Please welcome Carla, from Small + Friendly.
I can thank the lovely Rachael for "introducing" me to Carla last winter when she and I and a few others did some guest posting while Rachael was off enjoying herself on her honeymoon. Since then I have been enjoying getting to know Carla! She shares so many fantastic things on her blog. She can often be found making some super cool clothes for her little boy. She shares lots of fun DIY ideas for kids and for adults. Not to mention some helpful tips on being a parent of a toddler. And, oh yeah, she loves to cook and shares some delish recipes as well! Today she shares with us her favorite place to tell stories and a few little story telling tips.
Hi there! I'm Carla, and I blog over at small + friendly. When Jane asked me to be a part of this series, I was so excited; I am a life long lover of the made up story. My grandfather was the king of tall tales. He would spin stories out of thin air, full of adventure, intrigue, humor, and morals. He was a master. I still tell many of his stories and have only recently started, with the help and inspiration of my son, to create my own. Perhaps because I grew up with such a master, I find the task more challenging than it should be, so I thought I'd share a few tips for anyone else feeling a little unsure.
My family is big on snuggling, and I'm convinced that nothing gets the creative juices flowing like being tucked into a cozy bed (no matter the hour). If you are shy to tell a story without any guidance, I suggest that step one be: snuggle up. Step two: start by asking your child what they would like the story to be about. Step three: if nothing seems to come to mind, try using stuffed animals as characters. Step four: have fun, that is what it's all about. And remember, there's a reason my grandpa was so good at it, he had a lot of practice! Bonus step: I found this article extremely helpful in taking the storytelling plunge.
Here's what I came up with when my son asked me for a story about a blue whale. Later, I drew our favorite scene (please excuse the drawing skills), and he colored it in!
A Whale of a Tale
There once was a blue whale who was very lonely. He was different from the other whales, he was more interested in the sky than the sea. He would float to the surface of the water and stare up at the sky all day. One day, a seagull flew by and noticed the strange little whale. He swooped down and sat next to him, bobbing on the waves. "Hi." he said. "Hi." said the whale. The seagull and the whale chatted, and they learned they had many things in common, including their love of the sky. They became fast friends. The other whales said, "You can't be friends with a bird, you belong in the sea, and he belongs in the sky." And the other seagulls said, "Why would you want to be friends with a whale, he can't even fly." But the seagull and the whale didn't care, they got along great despite their differences. One day, the whale told his seagull friend his greatest wish, "I want to fly." And the seagull got an idea ... On the day of the whale's birthday, he looked up in the sky to see it full of balloons, each one pulled by a bird. The seagull had gotten all of his bird friends to help him make his best friend's dream come true. They tied the balloons around the whale, and he got to spend his birthday among the clouds, with his best friend by his side.
I hope this silly story and my little tips encourage you to tell a story to your little one. Now, if you'd like to hear your toddler tell you a story, might I suggest you ask them about their dreams? It's truly fascinating stuff!
Thanks so much for sharing with us Carla. What a sweet little story. And, your drawings are fantastic. What a great way to get young kids in on the fun by drawing a picture of your story and letting them color it in. I'll have to try this with Henry because all he draws right now are "thunderstorms".