Woolies for the Winter, books for me and you (A Giveaway!).

Until relatively recently, Henry hated literacy.wooliesOr at least, that’s what we would joke about, as he would contort his body and cry if we tried to sit still and read a book. He has recently changed his tune a bit, but mostly because he likes to chew on the binding and pages, which means that we are strictly in the board book camp for the present moment.fall2016-393Confession: most board books are unspeakably dull.

There are some notable exceptions, like the Nancy Tillman books that make me cry with their perfection at expressing the love parents have for their children. Or this book that, while not exactly super original, manages to have a father in the I-love-you-so-much role usually reserved for mothers, which I appreciate, or even this book, which has sing-song lyrics that are fun to read. We have some board books that people gave us that I enjoy paging through as Henry drools on the pictures.fall2016-390fall2016-392But on the whole, most books for babies are tedious for parents to read and offer little beyond a teething surface for babies. Which is unfortunate, as I want Henry to learn to love reading. I want him to have an ear for poetry and an eye for beauty, and that should start with his first books. I also want to enjoy reading it, so it better rhyme, and I want the images to be the first art he learns to love.fall2016-394fall2016-395fall2016-397Which is why I was thrilled when my sister-in-law Laura started talking about the children’s book she was illustrating and women’s publishing house she was starting with another talented mom. Laura and Betsy have really thought about the books they are producing, really focused on poetic words that are a pleasure to read, and beautiful images that come from someone’s hand- not a computer. Laura was telling me about how it took forever to find a printer who could succeed in reproducing the delicate water colors, but that was absolutely necessary. They want children to engage with the images as something where the creative process left its mark.fall2016-407fall2016-408fall2016-405fall2016-409fall2016-398I ordered a couple books when they did their Kickstarter last fall, and they came this week, leaving me speechless at how beautiful they are. Laura and Betsy managed to transcribe in words and images the hilarity and sweetness of the endless bundle necessary to go outside. I think of the words when I try to get squirmy Henry into his winter wear and out the door, loving how they made poetry and beauty of the mundane.fall2016-399fall2016-400And because it’s Christmas, and I am positive you will love this book as much as we do, I’m giving a couple away!

To enter, just leave a comment below with your favorite children’s book anytime between now and Sunday night at 8pm.Β  I will send this gem of a book your way (sorry- no international shipping). I’m giving a second book away over on Instagram, so hop on over there if you want to enter twice! You can also order a copy here… and get excited for the spring, summer, and fall books that are coming out over the next year!fall2016-401fall2016-402(And thanks to Suze who snapped these pictures when she and her daughters came into the city to hang out with us this week! Yes, Henry is wearing two outfits in these pictures…and an entirely different one over on Instagram. Doing things with babies sometimes takes several days and as many outfits.)


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24 Responses to Woolies for the Winter, books for me and you (A Giveaway!).

  1. Caroline says:

    I entered on instagram with Curious George but I’m going to say Everywhere Babies here because it’s so adorable and rhymes!

  2. Laurie Whiteman says:

    The very hungry caterpillar and Sandra Boynton books (the going to bed book)

  3. Jamie Vanderput says:

    We love The Little Blue Truck book! My eldest has it memorized since we have read it so many times.

  4. Heidi says:

    My boys’ favorites as little guys were the Little Blue Truck books, some of the Baby Lit books (A Christmas Carol and Wuthering Heights are what we started with), and now they love Bear Stays Up for Christmas and quote Chicka Chicka Boom Boom nonstop…they’re very into anything alphabet-related.
    Basically…we have lots of favorites. πŸ™‚

  5. Simone says:

    Not board books, but How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World AND Summer Legs are both fun to read & the language is lovely!

  6. Bekah says:

    Jamberry is my favorite for the sing-songiness that makes out loud reading fun, and Magritte’s Imagination is great for the pictures, as it’s a “story” told with just his paintings.
    PS- Harrison still loves to chew on books, but has recently turned a corner where now he will actually sit and “listen” and legitimately look at the pictures. He will lean over to one side whenever I start to turn the page, trying to see the next page as soon as possible, it makes my heart sing.
    Of course, on the other side of that, I read Magritte’s Imagination to him 4 times in a row today, as every time I tried to put it down he got angry about it …

  7. Anna says:

    I love the Little Blue Truck books and the Baby Lit Pride & Prejudice!

  8. mrsroe says:

    I’ve wanted to try the Baby Lit books. My favorite board books are Goodnight Moon and Barnyard Dance. I can’t wait to get to Animalia once I’m sure my littles won’t eat the pages… πŸ™‚

  9. Christine Clemmer says:

    I entered on Instagram but loved coming here and seeing images of that adorable book. Another favorite around here right now is this version of The Gingerbread Man. Baked little men today and read the book again tonight with my 4 year old. https://www.amazon.com/Gingerbread-Man-Jim-Aylesworth/dp/0545235146

  10. Julie Finley says:

    IF YOU HAVE A HAT is a great book to read to little ones. I also love THE GIVING TREE.

  11. ledyardamy says:

    I said The Velveteen Rabbit on your instagram, and it truly is my favourite. I also love On The Night You Were Born.

  12. Charissa Peters says:

    Growing up I absolutely loved The Littles series and anything by Thornton Burgess– I spent years imagining the Littles living in the walls of our house and all the animals on our huge forested farm had Burgess’s names and personalities as far as I was concerned.

    My 16 month old’s current favorite is Scruffy the Tugboat since she likes saying, “toot toot!” but I often read her Robert Louis Stevenson’s A Child’s Garden of Verses– his charming poetry was first published around 1885. “How do you like to go up in a swing, up in the air so blue? Oh I do think it is the pleasantest thing ever a child can do . . ” Yes, I have most of the book memorized. πŸ™‚

  13. Meghan Turek says:

    The Napping House is one of our favs! The little lady is still “hating literacy” though. Hoping that changes soon.

  14. Mar H says:

    There are so many wonderful children’s books – wonderful in different ways for different stages. (4 children, ages 11 to 2.5. I’ve read a lot of books.) Babies love looking at photos of other babies. Not exciting for moms, but they love it. Mirror Me from Baby Einstein (there was an older version before it got bought out that is better than the newer version). Hug by Jez Alborough and Goodnight Gorilla are 2 that don’t have a lot of words, but are fun to look at the pictures and talk about what is happening and what the characters are thinking/feeling. Mr. Brown Can Moo, Can You? by Dr. Seuss is fun, and I’ve memorized a lot of Sandra Boynton. The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry, and the Big Hungry Bear by Don and Audrey Wood. Snowballs by Lois Ehlert. Dear Zoo is great when they are into opening flaps. Some board book versions of longer books are better than others. Read a variety to find what you and he love. Reading to and with my kids is truly one of my favorite things.

  15. Shannon says:

    Oh, it looks beautiful! I have been so excited about their company. I tend to look for board book versions of picture book classics (lots of Eric Carle, Jan Bret, Milne, etc.); better stories, beautiful illustrations, more enjoyable to reread. I have enjoyed most of the Babylit books; their newest alphabet series is awesome. We have “C is for Castle” for Elanor–and it has things like “N is for Needlepoint” and “I is for Invention” that make me really happy πŸ™‚ Granted, I tend just read long books to my girls, even if they can’t sit still past a few pages; I figure the good words will sink in and take root eventually πŸ™‚

  16. Sharon Pelletier says:

    You need to get you some Llama Llama! One of my favorite contemporary children’s books series, and with the advantage that several of the board books are totally different from the picture books. So you can have different stories at different ages.
    I also recommend Goodnight Gorilla and the BabyLit books.

  17. Sally Jo says:

    My go-to board books to buy for the babies in my life are “Goodnight Moon”, Jan Brett’s “The Mitten”, and the entire oeuvre of Sandra Boynton, but when they get a little bigger, I’m more inclined to get them Robert McCloskey’s “Blueberries for Sal” or Tasha Tudor’s “A is for Annabelle” (the small children in my life are primarily female).

  18. Madeleine says:

    Such a lovely book! My daughter loves The Pout Pout Fish. The illustrations aren’t nearly as lovely as this book, but the story is cute and the rhyming is wonderful!

  19. Carlie says:

    Goodnight moon has always been my favorite!

  20. Ashley Smith says:

    I love Chicka Chicka Boom Boom!

  21. singingselah says:

    I love children’s books! Pig william, the jolly pocket postman; brown bear brown bear what do you see; the madeline books; The Giving Tree; Amelia Bedelia; Oh the places you will go; The Ugly duckling

  22. Emily Geldmeier says:

    I said Little Owl Lost on Instagram (which taught my daughter the words “uh-oh”), but you need to check out Amy Rosenthal’s “Little Pea”, “Little Hoot” and “Little Oink.” Cute drawings, incredibly clever, and sweet.

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