You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Tue, Jan 19, 2010 : 5 a.m.

Debi Gliori's 'No Matter What'

By Lisa Bankey

Sorry about the break between posts.

No Matter What Cover.jpg

The month of December is always a busy month for everyone, but for my house it was extra busy. Not only did we have school concerts, indoor soccer, my final exams and projects for grad school, work, holiday shopping, and parties - our family bought a house and moved over the holiday break. So even though I was glad to see all of my family, especially my aunt and uncle who recently moved back to Michigan from living in Arizona for more than 20 years, all I really wanted to do was pack.

We are still in Ann Arbor and my daughters are still in the same school, but packing was bittersweet of course. I was excited to get a bigger house for my family that was near friends, but I was a little sad about leaving our tiny blue house that my daughters grew up in. I tried to remember my favorite poem Ithica and to enjoy the journey of moving. We uncovered many memories (“drawings” on the walls, tiny soccer cleats, wedding items, and the crib mobile!). I also rediscovered one of my favorite picture book stories I loved reading to my daughters, No Matter What by Debi Gliori. Our copy is the paperback version of the picture book, so it kind of got lost in our sea of books that flows through every room of our house.

No Matter What page.jpg

The story starts with Big Fox on the phone and Little Fox decides to act “grim and grumpy” and mope around the house. Big asks why this is and Little lays it on about not being loved by Big. Big tells Little that he is loved. And, like most kids attempt to do, Little Fox tests to see if there is some circumstance in which Big Fox could not love him. Little imagines himself as a grumpy grizzly bear, or a squishy bug, or a crocodile, but Big lovingly reassures Little that he is loved “no matter what” as they go through the familiar evening routine of dinner, bath, brush teeth, bed time story, and tucking in for the night. As Big and Little Fox go through their evening routine, they end up of having a thoughtful conversation about what love is. This too reminded me of Ithica. As parents, we too often rush through the daily routines and forget to enjoy the journey. Childhood is so fleeting that soon you will miss the bath times, the “read the story again” times and the tucking-in times. Remember to grab those moments, have small meaningful conversations, and enjoy the journey as a Big with your Littles.

Lisa Bankey is a parent, an Enrichment Facilitator for the Ann Arbor Public Schools, and a librarian-in-training who blogs about Children’s Literature for Lisa can be reached at