It’s baby season! There are new babies in my family. Friends expecting babies. And friends with new grandchildren! It’s all very exciting because babies are awesome, but also there are so many wonderful books for babies that it’s fun to buy gifts. A friend with her first grandchild recently asked for some suggestions. If I could choose 10 books for a new baby, here’s what my package would include:
Everywhere Babies by Susan Meyers and illustrations by Marla Frazee (Ten-years-old and still one of my go-to gifts. Frazee’s expressive little people make this one for toddlers to enjoy when they are ready for board books)
Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes by Mem Fox and illustrations by Helen Oxenbury (No one draws cuter, rounder, or sweeter babies than Helen Oxenbury. I’ve looked. No contest. Groups of multicultural babies in small groups – but all sharing “ten little fingers and ten little toes.”)
Global Babies by The Global Fund for Children (I love this book because it’s made for actual babies to enjoy. Babies like to look at other baby faces. This book has 17 sweet little faces. Lots of board books are reprints of picture books for older kids. That’s why many of them don’t work. This one does.)
Where’s Spot by Eric Hill (Spot has proven his staying power. My son had Spot books when he was a toddler and opening the little flaps got us through many restaurant meals!)
More More More, Said the Baby by Vera Williams (Three stories featuring babies and the people who love them. The names of the babies are great: Little Guy, Little Pumpkin, and Little Bird)
Black on White and White On Black by Tana Hoban (There are lots of high contrast books for babies, but Tana Hoban is the master of the category!)
We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Helen Oxenbury and illustrations by Michael Rosen (There’s Helen Oxenbury again – in a childhood classic! I can still memorize this one: “We can’t go over it. / We can’t go under it. / Oh, no! / We’ve got to go through it!” So fun!)
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr. and illustrations by Lois Ehlert (I could probably ask the 10 or 11 kids currently in the Library to recite the book and would hear: “a told b, and b told c, I’ll meet you at the top of the coconut tree” It’s catchy. And those colors are so bold!)
The Maisy Books by Lucy Cousins (cheating a bit here because I can’t choose just one. Colors, number, farm animals, bedtime, nursery rhymes – every baby deserves the world of Lucy Cousins!)
Listing only 10 is impossible. I haven’t included Goodnight Moon or Pat the Bunny, but I’m assuming the new parents received 5 copies of each book already. So the tenth slot on this list will go to….
First, an admission. I have a long-time obsession with York Peppermint Patties. In fact, sometimes looking at the dessert menu at a fancy restaurant, I wish I could just have a York Peppermint Pattie. Luckily, I usually have a small one in my bag!
So you can image how happy I was to meet this man at the grocery store recently.
Initially, he was kind of taken aback at my enthusiasm for his work, but we had a nice conversation and he gave me the box! Which now makes a perfect bookshelf for candy-themed books!