By Monta Cooper


Super simple. Memorable. Sweet. And teaches my kids? I’m all over it. I have always loved reading books with my kids. Having them sit still in my arms was always a bonus, but sharing connection over a sweet story was ideal. My mom instilled a love of reading in me and I wanted to give that same gift to my kids.

And so when my now 10-year old was about 1, I came up with this little project. It’s a simple ABC book, but customized to each individual child. Part of the fun is creating the book WITH them as you go around the house asking them, “What thing in our house starts with the letter B? or C? or M? Do you hear the T sound? What is around us that starts with the T sound?”

You’ll take pictures of each item in their little world and put it together in a simple photo album. The albums I used were the cheap $2 ones from Walmart. If you’re lucky you can find the ones that have slots for exactly 26 pictures! Then I used my Cricut to cut out one letter for each page, stuck it in with the pictures and voilĂ ! Instead of using a Cricut, you could easily use pre-cut ABC stickers as well!

If you choose to make an ABC Book with your child here are a few tips:

  1. Use an ultrasound from when they were still in your belly as an X-ray on the X page! Not only is it hard to come up with anything for the X page, besides xylophone, it makes this album an extra sweet momento for both you and your child!
  2. If you can’t think of words in their world that start with O or W or other tricky letters – just use colors! Cut out some construction paper to fill that photo pocket, stick the letter on top of it and you have O for Orange and W for white!
  3. Haven’t actually printed a photo since the 90s? Most Walmarts have photo kiosks where you can sit with your phone, camera, or cloud and get the photos printed immediately. OR you can upload the pictures to and go pick the pictures up the same day or have them delivered. Easy peasy lemon squeezy. Walmart also is the only place I’ve seen these small 26-pocket 4×6 flexible photo albums that are perfect for kids.

This project started out as just a simple way to help my child connect his ABCs with the world around him, but it has turned into a way to connect with my children and create a keepsake that I really treasure. Having pictures of their hands and feet (for H and F) , or their crib and ultrasound (for C and X), in a small little album that we read together often just warms my heart.

Granted my 10-year old could care less about it now, but who knows? Maybe someday I’ll share it with his kids, or even make an album for each one of my grandkids someday. Jumping the gun a bit? Maybe, but time sure goes fast these days! And with each year I treasure these books a little more.

If you do this project with your child, will you drop me a note in the comments below? Maybe even a picture? I’d love to see your kids’ ABC books!

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