January 8, 2012

A Mother's Best Friend

It's no secret that we're readers in this house. I grew up with my nose in a book, and while Carl doesn't have the same background as an avid reader that I do, it only took him a couple of years into our marriage to start amassing an even larger library than I have (in my defense, this is only because I still get most of my books from the library, whereas Carl just purchases his. Also, his books are bigger than mine, so when I say larger library, it doesn't necessarily mean he has more than I do, just that, literally, it is larger). We were reading to Joy from our first day home - one of my favorite memories is of her tucked up in her little bassinet, with Carl sitting next to her reading aloud from Winnie-the-Pooh. The nurse on night duty in the birthing center laughed when she came in to check on Grace and me after Grace's birth - there we were, with Gracie only a few hours old, and she was comfortably tucked up in one arm, nursing, while I was holding a book in my other hand and reading. "You've done this before," the nurse said. Yep. Read through two Charles Dickens books in Joy's first few months nursing! She took almost an hour to nurse each time, so I had lots of time for heavy tomes with her. Grace, on the other hand, was about ten minutes start to finish each time (they call her - SUPER-nurser!), so I quickly learned to only read books I could take in short doses with her.

Ah, memories.

Anyway - we still love to read to and with the girls, but sometimes, we want them to be able to enjoy a story without us, you know? Like, so we can take a shower or eat some food without immediate demands on our time? And since we do try to limit their tv intake, and since Joy is only tentatively starting on the path toward reading herself and Grace is nowhere near there yet ... I was beyond thrilled when one of my friends posted a link to this site on her FB page.

Books Should Be Free

Now, they have more than just children's audiobooks here, but I still have yet to make it past the children's page. I immediately downloaded the Beatrix Potter treasury (my girls adore Potter - oddly enough, Peter Rabbit is only mildly amusing to them, but they love the more obscure stories, like The Pie and the Patty-Pan, or The Tale of Timmy Tiptoes), and let them listen to it on my computer while I did housecleaning yesterday. Bliss.

Then I remember the iPod (with no charger, because it got lost) that my sister gave to me a few years ago when she got a new one, and thought, "a-ha! I finally have an excuse to buy a charger for this thing." A few purchases later, downloading stories from Mamma's computer onto the iPod, hooking the iPod up to our sound system, and this morning, Gracie has a decent consolation for having to stay home while Papa takes Joy to her very first skating lesson.

A morning curled up on the couch listening to Just-So Stories? Well, it may not be ice (this fall, baby, I promise - after you turn three you'll be old enough for lessons), but it's still quite nice.

(And yes, I rhymed that on purpose. Accolades accepted.)


  1. What a great idea! I wonder if it can replace the half hour of Thomas the Tank I park Lu in front of during dinner prep, or if she'll balk at the lack of garish moving pictures of trains?

  2. You are a brave soul! I won't allow Thomas in this house. I had to watch enough of it with friends' kids, and man, those trains creep me out. Nowhere near so bad as Fraggle Rock creeped me out as a kid (oh, who am I kidding, I still want to shriek and run away whenever I see a Fraggle), but still, creepy enough that I decided then and there that any trains in THIS house would be faceless and voiceless. Give me Peter Rabbit and Benjamin Bunny and dear stupid Jemima Puddleduck any day!