Do you have a word for the year? I am confused for I have a few in mind, but cannot pick one. Maybe you can help? I do believe that every word has magic and power of its own, and also that each one has a story its own (be it its origin story, or something else completely!). And with all the power words own, picking the right one(s) can bring out so many changes, in our lives and that of those around us. Don’t you think so?
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Words for the Year
Anyway, here are a few of my words for the year. If I cannot pick one, maybe I will pick one for each quarter instead, or simply find ways to incorporate them all together throughout the year. Let me know which one you would pick.
- Nagomi: The simplest way to define it, as it defies translation from Japanese, is to say that it is a philosophy of balance. I am reading The Way of Nagomi: The Japanese Philosophy of Finding Balance and Peace in Everything You Do currently and it is such a simple yet powerful concept from Japan. This inspired me to pick the word as one of my words for the year. In addition, nagomi also means joyful in my mother tongue of Tamil!
- Fun: Another book I am reading inspired this pick. The Fun Habit: How the Pursuit of Joy and Wonder Can Change Your Life by Mike Rucker. It is more about looking for and making fun a habit, and pursuing it to make our lives happier, rather than making it a once-in-a-while guilty pleasure. Fun should be looked at like an everyday habit, and looked for in the little things. The book explores
- Love: Well, this is self-explanatory.
- Magic: Looking for the magic in everyday, everything, and everybody can help us in so many ways, and I will be trying to do that each day this year.
Stories About the Magic and Power of Words
The Magic of Words
I read two wonderful books titled ‘The Magic of Words’ and each one is so very beautiful in its own way. I highly recommend that you read them both!
The Magic Of Words written and illustrated by Amy Mucci || Children’s Stories in Verse / Social Emotional Learning (2 – 8 years, and up) || Bright Wish Books (October 5, 2021)
Description: Do you want to teach children the power of their words and thoughts while supporting their creativity? Inspire your children to reflect and believe in themselves as they think about positive words.
Amy Mucci uses beautiful and lyrical verses to show readers that words matter and also how they play a magical and powerful role in shaping our thoughts and our everyday lives. And yes, her illustrations are so very sweet too! A book that will have young readers returning to it over and over again; and parents and educators will appreciate not just the beautiful book but also the discussion questions at the end.
The Magic Of Words by Phil M Jones and Eevi Jones; illustrated by Nina Khalova || Children’s Books / Social Emotional Learning (4 – 8 years, and up) || Box of Tricks (August 25, 2021)
Description: What if you could help your children understand the power and importance of the words they speak each day? Kids will love following a little girl and boy, as they are making their way through a magical world of make-believe. Fueled by their never-ending imagination, they discover and come to understand the true magic of words.
I realized that I had added both of Phil Jones books (the best-selling one he based this picture book on, and this one) to my reading list at the same time. I decided to read this first, because, well, of course! And I am glad I did. Nina Khavlova’s illustrations are vibrant and full of magical details that are dure to delight all readers. The sweet rhyming verses are filled with so much meaning in their simplicity as they state everyday truths we all need to keep in mind; and when we do so, we can make our worlds a better place simply by using the right words!
I will be reading Phil Jones ‘Exactly What to Say: The Magic Words for Influence and Impact‘ soon (or rather, have already started on it).
The Word Collector
I also read two wonderful books titled ‘The Word Collector’! And again, each one is so very wonderful in its own way. To repeat myself, I highly recommend that you read them both!
The Word Collector by Peter H. Reynolds (Author and Illustrator) || Children’s Books about Reading (3 – 7 years, and up) || Orchard Books (January 30, 2018)
Description: In this extraordinary new tale from Peter H. Reynolds, Jerome discovers the magic of the words all around him — short and sweet words, two-syllable treats, and multisyllable words that sound like little songs. Words that connect, transform, and empower.
Oh! So very sweet and delightful! This book shows that sharing what we have makes it all the more better, that words have the power to bring about change, whether they are short ones like “hi” or longer ones like “effervescent” (yes, this word is in the book). And I love how Reynolds shows Jerome collecting words!! Love both the illustrations and the words within this book equally, and it is a must-have and read.
Also Wonderful Words!
The Word Collector by Sonja Wimmer (Author and Illustrator) and Jon Brokenbrow (Translator) || Children’s Value Books (3 – 8 years, and up) || Cuento de Luz (April 1, 2012)
Description: A magical, heart-melting story about words that will captivate our hearts. A young girl shares her love of words and rescues people from feeling lost and blue.
Stunningly whimsical artwork and words that literally flow across the pages transport readers to a magical world where Luna loves collecting words; and when the need arises, she shares her collection and understands the beauty of sharing, and the power of the words themselves! The floating words in a way show that words should be fun, free, and help expand our worlds and minds. And if you find these words difficult to read, the whole text of the book is presented at the back of the book to help you read them in a more traditional format sans graphics.
Every Word Tells a Story
Every Word Tells a Story by Tom Read Wilson (Author) and Ian Morris (Illustrator) || Children’s Dictionaries (8 – 12 years, and up) || words & pictures (October 4, 2022)
Description: See how the English language evolved in this extraordinary exploration of the origins of everyday words. Full of funny stories and fascinating facts, Tom Read Wilson knows even the most ordinary-sounding word can have the most surprising story behind it!
Words and the stories they tell always fascinate me, and this book takes us on an amazing journey from A to Z! Filled with extraordinary stories behind even the most ordinary words (are there any?), this book is sure to entertain, enchant, and educate readers effortlessly! And those quirky illustrations charm and delight you at the same time. I loved learning the word origin for ‘clue’ (check it out in the book for yourself) and also how ‘frippery’ came about into use. Did you know that the flower ‘magnolia’ is named after a botanist? Or that…. well, that is enough for now and I will let you read the book! But yes, read it, you will not regret doing so.
And Now, the End of This Post
Dear reader, have you read any of these books (the picture books as well as the ones that inspired my words for the year)? Or any similar ones? I would love to hear your thoughts on the books you have read and recommendations for other books as well.
And once again, do you have a word for the year? If yes, what is it? Any goals and resolutions? I would love to be inspired by you, like you do everyday.