Kim, in Baltimore, binge-watching The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.
I come from a long line of story tellers. Some of my fondest memories of childhood were those spent listening to my Aunties or grandparents sharing family secrets disguised as magical tales. Though they were fun, and tales I’ve passed on to my own children, the best story times were with my mom as I was snuggled under the covers in my bed.
Mom would pull the fairy tales book from the shelf and settle in bedside me to read. Despite knowing that Cinderella would marry her prince and Red Riding Hood would out-smart the wolf, I enjoyed every moment of every story. The familiar stories were comforting. I’d memorized nearly every word yet still found myself rooting for Cinderella as if this were the first time I’d heard this story.
When my children were younger I read to them much in the same way my mom did for me. After baths were finished and teeth were brushed we’d all tuck in under the quilt. Night after night, I read the same books over and over until I barely needed to glance at the words. Goodnight, Gorilla was such a favorite book three copies had to be purchased in under a year because the pages were so worn. I suppose it didn’t help that my son liked to teethe on this particular book as well!
Pass the Fritters, Critters and I Don’t Want to Go to Bed were two of our last favorite bedtime books before they were old enough to move onto Mad Magazine and Meg Mysteries. I miss those days, especially on snowy evenings when we each sit in our own rooms reading.
Even as an adult I have several books I go to when I need that comfort zone to live in for awhile. Dorothy Cannell’s The Thin Woman and Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express are two of the books I call old friends. No matter how many times I read them, they still fill me with delight. I’m always ready for story time.
Dear Reader, which stories did you enjoy hearing as a child? Have you passed them on to younger family members? Which books do you read for comfort?