books we love

There are many WONDERFUL books out there, but these are ones with positive messages that Lucy loves.  I also try to find books that celebrate diversity.  Anything by Debbie Anderson has beautiful pictures of children of all races (and includes children with wheelchairs) and we both just LOVE them!  And, of course, the very best ones point to God's truth. I'm so thankful for our books.
First Favorites  (6 mo-1.5 years)

These three books by Debby Anderson are small board books with awesome pictures.  They have songs you can sing (Jesus Loves me and Jesus loves the little children) and she makes up all kinds of new verses.  That's usually too complicated for me, so we just sing the real song several times while we look at the pictures.  These have been favorites from early on!

Little One, God Loves You (Hilliker)
This one is really simple, but it talks about God's love and Lucy loved it!

Moo, Baa, La La La!  (Boynton)
So fun.

Snuggle Puppy (Boynton)
Lucy LOVES this book!  It comes with a CD of the song (which is the song in her Lucy's First Year video).  This is her comfort song.  I can't tell you how many times she's asked, pitifully, with tears running down her cheeks, "Sing puppy mine?"  It just makes her feel better.

Hippos Go Berserk (Boynton)
Counting with Hippos :)

Current Favorites  (1.5 years -3ish)

Most of All, Jesus Loves You!  (Piper)
This books is an every night favorite--a beautiful message to send a child off to bed with:  You are SO loved!

God Loves You (Bostrom)
This one is every night as well.  I hope it's message sinks deep into Lucy's heart!  It says it over and over again...
God loves you just as you are.

Jesus Storybook Bible (Lloyd-Jones)
This is WONDERFUL!  The stories are too long for her now, but we've skimmed and shortened our way through it several times.  The stories are told so beautifully--they feed my heart along with feeding Lucy's.

The Beginner's Bible
This one has shorter stories, and Lucy likes being able to read it a few times, then flip through the pictures and retell as much as she can.  We read this one or the Storybook one (above) every night with her two favorite books  (above).  It's so lovely!

I Love You Like Crazy Cakes (Lewis)
Lucy loves this "baby book" and it has been a beautiful way to talk about adoption apart from her own story.  She just coos at and kisses this baby!  (And throws China into her own story, but we'll sort that out!)

We're Different, We're the Same (Kates)
This book is so fun and gives a great perspective on diversity.  It talks about many parts that are different, but then talks about how they are the same (all eyes blink and wink, even though they look different).  It ends with, "We're different.  We're the same.  We're wonderful."

I'm the Best (Cousins)
This is lots of fun and addresses bragging and apologizing (and I skip the very last page, where Dog seems falls into bragging again!)

Hurray for Fish! (Cousins)
This book is lots of fun, and Lucy can say several parts of it by herself.  My favorite part:  Where's the one I love the best?.... Hello mom!  Hello Little Fish!   :)

I Love You, Stinky Face (McCourt)
Precious!  I love the end, where Mama says, "I love you, my WON-DER-FUL child."

Books I Hope Become Favorites :)  3-5ish

God knows my Name: Debby Anderson  Such a good book to start thinking about who we are and that our whole identity is wrapped up in God and his love for us.
A Mother for Chaco:  Lovely adoption book about how mamas and their babies can look different.
But no Elephants:  Adorable, and with the message that there is always room for one more.
Fancy Nancy:  Nancy appreciates her family, and the fancy words and pics are so fun.
Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon (about not letting bullies get you down)
Don't cry Lion (an adaptation of Daniel and the Lion's den--reminder to pray when you're scared)

Just for fun/imagination books:
--Click Clack Moo: Cows that Type (Cronin)
--I really want to eat a child  (so funny, and not scary)
--any Pete the Cat book
--any Mo Willems book (especially Knufflebunny lately)
--any Charlie and Lola book (I love how Lola talks... and the imaginary friend, Soren Lorenson)
--101 Dalmations
--Count the Monkeys

Other resources we love at this age:
--Seeds of Worship cds:  I went on and on about them here.  The best and easiest things we've done for Bible memory and it WORKS!
--Joyful Heart Character cards:  I found these here and have just started with them.  I love the idea of having her think about being thankful and attentive and kind and honest, and showing her verses and stories for each in the Bible.  So good!
--Eric Carle Alphabet flashcards.  These are lovely and sturdy and come in a great little box.  Lucy loved playing with them.  She got them at Christmas, and we played iwth them several times a week at her request.  Each time we'd add a letter or two, and by spring she knew all her letters and the animal that went with them.
--a little laptop (that's under $20):  This helped a lot with her letters, as well.  She could just hit the letter and hear the name and the sound it makes.  This is her only battery/noise toy at home, but it has been a good one!  It also has programmable emails, so it will tell her she has an email from me or John or Nana and "read" it to her.  Super sweet.
--Chica Chica 123 (this really helped with numbers 11-20)
--Melissa and Doug 24 pc wooden puzzles
--magnadoodle type things to draw on
--dress up
--hungry, hungry hippos
--memory game
--babies (especially Desta, a cloth doll I got in Ethiopia on one of my Lucy trips)

We haven't gotten to these yet, but I can't wait!
The Paper-Bag Princess
The Perfect Nest

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