Very First 1 * 2 * 3

That moment when your baby aggressively points to something… and you have no idea what they’re trying to get you to notice…

*Umm…* “Wow! That’s neat!”

Very First 1 * 2 * 3  will help you give your baby (toddlers, too!) a boost when it comes to putting words to things that are around them. As you can guess from the title, they’ll also get their first colorful lesson on counting.

In Very First 1 * 2 * 3, each spread has a new subject to count in a scene full of things to find and name. Your brilliant babe will be able to count one cozy house, two zooming cars, three fishing boats, four cuddly kittens (playing with 4 balls of yarn), and 5 balloons floating over a grassy meadow (where you’ll notice a few other things in groups of 5). On the last page, the items are lined up neatly next to their appropriate number for you to give that cutie their very first quiz. (Hey, maybe they’ll learn to love pop quizzes?)

With its colorful, adorable illustrations, you can count on looking at this one over and over again.

Very First 1 * 2 * 3
Design by Laura Hammonds/Illus. Rosalinde Bonnet
Usborne Publishing


  1. I saw the name Kevin Henkes.
  2. The book came home with us.

Growing up, I knew Chrysanthemum, Julius, and Lily (who made my Mom laugh out loud).

Birds just had to be good… and it is.


Birds (illustrated by Laura Dronzek, Henkes’ wife,) is narrated by a young girl who tells the reader things that she knows about birds– birds come in many sizes, they come in several colors, and they can sing. She is also not afraid to tell you, dear readers, things that she wonders about the birds. Birds encourages your little one (and you!) to use your imaginations and see things a little differently. Check out these two lines from the book:

“If birds made marks with their tail feathers when they flew, think of what the sky would look like.”

You’re imagining it, right?

“If there are lots of birds in one tree and they all fly away at the same time, it looks like
the tree yelled, “SURPRISE!”

It DOES look like that!

Birds would make a perfect addition to your imaginative tot’s bookshelf.

Kevin Henkes/Illus. Laura Dronzek
Greenwillow Books

How Do I Love You?

Do you have a go-to phrase when you tell the little ones in your life just how much you love them? Maybe it’s “I love you to the moon and back,” or with arms extended, “I love you thi-i-i-i-s much!”

Maybe you’re looking for a phrase that fits you and your little Valentine just right? How Do I Love You? is filled with them. Here are a few lines…

“I love you as the bird

loves a song to sing.

I love you as the waking bear

loves the smell of spring.”howdoiloveyou

As baby grows, they’ll see the perfectly paired text and illustrations show how the bear (who is walking through flowers with a smile & her nose in the air) is loving the spring smell. They’ll see how the splashing, joyful duck is loving the unexpected rain and the puddles it made. Your kiddo will see the perky bird in a tree and how he is loving singing his bright song.

I have no doubt that the sweet rhymes (Marion Dane Bauer) and the adorable illustrations by Caroline Jayne Church (Ten Tiny Toes) will leave your little one feeling the love and both of you filled with plenty of warm, happy feelings.

How Do I Love You?
Marion Dane Bauer/Illus. Caroline Jayne Church
Cartwheel Books/Scholastic

Peek-a Who?

Do you ever get smacked with small reminders that your little one is growing up much faster than you realized? Maybe your sweet baby suddenly likes to hold the bottle by himself, or maybe your independent toddler says (to your surprise), “Potty? POTTY!?”

Maybe, they’re really good at digging through the “rubble” of scattered board books to find the one that you asked them to find.

With vibrant, contrasting colors, Peek-a Who? will be an easy one for your little one to find over and over again.


This rhyming book has cut-out pages for kiddos to peek through to guess what’s on the next page. Peek-a who? is simple and sweet. In the beginning, your little one sees black and white spots– who could be on the next page? “Peek-a moo!” Kiddos will see a ghost (“Peek-a boo!”), a zoo full of animals, and a “Peek-a choo choo!”train going around its tracks. At last, your baby looks through a cut-out to see a special surprise–their own reflection. “Peek-a you!”

Peek-a Who? is one of Scholastic Parent & Child magazine’s list of 100 Greatest Books for Kids.

Peek-a Who?
Nina Laden
Chronicle Books