Florence’s Favourite: Children’s books

Yesterday I was very honoured to become a Godmother to my friend Helen’s 16 week little boy. As most of you will know, I don’t have children yet and I really felt quite overwhelmed at the responsibility that lies before me, but it’s a role which I’m looking forward to and I hope gives me further insight and tips for babies in my own future! (Helen is akin to Super-Nanny when it comes to managing her little ones.)

However, my first responsibility was to find a gift! I was christened and I still have many of the gifts I was given then, but it has to be said that most of them are pretty impractical; things that I look at once in a blue moon rather than getting any use out of. I hate to give presents that are ‘dust gatherers’ as my Mum would say, but obviously the occasion requires something a touch more sentimental than a baby-grow.

Eventually I settled on a collection of books that I read as a child and remember my Mum reading to me or my sister. I figured it could be the beginning of his little library and I can add to it throughout his life, plus it has an intimate connection to me.

I chose:

I could have gone on forever though, The BFG, Harry Potter, The Water Babies, The Velveteen Rabbit, The Little Match Girl…

Before I came to this decision however, I asked the almighty genius of my twitter followers and received so many brilliant suggestions, I thought I would use them for a gift guide in case any of you required some similar help in the future. Most of them would make great gifts for any celebration in fact.

Other suggestions included a course of swimming lessons, (genius Aisling!) a tree planted in his name, or wine that matures on his 21st. (I’m not sure I would have appreciated fine wine at 21, but good idea!)

After an enjoyable afternoon scouring a couple of book shops and feeling nostalgic – it’s amazing how many memories children’s books bring back, I thought I would ask you all to share the books you were read at bedtime as a child that bring back lovely memories?


Pssst! It’s a 3 post Monday! Pop back at 1pm to see who the winner of the Swoon Worthy Homewares giveaway was and then for a brilliant and ethical idea later on…

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17 thoughts on “Florence’s Favourite: Children’s books

  1. Oh, the Jolly Postman! What a book! I’m also partial to a special edition Hungry Caterpillar book (complete with furry caterpillar) for occasions such as this. What a great post! I’ve bought The Jolly Postman and the Christmas version for so many kids, my mummy friends must think I’m related to Janet and Allan! 🙂

    I almost bought my god daughter a picture of the sunrise on the morning she was born (http://www.thedaythat.co.uk/christenings) but didn’t as her mum is quite particular about what she puts on her wall, I also recall it not being a very pretty sunrise that day so I knew her mummy would defo not want it in the nursery… Ha ha!

  2. Congratulations on becoming a Godmother! I’m desperate for my friends to have babies and deem me worthy of such a position.

    I have two children {a 2 year old boy and a 7 year old girl} and buying them books is a major weakness of mine. I can’t browse Amazon or wander round Waterstones without coming home with a full bag of literary goodies. A few favourites include The Gruffalo books, The Hungry Caterpillar and the books about The Large family by Jill Murphy. My eldest has just started getting into what she calls ‘chapter books’ and, apart from falling wildly in love with everything written by Roald Dahl, she’s enjoyed reading The Worst Witch books and anything by Enid Blyton {but particularly the Mallory Towers books}. I’ve also bought her beautiful copies of The Secret Garden, Pippi Longstockings and Anne of Green Gables for when she’s a little older.

    I’ll stop now… I can talk about books all day!

    Loveaudrey xxx

    • Oh, Anne of Green Gables. I must have re-read that box set ten times, and the Mallory Towers books. Oh the memories!

      And Roald Dahl has a lot to answer for – I got in a lot of trouble making Victoria’s Marvellous Medicine with my mum’s designer toiletries!

  3. I loved the jolly postman! I wonder if I still have it somewhere? The fact that you could open the teeny tiny letters was amazing. I also loved a huge floor book I had which was ‘The wonderful world of Richard Scarry’ when I was younger. Then I loved all Roald Dahl books, the Secret Seven, Famous Five, and Swallows and Amazons. I still read these in fact 🙂

  4. Aw, I love Shirley Hughes. My favourite of all time has to be Dogger. I’m a big sister with a little brother, like Bella and Dave in the book, but I’m not sure I would have been quite so generous and loving…

    I hope the Christening was lovely, congratulations!

  5. Ahh, good choice Rebecca but where’s my fave ‘each peach pear plum’?

    Also I bought this (a slight variation on Rachies suggestion) for my nephews, Christening,, his name is Noah so couldn’t resist.


  6. Ooooh I knew this would throw up some corkers…!

    Kirsty – I’ve never seen Dogger! Will have to look that one up.

    Audrey – The worst witch – LOVED them, only to be eclipsed by Mallory Towers. Totally gave me my irrepressable moral streak that gets me into trouble all the time!

    Laura C – My sister read the Richard Scarry books 🙂

    Victoria – Roald Dahl is the best. The Witches film terrified me though!

    • They are!! The Twits are to blame for my aversion to excessive facial hair. It still makes me gag when I think of the food caught in Mr Twit’s beard… bleurgh.

  7. What a fantastic present Rebecca! I had the honour of becoming a Godmother last year and bought my God Daughter a Royal Doulton set which is the same as a gift I received on my Christening… it was nice to carry on the tradition.

    My favourite book as a child was ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’… I still love it and read it to my God Daughter all the time!

  8. The only books I truely remember from being wee are Roald Dahl, apparently I wanted to be Matilda, which given her parents were horrible (and mine are fab) could have been taken as an insult! I still love his books but agree with you Rebecca that The Witches film was scary! x

  9. Oh gosh, I don’t think I have long enough to list them all but stand out picture books include The Tiger Who Came To Tea, The Giant Jam Sandwich, We’re Going On A Bear Hunt, Guess How Much I Love You, The Jolly Postman, The Very Hungry Caterpillar and all Thomas the Tank Engine and Spot the Dog stories.

    Slightly older books that got me obsessed with reading for life include The Magic Faraway Tree, The Chronicles of Narnia, all the Roald Dahl books, The Worst Witch, The Demon Headmaster, The Famous Five and Swallows and Amazons. There are so many more but I would be writing this comment for days if I listed them! That is such an incredibly lovely Christening gift Rebecca, if it were my child I would adore for them to receive that!

    K x

  10. Oh – how can you not love the Gruffalo?

    I have to admit to being biased. The author is one of my mum’s best friends, but still. It’s so gooooood!

  11. Love this! The Jolly Postman is a super little book, one of my daughter Eska’s favourites. It’s utterly beautifully designed with lots of interaction, little envelopes to open inside, letters to Mr Wolf, a game to play, a concertina style pop up page at the back that draws together the cutest scene of the story when you peer through it – sounds mental but it is just a beautifully designed little book for your children.

    Peepo looks great – babies LOVE peepo – read it to them and play peepo by hiding your face behind your hands – they will be giggling their heads off, my 16 month old plays this with me still and gets herself in stitches 😉

  12. Pingback: Stuck For Christening Gift Ideas? Try These. - Cori's Cozy Corner

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