Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Express Yourself--Favorite Childhood Books and Movies

If you read my post on last week's Express Yourself Weekly Meme about Comfort Books and Movies you may find some of this week's post a little repetitious.  That's because I found out while writing it that a great many of my comfort reading and movies date back to my childhood and adolescence. I'll try to vary things a bit though.

I tried to find a picture of me as a child with a book and couldn't,
but this is me about the time I learned to read.
When I was a child we didn't always have a TV set and didn't go to movies a lot. The first movies I saw in  a theatre were Cinderella (on my fifth birthday) and Mary Poppins. Those movies were treats from two of my favorite aunts, and going to them are special memories. Without a doubt though, my favorite childhood film was The Wizard of Oz. In the days before VCRs and DVD players, it was one of the few movies one could rely on watching yearly, and I also had a record of the movie that I listened to all the time, so I knew it by heart.  Both my kids like the movie now too, my daughter actually had her own pair of Ruby Slippers at one point.

Although I realize there was a time when I didn't know how to read, I don't remember actually learning to read.  I know my mother read to me as a child, I remember a lot of Little Golden Books, and a 3 volume Family Treasury of Children's Stories. One of the first books I remember being given to me as a gift was a copy of A Child's Garden of Verses. 

I got into mysteries early too: Nancy Drew, and the Happy Hollisters, and the Bobsey Twins and so on. I still love mystery stories.  I also liked The Jungle Book and the Wizard of Oz books.

I didn't just read or like books that were written for children either. By the second grade I was opening every book I came across and trying to understand what they were talking about.  My dad liked history and particularly liked the works of Jim Bishop and Cornelius Ryan, so I read The Day Lincoln Was Shot and A Bridge to Far when I was way too young to understand everything that was going on, but I was captivated by the way both authors made one feel they were at the event, and by the stories of the individuals highlighted in the books.  Before I knew really what "History" was, I perceived it as stories that happened to be true, something that has remained for me.

If I had to pick a favorite book of childhood though it would certainly be Little Women,  I wore out 2 copies in childhood before a friend of my mother gave me a 6 volume set of Louisa May Alcott that I have to this day.
They are one of the most treasured possessions of my childhood, a reminder of all that books have meant to me.

This post is part of Express Yourself weekly meme.  To see what movies and books others turn to for comfort, click here.

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