Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Every night growing up, feet pounded down the steps as three pajama-clad children raced for the living room. We piled around Mom on the big, green couch, expectantly peering over her shoulders. An almost reverent silence settled around us, waiting for her words -- "Chapter One." The ritual that had begun long before we could read would take place until we were too big to fit on the couch together.

My mother instilled in all of us a love of reading at an early age, spending hours reading aloud to us and trekking to the Bookmobile, our library on wheels, to fill our bushel basket. We read the good books -- Laura Ingalls Wilder and Ralph Moody and Beverly Cleary -- and the hard books -- Where the Red Fern Grows, The Yearling, and A Taste of Blackberries. We each enjoyed our own favorites as well, with my brother often lost in a Louis L'Amour and my sister and I spending afternoons in Avonlea with Anne. We also had an aunt who invested in our literary lives, mailing brown wrapped packages of soon-to-become favorites. She knew who loved horse books and which of us liked a princess story or needed a title on training the new puppy.

Just days ago, I walked in to the living room to find my three cuddled together, big brother reading aloud. It has been such a joy to share this gift of reading with my own children and to have them beg for "one more chapter," "one more story" or MyLinh's insistent, "book! book! book!" In this coming week, I hope to share some favorite books that might delight you and yours as well.


Kristen said...

What sweet pictures and memories. :)
Looking forward to the book suggestions.

Love you all!
Auntie K

Anonymous said...

What beautiful memories your pictures and story brought to us.
Your children will always remember the precious time you shared reading with them.
Grandma and Pappy

mom said...

i remember one of you (or was it one of your own, crying,"read me, read me!"
sweet memories and photos. so,ri, have you forgiven me yet for the "hard ones"? (smile)
love you all, mom

Delena said...

I loved reading this. I wasn't read to as a child and have just recently really learned to enjoy reading. Its difficult for me to sit down and read to my kids, but I do it because I really want them to love it. Glad to see it worked for you. :)

Ann said...

We have always read picture books at bedtime but rarely chapter books however this year we are homeschooling using Sonlight and have enjoyed chapter books at bedtime all year. It is such a blessing to have my four youngest kids snuggle and and ask for "one more chapter!"

Also, the list Sonlight recommends has been exceptional. I would recommend looking at it even if you aren't using their curric. We just finished Doctor Dolittle. Fun!

Anonymous said...

We are going to start "Narnia" with ours tonight...Ryan and I are excited to share these favorites with the kids! What a perfect post to read today! I have fond memories of sitting in on your family's reading...the ones I remember the most were the Orphan Train series...and your sweet dad snoring away in his chair across the room! :) LydKyd