My Favorite Childhood Reading Story: Ramona and Her Father

Submitted by: Vickie L.

When I was a little girl, it was my dad who read to me every night before bed. We sat in his little den, which consisted of floor to ceiling bookshelves, every square inch of which was lined with books. The furniture in the room was an antique desk and his wing chair, his nightly reading spot. I would either perch on his lap or sit on the floor at his feet.

Ramona Quimby and her father

While I remember reading every night, and no doubt read many, many books, my clearest memory was reading the Beverly Cleary “Ramona” series. It is about a little girl named Ramona Quimby and the daily life she shares with her family. Remember Ramona the Pest? She was a typical little girl—so I related to her “adventures.”

Ramona Quimby, a typical girl

We read every single one, but of course, as a little girl, the one that I loved the most was Ramona and Her Father. It’s funny—I recently went online to refresh my memory on the storyline and was surprised that it touched upon such grown-up topics as a dad losing his job and money being tight for a family.

Ramona Quimby and her family

Instead, I remember the feeling that the Quimby’s were a special family—one that was so clearly full of love, no matter what trouble Ramona and Beatrice find themselves in, and one that I couldn’t wait to see what happened each night at storytime. I remember giggling out loud as Ramona acts out in funny ways, not wanting the chapter to be over so that I could get a few more minutes of togetherness with my dad, reading a book that left me each night with a warm and fuzzy feeling.

Ramona Quimby and her father

Beverly Cleary’s books took such a place in my heart that I sent her the one and only “fan” letter I ever wrote. I was thrilled when I received a postcard back in the mail several months later, with a handwritten “Love, Beverly Cleary.” I came across this postcard a couple of years ago when my parents moved out of my childhood home—saved in a shoebox for more than 25 years.

Name: Vickie L.
Age: 35
Position: Research Analyst
Hometown: Austin, Texas

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My Favorite Childhood Reading Story: Ramona and Her Father
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My Favorite Childhood Reading Story: Ramona and Her Father

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