By Brian Gonsar
There are up sides and down sides to having a toddler. The down side is that you have very little time to read on your own. Any fleeting moment I have without the tug of a toddler is usually filled with house work, day-job work, or sleeping (with sleeping the last priority). But the up side is that any reading you get to do usually involves board books or pictures books with said toddler.
Before I was a parent, I was an uncle. And during a longer-than-expected house renovation, my wife and I stayed with my very generous brother and sister-in-law. One of the highlights was when I’d get home from work. It was usually pretty close to my niece / goddaughter’s bed time. Since I didn’t have much time to play, I would try to spend some quality time reading her a bedtime book or two.
She loved books like Lady Pancake and Sir French Toast by Josh Funk and Secret Pizza Party by Adam Rubin (maybe she just liked food?). But the book she always asked me to read was Woodpecker Wants a Waffle by Steve Breen (ok, it was the food). She was a waffle fanatic, so the cover of this book spoke to her. But when we opened the pages, we discovered great read-aloud text, funny visuals with physical humor, lots of furry woodland creatures, and a plot twist that you didn’t see coming (well, after read #49, you could see it coming).
Since that time, my wife and I moved back into our house and had a kid of our own. Now, I’m having fun sharing my collection of picture books with my own waffle-loving daughter. She shares the same love of food picture books that my niece does, and reading those books together has built a great father-daughter bond.
Toddlers may not have huge attention spans and I may not have a ton of free time, but when I’m able to sit down to read with my daughter, it feels like I have all the time in the world.
Brian is an award-winning commercial and feature film producer. As an Executive Producer at several ad agencies, Brian has headed up the production for Fortune 500 companies, managing budgets, schedules, staffing, and teams of producers. As a creatively-driven producer, Brian has produced a wide range of projects including TV commercials, digital executions, live events, websites, apps, music videos, feature films, animation, digital signage, and influencer-focused projects.