Reading With Shortcake

Close to five months ago, we welcome Shortcake into our lives.  Since that time, we’ve watched her grow and develop.  It seems like she changes while napping and I can’t get enough of her sweet smile and her giggles.

One of my privileges of being her Dad is reading to her.

Here are some thoughts on some of the books we’ve read together.

Little Blue TruckLittle Blue Truck by Alice Schertle

The Little Blue Truck drives through the country, making friends with all the animals. This comes in handy when he gets stuck in a mud puddle trying to help out a big, yellow truck who doesn’t see the value of friendship at first.

Filled with rhymes and the opportunity to mimic animal sounds from frogs to goats to sheep to ducks, this one was a big hit with Shortcake. It’s a fun book with colorful illustrations that has a good message in there about friendship. I could see us reading this one several more times as Daddy works on his silly animal sounds.

Because I'm Your DadBecause I’m Your Dad by Ahmet Zappa

Highlighting the benefits of having a “fun” dad, this book includes things like having french toast for dinner and playing rock music at a high decibel level.

Filled with great illustrations and some silly things for dads to do with their kids, this one was a hit with Daddy, who’s read it to Shortcake several times now.

It’s nice to have the phrase “Because I’m your Dad” be fun now because I have a feeling I’ll be using it later in life in ways that aren’t as much fun for her.

The Best Part of Daddy's DayThe Best Part of Daddy’s Day by Claire Alexander

A sweet, well-illustrated book about the day experienced by a father and son. Bertie’s dad builds things and Bertie couldn’t be more proud, even climbing the highest jungle gym at school to try and see if he can see his dad on the crane at work.

Entertaining, fun book that I can see myself reading to Shortcake many more times. And hopefully this next time, it won’t get as dusty while I’m reading it (though the dust didn’t seem to affect her as much. Maybe it’s just a Daddy thing)

Halloween Collector's EditionHalloween Collector’s Edition by Jerry Seinfeld

Seems like a lot of celebrities are writing children’s books these days.

I guess the name recognition helps out when it comes to picking up the book. But, as many children’s stories tell us, it’s what’s on the inside that matters most.

Which is why I’m a bit frustrated with Jerry Seinfeld’s book Halloween. As a fan of Seinfeld (both this classic series and his stand-up humor) this reflection on growing up and what Halloween meant to him is fun. Except that all this book turns out to be is several of his stand-up routines illustrated.

And while Shortcake and I enjoyed it the first time we read it, I’m not sure this is one that we’ll be adding to the rotation of book we read together any time soon. I suppose if I had the CD with Seinfeld delivering…I mean, reading the book it might be a bit more fun. I certainly tried to do my best Seinfeld impression while reading it, but it met with little enthusiasm from Shortcake.

When I Grow UpWhen I Grow Up by Al Yankovic

Everything I hoped Jerry Seinfeld’s Halloween would be, Al Yankovic’s When I Grow Up turned out to be.

Billy is in the fourth grade and can’t wait for the upcoming show and tell day when he can talk about all the things he’d like to be when he grows up. His dreams aren’t just limited to the typical police officer or firefighter. Billy has some very interesting dreams including giving the cows a break by milking giraffes.

Told in Seuss-like rhyme, this is a clever, fun, well-illustrated and entertaining book for both kids and adults. Of course, I guess I should expect that from the man who is better known as “Weird Al” and who’s been entertaining me with his songs and parodies since I was a teenager.

A pure delight to read and one I hope to add to our rotation of favorite stories.

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