The Way Home

Today was my 40th birthday and this – by complete accident – is my 40th post.

I won’t bang on about the day itself, but our adventures in reading certainly gave us some special moments today.

At my birthday lunch, more than once monkey-face wanted to escape from the table and books lured her back to us. Each Peach Pear Plum by Janet & Allan Ahlberg certainly had enough to keep her occupied and Monkey-face has certainly started linking the words being read to her with the illustrations.

She pretended to read her menu and I saw her studying the letters as well as the pictures. Like yesterday’s interest in the yellow pages, it gave me a buzz to see that she realised the stories and rhymes we were recounting were driven not merely by the drawings, but by the symbols next to them. Thrilling.

Later, before bed, I read The Way Back Home by Oliver Jeffries and then she had her father read it again to her. She loved the sound of the little boy’s aeroplane running out of petrol “phut phut phut” and chortled toothily. At the end of it’s third reading, she told us emphatically she wanted another book. I asked her which and she ran to my old room where a pile of new books jostled precariously on top of overflowing travel bags, hillocks of shoes and piles of gifts. We grabbed another and she ran about delighted. The most happy I’ve seen her around books.

Maybe it was the birthday cake she’d recently eaten, maybe not. Maybe she just knew, mummy was home.

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