But Grace definitely has her favorites too. So, we usually read one or two of our favorites and then two of her favorites every night. Kyle and I are also enjoying reading the Harry Potter series to Grace, so we usually read a few pages of that to her too.
Among Grace's favorite books is one called Hooray for My Family, written by Victoria Osteen. It was a set of three board books given to Grace shortly after she was born by Greg and Kim Matthews from our church family. They have always been among her top choices, especially the family one.
When I lay beside her to read it at night, her eyes completely light up when you hold up Hooray for My Family. It has a photo of an illustration of a family at the dinner table, and we always point out the daddy, the mommy and the Grace, as well as the kitty, Joey.
It's a "touch and feel" book, and when Grace was able, she knew exactly the places on each pages that were special. She also liked to help turn the pages, which always made me smile.
The book has a page for each family member, and each one rhymes.
- Hooray! Hooray for family!
- I love the one I've got!
- My mommy helps me take a bath,
- so I won't smell like Spot!
But most importantly, the book is a constant reminder of the importance of family. We are so lucky to have both sets of our parents close to us, and they are a great help with Grace. Grace loves the chance to play with her cousins and her aunts and uncles, and just loves being around the people that love her the most. I think that's probably why she loves that book so much. It seems like it was written about the people that she cares the most about.
We have read it to her so many times that both Kyle and I know it by heart. But we never stop reading it to Grace each and every night, because her eyes light up when we read it, just like they light up when she spends time with her family.
The other book we read every night is called, All the Ways I Love You, and was a Christmas present from her Grandma and Grandpa Galer one year. It's another rhyming book, and a short one. But it's also one that we know by heart.
- I love you quicker than a minute.
- I love you longer than an hour.
- I love you like the honeybee
- Loves buzzing round a flower.
- I love you round and round the world.
- I love you through and through.
- And when it seems impossible
- to love you more . . . I do.
I don't know the exact number of times we have read these books to Grace, yet I never tire reading either of them to her. I will share with her the importance of family and unconditional love as many chances as I get, especially since I already know the stories by heart.