Hello dear Forest Friends!

Today I want to share a special project of mine! When I was around 3 and 4 years old, I had an imaginary friend named Friend Dinosaur (some upstairs kiddos might be familiar with stories I have told about him, very mischievous). My dad wrote down a lot of quotes from my childhood (writer parents + first child) including a lot of me talking about Friend Dinosaur, and now that Lulu and I have had so much time on our hands, we decided to turn those carefully preserved quotes into a book. Lulu and I worked together to create some frankly beautiful artwork. It’s not exactly a story, but hopefully an entertaining read and vision of where my brain was a couple decades ago. 🙂
Making this book over the past few weeks has been a comforting recurring activity for Lulu and I–every afternoon we would pick a few lines to illustrate and make a few pages of the book, stopping when we puttered out and returning the next day. And when we finished, it was so fun to see a collection of so many days of work and how our art styles changed day by day.
Make your own book!
There are lots of ways y’all can do a book-making project: you can create a character, like we did, and write a sentence on each page that tells a story. Or, you could make an alphabet book–make big block letters, a letter a page, and have your kiddo draw inside the letter, and draw things that start with that letter. Or, write out the lyrics to some favorite songs, and make an illustrated songbook. Or retell a fairy tale! Your kiddo can dictate the words to you, you can lift them from another source, or you can write it together–maybe they could write the first letter on each page, medieval illustration style.
Remember, this doesn’t need to be a one-day project! You can do a page a day, or a bunch one day and forget for a while and come back later.
For the actual book-making: Lulu and I used a premade sketchbook; you can also staple pages together, or punch holes and bind with yarn.
About the Author!
A part that Lulu and I haven’t gotten to yet, but is super fun, is making an “About the Author” page. When we’re reading books to kids we often skip over the authors, so take the time to read the names of some faves on your library, and see if they have a picture and bio. And then make one to go at the end of your book!
I hope Friend Dinosaur shares a little bit of the comfort and joy that he once gave me! Sending so much love to each of y’all.
–Teacher Madeleine