The Complete Tales of Winnie-the-Pooh, by A.A. Milne with decorations by Ernest H. Shepard
In the past year, Bug showed some interest in a little bear who loves honey, so I went big and got the family a copy of The Complete Tales of Winnie-the-Pooh.
It turns out, two-year-olds are probably not ready for a book with so many words and so few pictures.
Nevertheless, in the last couple of weeks Bug and I have been enjoying the book in our own way (i.e., with Bug turning the page after I have read for too long without a new picture).
It turns out these Tales are amazing. Charming, witty, and sweet. What I read now blows away any fuzzy (yet unmistakably fond) memory I have of a Pooh packaged by a certain entertainment company. I still love That Old Pooh From My Memory - he is adorable, funny, an has the most endearing voice and cadence - but This New (Actually Older) Pooh And His Friends are wonderful. They are imaginary, and they live in an imaginary world - but they display all of the characteristics that we (and, more importantly, our kids) can relate to.
The characters are silly, lovely, flawed, selfish, giving, caring, kind, and thoughtful. And they are everything else we are. It is so easy to love this book, and I am so glad it is on my shelf.