Do you remember sitting on your mother’s lap, your ears tuned to her voice, and your eyes glued to the pages of a captivating book? Or maybe you have memories of your siblings gathered around a CD player listening to stories for hours.
I have many memories connected with books and stories. Some of those memories are of stories read by Uncle J. on The Children’s Hour. That radio show was before my time, but some recordings have been collected and remastered into complete audiobooks.
For a while, my family had a tradition of listening to Uncle J. read Dickens’, A Christmas Carol every Christmas Eve. I thought it was great fun to stay up late learning lessons with Ebenezer Scrooge! (Grab your own copy and have Christmas in July! ????)
Heidi by Johanna Spyri
Let me tell you about Heidi. If you’re not familiar with this delightful children’s classic, it is the story of a lonely orphan girl who is taken to live with her jaded and taciturn uncle on the Swiss Alps. One of Heidi’s trials is months of living in a big city, separated from her beloved uncle and Peter-the-goatherd’s family. Her grandmama in Frankfurt tells her:
“If you have a sorrow that you cannot tell to anyone, you can go to our Father in Heaven.” ― Johanna Spyri, Heidi
When I read the quote above, I “hear” it in Uncle J’s voice. Earlier this year, I re-listened to Heidi and found myself caught up in her struggles and triumphs as she learns the joys of freedom and patience in trials. Heidi creates and finds a place of belonging with the Alm-Uncle, the alpine community, and creation.
“It was so lovely, Heidi stood with tears pouring down her cheeks, and thanked God for letting her come home to it again. She could find no words to express her feelings, but lingered until the light began to fade and then ran on.” ― Johanna Spyri, Heidi
You can purchase Heidi, narrated by Uncle J. by clicking this link. The children in your life will enjoy Heidi’s adventures, and the adults may be more intrigued than they anticipate. After all, an author once said: “A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.” ― C.S. Lewis
– Rachel Horst
1. Smith, Jessie Wilcox. (1863-1935). ”You can have that, I have plenty.”. 1922. Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America, http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/69691007-32f9-bf84-e040-e00a18064a07. (Accessed July 2, 2020.)