A few weeks ago, my sister MSNed me at quarter after midnight asking about a kid’s story that we used to read. After some Googling, we finally found it online: The Yellow Ribbon. It’s about a woman who wears a yellow ribbon around her neck that she never takes off, and for her entire life, her sweetheart asks her why she wears it. She refuses to tell him, until she’s lying on her deathbed — and she finally says that he can take it off and see why she wears it. THEN HER HEAD FALLS OFF. Seriously? That’s some creepy, fucked-up stuff for a kid’s story. A lot of fairytales are like that, though. When I was in high school, I had a French teacher who always wore high collars or scarves, so I never did see her neck… I used to imagine that her head would fall off if her scarves & collars didn’t protect it. And I liked her, so I didn’t want that to happen!
Then my sister brought up a poem by James Whitcomb Riley that I used to read to her — “Little Orphant Annie“. I remember trying to read it in that dialect, and hollering the “EF YOU DON’T — WATCH — OUT!” lines.
Us laughing over these things and reminiscing made me think of Baby Two. Chris and I have idly discussed the next one, mostly in the context of me saying “I do not want to be pregnant again within the next two years” and him saying “But maybe we just bunch them together and get it over with” which I feel is a sure-fire way to end up with like five kids in the next seven years and not the two or three over that time span I’d be happier with!
What are some stories that stand out from your childhood? Did you have a favourite fairytale or poem? Is there any particular book that your kids love to share with one another or their friends?