This alphabet boardbook gives each letter a one-word mindfulness practice — Awareness, Breathe, Compassion, Dream — and a short accompanying poem at the level a 3 - 5 year old can understand. The rhymes in each poem flow freely and unforced:
"Dream with us.
Let your thoughts fly —
Together we can reach the sky."
Engel's illustrations have just enough detail to make recurrent readings fun (oh, did you notice the girl's ankle bracelet? the seashells on the mobile?). Better yet, they add to the book's multifaith dimension. The Dream page shows a flying horse carrying a sleeping child towards a First People's dreamcatcher; the Meditation page has Tibetan prayer flags fluttering behind young meditators. These clues are subtle. The primary impression is of everyday spirituality and pure humanity, revealed by such down-to-earth acts as playing in rainbow-lit puddles and helping your mom take used clothes to the thrift store.
In the back of the book, a page describes what being mindful means. Then four of the possibly less-known practices mentioned on earlier pages — Emotion Rocks, Mandala Art, Nature Art, and a Thankfulness Tree — are explained so that families can try them out. The book becomes not simply a listening exercise, but a joyful participation.