It just so happens to be the title to one of our favourite books. Dr Suess’s Green Eggs and Ham, I used to read it to B Lloyd on every commuting train journey into and out of central London when I was working full time and she was attending the nursery attached to the hospital. We had it down to pat, I had – not to boast – but the Sam-I-am voice down to perfection and would often have the whole carriage in silence as they all listened in to my rendition of it whilst watching this silent wide eyed 18 month old who was glued to the pages of the book making all the right ooooh’s and arh’s and SPLASH noises in all the right places.
The mothership tried to read it to a 22 month old B Lloyd on the train one day, because that’s what you do on a train, read Green Eggs and Ham. The mothership was two pages in when B Lloyd took the book from her hands and slipped off the seat and padded across to me, climbed onto my lap and said “Mummy read it, Mummy does voices”. That was the mothership put in her place.
It’s a book that within its covers holds so many memories, of almost every time we have sat and cuddled and read it. We love The Hat in the Cat – note its corrected title as by Miss B Lloyd herself, even The Hat in the Cat Came Back, they were both as equally adored and loved on those long train journeys, again equally by the other commuters and B Lloyd. But somehow Green Eggs and Ham just held something more special for us both.
This evening as B Lloyd is about to start her last three days in year R we have had to dip into the special set of books I have purchased her for the summer because she is not getting any new books from school now, something drew me to her bookcase and I just wondered whether we had met that moment where she would now be able to read it to me…
We haven’t read it for months, but as soon as I picked it up B Lloyd’s eyes lit up – “wow Mummy, can I read it?!” Lets give it a go I said. We opened the cover and it was like being transported back to the 7.30am South West Train from Farnborough to London, she snuggled up under my arm and we looked at the first picture of I Am Sam. She read every single word. She read every single word without any help or prompting from me. She read every page with the same voice and expression I used all those years ago on the train. As she got to the end of each page, she looked up at me, into my eyes and her face said it all “I can do it, I can read it like you”
Now call me a sentimental old fool – I don’t care, I love being able to pass on tradition, my dad always read stories to me with voices, so I have naturally done the same for B Lloyd, the thought that she will always remember this book as fondly as me is just overwhelming. She had remembered exactly how I used to read it and she said “I miss those trains mummy, I liked reading this book with you” I love the fact that she will read it to her children with the same love and excitement – more importantly we will both fight to read it to Mini Lloyd!
So I want to know what your tradition is – what are you happily passing onto your children? Is there something you remember fondly from your own childhood that you would love your little one to know about? I would love to hear your thoughts and while you do that I will have a look into how to make it a ‘linky’ so I can read all your lovely traditions too
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