Wednesday, April 02, 2008
Happy Birthday Hans!
Hans Christian Andersen,that is. Andersen, (1805-1875) was a Danish author best known for his fairy tales. Some of his most famous titles are The Little Mermaid, The Ugly Duckling and The Emperor's New Clothes. Today is also International Children's Book Day. It's no coincidence it coincides with HCA's birthday. This event is sponsored by the International Board on Books for Young People. Their goal is to bring books and children together.
I simply cannot imagine a childhood without books. My favorite wasn't actually A book, but rather a set of sixteen books called The Children's Hour. I can't remember what all the volumes contained, but one was stories for young children, another was stories for older kids with characters like Beezus and Ramona and Henry Huggins (Gallons of Guppies anyone?).
One volume was all poetry from the simples A.A. Milne rhyme up to the words of Longfellow and Poe. I spent many an afternoon with my nose in those books. I was also partial to Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys and books about a family called The Happy Hollisters. I remember one Christmas when my uncle gave my sister and me a book by an author with a funny name -- Dr. Seuss. That book was How the Grinch Stole Christmas, and many years later I bought a copy for my own children.
They also had books like Goodnight Moon, The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Pat the Bunny along with many, many others. Now I'm buying books for my granddaughter (she LOVES books, which makes her Grammy very happy) and I've bought -- you guessed it -- Goodnight Moon, The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Pat the Bunny. Last Christmas I discovered the Sandra Boynton books. I especially like Barnyard Dance.
How can you not love a book with text like this?
STOMP YOUR FEET! CLAP YOUR HANDS! EVERYBODY READY FOR A BARNYARD DANCE!
Bow to the horse. Bow to the cow. Twirl with the pig if you know how.
Bounce with the Bunny. Strut with the duck. Spin with the chickens now CLUCK CLUCK CLUCK!
With a BAA and a MOO and a COCKADOODLEDOO everybody promenade two by two! *
What books do you remember from your childhood? And which books did you buy your children? Do you have any good recommendations? I'm always looking for new titles for the grandbaby.
A big P.S. -- Remember to enter the Spoil Me Silly contest on our website. It's filled with stuff to pamper yourself along with a dozen books. Contest entries will be accepted through noon Central time on April 30, 2008.
*copyright Sandra Boynton 1993