Now that I’m working on my third novel, I am growing more aware of my subconscious habits. I can now tell you that I write about women of faith navigating relationships with the aid of tea. Tea will always be vital to the lives of my characters because tea is so central to my habits that I can’t imagine a full life without it. What I did not notice till this week is that the books I read to my children are rife with pro-tea propaganda. (Prepare yourself for a few poor quality photos taken while reading to the four littles.)
About a month ago, I rejoiced to find one of our favorite board books on a lower bookshelf: The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry by Don Wood and Audrey Wood, and the Big Hungry Bear. I immediately started indoctrinating the babies about tea, I mean, reading them this lovely book. But this time I noticed myself pausing at my favorite page with the tea party scene. Look, babies! Even disguised fruit and rodents love tea. It’s ubiquitous. It’s inevitable. You will love tea.
Then, a couple of weeks ago, I perused the newest spate of children’s books. I”m always on the lookout for nonconventional Princess books to humor and edify my princess/fairy/unicorn/castle/dragon-loving older children. I wound up purchasing two beautiful picture books – Princess Hyacinth: The Surprising Tale of a Girl Who Floated by Florence Parry Heide (which I just noticed ALSO has a tea party scene at its resolution!) and the one you see above, Part-Time Princess by Deborah Underwood, illustrated by Cambria Evans. I’m not even going to pretend that I bought that one for another reason. I loved the way the story and art imitated my life. We use tea for conflict resolution all the time in our household. (You should buy the book, because spoiler alert: it’s adorable and bright and spunky.)
There we are, then. Proof that I’m indoctrinating my children in the ways of tea by means of adorable picture books.
How about you? Do you have favorite picture books or other books that feature tea in the story? Please share so we can look them up!
[I do not receive any sort of gain by mentioning the books in this post; I’m just a fan.]