Friday, January 27, 2012

Economy of language

Every night, I put Josie in her bed and I sit in a little chair next to it and read her stories.  Lately The Snowy Day and Llama Llama Misses Mama have been in heavy rotation.

The Snowy Day is one of my all-time favorites.  I read it to my children a lot, and every time I do, I find it magical.  I never get tired of it.  I love the illustrations, the way the book conveys the beauty and wonder a child finds in heading out to play in the snow, and the simplicity of the language.  (Plus, it's very free-range -- Peter lives in the city and goes out to play all day long by himself, though he's obviously fairly young -- too young for snowball fights with the big boys, after all).

Well, Josie may have one up on Ezra Jack Keats in the simplicity department.  Lately she has taken to reading the books to me ("Mama, I read it!").  This is The Snowy Day, Josie-fied.

"There's a boy.  And he's outside and there's LOTS of snow!"

"Crunch crunch crunch! He walk in the snow with his toes."
"Whee!  He goes down a hill!"
"There's his mother!"

"Night Night!  The end."

She slams the book shut.

"Song, mama?"

I turn off the light and sing.


  1. So cute! I'd forgotten about that book. *runs off to bookstore*

  2. Josie narrates concisely and to the point. Just like her mama!

    We love this book too! Last year Walt wanted to take it outside in the snow as a sort of check list. Snow Angels? check. Footprints? check. Snowball in pocket? Aaannnnd check.

    1. Oh, how I wish we lived in the same city. I get a kick out of Walt, and I think he and Zeke would be great friends. (And of course, I could hang out with you! :) )

  3. I think that all the time! I totally agree about Zeke and Walt. We're hoping to make it out to Denver this spring.