What do you give a girl on her first birthday? Books, of course! What do you do when her mamas are well read? You choose wisely.
My little friend Nell turned one this month. Her moms are my friends Andrea and Hope.
I met Andrea first when we taught girls’ writing classes together at Women Writing for (a) Change. Andrea is an excellent teacher – her day job – and a loyal friend. She shows up with food in times of celebration and struggle, drops off flowers, sends a card when you need cheer and brings coffee and muffins when your kid is in the hospital. She’s also a great hostess. Nell’s first birthday was quite the impressive Eric Carle extravaganza. (You could try every food from The Very Hungry Caterpillar!)
Hope is also a cool and talented mama. Performer, writer, yogi, teacher, she is wickedly funny and rocks a Boden dress. She helped me during my last job search by editing my resume and letter. She made me laugh too.
I’ll enjoy watching this family bloom. It will be lovely to see Nell grow.
Here are the Max and Calvin tested books we bought Nell.
The Library by Sarah Stewart, illustrated by David Small. Elizabeth Brown is an obsessive reader who one day donates her book-filled home to her town to create a library.
Brave Girl. This gem by Michelle Markel, illustrated by Melissa Sweet, who also illustrated one of our favorite books about Horace Pippin. Clara is an immigrant girl who works as a seamstress in horrid conditions in a factory. She bravely organizes a “revolt of girls” who strike for better treatment. My kids were captivated by the story, based on true events.
Rad American Women A-Z by Kate Schatz and illustrated by Miriam Klein Stahl. Brother Ben bought this one and it’s fascinating for adults and kids. From A is for Angela Davis to Z is for Zora Neale Hurston is introduces “rebels, trailblazers and visionaries who shaped our history and our future!”
Happy Birthday Nell!