Ironically, this is very hard to put into words, but I’m going to try.
You are learning to read, baby girl. Its funny, because up until now I haven’t seen that spark in you- its been your brother who will bring book after book to me and beg for more.
But as you start to sound out your words, and I see it click- first cat, then bat, then mat…allllll the rhyming words... your eyes lights up and sparkle. We are so much alike in that way. You want to be good at it, really good, before you let yourself love something.
Let me tell you though- please don’t wait to fall in love with books.
Just go for it. Let me help you, you don’t have to be perfect at this.
I remember sitting with your great-great grandmother on her screened porch, drowsy with summer breeze and and Hawaiian Punch, and falling deep into the world of Ellen Tebbits.
To this day your Pop still thinks the word “fresh” is a good substitute for cool because Claudia Kishi said so when we were making our way through The Babysitter’s Club.
I always stand a little taller because I am Anne “with an e”, as girl with red hair once taught me. Much later, the girl with the red hair and I both grew up and lost someones we loved very much but didn’t lost our “e”-ness.
There was a great man who wrote about the place you live like nobody else. His name was Pat, and I got to meet him once. He taught me that words can also heal.
Gracie, the books you read will become part of who you are, they will take you places you need to go and bring you back when you move a little too far from where you want to be.
So sweet girl, as you tell me so often, put your finkin’ cap on.
Keep going, and to quote another word lover, “Will you succeed? Yes! Yes you will indeed! (98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed)”
Your book-lovin’ Mama