We usually start with the "book" present of our three gifts from Mommy and Daddy. As much as books are treasured, we wanted to make sure they didn't get overlooked among the more flashy gifts. As our children have grown, I have come to realize we needn't worry about that. Books *are* flashy to them. But we've stuck with the tradition.
ZL's book is actually one ML's mom bought for him several years ago when his older cousin was going through a phase of loving this particular type of book. I put it back, because I just didn't think he'd be interested yet. Well, this was the *perfect* year to give it to him. He has loved it. It has removable figures that depict the story (not that he's sat still for the story yet :-) and can be played with in the bathtub, too, since it's foam rubber. He opened it with gusto, and then played with it with gusto. We even have a cute video. If I ever figure out how to convert and post the videos from our camera, I'll do so.
I saw MA looking at this book at one of the bookstores here and thought it fit her well. Pink. Glittery. Large vocabulary words. That's my girl to a "T." She didn't even remember looking at it previously but has enjoyed it.
JW marches to the beat of his own drummer. And he has definite opinions and preferences. He thinks it's a waste to use wrapping paper just once. I mean, we save gift sacks and tissue paper (as dictated by the genes from the maternal segment of my family), why waste wrapping paper after only one use? This first night, he meticulously removed each piece of tape (you can see the pile on the chair next to him, if you look closely at the second picture). After *all* tape was extracted, he unwrapped the paper and took a look at the book. It was a bit excruciating for some of the members of the family. Others of us found it amusing. Either way, he was very pleased with the present, an Astrix book.
MS also received an Astrix book. Daddy's childhood love for yet another series is being passed on. They finished their own books and promptly exchanged.