Ted absolutely loves us reading to him – this is something I am very pleased about. Reading is really important to me and as a child it is something I remember very fondly doing with both of my parents, we were surrounded by books and I have always loved the written word. We have been asked to make and review a personalised book from Love2read for Ted and I am so happy to have been introduced to this company! Love2read is founded by Caroline, a mum and teacher who initially started making these books to encourage her own children’s love of reading. The books are unique in that they use your personal photographs and your choice of words, so that you are creating a beautiful picture book to reflect the child’s own world. They do not operate with a ‘beginning, middle and end’ sequence, they are snapshots and reflections of the child’s life, using high-frequency words to help young children start to recognise words and learn through the look and say method.
For Ted’s book, I chose to make it as a look-back over the year, using key photographs of things we have done in 2015. This is great for us as we don’t live close by to our families, so it has enabled me to choose pictures of all his family members to keep showing him in-between visits. I have included photographs from his first family holiday with Grandparents, his first birthday party, playing with his older cousin, and various outings we have had to the farm, aquarium and local festivals. I love pointing to each individual in the picture and asking him who it is, and he will respond by saying “Daddy!” or “Grandma!” At the moment Aunty Amelia, Aunty Tilly and Aunty Lisa is a bit of a mouthful for a 15 month old, but he loves looking at their picture and hearing me say their names. He can recognise the pictures of his little friends, and when it is a photograph of himself at a few months old he says “Baby!” which is so sweet. I love sitting down to read this book with him, we take our time over each page looking at who and what we can see in the photograph, as well as reading the chosen sentence I added to caption each photograph. I chose simple phrases with key words such as “I went to the farm” so that Ted can draw association with the animals in the background and our family day out together.
I am really impressed with the quality of the book and the image printing, it is has a very professional finish to it. Ted can be quite destructive at times (many pop-up books have sadly been defaced) so we are keeping this beautiful book separate from the others as I would be so upset if he pulled out one of the paper pages. This also makes it more special every time I bring it out from safe keeping! When making the book on-line you can choose a colour scheme for the front page and photo borders. The website is really easy to navigate and the book is simple to make. If your image quality isn’t good enough you will get a notification, so you don’t have to worry then when your book arrives some pages won’t look good.
I think this would make such a great Christmas present or stocking filler for children of all ages, and the selection of titles and themes for the book is really wide – and you can always come up with your own. Some suggestions on the website are “My Daddy” “Our Holiday” “I Love…” “Where I live” and many, many more! I am particularly interested in the books geared at new siblings which document a new baby coming and joining the family. I think this would be great for Ted to feel included and excited about his new baby brother, so I will definitely be looking at these once baby has arrived.
The ordering process is simple and easy, you just need to have your photographs ready and a theme chosen. I was also really impressed with how quickly it arrived after ordering. If you are looking for a unique and personalised gift this Christmas, I would highly recommend these beautiful books from Love2read – head over to their website now to find out more!
*DISCLAIMER* I was given our book for free for review purposes, however all words and opinions are my own.