Story Time with Isabella

Story Time with Isabella

I gave Bella some pieces of tissue paper to play with this morning. (I’m finally writing thank you notes for Benedict’s baptismal presents, which means finally pulling the presents out of the gift bags. Thus the tissue paper from the gift bags.)


She soon had them spread out on the floor with her stuffed animals sitting on them as if they were mats. Like the librarian puts out for story time at the library.


Then she’d pulled a bunch of books off the shelf, perched herself in a chair facing them and began to host story time. Just like the one at the library.


Soon Sophie wandered in and got caught up in the action. She was thrilled to have Bella reading to her. But soon she wanted Bella to read a different book, Curious George Goes to the Fire Station.  She stood in front of Bella and shook the book while whining. Bella made her wait until she was done with her selection; but then gamely read her way through Sophie’s book. She has a very engaging reading style. “What is this, Sophie?” she’d ask. And, “Is that George?”

Story Time: Bella Reads Curious George from Domenico Bettinelli on Vimeo.

She was also coaching Sophie: “Could you say smoke?” and Sophie would reply, “moke.” Then
“Can you say ball?” and Sophie says, “Ball.”

Story Time 2 “Say Smoke” from Domenico Bettinelli on Vimeo.

I tried to redirect toward naptime, but Bella informed me that she had to finish the book first. So I consented. Then she had to sing “Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes”. (Because that’s how the librarian always ends story time.)

Story Time—Bella Sings “Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes” from Domenico Bettinelli on Vimeo.

(I laughed during her rendition of Head Shoulders because even when she’s the one singing Bella’s hand motions don’t sync with the words.)

And then when the song had been sung, Bella declared that they had to color pictures of fish. Because she’d read a book about fish and at the library they always ended with an art project that was thematically related to the books. 

Finally, after I’d drawn several dozen fish for her, Bella consented to transition to nap time.



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  • I got that often, and of course, still do.  My pet response at this point ~ “Full hands are so much better than empty ones.”  They almost always agree.

  • I had a lot of fun with this question when my three big girls were in Colorado for a week this summer. The days were so long without them! I found myself heading to the outdoor mall or the park almost every day—things I rarely do in a normal week. And with two little ones in the double stroller and a huge baby in a sling, I seemed to attract a lot of attention, and a whole lot of “You have your hands full!” And I’d say something like, “I sure do, THIS week, because half my kids are missing!” LOL.