Nostalgic Notes: Books
There are so many books that I’m nostalgic about, and if you’ve hung around this blog for a while, I’m sure some of these will be familiar. But, if not, here are a few books that give me the book feels.
First, we have Where the Wild Things Are. I read this book so often to my siblings and to my kids and daycare kids that I have it memorized. Still. After all this time. In fact, just last year, on the way to school, my son, Corwin bet me that I couldn’t recite it – loser had to fold all the laundry. Fool. Not only can I recite this book in my sleep, I fucking loathe folding clothes. As I pulled into the school parking lot, having just finished the story, I looked at Corwin and said, “Oh, please don’t go. I’ll eat you up, I love you so.” Corwin got out of the car, looked back at me rather balefully, and responded, “And Corwin said, ‘no’.”
These are the copies of the A.A. Milne books (Winnie the Pooh, The House at Pooh Corner, When We Were Very Young, and Now We Are Six) that my mom used to read to us when we were little. As you can see, they’ve been much loved and have had many cups of tea sat on top of them.
The Witch of Blackbird Pond often kept me company when I was in third and fourth grade. I ended up going to four different elementary schools, but the school I attended in third and fourth grade was my favorite. There was an apple orchard behind the school where we played during recess. And if I didn’t feel like playing, I’d sneak a book outside and climb one of the trees and read. I loved this book and read it several times a year and it remained one of my favorite memories of that school after we had to move. Years later, when we moved back into the area, I heard that my favorite elementary school was closing, but they were selling a bunch of stuff – including library books. I couldn’t believe my luck when I went to the sale and found the very same copy I used to read. Of course, I bought it immediately!
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, The Paper Bag Princess will always be my favorite book, and it’s another one I can recite from memory. Feminist children’s book? Absolutely. I used to read it to my sister’s preschool class, my kids and my daycare kids (and all their classes when I volunteered) and now I get to read it to my nieces and nephews. I’ve never once met a kid who didn’t love how Elizabeth outsmarted the dragon and rescued the prince finally realizing that he was a jerk who wasn’t worth her time, and she deserved so much better. One of these days, I’m gonna get me a Paper Bag Princess tattoo…
I loved Little House in the Big Woods so hard – it was a gift from a favorite uncle – and I read and reread it to death. And like probably millions of other little girls, I used to pretend to be Laura Ingalls all the time. My mom even made me a matching sunbonnet and apron.
These books make me wildly nostalgic for cuddly, drooly, giggly babies and toddlers. Sometimes, I wish there was a temporary rewind button for kids.
I could go on for days about books and nostalgia, but I’ll just post a few more that jumped off the bookshelf at me. Edward and the Pirates, The Ballad of the Pirate Queens, How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight, Drac and the Gremlin, Wild Robin, The Story of the Root Children, Stellaluna, The Wild Swans, and Tough Boris. These are all books that I read to my kids over and over.
Oh, and these, too!