Thursday, 15 December 2011

Christmas in Grandma's Day by Faye Gardner and Bananas In My Ears by Michael Rosen and Quentin Blake

Tonight's bedtime reading was yet another Mr Men book from the school library. I just know that the school library must have every single Mr Men book, and that C will read each in turn, until his obsession is over. It was Mr Nosey tonight, which was fine, and not quite as long as some of the others. We also had a chapter of Mr Gum, where Mr Gum starts to go somewhere other than Billy William the Third's Right Royal Meats for his dinner. I felt quite sorry for Billy William, when he realised that his friend was not going to come for dinner again "and his heart sank like a battleship in his chest." I was told off for feeling this way as, apparently "Billy William is a bad man, and you're not meant to feel sorry for bad men." I remember back when I thought that everybody was either good or bad, and went to heaven or hell accordingly. I remember being quite shocked when I got to an age when I realised that, actually, most people are a sort of indistinct shade of grey.

Anyway, in bed, as I type, the kids ar reading to themselves for as long as it takes me to type my blog post. A is reading Christmas in Grandma's Day by Faye Gardner, which she got from the, somewhat depleted, Christmas shelf at the library. Sadly, however, Christmas in Grandma's Day was published in 1997, and so the Grandma of the title was born in 1938, making her 14 years older than A's Granny,. And they were a long 14 years too; perhaps the longest in terms of historical change, given that Ava's Granny was a 1950s baby boomer, and this Grandma was born before the start of WW2. In fact the Granny of the book is only 11 years younger than my Granny. Anyway, A doesn't seem at all perturbed by this. She is finding it fascinating. She particularly likes the page about stockings, and we both found it interesting to think that however much Christmas has changed over the years, stockings are still pretty much the same. A and C have a satsuma, some nuts, chocolate coins and a few small presents in there, just as the Granny in the book recalls getting. However, A did say that this year she really hopes Santa remembers her Chocolate Orange, as last year he forgot. Oooops.

C is reading Bananas in My Ears by Michael Rosen and Quentin Blake, which I got from The Book People recently. He loves a good poem, but his favourite page is the street scene, illustrated in Blake's characteristic style, which is called "things people say". I can see why he loves it, the picture is lively and detailed, and the characters in it are saying everyday things. There's a Mum and child on the page where the Mum is dragging the unwilling child along and saying "Come, on!" Apparently, that one is me. I told him I was sure she was a really nice Mummy deep down; she was probably just a bit busy and her little boy was probably dawdling and looking at everything except the direction in which they were heading. C looked a little dubious, it has to be said...

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