Sunday, October 6, 2013

Princess' favorite books

One of the best parts of my day happens about 6:30-7:30pm when I spend lunch time with Joy and Princess on Skype. Yes, they are the ones having lunch, not me. When Princess is all done eating, I get a chance to read her a story before quiet time.

Her two most favorite books that I still have over here are Hop on Pop and Owl Babies. She asks for each of them regularly if I don't try to shape her choice. She also goes for The Bus for Us, The Itsy Bitsy Spider, and The Tawny Scrawny Lion that I used to enjoy as a boy. She never asks for it, but always enjoys it when I pull out Shel Silverstein.

I gotta say, some books are a lot easier to read on Skype than others. I essentially have to turn the pages completely away from me so she can see them. Both of her favorites are easy. In the case of Hop on Pop, it's because there are very few words on a page, so I can look at the words very quickly and know what to say while I show her the book. Owl Babies is very nice because the words are on one page and the pictures on the other, so I can bend the book in two and just show her picture after picture. By now I have all seven verses of Itsy Bitsy memorized, so that one is simple on my end, except there are very few words on each page so I have turn them pretty quickly while I sing and the poor video connection doesn't always give her time to see the picture clearly before it's time to move on.

Princess gives a cookie to a dragon. Om nom nom nom.
Tawny Scrawny isn't bad - there are a lot of words on each page, but thankfully the pictures on the wrong page generally work very well for the words on the page I'm reading, so I can cheat. But the Toy Story 3 drawing book is terrible because the interesting words are on the interesting page and because it's a mammoth board book I can't bend it. The Bus for Us is very repetitive and when Skype shows me the miniature picture of what I'm showing her, I can identify the truck and give the right line.

It's really cute to see what parts she likes to read too. Her favorite parts are still hopping on Pop and Mr. Brown being upside down. She just picked up that her father can read big words too, like ... "Constantinople and Timbuktu," which is adorable out of a two year old's mouth.

You knew I was coming back.
I knew it, said Sarah.
I knew it, said Percy.
I love my Mommy, said Bill
Sometimes I think about Owl Babies while I'm reading it. This is dangerous. I think about a little girl who loves her daddy, but he's not there. I love to testify that Daddy will come home again. I was daydreaming this week of hopping on a plane or four after class Thursday and just showing up at their door Friday evening to spend a long weekend during fall break. They would jump up and down and scream in their surprise. Then I might say in my best owl mother voice, "What's all the fuss? You knew I was coming back." Then they would think (all my owl children think a lot). Maybe one of them will say, "I love my Daddy."