We have a lot of books.
Let me repeat that: We have a LOT of BOOKS.
I don’t feel bad about this, but I do remember growing up and my book collection fit into a little shelf (one of the reasons we have a LOT of BOOKS is that my little shelf + my husbands little shelf + Henry’s little shelf ends up with a lot of books…. and there are still books at my in-laws), so I thought I’d challenge myself to come up with a list of books that you could fit on a “little shelf” during those baby/toddler/preschool years that would still amount to a good home library.
I know not everyone has lots of free money to spend on books (I’m sure you use the library to your best advantage – we’ve been very lucky with a quality consignment store down the roads where we can pick up most of our library for $1 each) and we don’t always have friends or family who gift books (and let’s not shame – toys are fun and clothes are necessary).
If a child only received one book for their birthday, Christmas and Easter (or however you round out your seasonal/religious celebrations)each year from Birth to their 5th year this is what an ideal little shelf would look like to me:
**note: The actual books shown below are not the only book to fill a category I’ve listed. I’ve taken some of our family favorites to illustrate a point. It’s okay if you don’t like Llama, Llama – find your own favorite rhyming book to fill that slot, etc. **
An ABC book, a Collection of Mother Goose or other Nursery Rhymes, a Nice Bedtime Book
An “Interactive” Book, A Good Book With Rhyme, A Favorite Classic.
A Book of Poems, A Collection of Fairy Tales, A Book of Faith
A Collection of Virtues, A Collection of Fables, A Collection of Animal Stories
And there you have it – a small home library, 18 books in all, that grows with a child and that feels quite big.
A Touch/Feel Book, First Words, A Book About the Seasons, A Favorite Holiday Book, a Children’s Encyclopedia