Books Matter

From 1st through 7th grade we didn’t have a television in the house.
I don’t think I ever complained…maybe because it was all I really knew.
Instead of Full House and Family Matters,
I read books–lots of them.
Every week, my Mom or Grandma would take me
to the bookstore to pick out a new book.
I remember attempting to take my time to read them,
savoring every single page until my next trip to the book shop.
However, I couldn’t resist sneaking pages under the covers with a flash light way past my bedtime.  Ultimately, the book was finished the first day I brought it home.
Soon, my Mom found a local used book shop
and gave me NO limit on the number of books I threw in our basket,
so long as I finished them before our next visit.
I wasn’t the smartest kid in the bunch,
didn’t get an impressive score on my SAT
and I certainly didn’t get a full ride to Harvard.
But I did alright.
And, looking back,
I attribute “doing alright” to those 7 years
of really good books.

What am I forgetting?
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Ashley Stock
I'm Ashley. Sometimes I craft, occasionally I cook, everyday I write, and I'm always Momma. This is my blog. I keep it real while still seeing the rainbows and butterflies in all of life's lessons.
Ashley Stock
Ashley Stock
Ashley Stock

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Comments

  1. Bridge to terebethia? Or was that too new?

  2. Kara @ Mine for the Making says:

    Agree with Trisha…Bridge to Terabithia for sure! I also loved Island of the Blue Dolphins ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. I was totally into the Goosebumps books. I had forgotten about some of those (like Bunnicula and The Boxcar Children!) Good books!

  4. I read all those books growing up and loved them! I think getting lost in a book has always been just about my favorite thing in the world to do. Ps.
    I still stay up way too late reading. I'm sort of a manic reader like that. If a book is good, I can't help myself.

  5. Jayna Rae says:

    Good post. Books are such a huge part of my life. I was just going through some today and put my Babysitter's Club books in the donate pile. I don't think that my boys will want them.

  6. We went to the library at least once a week when I was growing up. Like you, I could never seem to put my books down and make them last longer than a day or so. I'm still that way, unfortunately (which makes for some very long nights if I decide to start another book). Reading brought such joy to my life and even led me to win Reading Competitions, start writing at an early age and (I believe) made me the adventurous spirit that I am today.

  7. Breeann says:

    Oh man…I'm such a reader, too! We did have TV growing up…but I always preferred reading. I LOVED the Baby-Sitters Club and Nancy Drew and many of the others you have here. Oh, these bring me back!

  8. Gillian Mohlman says:

    i basically read every single book you put on there too! i love to read. it was my goal to read 50 books this year, and i have already done that! now i am hoping to get in 100. i like romance books, and LOVE the author robin gunn. she is a Christian writer. you should look her up. also, the alliance by gerald lund is amazing. and, after the giver, there are two books that kind of tie the giver all together! they are called gathering blue and true messanger. (by the same author of the giver.) have you read the hunger games? also so amazing… books… i love them all!

  9. DieselMonkey says:

    Some of my favorite books! Loved the boxcar children, mrs piggle wiggle, the borrowers. There were some you could pick your own adventure. It was like, having multiple books in one.

  10. Baby Sitter's Club!! I so wanted to start my own but I was too busy reading the whole series to ever do it…I did make my own kid kits though.
    I also LOVED Summer Sisters; in fact, I still read that probably once a year.

  11. Casey Martinez says:

    we didn't have tv either and we read a ton as well…all the books you listed are the same books I grew up reading though I did also love Mandy series. Oh the memories!

  12. Oh I looove Babysitter's Club, Boxcar Children and Nancy Drew books growing up! Pretty sure I still have my collection of books in my parents' house back home. I also loved reading anything by Lurlene McDaniels (books about kids dealing with cancer) and older books like "Gone with the Wind".

  13. My parents were careful to limit our tv watching (I do remember loving the TGIF lineup – anyone else watch that?) when I was a kid. I loved to read! Much of the list above is on my favorites list too. Now that my son is reading we're making new favorites. He and I read the Magic Treehouse and Magic Schoolbus books together daily. He loves them! Oh, and Fancy Nancy is pretty awesome too. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  14. Jillian says:

    I have already bought another copy of Where the Red Fern Grows. I can't wait until my kids are old enough to read it with me. I picture us curled up before bed, all three of us reading "just 1 more chapter". Most of the books on your list are the ones I grew up reading, great trip down memory lane!

  15. Mrs. G.I. Joe says:

    I {and now my 2 yr old Lucy} LOVE Amelia Bedelia! And The Giver. That's an all time fave because I so wish my husband could pass his war memories to me that way so he doesn't have to have them.

    Books make such a lasting impressing. More so that TV or even movies can. Our dependence on TV has gotten way too high lately but this is a great reminder!

  16. HELLO???!!! How could you forget "are you there god? It's me margaret!" HAHA… that one was my all time fave… and the boxcar children- Classic!!! I love this post!

  17. What a wonderful gift your family gave you! And you will no doubt pass that love of books on to your little man! I just read Amelia Bedilia to my kids last night ๐Ÿ˜‰ One of my favs as a little girl.

  18. I always read and will always suggest Number The Stars…to students and friends kids. When they are an appropriate age of course..but I absolutely lovee that book!!!

  19. We had a tv, but I would still read so many books over the course of a weekend! I loved to read! Out of my entire school in the 6th grade, I got an award for reading the most books. (I didn't even know they were counting.) Dork, much? That's ok – I'm proud of that little mousy girl with the big, Jiminy Cricket glasses for doing what she loved! It continues to this day! And thankfully, my toddler loves to read, too!

  20. Rhianon says:

    Awesome post!! I totally believe in reading over television, and was raised the same way. I don't understand now how most kids sit in front of the television all day. My daughter watches her fair amount of t.v., but I've also been reading to her everyday since she was born!

  21. Lindsay says:

    You had me at baby sitters club! Oh my, how I loved that series. And Roald Dahl…
    Oh to be young again ๐Ÿ™‚

  22. The Running Mama says:

    Indian in the Cupboard, Number the Stars, Island of the Blue Dolphins, The Pearl

    I devoured The Babysitters Club. I still have all of them. Have you read the Hunger Games series yet??

  23. Oh goodness- I've forgotten so many of those! You make me want to go back and re-read them all!!

  24. Danielle D. says:

    I loves many of these books as well! I probably still have a few Amelia Bedelia in the basement somewhere. My grandma is the one who encouraged us the most to read. During the summers we would spend our days at her house and if we weren't outside playing, we were reading a book from the book mobile (library on wheels that drove to houses more rural). She had a TV, but we didn't want to watch it. Funny how things change.

    Thanks for bringing back memories!

  25. Sweet Valley High—did you read any of those? I read a lot of those with the twins—Elizabeth and Jessica. Funny—I ended up having twins. Maybe those books were preparing me somehow?! Ha!

  26. Pretty in Black and White says:

    Sleepover Friends!!! YAY!!! Babysitters Club reminded me how much I loved those! I still own all of my books from that age and want my kids to read them someday!

  27. Oh I was just like you!! We didn't have a tv for my entire 4th grade year.
    Are you there God? It's me Margaret by Judy Blume

    The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
    {Awesome book,That reminds me to make my kids read it}

    The Hobit??

    AND I am pretty sure I read just about every one of those Little House on the Praire books.

    And oh how I wish I knew the name of a book that sticks in my memories. It was with awesome pictures and all about homonyms. Like a fork in the road and then the coolest picture with (an eating kind of) fork in the road.
    I thought that was the most clever book.
    If any of your readers know what I am talking about I might just kiss them! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  28. Pretty in Black and White says:

    I almost forgot- what about CS Lewis the Chronicles of Narnia too? I loved those as well. ๐Ÿ™‚

  29. Our TV is only used to watch DVDs. My oldest is a voracious reader and goes through an amazing number of books each week. I'm so grateful for the public library!! I would add Heidi, Mrs. Piggle Wiggle, and the Chronicles of Narnia.

  30. I read all those too! Love Amelia Bedelia and I just bought the Bunnicula master edition with all of the books in the same volume. I'm pretty sure I had all the Babysitter's Club book too.

  31. My mom was the same way with the library. She would walk all five of her children down there with a radio flyer and five milk crates. We were allowed to check out as many books as we wanted for the week. I remember coming home with thirty plus books.

    I try to read to my squirmy one year old everyday. Half (most) of the time I'm reading out loud while he runs around the room setting villages on fire and seeing how many things he can stack on the dog. I feel a break through is just around the corner though. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  32. I used to love so many of these books. A few years ago, I sat down and read all of the Little House on the Prarie books again. I still love them. I hope that one day my children love reading as much as I did because I was one of those that would read after the light was turned off at night too. This is a great list, thanks for sharing it ๐Ÿ™‚

  33. AllyceR says:

    Oh my gosh, this sure brought back some memories! Loved having all the time in the world to read back then!

  34. MelindaB says:

    we were big used book store buyers too! There were a couple other series books I read – can't remember their names but one was about Pen Pals, one was about a group of girl in gymnastics, and then the Babysitter's Little Sisters club! I too like others loved Island of the Blue Dolphins!
    (Although I did read it, Summer Sisters is a bit more mature than the other books you have on the list. Didn't read it until high school)

  35. pakosta says:

    I was the same way except we utilized the library because we had 7 kids and ZERO extra money! but we loved reading! We did have t.v. though but we were usually outside building tree forts, catching frogs & riding bikes, making trails through the woods….
    My girls are HUGE readers also….they will be reading a few of those books through our homeschooling curriculum next year (SOnlight is based on reading–their website has TONS of books you can go get a list of to read to your kids also, but we are getting the curriculum)….!!!
    love this post!
    tara

  36. Malinda Q says:

    These are some great books! My favorites were The Babysitters Club! I had all of them!
    @ Aubrey, I think the book you are talking about is called The King Who Rained. You can find it on Amazon.

  37. Little Miss Mama! Your fabulous reader Malinda Q just emailed me and my wish came true!!! Yes, it was the King who rained! I can not wait to see it again! Thank you for this post!! I owe her a big fat kiss!

  38. Aww, Amelia Bedelia! Love this post! I agree with the Bridge to Teribithea comments! I watched the movie a few years ago and it was definately a tearjerker!

  39. Oh my gosh!!! Boxcar Children was my favorite! Nancy Drew and Little House on the Prairie were GREAT too!

  40. OH these all were the BEST books! I also read the Pol Street School books when I was little, still plan on giving them to my kids ๐Ÿ™‚

  41. LOVE IT! This is exactly why I am working so hard right now to become a children's book author and get published. Fingers crossed!

    Hope you got my email about being a sponsor! I certainly would LOVE it!

  42. OMG! Actually seeing the babysitters club book made me smile. Wow. I used to read those, the sweet valley high books, vc andrews books, and one of my favorites was the true confessions of charlotte doyle.

    I guess without the internet, our age group read more. I remember actually reading encylopedia's. LOL.

    Ashley Marie Wilson
    http://laluceimagery.blogspot.com

  43. I am the same way! LOVE reading books… my mom worked near our local library so I would stay there when she worked… loved it. I totally agree! I have a TV in the house now, but don't really turn it on. My 5 yo would much rather color, play with toys, then sit and watch tv.

  44. Cutestuf11 says:

    American Girls

  45. I remember these some of these books…Babysitters club and Boxcar children. I am trying to get my girls into reading.

  46. Dyna Ly says:

    I really enjoyed reading this blog. It really brought back some childhood memories. I hope when my son grows up he will be into reading books as much as I was.

    http://urbanwarriormoms.blogspot.com

  47. the little wife says:

    My favorite was always Little Women

  48. Lauren-ItsMyWorld says:

    Oh my goodness. You just brought me down memory lane again!! I LOVE all those books! Summer Sisters is my favorite. And The Giver. And I totally forgot about Bunnicula!!! lol!

  49. brent. britney, and ryan. says:

    funny that you say that you grew up without tv. so did i! and when i tell people, they think im crazy and deprived. even more funny, i'm 23 with my own little family and i still don't have tv!!

    i used to love reading amelia bedelia when i was younger {and i secretly still do} . such great books!!!

  50. mrscannedy says:

    OHHHHHHHH EEEEMMMMMMM GEEEEEEEE!! This is the best post – it was a trip down memory lane. I thought that I was the only one who would rather read a book than watch TV. I could read and read and read. I love how I can get 100% lost in a book. Boxcar Children and the Babysitters Club were my faves, but I would read anything. We would go to the library once a week and I would check out the max number allowed – I got hooked on Mary Higgins Clark one summer. I still love to read, but find very little time to do so…maybe soon?!

    Awesome post – thanks!

  51. Kristen Duke Photography says:

    I just re-read a wrinkle in time with my kids. I have made it a goal to pick a book and read aloud to my kids (10, 8, 6, and 2) each day after school. they have loved it and a great bonding time for all of us!

  52. i have some fond memories of a few of these books as well. thank you for taking me back.

  53. Definitely the Babysitters Club series, Sweet Valley High, I loved the Mr Happy series when I was super little, and anything by Bill Wallace (A Dog Called Kitty is a MUST READ!) Oh, and The Outsiders was a favorite middle school book as was Hatchet

  54. You brought back some serious memories for me! I read veraciously as a kid. I still have all of my hard back Nancy Drew books. I'm saving them for my daughters.

  55. Oh my gosh, the BFG and The Giver are my favorite books! Good picks. I also loved My Side of The Mountain and Sideways Stories of Wayside school.

  56. we didn't have a tv growing up too. We took numerous trips to the book store. I remember my Mom's hands piled with books as we left. ๐Ÿ™‚ Some of our favorites were Wayside school, Mrs. Pigglewiggle, and the magic treehouse.

  57. Melissa @ knit purl baby says:

    Oh dang! I totally forgot about The Boxcar Children! Good books!

  58. I loved to read too and still do. I read all the time and love reading to my kids. Thanks for bringing back memories!

  59. MJ @ MD School Mrs says:

    I can totally tell we are from the same generation – just seeing those books brought back so many memories! My friends and I even made our own Babysitter's Club….yet we never actually did any babysitting – ha!

    Thanks for the reminiscing!

  60. Mrs. B. says:

    Just seeing the covers to those books makes me happy and feel like a little girl again. ๐Ÿ™‚ Sigh…thanks!

  61. Dana Michelle says:

    Oh my goodness I LOVE all of these. As a child, all I ever wanted to do was read too. This blog post brings back sweet memories of my childhood. I'm a little younger than you so this might be too new, but I also loved Sweet Valley High series. Great post!

    dana
    http://theabundantlifeblog.com

  62. Oh wow. Bunnicula. Brings back memories. I need to go buy a copy now for my son (even though he is 2 and can't read it).

    Sweet Valley Twins and Sweet Valley High were faves, too. I still remember exactly what the author described their house to look like ๐Ÿ˜‰

    I'm going to go turn off the TV now!

  63. Kassi @ Truly Lovely says:

    I loved to read too!!! And still do!!! I asked my mom awhile back how it was that she got her kids to be so interested in reading. Like your mom and grandma, she made it an exciting trip to go to the bookstore. And she was always reading! Hope I can instill that in my children someday!

  64. M.O.T.B says:

    Oh my, brings back memories! Judy Blume, Sweet Valley High, Babysitters Club, Anne of Green Gables…I would have rather been holed up in my bedroom reading on the floor than anything else when I was younger. I miss being able to read like that!

  65. Rolled Up Pretty and Cut Off Thoughts says:

    That was totally me when I was younger too! I would hide under the blankets with this nerdy head lamp thing and read all night, so funny ๐Ÿ™‚ I wish I could read now like I did back then… now I just fall asleep!

  66. I grew up without TV too. It's amazing how easy I find it to entertain myself compared to my husband. If the power goes out, and he can't watch TV or get on the computer he's devastated. I have my e-reader fully charge at all times and loaded with books.

  67. OH man…seeing these covers brought back some good memories…I used to love to read; need to make more time for reading again.

  68. Lindsay says:

    i loved the baby-sitter's club! my fave when i was growing up…

  69. Lexie Loo & Dylan Too says:

    I loved looking through the books you posted, and realizing that I had most packed away in a box for my kids! I read all the time as a kid, and my favorite day of the week was Friday, because my parents took me to the book store!

  70. Lexie Loo & Dylan Too says:

    I loved looking through the books you posted, and realizing that I had most packed away in a box for my kids! I read all the time as a kid, and my favorite day of the week was Friday, because my parents took me to the book store!

  71. ha! I had forgot about some of these books. Makes me think of my elementary school library!

    http://www.alwayshavejoy.blogspot.com

  72. miss amomynous says:

    i had every nancy drew book, and i'm 99% sure she kept all of them for me!
    thank-you for the trip down memory lane!

  73. all started years ago when our co-founders started asking some honest questions: Why should women have to endure the emotional and financial sacrifices that accompany the endless search for the “right” accessory for every event, wedding, and dinner party?

  74. Oh my gosh! I loved so many of these books growing up. I think I read every single one of the Boxcar Children series. And the Giver and Where the Red Fern Grows are totally on my list of all time favorites. And I loved the Amelia Bedelia books, I remember her “drawing the drapes” and “dressing the turkey”! Good memories. I love this list!

  75. This is so funny to me. I loved reading too and had so many of the same books…Box Car Children…Baby Sitter’s Club…The BFG…Amelia Bedilia (an all-time fav!) Thanks for the trip down memory lane.

  76. Ah! Your list is amazing and makes me so happy! Bunnicula, A Wrinkle In Time and Anne of Green Gables made me particularly giddy. I don’t often meet people who have read the entire Anne of Green Gables series, so when I do, I consider them ‘kindred spirits’. ๐Ÿ™‚

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Trackbacks

  1. […] 6. Useย Popular Prompts There are many popular topics out there that other bloggers have already written about.ย  And it’s not plagiarism if you take that same topic and write your version.ย  For example, I wrote a post titled, Letter to 16 Year Old Me.ย  Your post would be completely different than mine, but you could still get ideas from this same prompt.ย  Other topic ideas: Life List, Awkward & Awesome, Things You Should Know About Me if We’re Gonna Be BFF, Favorite Childhood Books. […]

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  3. […] And to see a list of some of the books I read growing up, click here. […]

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