FIVE Little MONKEYS jumping on the bed

B has a new favorite. It’s the every-single-night-til-forever book.

She has it memorized, and when she reads it to us at bedtime, it makes me want to squeeze her and never let go because I’m so proud. She looks so grown reading (the pictures) in her book.

But… I could do without reading it every. single. night. Just being honest here, folks. monkeysChances are, you know this story, so I’ll keep it short. The little monkeys, of course, are stinkers who just won’t quit jumping on the bed until there are none left to jump (due to falling off the bed and bonking their heads.)

While you’re reading this to your little pal, they can practice counting and they’ll quickly notice that every phrase is matched to its own illustration.See? Isn’t that great?

Do your smartie a favor and bring this book home for them– and you’ll see how proud they are when they memorize it and can “read” it, too.

Oh, and then go ahead and squeeze them and never let go, because they’re suddenly growing up much, much faster.

Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed (1989)
Eileen Christelow
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Co.

Duck Skates

I’m feeling inspired, awake and determined.

I’m swaying in the kitchen holding L and typing with one hand.

He just spit up on my shirt.

Still determined.

The whole month before Christmas, B was OBSESSED with a Mickey Mouse Christmas movie (the one where Daisy and Minnie aggressively compete on the ice trying to one-up each other until Minnie falls, Daisy feels bad, they make up and they’re best friends again. You know that one, too?)

It was “Ice Skate Minnie” every. single. day. (With newborn L, I wasn’t going to argue…much.) She took to sliding around the house in socks, kicking one foot up in the air for some added flair to her “routine”. Duck Skates was soooo perfect for the month of December in our skatesIn this rhyming picture book, five ducks awake to a snowy wonderland and can’t help but race outside. They have a ball slipping, sliding and gliding around on their skates at the nearby pond. The mischievous bunch ignores a warning and gleefully crashes into a giant snowbank– which leads to them having a rowdy snowball fight. How fun!

(When was the last time you were involved in a snowball fight? Adding this to my list of things to do this winter. Beware, Husband!)

After calling a duck truce, the lovable group “tramps, stamps and trudges” home (hello, perfect words!) Isn’t that how we all feel (or felt, as children) after a day playing in the snow (or after a day at work, depending on how you feel about that…) 🙂

Perfect for practicing counting, kiddos will love these 5 spunky ducks and their wintry adventure.

Duck Skates (2005)
Lynne Berry/Illus. Hiroe Nakata
Henry Holt

The Crayons’ Book of Numbers

Toddler B’s response when a toy comes to life: “I expected that.”

Her response when a book comes to life: “Again!” (Ahem… Don’t Push the Button!)

Her response when crayons come to life in a book: “Simply astonishing. Crayons can talk? Again!” She has an incredible vocabulary for being 2… 😉


The Crayons’ Book of Numbers has it all– mystery, determination, likes, dislikes, declarations, desperation! It also has ten funny, opinionated crayons that your little one has to help gather throughout the story. While counting to ten, kiddos will become familiar with their colors– purple, green, yellow, orange (“the true color of the sun,”) beige, pink, busy blue, red, black, and a slightly worried, slightly exhausted gray.

You (and your little ones) will have a hard time not enjoying this book. 

The Crayons’ Book of Numbers
Drew Daywalt/Illus. Oliver Jeffers
Grosset & Dunlap

Hippos Go Berserk!

When was the last time you saw or heard the wonderful word berserk?

It’s been a while in this house, so of course we had to grab this quick read about 45 wild party animals (er, party hippos, and how could I forget– one beast.)hippos

It all begins with one lonely hippo sitting by his phone– he decides to call two of his pals to come over… and then word spreads like wildfire! A group of three shows up, then four, then “five hippos come overdressed” (in tuxedos and evening gowns, and the hippo who answers the door isn’t wearing, well, anything.)

Six hippos, seven hippos, eight sneaky hippos, and finally– nine hard working hippos all arrive to the party, and then…


You and your cutie will count up to nine and then back down to one, all while feeling like a couple of rhyming “plus one” guests at the hippo’s house.

Hippos Go Berserk!
Sandra Boynton
Little Simon

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

Let’s Count!

For B, these things have “Ooh! Look!” written all over them.

A brown bunny bolting through the yard.

Another kid at the park.
*She begins to toddle over to the child stranger to give them a hug*

A colorful, lift-the-flap board book with huge print.
*She relaxes and looks through the book*

Sometimes, babies & toddlers need an instant distraction to buy you a little more time before a meltdown. Since I don’t have a black top hat and well, I’m not a magician, this board book is always with us when we leave the house.

Oh, just look at this photo of the cover. You can tell it’s semi-aggressively loved, the poor thing is starting to ripple. Who needs a top hat when a book is magic? No meltdowns when this thing is around.


Let’s Count! A First Book of Numbers is bright, colorful, and the print is nice and big for baby to see. Your little one can lift each number flap to see one big sun, two friendly kittens, three cars, and so on– all the way to the number 10. Each number flap is hiding adorable illustrations that just beg to keep your cutie’s attention.

What is the meltdown stalling book in your tot’s diaper bag?

Let’s Count! A First Book of Numbers
Sassy®/Illus. by Dave Aikins
Grosset & Dunlap/Penguin