Building a New Mom’s Library

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(Image via, with a lot of great suggestions of its own!)

I’m at a weird place in adulthood. All my sisters, friends, and coworkers are having babies, and I’m still marveling over the fact that I remember to pay my credit card bill on time most months. Needless to say, I’m not ready to be a mommy. I am thrilled for all my friends who are ready, though, and I have way too much fun shopping for wee little shoes and onesies. But my favorite gift to shop for? Books. A lot of my friends don’t have books on their baby registries, and surprisingly, I haven’t been to a shower that suggests bringing a book instead of a card. While they may already have a library started from their own childhood collections, there are some real gems out there that were published long after CorduroyWhere the Wild Things Are, and The Rainbow Fish (which are all amazing, by the way).

In July, Jennie shared a great blog post on how to help a new mom by bringing food to sleep-deprived parents. Today, I’m sharing how to give new moms a hand by helping them build up their library. Here are three children’s books published in the last five years to get for expecting moms.

The Wonderful Things You Will Be (2015)

wonderfulthingsAuthor/Illustrator: Emily Winfield Martin

I first learned about this book at a surprise baby shower for my boss who was expecting her second child. Everyone brought a book, and not a single one was a repeat of each other, or a repeat of a book she already had at home. The title The Wonderful Things You Will Be may remind you of the Dr. Seuss classic Oh, the Places You’ll Go!, and it definitely has that same feel. This book explores all the things little ones can grow up to be, from the fantastical to the practical, all in a beautifully illustrated package. It’s a sweet story with gorgeous illustrations that mom and baby will be sure to love.

The Day the Crayons Quit (2013)

crayons quitAuthor: Drew Daywalt; Illustrator: Oliver Jeffers

What happens when your blue crayon is sick of coloring lakes and your black crayon is tired of only being used as the outline?  They go on strike, of course! The Day the Crayons Quit is a funny story about a little boy trying to make his crayons happy so they’ll come back and color with him. It even has a sequel: The Day the Crayons Came Home. You can’t help but laugh as you read this one. (You also may want to make sure baby is fully stocked with crayons once she or he is old enough to start coloring, too!)

Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site (2011)

nightnightconstructionAuthor: Sherri Duskey Rinker; Illustrator: Tom Lichtenheld

Okay, confession, I also heard about this book from my boss. This is her first baby’s favorite book, and she’s read it to him so much she has it memorized. The Christmas after I heard about this book, I bought a copy for my nephew, and as far as I know, it’s his favorite, too! Like Goodnight, MoonGoodnight, Goodnight Construction Site says goodnight to all the things around, but instead of a house, it’s—you guessed it—a construction site! The book rhymes, the illustrations are bold and fun, and who can resist tucking in a bulldozer at night?

If you haven’t seen these books before take a peek at Target or Barnes & Noble’s children’s book sections the next time you get a baby shower invite. Or take a look for another new classic to add to a new mom’s library.

What other children’s books have you bought for your family or friends who are expecting? Share below!

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  1. I like to buy new babies older books too so that they begin that stage of a library. My favorite gift for a new baby is the full set of Chronicles of Narnia and a check to help with their college fund.

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