Whenever autumn rolls around, I play an imaginary mental merry-go-round of determining whether it is truly my favorite season. On the one hand, it beckons the arrival of colder weather; while on the other, it seems to extend summer into a sort of colorful coziness that feels like a grand swan song. In truth, I honestly love it. Long before pumpkin spice lattes had their own acronym, my family would pilgrimage up the Rocky Mountains and take autumn hikes, surrounded by the colorful tones of pumpkin, pomegranate, and turmeric. Nowadays we take our girls apple picking and make cider donuts to celebrate the arrival of sweater weather. No matter how many autumns you’ve experienced, the season always feels ripe with possibility. So grab your scarf and a mug of tea—these 12 books are best enjoyed with company.
A few months ago I was at a conference in Washington, D.C., and saw another family enjoying brunch on a weekend morning. Tucked into the folds of their stroller canopy I saw a familiar spiral binding peeking out. To which I knowingly questioned, “Is that a Pinhole Press book?” The surprised mother, looked up, slightly confused, then enthusiastically said, “Yes, yes it is!” Since becoming a parent I often look for those little moments. Making connections with strangers, usually parents with small children too, and somehow acknowledging that Hey, we’re on the same team.
There’s something about oversize objects that immediately captivates people. Think giant rocking chairs or markers the size of a grown adult. When considering the scale of a book, particularly one for children, oversize books feel even bigger when they measure to be toddler size or larger. We’re not talking about big books designed specifically for a library or school storytime (think Five Little Ducks or Planting a Garden); rather, we mean books that are constructed to be enormous—and likely will often have to sit sideways on a shelf.
New motherhood is a rush of excitement and trepidation, from the early stages of pregnancy to the moment of meeting your child on a matched adoption application. While motherhood can easily conjure a host of cliches and may look different across a spectrum, ultimately, loving mothers all want the same thing for their child(ren).
February 14th always seems like a bright spot in the middle of the longest part of winter. Granted, chocolate, flowers, and handmade cards usually take center stage on Valentine’s Day (all things I also appreciate), but it’s nice to reach for a stack of love-centered books leading up to the middle of the shortest month.
When our firstborn turned two, rather than accumulate more stuff, we asked guests to bring a book in lieu of gifts. We collected a handful of new and used titles that we then donated to the Ready Readers program in our community. This book-giving birthday tradition has continued and it doesn’t diminish how special birthdays feel; in fact, I’d say it enhances the experience for all involved. Here’s why: books keep giving.
Ah, another summer over and the air hums with the excited trepidation of starting a new school year. It’s a feeling that’s hard to shake, even as an adult. And whether you’ve finished or haven’t given a second thought to back-to-school shopping, it’s helpful to have a few books in your back pocket to gently address the recurring worries most children face when starting a new school year.
Remember those old I Spy books from the early 90s — intricate pictures jam-packed with baubles and what-nots, a visual treasure hunt inviting you to find various items? I loved those books as a kid. Now that I’m a parent I especially appreciate looking at these type of books with my daughter.