It's well known that Hubs and I are deeply in love with books. When we were pregnant with Noise, our first, my sister-in-law threw us a "Book Shower." Friends and family each gifted us with their best-loved titles, and kick started our children's library with their love and thoughtfulness.
One of the best books we received was this book, Go In and Out The Window, An Illustrated Songbook for Young People. Published by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, it is a gorgeous tome of folk, hymn, and children's songs, illustrated by famous paintings from the MOMA collections. "Amazing Grace" is illustrated by Gauguin's la Orana Maria, making the song not just a beautiful listening experience, but a stimulating visual one as well:
"Hush Little Baby" is handsomely captured in the painting "Just Moved" by American artist Henry Mosler:
And my own state song, "Home on the Range," is captured perfectly in Bierstadt's The Rocky Mountains, Lander's Peak:
There are a few songs in the book I had never heard of, and some I knew well. My husband and I are probably two of the five people in the world who now know every verse of "Clementine," and this book is the reason-- Noise loved that one as a baby.
Other books have come and gone, but Noise will still, at nearly 6, sit down in our laps and sing every song, looking at the art for hours. In addition to the art itself, there are small informational paragraphs about the artists, the art, the song, or the era of the song. I really think that as our kids get older, their enjoyment of this book will only increase.