Toddler Connections and Meaning: “Goodnight Moon”

On Monday, October 3, 2011 the first quarter moon showed bright in the darkening fall skies around 8:00 p.m. It was a very busy day for 21 month old Harlow Marie. A blustery warm day, blowing leaves off the trees and gusts capable of blowing a small framed girl off her feet. Does everything have a name and what does it mean?

The western skies over Montana have begun their descent into early darkness. Summer days of sunlight until nearly 10 p.m. are gone. A crispness is in the early morning air and leaves are turning crimson red, orange and yellow.

By early evening, the gusts subsided and a desert like warm breeze waffled among the trees. A smorgasbord of favorite foods was consumed followed by a fragrant bath of lavender that washed the dust of the day away. Monday was on wind-down mode.

Harlow Marie began her search for the book of the night. Her stack of books some two feet tall sat on a chair. Carefully she moved each book to the sofa and reviewed the front cover and first page. No, she said after rejecting a book and setting it aside. The review process was arduous and tedious. Some where between book 1 and book 75, Harlow spotted a glowing moon through the window blinds. The review process went fast and furious from this point. Stacks of books tumbled all around her.

Upon locating the children’s classic, “Goodnight Moon”, Harlow Marie’s glee was like watching an astronomer discover a new planet. See! See! The Moon, she exclaimed. She located the cow jumping over the moon, the kittens and their mittens and we read the book three or four times.

The warm desert like breeze and the evening skies provided the greatest ending for any story. With book in hand, we sat on the porch as she pointed to the real moon and her illustrated version. She was satisfied that not only did she understand, but that she was able to share her discovery with her biggest fan.

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