Friday, April 22, 2016

A Tree is Nice by Janice May Udry & illustrated by Marc Simont

I bought this book simply because of the title. It is simple and sweet. Nice is such an under appreciated word. It isn't gushy, silly, or over the top. It is like pleasant and fun. Somewhat gentle words that in this day and age of hyperbole and sentimentalization are only used for slightly boring things. 

But here I am, liking boring things. And so I like these words. 

(I really don't know how this became a discussion on modern word usage, but there we are.) 

The pictures are pretty great too. Marc Simont won the Caldecott Medal in 1957 for this book. Marc Simont was the illustrator of the Nate, the Great books, as well as scores* of other books. He lived to be 97 and was actively illustrating and working up until his death.

*Also a neglected word. Why did dozen remain in usage, but score die out? Who wouldn't rather have a score of doughnuts than a dozen?

They fill up the sky. 

This is something that Westerners don't always appreciate. I remember my Colorado father-in-law as we were showing him the Kenai Penninsula in Alaska, saying "These trees really block the view." I have loved that ever since! To this here tree loving eastern girl, trees often are the view. 

They go beside the rivers and down the valley. They live up on the hills.

I love the way the words make the trees seem like moving things.

Happy picture!

The leaves whisper in the breeze 

Oh the gentleness of this book delights me!

Oh the joy of a climbing tree!

For some reason, I love the boy on the right, eating an apple. His placid enjoyment of an apple.

Even cats need trees. And what would we draw in the sand with if trees weren't around?

I love these cows, resting in the shade. 

Trees as picnic spots. 

Trees to shade the house in the summertime. 

Trees to shelter the house in the winter. The poor doghouse. The kids like that bewildered looking dog.

The planting of trees. 

(I love the detail of You hang the shovel back in the garage.)

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