A big part of my childhood consisted of being read to and later on of reading to myself and younger siblings.
Other than my mom, my oldest sister was one of the people who inspired my love of reading more than anyone else. I remember back to when I was three and four and she would gather us children around in the living room or her bedroom and we would slip into another world as we listened. She also often used books to help chore time go faster as we mated socks or folded ever-full baskets of laundry.
Some of the stories that she read to me twenty years ago remain my favorites to this day. I have read and re-read the books so many times that they feel like old friends. I named my first dog after a dog in one of the books. I dreamed endlessly about being able to *really* live in the books. I imagined being able to write a story one day and have other children like it.
Now that my sister has a family of her own, one of my favorite parts about visiting them is story time. Each day before nap time and again each night before bedtime they gather as a family to read a couple of chapters in a chapter book. You can also often find the children reading throughout the day.
Earlier today I was reading to them, thrilled at the fact that my little nieces and nephews are growing up with the same enjoyment of books that I grew up with. Even the one-year-old was fascinated while sitting next to me and looking at the book. That’s enough to make this auntie heart happy.
Reading is so important and can help so much in life. I’m very happy that I grew up in a reading environment and am excited whenever I see other kids who are being raised in one, too.
Did you grow up with book? If so, which were some of your favorite? (Chapter or picture books.)