A few posts back I mentioned some of our favorite seasonal books by Cicely Mary Barker. At the moment we're thoroughly enjoying Flower Fairies of the Spring. I had also mentioned The Story of the Root Children by Sibylle von Olfers and the way the characters from that tale have dominated our Nature Table since before this particular season had even sprung.
In celebration of what seems like an actual Spring day today (with, you know, real sunshine and outdoor play without four layers of clothing to keep ourselves warm), I'd like to share just a few more of our other seasonal favorites as well.
The first is Miss Jaster's Garden by N.M. Bodecker. This is a book I've had since I was a child. It tells a sweet and somewhat fanciful tale of a woman who resides in a villa by the sea and the hedgehog who lives in her garden. As the first blossoms bring joy to Miss Jaster, Hedgie the hedgehog unwittingly runs off with a patch of marigolds, baby's breath and sweet william. The illustrations (also by Bodecker) are lovingly detailed pencil drawings with soft water colors that delight both Naiya and I.
A book I recently acquired is Spring from Wynstones Press. This is a collection of songs, stories and poems that I use a lot for story time and puppet shows as well as for singing transitions and small celebrations of moments in our days. It isn't illustrated but since it's contents are so simple, it is the source of much that I share with Naiya by heart (which is to say that I sort of "memorize" the material from this book and share it with my daughter without the actual anthology in hand).
Another recent find is Big-Stamp Two-Toes the Barefoot Giant (Spring Tales of Tiptoes Lightly) by Reg Down. Tiptoes Lightly is a sweet little fairy who has, in fact, a whole series of books written about her and her friends and adventures. We've been using this as our bed time reading and love the innocent seasonal stories that are thoughtful and gentle but are at times also humorous and occasionally ridiculous. (Both Ryan and I take issue with Mr. Owl the Vegetarian.)
Lastly, in the Spring gardening theme, The Empty Pot by Demi is a really lovely Chinese tale involving the growing of flowers, an emperor, a poor boy and the noble virtue of simple truth.
I'd be so pleased to hear about your Spring favorites! Please feel free to leave your front runners in the comments. I read and appreciate every comment left (even if I'm not so good at responding). I'll try to share any additional suggestions I receive or find before we transition into our Summer collection.