I tend to not really be the sentimental type. My husband and I are very minimalist, and we like to hold onto memories rather than “stuff.” This is the exact opposite of my mother, who actually still has a box of my baby teeth in her bedroom dresser. No, seriously. Now that my sister and I both have kids, my mom has had a lot of fun being a grandma. One of her favorite parts of grandma-hood is digging out our old baby stuff from the basement and bringing it up to be resurrected for Cullen and his cousin. Naturally, this makes both me and my sister squirm and cringe. I’m all for holding onto some keepsakes, and I have no problem with sanitized plastic toys—but 30 year old stuffed animals? I’m gonna pass.
But this isn’t a post meant to rag on my mom—she’s an amazing grandma and mom to all of us. But it’s funny how she is so overly sentimental about everything, and I think it’s tough for her that none of us seem to have developed that same fondness for holding onto all this old stuff. With that said, I can definitely appreciate some moments of nostalgia now that I have my own son, and I find myself reflecting on my childhood as I watch him.
Last week, I was ordering some things online and decided to get him a few extra books since our regular lineup was getting a little stale. He’s just getting to a point where I think he’s ready to graduate beyond some of the simpler board books, and he’s understanding concepts like colors and counting. So I picked out a few books that were my personal favorites when I was little, knowing that for some reason these books stood out to me as ones I wanted to read again and again and again.
For what seemed like years, I harassed my family to read me PD. Eastman’s Go Dog Go. What is it about that book that made me love it so much? And once I could finally read it myself, I can remember staring at the pages and analyzing every detail. So I was definitely met with a big wave of nostalgia the first time I cracked it open to read it for Cullen before bedtime.
And wouldn’t you know it, it’s currently his favorite book. Every time we go anywhere near his reading chair he points to the book and says “Ooof Oooooooooffff!” which means of course, “Read me the book about dogs!” If I hadn’t already read it a million times in my lifetime, I definitely have now. I sit with him on my lap and watch his little eyes dart around the page, and I can remember how mesmerized I was by the dogs’ funny hats and their picnic up on the tree top. And another part of me can remember being about 12 years old and sitting with my little sister in my lap, reading it to her over and over again while she jammed her chubby little thumb into her mouth.
It’s definitely one of those timeless treasures that just continues to entertain and mean something throughout the years. And even though I didn’t hold onto my original copy, it’s just as special to get a new version that Cullen can call his very own.