I got Baby Danced the Polka by Karen Beaumont, illustrated by Jennifer Plecas for Henry's birthday and it is my absolute favorite book right now. It is a pretty long book by Henry's standards, but it's such a bouncy, rhyme-y, fun book that he's up for a reading (if not two) each night. The illustrations are simple, but not boring. I particularly love the round, happy baby.
Mama and Papa put Baby down for a nap while they try to get their chores done, but instead of sleeping, Baby and his stuffed animals keep escaping the crib to do some dancing. Finally, Mama and Papa give up on making Baby nap when he's clearly not sleepy. (I've been there. How about you?) And after just a bit of grumbling, they decide to join in the dancing fun.
Not really a great message for a naptime/bedtime book, but Henry isn't quite hip to that yet. You might want to share it with older kids (who may immitate Baby's tactics) at a more neutral time. But it is so much fun for reader and the read-to alike. I find myself almost humming the rhymes in my head as I'm brushing my teeth. So be forewarned, it does get stuck in your head, but not in a crappy 80s pop tune kind of way. Here's an example:
"Whoa! Papa's whiskers!
Whoa! Mama's wig!
"Go!" Baby giggled with the polka-dotted pig.
Did you hear what Mama told you?
Did you hear what Papa said?
It's your naptime, little baby.
Now you better stay in bed!
Well, you'll just have to find out now, won't you? I cannot recommend this book highly enough. You absolutely need it if you have a little one in the house.