Books Elma Family Kitty Reading what we're reading

Hairy Maclary and Zachary Quack {what we’re reading}

24/06/2014

Once upon a time a very tired Mummy and a very fractious baby Kitty went out for a walk. And as it was raining, and grey and cold and damp they decided to pop into the Oxfam bookshop for a little browse, a little brightly coloured distraction, and a little drying out (for the Mummy at least – this was after all back in the day when I could remember to take the right rain cover for the right bit of the pram with me!).

We had a quick scan of the cookbooks, and the detective fiction, in my perpetual hunt for “Things that have gone out of print that I really wish I’d bought at the time. Or known about”, and then turned our attention to the children’s section.

And there, on the bottom shelf, tucked away in the corner, sat Hairy Maclary and Zachary Quack. A board book version, a little well loved, but none the worse for it, and packed with Lynley Dodd’s tongue twisters and gentle illustrations.

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life - What we're Reading - Hairy Maclary and Zachary Quack

So it came home with us, and I read it a couple of times, and Kitty flicked through the pages and then chewed the spine binding until it seemed a bit looser than was really ideal, and I tucked it away on the shelf in favour of something a little sturdier (and possibly waterproof) while we made our way through the chewing everything in sight phase.

And I’m sorry to say there it stayed until I pulled it out in one of those rare bursts of rearranging energy, putting together an Elma sized bookshelf and a Kitty sized shelf a bit higher up.

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life - What we're Reading - Hairy Maclary and Zachary Quack

And as I turned the pages I wondered why on earth I’d put it away, especially given that the rate of consumption of binding glue by a small girl has dramatically decreased, and her sister doesn’t seem to think it anything like as delicious as trying to scavenge the bits of breakfast that fell on the floor but Mummy hasn’t noticed yet because they landed behind the table leg.

Pittery pattery, skittery scattery – ZIP – into my lap scuttled Elma, settling down in my arms for a “‘tory”.

“Duck!” said a little voice, and a pudgy finger reached out to prod the page,

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life - What we're Reading - Hairy Maclary and Zachary Quack

“Quack! Quack!”

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life - What we're Reading - Hairy Maclary and Zachary Quack

And just like that it hit the favourites list.

Perhaps it resonates more with all of us now that I’m reading it to two little girls, who are constantly learning how to balance wanting to be together with the need for a little time and space of their own!

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life - What we're Reading - Hairy Maclary and Zachary Quack

All Hairy Maclary wants is a nice spot for an afternoon nap. And all Zachary Quack wants is to be cuddled up with his very very bestest friend. We can all relate to the desperate quest for a nap, but Hairy Maclary takes it to new heights, or perhaps that should be depths as he rapidly realises that the duck pond was perhaps not the best place to try, and now he can’t get out!

But as it turns out, sometimes the baby sister duck that follows you round might just be the very person you need.

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life - What we're Reading - Hairy Maclary and Zachary Quack

With that not so subliminal messaging I think it might just be on the repeat list for a while to come!

Space for the Butterflies: What We're Reading

 

Last week’s suggestion from Vickie was the gorgeous looking The Perfect Hug; we’ve got The Perfect Kiss and if the former is anything like the latter it will be a really visual treat, and a lovely read to boot!

And if you have a favourite, or just something fun your little ones have enjoyed reading lately please do join us. The linky is always open for the whole week so there’s plenty of time. And so, without further ado, it’s over to you to tell me what we should be reading!



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  • preeta samarasan 24/06/2014 at 5:59 pm

    We love this one too! We have a small stack of the Hairy Maclary and Slinky Malinki books and they are all big hits at our house. The lively rhymes make them quite appealing to the littler ones, I think — my nearly-21-month-old is always entranced and begs “again, again!” whenever I’ve read out one of those rollicking lists of dog names. Lynley Dodd is a genius with names!

    • Carie 25/06/2014 at 10:18 pm

      I’m guessing you’ve got Hairy MacLary of Donaldson Dairy then – my sister had it with her when we were all on holiday together and it was one of the ones the girls pinched off their cousin the most!!

  • Claire @ Clarina's Contemplations 24/06/2014 at 7:47 pm

    Oh…. Hairy Maclary! We are BIG fans… nothing more needs to be said really, other than that I will be hunting this particular book down… we haven’t read it yet! 😀

    • Carie 25/06/2014 at 10:19 pm

      I’ve not read all of the Hairy Maclary books (yet) but of the ones we’ve encountered it’s definitely a favourite!

  • sally 27/06/2014 at 3:20 pm

    This is one of our favourites too, and we’ve found a copy of the ‘Early Bird’ Slinky Malinki from a previous post now too and love that. I think we could happily read all Lynley Dodd’s books back to back in fact.

    • Carie 27/06/2014 at 10:03 pm

      There would definitely be worse ways to spend your time…!