Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Books Of The Week: Oliver At The Window and How To Be A Happy Hippo

We've had a rainy week here, which means we've done a lot of snuggling in the big armchair while reading books.  We max out the number of books we're allowed to check out every single time we go to the library, and this time we got through them fast. While we liked all the books, two of them really stood out to me.

As a mother, I really appreciate children's books that can explain to them (and sometimes to me as well) some of the really 'tough' things in life.  I'm never really sure how to talk about some of these issues with my kids, so it's extremely helpful when I find a book that does the talking for me.  They are usually much more tender and delicate than I would be with the subject.  We read two such books this week.

Oliver at the Window by Elizabeth Shreeve is a very sweet book that illustrates to children that life does go on after parents get divorced.  The book tells about a little boy named Oliver who begins a new school after his parents' split, and shows in tender images how he copes with the change.  I'm not sure my children (2 and 4) really "got" the message of the book, but it's comforting to me to know that I have this resource should they ever have questions in the future. 

How To Be A Happy Hippo by Johnathan Shipton is a great teaching book for parents as well as kids.  This book reminds us very poignantly that quality time with our kids is the biggest key to their happiness.   The book shows us a very unhappy little hippo and all of the tricks and traps he employs to try to grab the attention of his oft-absent father.  The book teaches children that they are loved, even if their parents aren't always around, and it knocks the parents over the head with the idea that the most important people we need to see are our own kids, and the most important place we can be is by their side. 

Those are our picks for this week - enjoy!

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