Friday, November 28, 2008

Black Friday: Books=Gifts

By Amy MacKinnon

Remember the sheer joy of Christmas when you were a kid? Remember how the eight days of Hanukkah captivated you? Oh, and the presents! Big Wheels, Gnip Gnop, anything Fisher Price held your attention for hours, and, if you were really lucky, you might have found an Atari game system under the tree.

Great memories. But what do you have from those halcyon days? Maybe the western town but no stagecoach. Maybe.

Do you have any books from when you were a child? I do. In fact, one of the first gifts my mother gave me when I became a mother was a box filled with my childhood picture books. The Little Mommy was my favorite. Years later, seeing my daughter pour over the same illustrations, sounding out An-na-belle as I had a quarter century before became one of the singular moments of my life. Later there were my Judy Blumes, Madeleine L'Engles, Nancy Drews to share -- all of which found their way to my own children's nightstands and now their bookshelves. When the time comes, I'll pack them into a box, wrap them in something pretty, and give them to my grandchildren. Imagine?

I don't have my kitchen set, my Rockem Sockem Robots, or any of those video games from my childhood to pass along and I'm pretty sure my kids wouldn't have much liked them anyway. Something bigger and shinier is always around the corner.

But stories are timeless. Precious. They inspire and comfort and teach.
Buy local. Buy books for the holidays. Buy books for a lifetime.

32 comments:

Minicapt said...

Since a certain husband quaketh with fear lest he be undone, I proudly shop at ABE Books: http://www.abebooks.com/

Cheers
JMH

Amy MacKinnon said...

Thank you, JMH, that's a fine store. As to your other point, I only wish I could make the man quake.

Kira said...

I'm hoping I started a new family tradition. Though they technically came from my grandmother to me, I received several Nancy Drews that my aunt had read as a child. These date to the 1930s and were fascinating for me to compare to my 1960s versions. I prefer the runabout with the rumble seat myself.

I gave some of them to my nieces and I hope someday they'll pass them on to each other's daughters and start a trend.

But if not, oh well.

I still have my Alice in Wonderland, Wizard of Oz, and McElligot's Pool by Dr. Seuss.

Kellybelly said...

Well said! Happy holidays.

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