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In the bear cave

Hattie and Joe have a huge number of books. I love books, and reading, and I really want them to be keen readers too, so I figured that the best way to help with that goal is to make books a crucial part of their lives. Their big book collection has come about not because I’ve won Lotto (books are SO expensive in New Zealand), but because I love charity shops: such a great place to buy kids’ stuff. So I pay $1 or $2 for books that would otherwise cost $29.99 new. Some of the kids’ favourite books

Anyway, one of their favourite charity shop books is Two Bears and Joe. I chose it primarily because I’m collecting books that feature their Christian names.

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It’s a very cute story about a little boy who entertains himself all day with the help of two bears, who his parents can’t see (although they can see the aftermath of Joe’s games with the bears). At one point Joe and the bears play in a cave under the stairs:

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This particular part of the story has resonated with the kids, and they’re talked about making a bear cave, so when they were out at a playgroup this morning with Nikita (our amazing au pair for this year) I transformed their playhouse into a bear cave complete with resident bears, with the help of a couple of blankets.

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The kids were absolutely delighted to find their bear cave! They had lunch in there – honey sandwiches, plus some fruit:

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And they stayed in their bear cave, with the blanket down, for ages, chatting and singing to each other. Later they insisted on wearing their slippers, which have been seen as Gruffalo feet until now, but which are very good substitute bear feet as well:

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They’re having their naps now, but I’ve promised them that, if they’re good for the rest of the day, they can have their dinner in the bear cave as well.

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