31-Day Blog Challenge: Favorite Childhood Book

Day #7 of my Blog Challenge

As a preschool teacher, I've read probably over a hundred children's books by now. There are some really amazing ones, some really boring ones, and ones I'm not sure were meant for children at all. But there is one book that has literally stood the test of time for me. It was published the year I was born, which was probably when I received it since it's been with me as long as I can remember. So what book is it??

Love Is . . .

by Barbara Swaby

Chances are, you've probably never heard of this book. I searched for a nice photo of this book (since mine is clearly well-loved) to no avail. I don't know where it came from, but the fact that I can't find any trace of it on the internet makes me love it even more!

The message is simple: Love is a rainbow. Love is a smile. Love is a butterfly on a woodpile. Love is a kitten. Love is a hug. Love is a puppy curled up in a rug. Love is a lollipop. Love is a rose. Love is a snowdrop on top of your nose. Love is a blanket. Love is a swing. Love can be most anything.

That's it! This book is clearly geared toward infants/toddlers, but the simplicity of the message is what makes it so powerfully universal. It's easy, as an adult, to over-complicate things. Sometimes, we're even afraid of the word "love." What I love, yes, love about this book is how it takes the most basic objects and gestures and makes them beautiful. The illustrations by Beverly Luedecke alone give me the warm fuzzies inside.

Even if I never have children, I will continue to read this book to myself as a reminder that, even if I can't always feel it, love actually is all around. (Yes, I shamelessly quoted Love, Actually.) Let's share some love today!