My Stories – A Personal Reading Adventure

My Stories - Reading Is An Adventure

“Reading is dreaming with open eyes”

As a child reading was my escape. I started reading at age 5 and reading became a part of me. The books became my reality and I could see the scenes as if it was happening around me, I still do. I could spend hours alone in my room, just living in my fantasy world, as the words jumped out of the page and took on a life of its own. It was beautiful, even magical. I still remember how my mom would take me to the library, I would pick 3 or 4 big books, that my mom hoped would last me the week and I would finish them in a day, because I just could not stop reading. My mom got very frustrated with having to drive to the library every second day, so she would make me pick bigger, more advanced books with the hopes that it would last longer, but this just encouraged me to read even more. By the time I reached Grade 1 I read 300 books in a year, yes I did not mistype it. I had a book with me wherever I went, and by the time I reached Highschool my room mates in hostel would hide my books in order to get me to spend some time with them away from my books. As a mom, I now believe that reading is the best gift I could give my child and I have made it my mission to open the world of reading to him from a very young age.

On the 6th of September we celebrate National Read A Book day and what better way to celebrate than with his very own personalized story books by My Stories? When Mariana from My Stories asked me if we would like to review their newest edition “Red Balloon” I was just filled with excitement! But before we start, let me introduce you to the little small business My Stories!

Who and what is My Stories

Cené and Mariane are sisters in law. Cenè had a dream of creating personalized books on home ground and Mariana has always had a deep love for writing and have been wanting to write and print a children’s book. In 2020 their 2 dreams finally collided, and My Stories was born. At My Stories each storybook is specially designed, personalized and individually printed. The story books are available in Afrikaans and English and you can choose from 3 different stories: 1. The Red Balloon, 2. Safari Adventure and 3. Where is Hadeda’s laugh?

The Red Balloon

The Red Balloon is their newest addition and is all about the adventures of, in our case little A and his pretty red balloon. A leaves on a game drive with Ranger Steve and in his backpack he hid a pretty red balloon. Out of nowhere a wild west wind starts blowing  and blows the balloon right out of his backpack! A tries his best to catch his balloon, but the clouds are getting darker and the wind blows stronger and stronger. What if the balloon burst and the shreds of plastic end up in the bush? Do you think A can catch the balloon in time?

We thoroughly enjoyed reading this book because it was so relatable. I could see little A come alive through the story, not only through the illustrations, but also because it is exactly something A would do! I also love that the book itself is an adventure! The story keeps your attention with all of its ups and downs, and little bits of humor at just the right places. We had tons of “ooohs”, “aaahs”, “Oh no’s!” and giggles. The illustrations are out of this world and the story captivating, yet educational as well. It’s definitely already a favorite bedtime story.

Our My Stories journey was such a special little adventure in itself, and these are definitely books that will be treasured for years to come. Here are some of our favorite things about My Stories;

1.Only ordering the books is an adventure in itself

I absolutely loved how they let you choose and personalize your child’s character in the book. You get to pick the color of the skin, the gender, the hairstyle and color, and whether you want him/her to have glasses and/or freckles. It is just so personal and intimate that you are really able to bring your child to life through the illustrations of him/her.

2. Customer Service

The customer service is out of this world! Ordering is not only simple and straightforward, but you are also kept up to date with your order throughout the whole entire process! From when your order is received, to where it is sent for printing, to when it is sent for delivery, etc. You are never left in the dark, and you know exactly where your order is at any given time.

3. The stories

I love how well written these books are. The stories are fun and exciting and relatable because it is based on South African experiences and not some international events that our children are not familiar with. The characters are cute, friendly, curious and kind. I also love that you can expect a bit of everything from the stories, which keeps the attention of even my busy, 4-year-old. Not just that, the stories are educational as well, and leaves you with something to think about and opens up the line of communication and an opportunity for conversation with your child. The Red balloon, for example, allowed us to talk comfortably about pollution, its effects on nature and how we could protect and care for nature from our side.

4. It’s the perfect gift

This really makes the perfect birthday or Christmas gift for any child. It is so personal and so special, and definitely is something that can not only be used but will be treasured for years to come!

5. The illustrations

A is all about the pictures at this stage and he absolutely adored all of the beautiful illustrations in the books. He giggled all the way through and needed some extra time to take everything in on each of the pages.

6. The quality

The quality of these books are like no other. They are beautifully printed and so beautiful. I feel like I could just frame them.

I for one believe that a child can never have enough books, but I also believe that some books a child will outgrow, and some will stay with them forever. These books are one of those that will stay with him forever and that hopefully he can read to his children and grandchildren one day. I cannot wait to see what other stories will be released by My Stories, but this is one collection I would love to complete. I cannot think of a better gift than a My Stories story book.

If you would like to order your very own My Stories Story Book and give your child the opportunity to go an epic adventure you can do so here: https://www.mystories.co.za

Lots of Love,

~ A and Mommy ~

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