Today was the baby shower for my friend Kristin who is expecting a baby in August.
The hosts of the shower asked everyone to sign and inscribe their favorite children's book and include it with their gift - rather than to include a card.
On one hand, I don't much care for gift giving instructions on invitations - but on the other hand, I had to admit it's a great idea! I'd much rather buy a book than a useless card. Some children's books are more affordable than greeting cards anyway. Most are only twice the cost!
And honestly, which would you cherish more? 20 baby shower cards or 20 incredible books - inscribed with personal messages from people who love you - that you can reflect upon every time you choose a tome to while away the hours with your child throughout the next 20 years?
Easy choice isn't it?
I was eager to share a book that I discovered in my 20s.
Simple title: You Are Special by Max Lucado
I first read it in a Christian bookstore on my lunch break. When I finished, I set the book down in tears!
It's a great message for kids - and it's also great to give to a friend who may be struggling with the way the world is treating her!
The story is about a land of wooden people called Wemmicks who live in a village where they spend each day sticking gold stars and gray dots on one another. Wemmicks get gold stars for doing things well, displaying fine talents, or looking good. They get gray dots if they do something poorly, say something silly or if their wood is scratched or paint is chipped.
One little Wemmick, Punchinello, can't seem to do anything right. He's covered in gray dots and feels badly about himself. One day he meets a Wemmick girl who has no stickers at all! When he asks her how she does it, she sends Punchinello to see the wood carver Eli.
You guessed it. Eli is Punchinello's creator. Eli explains that the stickers only stick if they matter to you. They don't matter to Eli. Eli thinks Punchinello is special no matter what everyone else thinks. Filled with this love and knowledge, Punchinello's gray dots start to fall right off!
A beautiful story about God's love.
When Kristin revealed the title, other moms all oohed and warned, "Have a tissue ready when you read that one!"
Another guest gave her a book I'd forgotten about.
The Tale of Three Trees
This is an amazing story! It's based on a beautiful Christian folklore story of three trees on a hill who had big dreams for themselves.
The first tree aspires to be a treasure chest, inlaid with gold and beautiful jewels and holding the great treasures of a king. The second dreams of becoming a mighty sailing ship carrying important people on adventures throughout the world. The third tree just wants to stand on the hill, grow as tall and beautiful as possible and point to God.
Well, the first tree becomes a feed trough. The second becomes a small fishing boat. And the third is cut down for lumber.
Imagine their disappointment. But can you imagine their true destinies?
Another beautiful tear-jerking story!
One mom said her kid's school performed a play of the Tale of Three Trees, and the teacher asked her to be the narrator. Poor woman had to practice reading it to her dog until she could deliver the story without crying!!
If you are looking for good gifts... these books come highly recommended.
photos from Amazon.com