August 16, 2012

summer family reading

When I became a parent, I had no idea I would love reading to my kids so much. (At least when they're being good listeners.) We started a routine of reading at bedtime with simple short books like Time For Bed by Mem Fox. Over the years we've done a mixture of modern popular stuff (Thomas the Tank Engine, Bob the Builder, Oswald) and vintage books. Some of my favorites include Harold and the Purple Crayon, The Huffin Puff Express, and (each December) Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree (the same one I had as a kid, complete with crayon scribblings inside the front and back covers I hate to admit are mine!).

My boys are 9 and 11 now, and in recent years the reading choices have grown up quite a bit. I recently read them one of the books I saved from my youth, and how fun that was! In addition to the Black Stallion book series, when I was young I was fascinated with youth wilderness survival stories. Earlier this summer I figured my boys might enjoy Lost In The Barrens by Farley Mowat. I knew I had liked the story enough to save the book, but I honestly couldn't remember much about it. It was great to experience the adventure with them all over again!

We followed that with one of Mowat's lighter works, Owls In The Family. Oh gosh, how funny! It looks like we are going to finish our summer reading with the first book of the Dive trilogy by Gordon Korman that we picked up at a garage sale last week. The great thing about summer break (and being a work-at-home-mom) is if we get really into a book and can't wait to hear what happens next, I can read to them in the middle of the day, too.

And of course my kids do read on their own. My younger son read my old copy of Island of the Blue Dolphins this spring, and really liked it. Another outdoor survival story for youth that I had enjoyed. Made me smile.

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