When I was a kid my mom and dad accumulated a fairly large library of books for me. Berenstein Bears. Cat in the Hat. Fox in Socks. Peter Rabbit. There were so many. I was lucky to have those books and I knew they were special. I remember being so excited to go to Kindergarten because I wanted nothing more than to learn how to read by myself. I wanted to be able to pick any book I wanted from my shelf and live the stories. Kindergarten came and went and I still didn’t know how to read. I didn’t realize it was something you had to wait to learn in Grade 1.
Eventually I did learn to read (obviously) and I did pick up my books and experience the stories and I never stopped. Reading (and now writing too) is one of the most important aspects of life for me.
Those books followed our family around packed in boxes for years. Long after my sister and I were ‘done’ with picture books and moved to reading novels those books sat in basements and crawlspaces. Each time we moved house those books moved with us and that was quite often considering my father was in the military.
I moved out of my parents’ home. I moved in with my boyfriend. I married that boy who is now a man and a father. When my daughter was very small my parents drove over the mountains from Vancouver Island to visit. They did so with a couple of boxes in their trunk. I filled up the little book case in her room and began to read to her every night. She loves many of the same stories that I loved when I was her age. This week her favorite is ‘In A People House.‘
I taught her the alphabet and what sounds the letters make. She has memorized many of the stories and recites them back to me because she wants nothing more than to read to me. She wants to read those books all by herself just like I wanted to. She points out the words and asks me what each one says.
“What are the letters?” I ask her.
“H. A. T.” She says with her little finger poised over each one as she speaks.
“That’s right! And what does each letter sound like?”
“hhhhhh aaaaaa ttttttt” she responds correctly and with hesitation. She wants to make sure she gets it right.
“Very good. Now, what word are the sounds making?”
“Hat!” She smiles. She knows she read it all on her own and she’s pleased.
But she’s not as pleased as I am. I’m over the moon that my little girl of not quite five years old is beginning to read. She’s reading all on her own and she’s learning off the very same books that I so adored as a girl. A girl who was once very much like my daughter.
This post was sponsored by Electrolux. The Electrolux Perfect Steam washer gets your clothes cleaner than any other washer, keeping kids looking their best, so parents can focus on the moments that count. Kelly Ripa and Electrolux want to know your proud parent moments. Visit facebook.com/Electrolux to share your BEST moments and enter for a chance to win a new laundry pair.
Ends June 26th. No purchase necessary.