I wanted to share my story of the impact a Chinaberry book had on my family. (I originally wrote this in autumn 2005–we still love reading this book.) Please share your story of a Chinaberry book that has touched your family’s lives.
I am a new single-mom who recently adopted twin 3-year-old girls. Due to their background, the newness of our family, and their age, my daughters were having a lot of trouble separating from me when I would take them to preschool, at bedtime, etc. It filled me with sadness when I would see their surprised looks when I came to pick them up from preschool and they would ask me “You came back to get us?” I was looking for books that could help them feel reassured that this Mommy will always love them, take care of them & come back for them.
The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn was the perfect book to help illustrate that point. At every separation (and any other time they wanted), I would give them a kiss on the hand, ask them to put their hand on the side of their face, and repeat “Mommy loves me.” It sounds so simple, yet it really works. Now, several months later, I am happy to say that the girls are still happy to see me after work, but never surprised. The Kissing Hand book and concept have really helped the girls feel/sense my love for them during the school day & even throughout their sleep. (They also like to give me a “kissing hand” so I can remember how much they love me.)