Now that my children are older, I can reflect on some of the best of times when they were small. Make no mistake, I still remember the hectic daily grind and the never ending lists of chores, which have lessened quite drastically now that one of my children is living and working in the "real world" and another is away at college. With only two children left at home, who actively help with chores, and are out of the house at school and activities more than at home, things are much quieter and calmer around here. Hence the time for reflection. And one of my conclusions has been that the time I spent reading with my children resulted in some of the happiest moments of motherhood.
I really miss the feeling of little warm bodies, cuddling close and listening with rapt attention to a storybook. I miss holding little hands as we marched into our local library, and the excitement in their eyes as they chose a stack of book to borrow and take home. Reading time meant we could often share a giggle, or learn something new. It meant we could experience new books together and decide if they were worth reading a second, third or fourth time. I know our reading time shaped them as well, because one of their favorite traditions is on Christmas Eve, when we all are at home, we come together to read a few favorite stories from their childhood. They are grown now, but it wouldn't be Christmas Eve without our books.
Our modern lives are so hectic and busy and stressful. We have increasingly become dependent on electronic devices for reading. But I am urging parents to not lose sight of this simple pleasure. Visit your local library. Get yourself a library card. Spend time with your child, enjoying books together. In the future, you will be so glad that you did.