Adopt a family favorite [book]

I’m not a fan of “Hallmark” holidays. I believe we should take time each and every day to show our love and appreciation to those we hold most dear.

As someone who spent many a Mother’s Day desperately longing to hear the pitter patter of little feet, I know that these celebrations can be hard for those who have lost loved ones, are in estranged relationships, or haven’t yet had their dreams of becoming parents fulfilled.

Whether in joyful moments or in times of sorrow, I’ve always found solace in the pages of books. My husband and I gift books to our children on special occasions as meaningful keepsakes, hoping they will someday look back and read the loving inscriptions and sweet stories with fond memories.

A few of my favorite picture books celebrating parenthood, families, and adoption include:

Wish by Matthew Cordell. This is a simple story with a big message, fitting whatever circumstances brought your children to you. Mom and Dad Elephant wished, dreamed, and longed for their little one but time keeps moving on without him there until one day ….

Our family loves Wild About You by Judy Sierra and illustrated by Marc Brown. We initially picked it up because we adore their book Born to Read. This one also has fabulous Dr. Seuss style rhythm and rhyme but most importantly to us, it is a terrific adoption tale.

Tree Kangaroo and the Pandas are so sad that everyone else has babies but they don't. The Crocs complain loudly how horrible babies are but love them so much and wouldn’t dare given them up. The zoo rescue truck shows up one day with an egg and Ms. Kanga offers to incubate it, love it completely, and can't wait to listen to the hatchling sing sweetly. But the chick that hatches from the egg isn’t quite the bird she imagined. Meanwhile the Pandas are black, white, and BLUE...until their pandalicious true love finds its way into their laps. 

Our family loves to cuddle close each and every time we read this sweet tale to our cool pandacat and sweet pengaroos, whom we love completely, regardless of how they each made their way to us.

Wherever You Are My Love Will Find You by Nancy Tillman. Each of Tillman’s beautifully painted illustrations would be perfect to frame and display on the walls of your home, and not just in nurseries. Her lyrical verses are great for reading slow and rocking babes to sleep covered in love. With over a half dozen books in the series, families are sure to find favorites especially if your children are animal lovers.

Books are a great way to connect with someone you love. Make a library date with your loved ones to browse and borrow some great new reads. Perhaps you’ll stumble upon a perfect book you’ll want to adopt into your family favorites.

**I wrote this for a library column in our local paper.  {Casper Journal, May 10, 2017} **


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