Friday, January 13, 2017

Sadie's Top 5, Ages 0-3 months

Hi! I'm back from maternity leave and, while I love and even kind of missed my job, it's incredibly difficult to be away from my daughter for so long. So I've decided to start a new feature on my blog that's inspired by her! It's called "Sadie's Top 5" and I'm going to do one of these posts every three months.

Sadie and I read a lot of books together and I've very quickly built her quite an extensive home library. I've never done reader's advisory on my blog before (because, honestly, I think it's the hardest part of my job), but now that I have my own little 3-month-old authority, I'm going to recommend her personal favorites! So today... Sadie's Top 5 for ages 0-3 months:

1. Sneak-a-Peek Colors by Roger Priddy taught Sadie how to lift up her head. For real. This is her absolute favorite! It was the first book I could really get her to focus on and, in fact, she focused on it so hard that I was able to lure her to lift her head up to see it! What you can't see from the picture above is that each colored ring on the cover of the book is actually the perimeter of a hole. So as you turn the pages, the holes get smaller and smaller until you finally reach that all elusive, super-awesome, shiny mirror at the end. That mirror freakin' rules. Sadie is happy just staring at it for several minutes in a row. This book is basically a MUST for one-on-one reading with tiny babies! Sadie recommends it highly.

2. My Soft-and-Cuddly Animals by Xavier Deneux is a close second for Sadie's favorite book. It's got both bold, black and white images and touch-and-feel pages, making it a really great pick, sensory-wise. Sadie is able to find the animal shapes and reach out and touch them on the pages (with some help from mom). I do have one little bone to pick with this book, which I feel the need to mention: The rabbit has white fur on a white page and I'm not sure her eyes can see the outline of the shape yet. But bone aside, this book is awesome and Sadie loves it! She even tries to help me turn the pages sometimes. Each page has just 1 or 2 words ("A cat," "An owl," "Bears") and the outline of that animal in black or white. I like that every animal (except the butterflies) is soft or hairy. We recently read another touch-and-feel animal book and half of the animals had no texture! Or they had a texture so subtle, even I could barely feel it. My Soft-and-Cuddly Animals is consistent and super simple. It even has a few "lesser seen" creatures like a bat, mole, and wolf. A fantastic choice, according to Sadie.

3. See The Year by Joan Walsh Anglund, published in 1984, was one of my favorites as a kid. In fact, what I've been reading to Sadie is actually my childhood copy. When I found the book at my parents' house, I decided to save it for my own children and now, here I am, sharing it with Sadie and she absolutely loves it! I think a large part of her affinity comes from the book's size. It's teeny and "baby sized," definitely the smallest book we own but it's certainly got lots of other redeeming factors too: bright (yet somehow also soft) colors, super chunky "grabbable" pages, and a sweet and concise message. On each page, there is a month and something that represents it. Examples: "January, See the snowman," "May, See the flowers," and "November, See the turkey." Super cute little book! And it's kind of a collectible!

4. Pete the Cat: Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star by James Dean includes all five verses of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, which I'll admit, I didn't know existed before opening this book. But maybe Sadie will grow up knowing them all equally! Anyway, the book recites the (beautiful) text of the Twinkle Twinkle poem and pairs it with typical, fun Pete the Cat illustrations. It's become our nightly ritual to read this book as I put Sadie down in her Rock n Play and hope she falls asleep within a reasonable time frame. Actually, I thought she wouldn't appreciate it until she was old enough to understand Pete the Cat's appeal, but that's not the case! She really does love it! I imagine that she must just be drawn to the really vivid illustrations, or it's possible that she just loves my singing voice. Probably the latter.

5. Five Little Elves by Dan Yaccarino has the best, bright, vibrant colors. Sadie loves staring at the bright green elves and dark blue sky on each page. Even after Christmas, I had to keep this book in our rotation. Sadie's orders! The text of it is a version of Five Little Elves that I wasn't familiar with but it lends itself to using funny voices, which I think Sadie will appreciate when she gets a tiny bit older. Maybe it'll even appear in her top 5 again one day!

So, that's it! More from Sadie at her 6-month mark!

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