Childhood books

My parents, not to mention my brother and sisters, read to me as a kid.  It was the start of my love for books.  One of my favorite pictures of my dad is me sitting in his lap as he’s reading to me.  When my siblings had kids of their own, back out came the books.  I read a lot to my nieces and nephews too, many of the books were the sames ones that were read to me.

I was talking with people at work and some of my other friends, discussing what books do we remember.  It’s amazing how remembering them brings back such great feelings, like a feeling of wonder and magic that stays inside, just waiting to fill you again.  In fact, today at lunch, I saw a Dr. Seuss book and read it.  I had the biggest smile as I saw so many of my “old friends” again.

Dr. Seuss was of course HUGE! I can still quote from some of the books.  “Big A, little a, what begins with A?  Aunt Annie’s alligator. A…a…A …”  “One fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish.”    My mom told me that when I was little, I would tell people that I’d read them a book, and I’d read Hop on Pop.  The truth was, I had memorized it, but wanted to be like the grownups, reading on my own.  “Mulberry Street” was one of the books when I was “bigger” and reading to myself (on top of begging people to read it to me too).    Cat in the Hat, the Grinch, Horton, the Lorax…. so many wonderful books.

I wanted a purple crayon like Harold’s so bad!!  I wanted to draw airplanes and forests, friendly animals and stairs that went up and up and up! Remember when he made a whole city?  Including a police officer?  He went to the North Pole in one adventure and the stars in another.  He drew his own circus and artwork in his room.  Lucky, lucky Harold!

Good ol’ Max.  I not only remember “Where the Wild Things Are”, but I remember Max being in an animated special with music done by Carol King.

How many kids can go to an island of monster looking creatures and actually become their king?

Max could.

“… and made him a king of all  wild things.”

You go, Max.

I actually had Christmas cards a few years ago that had Harry and his Christmas sweater on them.  I sent them only to people who I knew would remember Harry.

I loved Harry.  I used to have a bunch of his books.   “Harry and the Sea”, “Harry the Dirty Dog”, “Harry and the Lady Next Door”…. he was a great dog.

In this one, I remember he finally unravels the sweater he hates and a bird uses it to make a nest, making them both happy.  Then he gets a sweater he looks, one that has his exact spots.

When I was older, my sister Terry got me Paddington Bear, and would take me to the library so I could read each one!

For some reason, I always remember his first story, the one on Guy Fawkes day, and the one where they build a snowman around him the most.

Frederick….  what a great book and, sadly, not one that a lot people seemed to have read – or read to them.  The artwork is…. breathtaking and the story….

“But Frederick,” they said, “you are a poet!”

Frederick blushed, took a bow, and said shyly, “I know it.”

…I can still hear my sister Terry’s voice reading that last line….


One response to “Childhood books

  1. My parents didn’t read much to me when I was a kid. I do remember having the Dr. Seuss books which I loved so much. I think my favorite was the one with the all the dogs, Go Dog Go. I did read a lot to my daughter and she is still an avid reader today. Her favorite book was, The Monster at the End of the Book. (The monster was Grover)

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