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Cry like nobody’s watching – baby bedtime stories

At what age did you start reading to your child? We started showing Carys books from as soon as she could sit up and listen to one, and she’s always been interested in turning the pages. At 17 months, she now brings books to us, points to words and pictures and copies us as we read to her. She has her favourite books – Spot goes to the Farm, Dear Zoo, That’s not my Pirate. We’ve recently joined the Library and have a special shelf in the living room for the five books a week we borrow and read as part of playtime.

We don’t read her a bedtime story yet. My plan was to wait until she no couldn’t handle her current bed/bath routine anymore, which involves her in a bouncy chair watching Baby Jake whilst we get the bath ready. That day is upon me – last night I spied her walking out of the lounge after flipping herself out of the chair and flipping the metaphorical bird to Baby Jake.

And so to bed. Or baby bedtime stories. There are some books that won’t be on my roster for her bedtime. Not because I think they’re rubbish, but because every time I read them, I cry. I cry because they are so utterly sweet, so sentimental and so expressive of the love we feel as parents. I read in a strangled, awkward screech as the tears plop onto the top of Tibbs’ head. This isn’t what I want her to think bedtime is all about! So I save these books for the day time, when I’m not usually as much of a sissy.

If you’re in the market for this sort of book, here are my top three. I’ve omitted ‘Guess how much I love you?’ – even the picture on the front if I see it in a bookshop makes me tear up.

My Mum – by Anthony Browne

Forever – by Emma Dodd

Kiss Good Night, Sam – by Amy Hest

Give me some suggestions for bedtime stories that won’t have me sniffling into her sleep suit!

Ps – I also cry at the closing credits to In The Night Garden. This says it all, really.

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5 Comments

  1. Ah they all look like great reads – and ones I’ve not come across before. We’ve read with Frog since she was a tiny dot and now at age 4 I can’t remember the last time we did bedtime without a story. She currently loves Blown Away, a beautiful new book by new author Rob Biddulph. Old favourites also include Dogger, The Tiger Who Came to Tea and Whatever’s Next – all gems from my own childhood too! x

  2. Rachel Rachel

    With my post pregnancy hormones I need these books like a hole in the head! But when I’m recovered, I shall read them to the smaller one (and bigger too probably!)

  3. I cry at everything these days! We started reading books to the kids when they were about 6 months I think and now they have one every night, or two depending on if Tiger wants a different one to Cherry. I have to admit though reading books is not one of my favourite things to do, I’m fine the first time but when I have to read a book more than once I get really bored so usually make Mr C do it. I do let Cherry play with glitter in the house which makes me feel better about my hatred of reading stories 😉 x

  4. Lia Lia

    ‘Guess how much I love you’ has been the first book i’ve read to all three of mine! Can’t say it won’t have you weeping though 😉
    My older two want to read on their own now (which is a bit of a relief when it’s something like Beast Quest or Captain Underpants!) but India still gets a good two or three stories a night! I think i enjoy it more than her!

  5. We’ve been reading to F since he was in the womb, as someone obsessed with kids books I couldn’t help myself. I bet you’ll love another night before Christmas, it gets me every time x

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