Here is the article I promised to link to in my Instagram post. Thank you, Emily, from Life at Blueberry Barn, for sharing your beautiful celebration and recreation of one of the most magical moments from Tasha Tudor’s books.
Happy Tasha Tudor Day! Today would have been Tasha Tudor’s 105th birthday. We love Tasha Tudor around here . . . every time I scour the thrift store bookshelves I hope to find books to add to our collection. I wish I could flip through the pages of her books with you so you could see for yourself how sweet and delightful her illustrations are.
Tasha always used the people, places, and objects around her as inspiration for her illustrations. Many of her drawings are of her own children, scenes from her farmhouse, flowers from her well-kept gardens, or of the pets she owned–none so premier as her beloved corgis. Tasha’s drawings are elaborate and exquisite, and capture best the innocence and joy of childhood and all its adventures.
Tasha illustrated classics such as Mother Goose, A Little Princess, The Secret Garden, and The Wind in the Willows, but also penned her own stories, many which describe her family’s unique traditions and celebrations, such as those in The Dolls’ Christmas and A Time to Keep.
Here is a list of our favorite Tasha Tudor books. Several of the books below are out-of-print, but they should be accessible through your library. They are also available to purchase on eBay or through Instagram booksellers. If pressed, my very favorite book on this list is Tasha Tudor’s A Child’s Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson. My children and I owe part of our love for poetry to Tasha.
A is for Annabelle by Tasha Tudor
A Child’s Garden of Versesby Robert Louis Stevenson, illustrated by Tasha Tudor
The Dolls’ Christmas by Tasha Tudor
The Lord is My Shepherd: The Twenty-Third Psalm by Tasha Tudor
First Poems of Childhood by Tasha Tudor
Give Us This Day: The Lord’s Prayer by Tasha Tudor
This page contains affiliate links. I am an affiliate of Memoria Press, a family-run publishing company that specializes in classical Christian curriculum. This means I earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. This allows me to pay domain fees and continue sharing children’s bookrecommendations with you.
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My eldest daughter Lucy loved pulling books from the little shelf in our apartment living room as a toddler. She would sit with them tucked between her chubby knees and turn the pages continually. The books began to tear from her daily routine. My first instinct was to put them high where she could not reach them so they could be preserved for her future siblings.
It took me a few years–and two more children–to realize that often the best picture books are the ones that end up torn, taped, re-taped, and broken at the binding from being opened so many times. They are the ones that end up in my lap for the tenth day in a row with the words, “Mama, book?”
Here is a list of books that have been beloved by my toddler-aged children (you better believe I have these memorized!):
Appley Dapply’s Nursery Rhymes by Beatrix Potter, also Cecily Parsley’s Nursery Rhymes
Are You My Mother?by P.D. Eastman
Blue on Blueby Dianne White
Blueberries for Salby Robert McCloskey
Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?by Bill Martin Jr. and Eric Carle
Caps for Saleby Esphyr Slobodkina
Corduroyby Don Freeman
Diggers Goby Steve Light
Freight Trainby Donald Crews
The Gingerbread Boyby Paul Galdone
Going to Sleep on the Farmby Wendy Cheyette Lewison
Go Dog Go by P.D. Eastman
Good Night, Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann
Goodnight Moonby Margaret Wise Brown
Harold and the Purple Crayonby Crockett Johnson
Have You Seen My Duckling?by Nancy Tafuri
The House in the Nightby Susan Marie Swanson
I am a Bunnyby Richard Scarry
If You Give a Mouse a Cookieby Laura Numeroff
Jesse Bear, What Will You Wear?by Nancy Carlstrom
The Little Engine that Couldby Watty Piper
Madelineby Ludwig Bemelmans
Make Way for Ducklingsby Robert McCloskey
Moo, Baa, La La La!by Sandra Boynton
Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You? by Dr. Seuss
My First Counting Bookby Lilian Moore
My First Winnie-the-Pooh by A.A. Milne (poetry)
My Very First Mother Gooseby Iona Opie
The Napping Houseby Audrey & Don Wood
1 is Oneby Tasha Tudor
Pat the Bunny by Dorothy Kunhardt
Pelle’s New Suit by Elsa Beskow
A Picnic with Monet by Julie Merberg and Suzanne Bober, and others in the “Mini Masters” series
Poems to Read to the Very Youngby Josette Frank, illustrated by Eloise Wilkin
Prayer for a Childby Rachel Field
Put Me in the Zooby Robert Lopshire
Richard Scarry’s Best Storybook Everby Richard Scarry
Hoping you had a merry Christmas and are having a great start to the New Year! I have been looking forward to beginning a new year with Beloved Bookshelf as I enjoy the fresh start that a new calendar year provides.
These are my plans and priorities for 2020:
. . . finding editions of classics like Mother Goose, Grimm Brothers, Hans Christian Andersen, and Aesop’s Fables to recommend. Call it my nursery essentials list, if you will. Many booklists recommend these classics but do not always suggest which editions. I want to provide you with some great suggestions. All editions must have top-notch prose (when dealing with translations and adaptations) as well as beautiful illustrations.
. . . recommending more chapter books. My children are six and under, so most of my time has been spent searching for picture books and nursery classics. My eldest daughter and I are now beginning to read chapters books together! I am also planning on reading a handful on my own this year. If your children are older and you need chapter book recommendations now, please check out this page where I list my trusted resources for finding book recommendations.
. . . book cover photographs above all of my book titles. Photographs are so helpful and this is my top priority in the coming months.
. . . and the project I am most excited to announce: grade-specific literature lists for homeschool and the classroom, beginning with preschool, kindergarten, and first grade!
Please send me an email if there is anything you would like to see on Beloved Bookshelf this year. I am grateful to several readers who informed me that they prefer age or grade-specific booklists rather than master lists. While I do think most of the books on my lists can be read at various ages, I do understand the convenience of organizing booklists this way. For example, “Put Me in the Zoo” is a splendid early reader, but my two-year-old toddler can’t get enough of it. Just something to keep in mind even after I reconfigure the booklists.