I gave them books, the grandchildren, and they didn't seem to mind. My own little kids loved books, just like I did when I was a little girl. I have many cherished childhood memories that include picture books or poetry books, my sisters, one of my parents, and the living room couch. When I was very small it was Mom reading to me (The Runaway Pancake, Five Beds for Bitsy, ... ), and later it was Dad reading to us before bed (Disney's Uncle Remus, The Storybook of River Bend, .... ) It's fun to see the tradition passed down to my grandchildren
Before I ordered the books for Christmas, I asked my kids for ideas. I love how they often choose the books they loved when they were kids themselves. Bill Peet is one of Dave's favorite author/illustrators and each of his three children received a book by Bill Peet (The Ant and the Elephant, Cyrus the Sea Serpent, and Jennifer and Josephine). Little Jilly got Gyo Fujikawa's wonderful board book entitled Babies. It was my favorite when I was one and a half.
I don't remember my parents reading us chapter books, but I read dozens of them to my own children. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Caddie Woodlawn, The Not-Just-Anybody Family, Beverly Cleary's books, and many others. So much fun! We have an entire library! Maybe one day I'll have a passel of kids surrounding me once again for another trip through the wonderful world of Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle.