The most wonderful thing has happened - our kids are reading. Like, on purpose. Stomper and Bitty have both fallen in love with a series of books that are not I repeat NOT the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. Not that I want to knock that series - it got both of my kids at least reading words on a page. It's so weird - I was that kid who never stopped reading. Who read under her covers at night with a flashlight, no kidding. Who woke up with nightmares and soothed herself by heading to the bathroom to turn on the light, perch on a lid-down potty and read until my toes were frozen and I was sleepy again. And I just don't seem to have passed that gene on down to anyone. The kids love stories, don't get me wrong. They just prefer to either listen to Troy and me read to them or to listen to them on a CD or something. It's been hard to get them to do much reading on their own. And then Stomper started reading Gregor the Overlander. And he has read and read and read. He's on book three, and he only started book 1 a month or so ago. This is a very big deal at my house, trust me. And now Bitty is reading them too. Suzanne Collins, praise thy name! This wonderful author has hooked my kids and I couldn't be more grateful.
I am so enamored with children's literature. Every night, as we have always done, we gather as a family and I'll read a chapter or two from some book or another to the kids before bed. Harry Potter, stuff by Robin McKinley, The Penderwick Series, Rhode Dahl....it's wonderful. And now after we finish our chapters they scamper off to read a chapter or two of their own. Miracle.
As Troy and I have been talking about this phenomenon, we suddenly realized that something was missing. We have a third child. Oh yeah! We thought back to when our older kids were her age and how many fantastic picture books we read to them night after night. After night. Stacks of books I'd bring home from the library every week or two. And Skippidy wasn't getting that! Her older siblings have surged ahead into their chapter books and while I read to them, she just curls up on my lap and falls asleep. Poor little caboose. We decided to start making a more conscious effort to get her her own reading time.
These aren't very good pictures because I just snagged them on my phone as I passed by, but as I watched Skippidy's rapt attention to her dad as he read to her my heart filled up. It's not too late - we haven't yet passed by every single little kid moment we will ever have. There's still time for picture books and daddy-daughter story time. I still get to go to the library and bring home a bulging bag of all those fantastic picture books out there to be gobbled up night after night.