Sometimes, as a parent, I feel like I am trying to clutch the sands of time as they slide through my hands. I love my girls, and I'm constantly telling them how much I want them to stay right where they are (at 4, at 5, at 6, and so on.)  For me, (other than the admittedly difficult terrible-twos,) my girls have been a pleasure at every stage of their growth and development — and I always want to hang on to that pleasure. That is, until I realize how awesome their next stage will be.

This is the sentiment captured in a new book by Marianne Richmond called "If I Could Keep You Little." Accompanied by Richmond's gentle and whimsical illustrations, "If I Could Keep You Little" perfectly captures that powerful feeling that parents experience as they are raising their kids — that feeling of wanting your kids to grow while greedily hanging on to every moment they are little.  

Here's an excerpt of my favorite part:

If I could keep you little,

We'd finger paint our art.

But then I'd miss you creating,

Stories from your heart.

If I could keep you little,

I'd push your ducky float.

But then I'd miss you feeling,

the wind behind summer's boat.

Seriously, does it get any sweeter than that? I hope not because I don't think I could take it. "If I Could Keep You Little" is perfect for any kid who enjoys having a story read to them, from babies right on up to elementary students. (And it's even better for their parents.)