“Too Good to Be True”

May 26, 2021

When Hitomi McAbee first heard about United Through Reading from an MCCS Miramar event, she thought that it was too good to be true. After downloading the UTR app, receiving their first book, making a recording, and then requesting another one, the family couldn’t believe the wonderful tool they had found.

For her family, the United Through Reading App not only helps her husband, a Navy Sailor, stay connected with their toddler, but it also helps her learn more about American culture. Born and raised in Japan, Hitomi doesn’t always know the nursery rhymes and stories that her 2-year-old son asks to hear, and that’s where the App has come in for their family.

“It’s not just about reading books for us, because I don’t know the nursery rhymes or Christmas songs. It was very helpful for me to have my husband record those rhymes and songs so that both my son and I could listen to them over again and again. It is culturally important for us to have United Through Reading,” she said.

The McAbee family has the most recordings of any UTR App users. They also regularly participate in the App Recording Challenges and love meeting their personal goals each month.

Even during COVID when her husband was working from home more, there was only so much time that he could read every day, so the United Through Reading App was a great way to still connect with him, even in the same house.

“YouTube has commercials, but with UTR, it’s your dad recording, without any ads, you can just listen again and again. It is perfect for us,” Hitomi added.

When her son points to a nursery rhyme or story in a book, Hitomi pulls up ther App to watch dad’s video-recordings, learning along the way with her son.

“The app helps me learn more about American culture, and feel more connected to it. I’m inseparable with this app and am very thankful for what it provides us.”