From the moment I found out I was pregnant and thought about life with a baby, I knew that I wanted us to be a family that reads. I was read to a lot as a child and grew up loving reading; settling down with a book and being transported to another world. Somewhere along the way I started reading less and less, I suppose life got busy and reading books slipped to the bottom of the priority list. But now that I have Darcie, I’ve pushed it right back up again and I am determined for her to be a child that reads. As it happens I actually haven’t had to do much to encouraging and she has developed a real enjoyment of books. We’ve always usually read a book at least once a day and if I’m ever stuck for gift ideas for her I always suggest a book, but aside from those things she just seems to naturally enjoy books. She loves to go to her shelf, choose a book and go and sit herself in the corner of the sofa turning the pages, lifting the flaps and chattering away as if she is reading.
I’m always after recommendations for books and toys from other parents and so I thought I would share Darcie’s favourite books for anyone needing a bit of inspiration or trying to think of Christmas present ideas. These are all books that we’ve had for a while so would be good for younger children too.
1. Tales From Acorn Wood: Rabbit’s Nap
By the creators of The Gruffalo (which we actually haven’t read yet!), this is a really nice little lift the flap book and the one that Darcie first learn how to lift them up and turn the pages. It is a board book too so is pretty robust against sticky fingers and teething babies!
2. Tales From Acorn Wood: Hide and Seek Pig
Another one in the same series as Rabbit’s Nap. There are four in the series I believe, these are Darcie’s two favourites, but that’s just down to personal preference.
3. You Must Never Touch A Dinosaur
This is a touch and feel book, each page has a different dinosaur with a different rubbery texture on it. The little story that goes with it is very sweet as well and I like the fact it is about dinosaurs!
4. We’re Going On A bear Hunt
This was a first Birthday present for Darcie and we have the copy with sounds. She has worked out how to press he buttons and makes the sounds along with them too.
5. In My Flower
This one has a butterfly finger puppet and it was the first book she ever really loved looking at as she was mesmerised by it. She probably has outgrown it a bit now but she still loves it anyway. The pictures are really bright and colourful and the butterfly is very well worn now.
6. The Very Hungry Caterpillar
Who doesn’t love this book? It is her current bedtime story and during the day time she loves to sit down and have a read of it herself too.
7. Elmo’s World Lift the Flap Books
Another first birthday present. This is a set of four Elmo books. Darcie loves Elmo and life the flap books so the combination was always going to be a winner. The four in the series are Babies, Food, Balls and Puppies. Her favourite one is Babies because she loves pointing at them and saying ‘bub’!
8. Springtime Tales
This is a beautiful book with three stories in it: The Lost Duckling, The Blackberry Mouse and The Bunny of Bluebell Hill. The pictures are so pretty and are embossed as well so are great for hands that want to be involved! This one isn’t a board book so we only get it down every so often to keep it nice and that just makes it that bit more exciting when we do read it together.
9. Winnie the Pooh Collection
These were a part of Darcie’s advent calendar last Christmas. There are six books in total each based around a different character in Winnie the Pooh. The books are tiny and the stories are short but they are a perfect size for little hands and the pictures are really sweet.
What are your favourite books to read with your children?