As with the other titles in Sarah Garland's 'Coming and Going' series for toddlers, 'Doing the Garden' depicts a fairly ordinary scene from family life. Spring has come, and Mum has decided that it's time to plant some flowers in the garden, so she and the children head off to the garden shop. Of course, they buy too much and have to struggle home with everything perched in an ancient pram. When they get home, Mum and the children plant things, and then the pets dig them up again! Then it's time for a drink, a snack, and a well-deserved rest.
As a parent, the thing I love most about Sarah Garland's books are the illustrations - we see a mother who isn't always neatly dressed, who often looks tired and needs frequent cups of tea, but she clearly loves her children and they are shown here working together to get things done. The text in the books is fairly undemanding - it really just describes a sequence of events - but the illustrations give plenty to discuss, and my daughter loves describing what's going on in each picture. Buyers may like to note that Dad does not make an appearance in this book, so the tale may not suit single fathers.
If you're looking for a realistic portrayal of a slice of family life to share with your toddler, then this tale comes highly recommended.