When you spend all day every day with your child, it can be easy to take some of the wonderful every day moments for granted, can’t it? A giggling baby in his highchair at breakfast, a silly toddler playing hide and seek or sleepy cuddles with your little one while reading a book at bedtime, sometimes life gets in the way and we don’t cherish these moments as much as we should. As a stay at home mum I am so lucky I get the chance to experience these moments every single day, some parents/relatives don’t get have this option and would love to be a part of these daily routines. For family members who want to be there but can’t, Read me a Story is a wonderful new website that is helping to bring families closer together for story time, no matter where they may be in the world.
Read me a Story is a new website that enables you to record yourself reading a story from a selection of age appropriate books, your face and the story book then appear on the screen simultaneously. So if you’re a parent who works away, a family living overseas or a grandparent who lives far away, Read me Story helps you to be a part of the children in your life’s day, even when you can’t physically be there in person.
Leo rarely gets to see his grandparents since we moved from Wales to Hampshire last year. We probably only see each other once a month and I know Leo misses them all terribly when they are not around. When Read me a Story got in touch asking if I wanted to review their service, I knew exactly who Leo would want to receive a special story from. A trial was set up for each of his grandparents and Leo received two lovely story videos, one from his Nanny and one from his Granddad. Here is a short video of Leo’s bedtime routine, with a little surprise from Read me a Story.
As you can see, Leo loved having Nanny and Granddad involved in his bedtime routine and could have happily watched them reading a story all night if I had let him. I think the fact Leo wanted to watch the stories again proves what a great idea Read me a Story is. Story time is Leo’s favourite part of his bed time routine and he loved having his grandparents there to read to him for a change.
The process of getting the video from the grandparents in Wales to a sleepy cuddly Leo in Hampshire couldn’t have been easier. To use the Read me a Story website all you have to do is set up a free account, select your story from the Book Shelf, configure your webcam and mic and hit record. You can add a personal message before you begin to read and then you just read the story from the screen as you would a book. Once you are done you can watch the story back to check you’re happy with it, head to the checkout, pay and then send the link for the video to the recipients email. It really is that simple.
Watching the video is even easier. You go to your email, click the link and Read me a Story opens up on a separate webpage and starts automatically. If you want to watch the video more than once you simply register on the Read me a Story website for free, your little one can then watch their loved one reading them a story as many times as they want. You don’t have to watch the story on your laptop either, you can view it on your tablet device too (perhaps an easier option for bedtime).
Leo and I loved reviewing the Read me a Story website. Leo adored having his grandparents read to him while he settled down in bed and it gave me a night off reading to him. I love story time but sometimes reading the same books every night can be hard going, can’t it? Watching Leo’s face light up when his Grandparents appeared on the screen was so special.
Here is what Leo’s Grandparents thought of the Read me a Story website,
‘The Read me a Story website is really easy to use. Configuring the webcam and microphone took seconds and it was easy to record the story. I had a small problem reading the text but that is probably because my eyesight is awful! I liked that your face appeared on the screen along with the story book. I would have like to have seen a smaller age range for the stories as I felt 0-3 was too much of a gap, a 3 year old is unlikley to enjoy a book aimed at babies and vice versa. I think this is a great website for families who live far apart.’ Granddad Hughes.
‘The story was really easy to read and I like that you can review the recording before you send it, to check it is as good as you would like. I also like that when watching the video Leo could see our faces as well as the pages of the story book. I had a bit of trouble configuring the webcam on my one laptop while using IE, I tried it on a different laptop using Chrome and it worked fine. We would definitely use again as we have other grandchildren in Australia who we very rarely get to see.‘ Nanny and Grampy Reynolds.
So I loved it, the grandparents loved it and Leo definitely loved it – I would say Read me a Story was a hit! I think at only £5.99 a month to record unlimited stories, this website is perfect for parents/family who can’t be around or be as big a part of their children’s lives as they would like. Schools and nurseries can register for a free account and use the Read me a Story service for free.
If you like the sound of Read me a Story and would like to get distant family members involved in story time then I have a lovely little gift for you. The wonderful people behind Read me a Story have set up an exclusive free trial for my lovely readers. Just click here and enter your email address to receive your voucher for a free trial. Read me a Story is a brand new business and if you love what they do please spread the word over social media. It really is a brilliant idea, think of all those people who are missing their children so much and would love more than anything to sit and read them a story.
Does your child love story time? What do you think of Read me a Story, would you use it? I would love to know what you think.
*Disclaimer: I was given two free trials so each of Leo’s grandparents could send him a story in exchange for an honest review of Read me a Story. All words and opinions are my own.*
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* After my recent blog move from Blogger to Word Press, some of my posts have been left looking a bit strange. I am working my way through everything and sorting out the formatting, hopefully it won’t take me too long! If you come across a post with strange looking formatting please let me know as I might have missed it. Thank you 🙂 *