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A Childhood Favorite from CLiF’s Newest Blogger

September 24, 2012

By Nina Cavender

When I was younger, the best part of my day was story time with my parents. Whether it was with my dad, mom, or both of them, the feeling of being rocked in a chair, or cuddled in bed with a good book was overwhelmingly heartwarming.

When I was asked to start this blog about my personal childhood memories, and the books that filled those, I immediately thought of one title: I Swim An Ocean In My Sleep by Norma Farber. I remember countless nights spent tucked under my covers, with my Mom sitting at the foot of the bed, reading this book, making the words come to life. It never failed to lull me into a deep sleep.

This book covers every element of my childhood in a nutshell: whimsy, wild imagination, adventure, and after the journey of a elementary student’s day, the overwhelming feeling of satisfying exhaustion.

The book follows a young boy through poetic verses, playing and frolicking with creatures of the ocean. He befriends a mermaid, whale, octopus, and various schools of fish. “Boats flow over friends and me, jumping rope in weeds of sea,”  he says.

The melodic tone through the beautifully illustrated book slowly rocks you to sleep, just like the waves of the ocean.

Every time this book was read to me, I would close my eyes and picture myself riding the large, purple seahorse, and laying my head on the foamy pillow of a wave. This book is so connected with my childhood, that I can’t reminisce without thinking about it. It is what made me love the ocean, and inspired me to explore the world around me. This gorgeously written and illustrated picture book should be part of every child’s library, hands down.

“Ocean deep, ocean dim, fill my dreaming to the brim. Nights so long, the dark will last if I do not dream too fast.”

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