Years ago, when I e-mailed David Tolk to ask permission to use his beautiful song on this site, he wrote back with a comment that still warms me today: “Some of my most cherished moments in life have been spent reading children’s books to my little ones at bedtime. Thanks for your great work.”
Though I was undeserving of his second sentence, I well-understood the moments he wrote about . . . cozy moments, magical moments, in a reading chair or on the couch with my little “son”shines.
Now, my youngest sister (the first little one I remember reading to) is expecting her first child. I want her and her sweet baby girl to have every imaginable joy! So, dear Allison, this is for you . . .
My List of Don’t Miss Memory-Makers:
Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Clement Hurd
The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Clement Hurd
Prayer for a Child by Rachel Field, illustrated by Elizabeth Orton Jones
I Love You Through and Through by Bernadette Rossetti-Shustak, illustrated by Caroline Jayne Church
When Mama Comes Home Tonight by Eileen Spinelli, illustrated by Jane Dyer
The Wonderful Things You Will Be by Emily Winfield Martin
Oh My Baby, Little One by Kathi Appelt, illustrated by Jane Dyer
Emily’s Balloon by Komako Sakai
Once There Were Giants by Martin Waddell, illustrated by Penny Dale
Some Things Go Together by Charlotte Zolotow, illustrated by Ashley Wolff
Love You Forever by Robert Munsch, illustrated by Sheila McGraw
I Love You, Stinky Face by Lisa McCourt, illustrated by Cyd Moore
Next to You: A Book if Adorableness by Lori Haskins Houran, illustrated by Sydney Hanson
Your Nursery Is an Everywhere by Carol Bullman, illustrated by Maureen McAfee
(Update 4/1/21: I’m so excited to add my own book for babies to this list!)
Other “Must-Reads” for the Toddler’s Bookshelf:
We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen, illustrated by Helen Oxenbury
The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
Mary Engelbreit’s Mother Goose
The Monster at the End of This Book by Jon Stone, illustrated by Michael Smollin
Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson, illustrated by Jane Chapman
Llama Llama Home with Mama by Anna Dewdney
Little Pea by Amy Krouse Rosenthal, illustrated by Jen Corace
Olivia series (the ones by Ian Falconer)
Jamberry by Bruce Degen
Quick as a Cricket by Audrey Wood, illustrated by Don Wood
Ten in the Den by John Butler
Barnyard Dance! by Sandra Boynton
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin, Jr. and John Archambault, illustrated by Lois Ehlert
Honey Baby Sugar Child by Alice Faye Duncan, illustrated by Susan Keeter
All the World by Liz Garton Scanlon, illustrated by Marla Frazee
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
Oh, there are so many wonderful gems! If anyone has a favorite book for babies/toddlers I’ve forgotten to mention, please add it in the comments box below!
Emily’s Balloon and When Mama Comes Home Tonight have always been favorites from our library.
All the children have loved Lars Klinting (What Do You Want) and Lisa Wheeler (Jazz Baby).
I wish they would appreciate Verla Kay (Orphan Train) & Dav Pilkey (The Paperboy) as much as I do.
Thanks so much, Lyn! You’ve given me some titles to request at the library! I’m ashamed to admit I haven’t read the four new titles you mentioned!
You are the sweetest to make this list❣❣❣
On Thu, Feb 6, 2020, 8:58 PM A Children’s Book World wrote:
> Carol posted: “Years ago, when I e-mailed David Tolk to ask permission to > use his beautiful song on this site, he wrote back with a comment that > still warms me today: “Some of my most cherished moments in life have been > spent reading children’s books to my little ones ” >
It was fun to make!
What a wonderful list! Thank you for including Robert Munsch’s Love You Forever on it. 💙💙💙
Of course! When I was young, my mother taught me a tune to the song repeated in the book. Love You Forever has long been a favorite in our family! I still can’t read it without getting tears in my eyes.
Dear Carol, it was a time machine to read all this titles again! I remember my baby’ face and his joy. Thank you for bringing back these sweet memories. And thank you for coming back , I have missed your blog.
Wow, Ana, I love that description! You’re right! Picture books, like music, can take us back to a particular place and time. The moments these books transport me to are ones I love to remember. 🙂