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My sister had my first niece, Layla, 3 months ago but they live in Texas, so I don’t see my goddaughter nearly as much as I want to. I call every day and talk to her so she’ll know my voice but its still not enough. I came across this book at at gift guide event and thought the idea was so great. Its a children’s book, much like many Layla will have. The difference is that this book lets me record myself telling the story so that every time my sister opens the book for her, its like I’m reading to her!
As awesome as I thought this was, I was sure it was going to be complicated and difficult to record so I set aside a Saturday afternoon to accomplish the task of recording my voice. The name of Layla’s book is Bright and Beautiful and its about all the beautiful things in nature. The instructions told me to sit in a quiet place and press REC to record my voice, wait for the prompt, then press STOP at the end and turn the page. What if I wanted to re-record my voice? I just had to press REC and do it again before turning the page. Could it really be that easy? I started with the first page, which is a dedication page, then proceeded to press REC, read, press STOP, turn the page and so on until the book was completed. Then, I opened the battery case and slid the button to lock it. I was done, already! I turned to the front and, sure enough, my voice spoke the words on the page for each page. And this was all done in less than 5 minutes! The recording is clear and loud enough for a child. I thought that the child would have to press a button to hear the voice but all you have to do is turn the page. I love love love this book! Now, I feel like Layla will have a piece of me in her room at all times.
Its not only a great gift for aunties and other family members like me who live far from their little loved ones. Its perfect for parents who share custody. Layla isn’t ready to grab this book off the shelf just yet but toddlers sure can, when they miss that parent. Its also a neat idea for kids who are just starting to go on sleepovers. They can pack this book and hear their parents’ voice reading them a bedtime story.
Hallmark has 12 of these books to choose from. One of my favorites is “We’re not scared of anything!”. “The Very First Christmas” is also a fun gift idea for the holiday season, which you know will be here before we know it. Go to www.hallmark.com to see all the others.

Written by Tabitha

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