A Family That Reads Together

I'm sure you all have heard the quote
"A family that reads together stays together".
Well that's not exactly how it goes in our home
but reading may help us cohabitate. 
We all have things we need to work on,
but when it's of a personal matter it can be uncomfortable
to learn through our closest acquaintances. 

Here are a few good reads that I have found especially helpful
and enjoyable for both myself and my foster kiddos.

The Happiest Toddler on the Block is my survival guide 
for all the little "angels" that come into our life.
Before I read this book I had more meltdowns than 
I care to count, but that number is nothing compared to the meltdowns
that were accruing day after day from our little tikes. 
Toddlers are hard enough without the emotional tole of trying to understand why
they can't see momma everyday.
Just think about it, our little kiddos see their momma 
typically for a mere hour and a half once a week.
Until reading The Happiest Toddler on the Block I struggled with how to sooth 
these big emotions - which surprisingly was precisely my problem it turns out.
I was quietly repeating "hush baby, everything is going to be okay"
which translates in toddler language to something like
"be quite, everything is going to stay as it is".
I was failing to show that I understood what they were going through.
When I thought about what I want when I'm upset my conclusion was
that all I really wanted was someone to let me rant and cry and have my moment,
not to immediately find a solution, or try to make me see reason.
When I thought about it from their perspective
it gave me the patience and empathy to let them have a moment.
If they needed to throw a fit because their mom doesn't bother to show up for a visit
then I let them, in fact I encourage it!
I found that most destructive behavior was merely suppressed aggression.
Once I stopped trying to create peace
it naturally found it's way to both me and my toddler.

In our short time as foster parents we've had just as many "big" girls as we've had little.
I've tried to help young girls learn to be mothers, and others take on the challenges of womanhood.
This is no easy task, especially when the majority of these young ladies have had cognitive delays.
Doctors, nurses, counselors, all handed us pamphlets
 that explained everything from breast feeding to puberty 
- but not one was written for young teens,
 even I had a hard time digesting all the information.  
developed by the American Doll Company.
The text is short, sweet, and to the point,
and most importantly the graphics don't make my girls blush in embracement.
I have to admit, even I've learned a thing or two.

Lastly, I can't rave enough about the Llama Liama books by Auther 
Anna Dewdney.
After months of borrowing from the library my husband (perhaps a bit reluctantly) purchased 
me a set of four from Costco this evening. 
These books are super popular and so I'm probably just preaching to the choir here,
but honestly they are so CHARMING!
I love how momma Llama keeps her cool time and time again,
helping her little Llama learns how to work through his emotions and insecurities. 

I'd be very grateful if you would like to share
any of your families favorite reads...
what stories have inspired your young readers,
or helped you through a ruff time? 

Happy Easter weekend friends!