Thursday, February 11, 2016

Story Time

I originally wrote this post for Family and Faith Matters in 2014.
I grew up before cable TV. No Netflix, no Google, no i-tunes, no social media. It was a simpler time. We played more. We read books and sometimes, we read them together.

“Story Time”…I feel a little thrill of pleasure when I think of those two simple words. They conjure up all sorts of happy memories for me and even now, sharing stories is one of my favourite things to do. You’re never too old for Story Time in my opinion.

 I’ve always loved to read. I can lose myself in the pages of a good book, transported to faraway times and places with characters that come to life in my imagination. A story becomes an adventure, an experience to be treasured. How much better it is when those adventures are shared.

I can remember spending long lazy afternoons with my brother, the two of us curled up at opposite ends of the bed in the attic bedroom, taking turns reading aloud from a tattered and much loved copy of J. R. R. Tolkein’s Lord of the Rings. Later we laughed ourselves silly trying to read Bored of the Rings, Henry Beard and Douglas Kenney’s parody of the trilogy. We could scarcely get through a page without dissolving into giggles. We were teenagers at the time.  There was something special about sharing those experiences. We were forging a connection that would last a lifetime.

That was one of the reasons I so looked forward to Story Time with my own three children. It may have started with picture books and bedtime stories but it didn’t stop there. We carried on with the tradition whenever we had opportunity. We could get through whole novels on some of our camping trips, especially if the weather was bad. They were happy times. In fact, I was still reading aloud and sharing books with one of my boys right up until he left home for university. He loved to listen.

They all have their own families now and I like to picture them reading aloud to their children. As for me, I keep a collection of favourite books on hand.  I am looking forward to reading to all those grandchildren as they get older. There are some things worth hanging on to from the days when life was simpler. Story Time is one of them.

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