At my cousin’s recent book-inspired baby shower (which was one of the most gorgeous showers I’ve attended — bar none. More on that in another post!), guests were asked to bring their favorite childhood reads to help build the new little one’s library. As I mentioned in January, I was all over this.
My mom and I made a trip to our local bookstore (yay, we still have one!) to wander the kids’ section. I hadn’t spent any amount of time back there since I worked at Borders, its previous incarnation, and those times were usually awful; they required me getting down my knees to pick up books that had been strewn all over the floor. I can count on one hand the times I’d wander back to the children’s section while working and wouldn’t discover a very localized tornado had chucked everything off the shelves and into the walkway.
But this time? Total fun — though choosing just one was really difficult. I spent way too much time debating the merits of several picture books, reminiscing with Mom about the times she’d read classics like “The Berenstain Bears” to my sister and me. In the end, I wound up selecting an unconventional favorite — because I feared my usual loves, like Dr. Seuss’ One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish, might result in duplicates.
My choice? If You Give A Mouse a Cookie by Laura Joffe Numeroff and illustrated by Felicia Bond.
Published in 1985, the year I was born, I remember spending hours reading and re-reading this story on the floor of my elementary school library. As kids, it was just hilarious. Described as a “circular story,” I loved the symmetry of it all. Although, at 7, I doubt I would have described it that way.
There are so many awesome children’s stories, though — many of which were highlighted at the shower. My sister brought a selection of Mercer Mayer’s “Little Critter” books and a few favorites from “The Berenstain Bears,” and Mom found a musical book featuring “A Charlie Brown Christmas” — the TV special she looked forward to watching every holiday season (and still does!).
It was so fun to see what others had chosen for Karen and Ben’s little girl or boy to come, and I may or may not have gotten some ideas for my own future kids’ secret library. Plus, the whole experience reminded me of some beloved classics I’d completely forgotten: like The Giant Jam Sandwich. Man, that book was awesome.
Um, I kind of added it to my Amazon cart. For . . . me.