a book we got from the library several times over the course of a few months last year and eventually just bought it. Even before The Who was fluently talking, he could finish each stanza of this book with “beeeeeeebimBOP!” We keep intending to cook the recipe at the end of the book, too, but haven’t gotten around to it. Soon. ish.

I really like books that speak to our experiences. I like to use literature to keep adventures in our mind and I love to show The Who that his experience is actually represented in print. This is a big reason why I want to write a kids’ book (and will hopefully do it before he is no longer a kid.) Luckily, though, The Who is growing up in a time where we have more than just Heather Has Two Mommies to illustrate his life experience. In fact, we don’t even have that book on our shelves. (I know. I know we should.) What we do have, though, is Mama, Mommy, and Me by Leslea Newman. Short, sweet, cute. We read this one a lot.

There are, of course, lots more, but I will spare you tonight. You must have favorite books for your kids. What are they?


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