A gator dad and his three hatchlings “squeeze the day” they have together.
The morning starts with Dad waking up the kids and feeding them a high-energy breakfast of pan-fried fish, tails sticking out of the breading. Then it’s on to errands at the grocery store (in one of those carts that looks like a car) and some outdoor adventures at the local park: football, a seesaw, swings. While the start was uneven, from here on out, Lies writes with a just-right combination of lyricism and pragmatism: “I’ll be your raft on a sea of grass, / a tree for you to climb. // I might even agree to do something // that maybe we shouldn’t have done.” Back home and dry again, they settle down with a book or perhaps “tear the house apart” building a fort out of blankets and couch cushions. This is a dad who will play dress-up and “teach you the sounds that all your toys make,” a dad who will supervise tub time, hug you through a storm, robot you to bed, read one last book, and then look forward to more “squeezing” tomorrow. Lies’ acrylic illustrations are filled with small details to notice, especially the labels on cans and boxes, but what is most evident are the feelings these four have for one another.
Dads, squeeze the day with your own children just as this one does. (Picture book. 4-8)