Bedtime is a beast around here, and many nights the chaos just barrels right on through what ought to be story time. I'll confess that brings an awful lot of shame on this educator and librarian and book-lovin' mama's shoulders, but for the love, y'all, we are just doing the best we can.
Lately, though, I've been managing to do a smidge better by reading through Charlotte's Web with Sassafras and Pearl.
I fretted over all the death talk in this classic, given the Big Feelings that tend to crop up in our little gaggle's midst. It has been completely fine, however, and leaves us with chapters of the perfect length for our nightly routine.
And also, I can take some solace in the fact that I have personally loved this book for 25 years and don't at all associate it with murderous axe-laden attempts to off sweet Wilbur the sad runty pig. That has to count for something, right?
It's so neat, reading back through all these old classics and enjoying them again at their "sweet story" face value along with my girls. I love snuggling with my daughters and getting to see them wonder and react and feel their way through great stories like Charlotte's. It makes those pieces even more dear to my heart.
It's also intriguing to think through books like Charlotte's Web from an analytical standpoint...to inspect Mr. Arable through fresh eyes, to wonder if maybe Fern just made up the whole blasted thing, to pick out the bits that make these classics so astonishingly lovely.