Celebrating Books – A Feast

Did you know it’s Read Across America Week? I didn’t until I read about it over on the LPM blog on Monday. I know I wrote about reading just a couple of months ago, but in honor of Read Across America, I’d say it’s time to celebrate books again, right?

Some of my fondest, earliest memories of books take me back to my grandparents’ farmhouse, our home on Christmas Eve, and also to the public library in Pittsburg, Kansas. Grandpa and Grandma Hoy kept a few Little Golden Books on hand to read to us grandkids when we came to visit. We could find the books, along with a few other treasures, in their dining room buffet. My favorite was Three Bedtime Stories. Grandpa loved reading to us and had all the voices down pat. I don’t think this book is available anymore, but I bought a copy when our girls were young so I could share my love for the book — and the great memories — with them.

When I was growing up, Christmas Eve found us engrossed in another Little Golden Book favorite — The Night Before Christmas. I still have an image in mind of our house on Parkview Drive with Dad sitting in his chair reading this magical classic to us. Again, I made sure to purchase a copy of this favorite for our girls while it was still available with the same cover I loved as a child.

As I grew older, my mom made sure to take me and my sisters to the public library on a regular basis during the summers. There in a room with vaulted ceiling, filled with the familiar smell of books and dominated by the silence befitting a library, I discovered Nancy Drew mysteries and devoured them one after the other.

My favorite in high school, Gone with the Wind, I think may be my all-time favorite book. I became so immersed in the story and the lives of the characters I didn’t want it to end. As I remember, its emotional impact stayed with me for days. This sweeping epic indeed swept me away. I think I should go back and reread it again after all these years and see if it has the same effect on me now.

The written word wields power — power to transport us as well as transform us. Reading allows us to feast on all kinds of treasure. And as we feast, let’s remember to feast on the most powerful of all written words, the Word of God. Talk about transformation power — I’ve seen it work in my life. How about you?

Okay, now it’s your turn. What are some of your earliest, fondest memories of books? What’s your all-time favorite? Come on and share in the feast!

“When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight…” Jeremiah 15:16a

**Update: My mother-in-law’s lab work this week shows that the infusions aren’t really helping the kidney function hold its own. Not sure how much longer she can avoid another hospitalization. Thanks once again for all your prayers.


  1. My daughter has read nearly all of the Nancy Drew books. I love that both of my kids are readers. ;-)

  2. Great topic, Cheryl! Let’s see….I apparently learned to read by “reading” Marvin K. Mooney by Dr. Seuss over and over, but my favorites are Gone With the Wind and Pride and Prejudice. Both sustain their initial emotional impact years after I first read them. Yea books!!

  3. Cheryl,

    Your post brought back many memories for me, too, as well as the picture of the books. Thanks for being so good about remembering things. One of my favorite books was a book I used to read Aaron and Adam called Curious George Flies a Kite. I read that book to them so many times.

  4. Little Golden Books, Dr Seuss, trips to the library, Nancy Drew were staples in my life growing up. I read GWTW in 7th grade, still love it. I love forest green and I think it’s because of Scarlet and the dress which was made from the drapes…


  5. I remember reading the Golden Books and my Mom has them all collected I think.
    But my first memory of getting “hooked” on reading..was the Hardy Boys…I remember laying across my bed all day one Saturday and read an entire book. My mom was shocked!!
    I love to read..but dont’ seem to get to as often as I would like.

  6. I think I was reading in the womb. I can remember the Golden books very well. Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella were definitely favorites as a child, but as an adult, it has to be the Left Behind series. Those books are so captivating.

  7. I’ve read more to my children and read more now than I ever did in my childhood. I can’t remember loving too many books. I was too busy writing my own and playing outside with my friends.

    At night, almost every night, my dad would sweep my sister and me away with imaginative tales that he created on the spot. Those were the best “reads” of my youth…imagining with my dad at the helm.

    Thanks for checking in.


  8. Thanks for the timely reminder of the joy of books. The ones that got me hooked on reading as a child were the Trixie Belden Mysteries. When I decided to write kids’ mysteries, I knew I wanted Bitsy to be more Trixie Belden-ish than Nancy Drew-ish. This tomboy from a poor SC town just couldn’t identify with a free-wheeling, convertible-driving, tennis-playing, rich girl! But a scruffy kid with a bratty sibling…now I could identify with HER!

  9. Hey everyone, I am thoroughly enjoying reading about all your memories and favorite books! Love fnding out new little tidbits of info about you all. Thanks so much for sharing!

  10. Thanks for sharing such wonderful memories. I wasn’t raised in a “reading” home. I didn’t fall in love with books until high school. The first book I remember absolutely loving was /The Robe/.

    After I became a mom, though, I surrounded my children, and now my grandchildren, with books, books, books.

    I hope that’s one thing they’ll remember after I’m gone to heaven. MeMe LOVED books.


  11. In elementary I remember having boundless energy, so much so that it was difficult to sit still long enough to read. But, I can’t tell you how many times I checked out Charlotte’s Web from the school library. As a matter of fact, if it wasn’t on the shelf come time for me to get my fix of the barnyard characters, it would ruin my day. I absolutely loved that story. I still love it today and have it on DVD for our daughter to watch and enjoy.

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