During the two days that we were home alone last week while Steve was out of town, Silas and I took a long overdue trip to our local independent bookstore. It's a dangerous place for me; I have to be very careful that I don't buy the entire store every time I go there. After wandering around the children's section we decided on two new books to bring home to add to our collection. Unintentionally, they have a similar "seed" theme.
The first is The Giant Seed by Arthur Geisert, a fellow Iowan.
There are no words, only beautiful etchings that tell the story of a miniature porcine community. When a volcano threatens their homes they use the gift of a dandelion seed to save themselves and start anew. Silas and I both love picture books without words. Our first were the Gerda Muller seasons books, which Silas asks me to "read" to him over and over again. He loves looking at the drawings and I like the storytelling practice I get. I am not a tale-spinner by nature or by habit. I took a storytelling class in college (yes, really) but dropped it after the first meeting because the idea of standing up in front of a classroom of people and just talking made me paralyzed with anxiety. I do believe, though, in the power of spontaneous stories and think that they are really useful tools in parenting. So I persevere.
The second book is If You Hold a Seed by Elly MacKay.
It's a sparsely worded story about a little boy who plants a wish along with a tree seed. He watches it grow through the seasons and over the years until he is able to sit its branches with his own son. It's sweet. But, what really sets the book apart are the illustrations. Elly MacKay makes ethereal three-dimensional paper scenes that she then photographs.They are are absolutely luminous and Silas and I both love to get lost in them.
These are what we're reading over and over these days!