I first heard of Mrs. Nelson’s Toy & Book Shop when it won the Parnell Award last year. The Parnell Award is given to bookstores that excel in promoting books to young people. After stopping by last month, it’s clear why they won. The store is stocked with great books and toys for newborns to YA readers. I enjoyed walking through the picture book section, it brought back memories of wonderful hours spent reading to my kids. I noticed that since my kids have passed this stage, I tend to gravitate toward the books that were our favorites rather than explore any new books. So I’ll use this platform to pitch my two favorite children’s books, the ones I give at every baby shower: Time for Bed by Mem Fox, illustrated by Jane Dyer and Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr., John Archambault and Louis Ehlert.
Time for Bed is a story of parent animals lulling their babies to sleep. The singsong rhyme was perfect for calming down my sleepy, but squirrelly, toddlers. Although primarily a bedtime book, we read it all through the day. Each page gave me the opportunity to weave in animal noises for more rousing readings. Between the stunning illustrations (I bought every book illustrated by Jane Dyer after this one) and the fun rhymes, neither my kids or their incredibly wonderful parents (somebody needs to say it) tired of reading it.
I can still recite most of Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. Oddly enough, what I tend to forget is the title. Several times I have asked a bookseller, do you have “A told B and B told C, I’ll Read the rest of this entry »