Growing Bookworms Newsletter: April 4
Otis & Sydney and the Best Birthday Ever: Laura Numeroff

Happy Birthday, Baby Bookworm!

Birthday_cake Amazing as it seems, my Baby Bookworm is one year old today. She had a bit of a rough start (arriving 10 weeks early at 3+ pounds, and spending 5 weeks in the NICU), but today she's healthy and happy and pretty much caught up relative to her "corrected age". I like to look back at the very early photos from time to time, to remind myself of how far we've come. We're so very, very lucky. She had excellent care at the hospital, and we've had wonderful support from family and friends.

But what my blog-reading friends most likely want to know is: is she really a Baby Bookworm? So hard to say, really, when watching a one-year-old. For sure she loves books. But she mostly likes to, well, eat them. Does that count?

Seriously, though, she has spent her first year surrounded by shelves and baskets and piles of books. She definitely enjoys picking them up and looking at them. Her favorites right now are lift-the-flap and touch-and-feel books - she especially likes the DK Peekaboo series, which has flaps to lift and fun things to touch, and the Clackers series from Random House. She's developing an appreciation for pop-up books, too. [I'm developing a new appreciation for scotch tape.]

I read aloud to her as often as I can - usually multiple times a day. You can see our 2011 reading list here. She doesn't have a lot of patience for sitting still, so I often read at her while she's doing something else - playing or sitting in her high chair. She tends to tear at the pages of picture books, so our lap-reading consists mostly of board books. I also continue to read her chapter books, when she's in my lap and willing to listen. And I usually have an audiobook going when we're in the car.

We've just started visiting the library. She's not sure what to make of it yet, but I've enjoyed having additional sources of books. We plan to start attending storytimes soon. And we're keeping up her wish list for new titles to own - book buying has really become a vice with me these days.

And that's the reading life of Baby Bookworm, age one. It makes me happy to know that the years when she'll really start to appreciate books are still ahead of us. We'll be focusing on birthday books for the rest of this week on the blog.

To all of you who have offered support and encouragement this past year, thank you. We couldn't have done it without you.

Happy Birthday, Baby Bookworm! You bring us joy every day.

[Update: see also the absolute perfect virtual birthday cake for a Baby Bookworm at Rasco from RIF today]