This Little Miggy Stayed Home: Ramona The Pest

Friday, August 12, 2011

Ramona The Pest

We did it.  We (Princess Sparkle and I) finished our first chapter book together, Ramona the Pest.  Probably the first big book I read as a kid and it was a perfect first read for Sparkle Pants as well since it documents Ramona's adventures as she starts kindergarten.  I think I loved Ramona books so much because I could really relate to her.  Straight, plain brown hair?  Check.  A pest to my older sibling?  Check.  Eager, antsy and often misunderstood?  Check, check, check.  Reading it again as an adult I realize what a great author Beverly Cleary was especially for a younger audience.  And while there was plenty about the book that was still a little over her head, PSP loved it too.  When we finished she asked if we could read it again from the beginning.  Instead I told her we'd call GG to see if she could send me the rest of my Ramona books and any other children's books I left at home, my other favorites being my Roald Dahl collection.  

In the meantime any suggestions?  I know there are SO many children's books I didn't read as a kid that other people husband favored the Boxcar Children series.  So what about you?  What did you love then and what do your kids love now?  

ps. Thank you Jess for the inspiration!  I read you post about reading to Noah and thought hey, why not?  


  1. Anonymous11:47 AM

    I loved Ramona!!!! I was also a huge fan of the Babysitters Club and Judy Blume.

  2. My first chapter book was Charlotte's Web and I'm still so in love with it.

    Favorite series as a kid was Little House on the Prairie.

  3. I had the same copy of Ramona the Pest. My mom read it to me and we still make references to it on conversation all these years later. Beverly Cleary is amazing, and I also love Roald Dahl!

    I also loved Pippi Longstocking and the Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle books. Both are series, so if PPS likes them you will have plenty of reading material. Ooh, also the Little House series! It was my very favorite. I read them until the covers fell off.

  4. My little family LOVES the following--in no particular order :) (You might want to wait until she's a little bit older on some of these titles!)
    ~Mrs. Piggle Wiggle series (Betty MacDonald)
    ~Little House on the Prairie series
    ~The Fairy Rebel (Lynn Reid Banks)
    ~The Indian in the Cupboard (Lynn Reid Banks) *The book is better than the movie!
    ~The Castle in the Attic, (Elizabeth Winthrop)
    ~The Summer of the Monkeys (Wilson Rawls)
    ~Mandy (Julie Andrews Edwards, yes "The Sound of Music" Julie!)
    ~The Summer Birds (Penelope Farmer)
    All FABULOUS books!

  5. My kids loved Madeline D'Engle and Roald Dahl. One of my very favorites is The mixed up Files of Mrs Basil E. Frankweiler by E L Konisburrg. (another great children's author)

  6. Magic Tree House series is good... some will be over her head, but we enjoy the stories a lot! I'd stay away from Junie B Jones - the grammar is so horrid...

  7. Good for you. All the Cleary books are wonderful, and my daughters equally enjoy the Henry Huggins & Ribsy books. We loved all the Ralph S. Mouse books, and Fifteen is a FABULOUS first romance (even dated, I think it wears well). Go for it!

    The Boxcar books were our first read-aloud chapter books. The first 19 were actually written by Warner; the rest are ghost-written and not quite so fab. Some other "first" books we have loved, some already mentioned:

    - Little House series (Wilder)
    - The Bears on Hemlock Mountain (Dalgliesh)
    - Cricket in Times Square (Selden)
    - Flat Stanley series (Brown)
    - Pippi Longstocking (Lindgren)
    - My Father's Dragon (Gannett)
    - A Little Princess & The Secret Garden (Burnett, harder but my girls loved hearing these even at a very young age)
    - Horrible Harry series (Kline, perfect for second-graders; Harry is a second-grader)
    - any of the Shoes books (Streatfeild, our favorite has always been Dancing Shoes...lso, we love his novel Magic Summer, which is out of print but usually available at libraries...that may be my kids' favorite one)
    - Roald Dahl books, esp James & the Giant Peach, although all of his are a bit scary for my kids

    Have fun reading! You think you love libraries for the picture books, but once they start chapter-books, you will love them more than ever, especially for the older and out-of-print ones. :>

  8. YES on all books Roald Dahl.

    My mom read the entire Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe series with me, and it was awesome.

    Last of the Really Great Wangdoodles was also a personal fave.

  9. I have three boys, and they all loved the "Brer Rabbit" stories. When we went to Disney World, they loved Splash Mountain as many of the stories from that collection are depicted there!

  10. Graham also loves the Ramona series, and Ralph Mouse:) This summer, we did more Dahl, and also started the Narnia books (he now has read The Magician's Nephew and TLTWATW:) and Little House.
    The Magic Tree House books have all been great so far, and I bet Miss PSP would love Junie B. Jones! Those are hilarious:)
    Graham also enjoys the Redwall series, so if PSP is getting at all into the Fantasy/magical stuff, those are great! Hooray for PSP and Ramona! Love you guys!

  11. The Little House on the Prairie books are so great for little kids.

  12. I remember my mom reading Little House on the Prairie. We LOVE the Magic Tree House series. Highly recommend!

  13. We are almost done with our first Boxcar Children book. The kids LOVE it, and I love their little world of creating new uses for old things.

  14. We loved all the Little House books. Another series that my kids loved is Hank the Cowdog. Set on a ranch in Texas and hysterically funny. You'll enjoy it as much as she will.

  15. Anonymous5:05 AM

    Totally forgot about Ramona! Thank you! I read my daughter Farmer Boy (akin to Little House on the Prairie books) when she was just 1 or 2 and she loved it then; now I'm freshly inspired to read it again-and start on these other great recommendations!

  16. I love this book list (have used it for years for our four kids now ages 22, 20, 17, and 12!):

    It is divided up into reading levels. A very helpful resource!

  17. LOVED all the Beverly Cleary books! I have very distinct memories of hiding in the house, ignoring my mom who was calling everyone to dinner, trying to get 5 more minutes of reading about Ramona and all her adventures. The only other books I could think of besides the ones that have already been mentioned are The Great Brain books by John D. Fitzgerald. So so so funny. Set in turn of the century Utah. The author and his brother thinking of schemes to make money, like charging neighborhood kids a nickle to see their indoor toilet (the first one in town!). You've got to get these!

  18. Anonymous1:03 AM

    ok- I know the Junie B. Jones books get complaints from teachers for the bad grammar, but I do have to say that Whitney loves those books (since kindergarten) and I have read at least 5 of them with her...we laugh together and she toatally gets that the bad grammar is part of what makes the story funny. Most of the time she points out how the characters should have said something the correct way and when I noticed that I wasn't worried about her reading those books... so I actually really like those books. I'd say at least give them a try and see what you think because they really are funny :) In fact, we've read 2 Ramona books and we both laughed more with the Junie B. books (and belive me, I wanted her to like Ramona better than Junie B. but she'd rather read Junie B.)
    p.s. I also loved the boxcar children and hope that my kids will like to read that series too!

  19. Anonymous6:15 PM

    My Father's Dragon by Ruth Stiles Gannett.

  20. I loved Beverly Cleary books! I loved Nancy Drew and anything to do with mystery, which may seem odd for a child, but I did. I loved bring home the scholastic book order form and filling it out with my mom, and I couldn't wait until the books arrived and I could begin reading them.

    My mom read aloud to us every night well into our teens. One by one, as we turned 16 we'd stop. Today as adults, it is one of our greatest regrets, that we didn't continue listening to mom read to us. Story time was a very special time with all us (6 girls) climbed into one bed with mom and a book. Special memories.

    Enjoy your reading time, and I know your girls will love it as much a we all di.

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