The Great Blue House by Kate Banks, Illustrated by Georg Hallensleben
The story begins, "It is summer at the great blue house. The crickets are singing. Clothes billow on the line. The children crouch beside a stream chasing frogs. Their voices rise into the air like dandelion puff. Listen to them giggle and shout."
Then the, the family must leave and the blue house is all alone...kind of. A little mouse, a cat, and a bird make the blue house their home for the winter.
The cat even gives birth to some kittens in the house while the people are away.
When summer finally returns, the people come with it, back to their summer house: "Kittens are meowing. Fledglings are chirping. And a new baby cries. Summer has returned to the great blue house."
Although, we cannot necessarily relate to what it is like having a summer house, this book was fun to read together. It immediately reminded me of a little kid that I used to babysit for whose family DID have a summer house.
One day, I was babysitting and the little boy said to me, "I love Nightingale. I can't wait till we get to go back!" I had no idea what he was talking about, so I asked, "What's nightingale?" He looked at me like I was from the moon and said, "Our plantation, silly!!"
Of course. His plantation.
Back to the book--we really liked it, especially the illustrations.