Friday, June 10, 2016

Freestyle Friday - The Library

When I was younger, my mom used to take us to the summer reading program in a nearby town (White Oak didn't have its own library). I've loved reading (and writing) as long as I can remember, and I will always have fond memories of those trips to Longview, lists of books stacking up so I could win prizes. I'm not sure how old I was, but she must have started me pretty young because I vaguely remember watching one of those still videos of the Velveteen Rabbit in the OLD library in Longview. You know, where the characters don't move but the camera just kinda pans across an illustration.

Boston Public Library - Copley Square

One of my favorite pictures from Boston is of the public library at Christmas, dusted with snow. While we were apartment dwellers, Tim got denied a library card at the Round Rock library because apparently (despite having a Round Rock address and living only a few miles away) we technically lived in Pflugerville and were supposed to patronize their library. [I had somehow gotten myself a card despite this nuance].

One of the idyllic pictures I had in my mind of being a mother was taking my children to story time. When we were thinking of moving to Cameron, I was thrilled to see a small library just as you come into town! It took me a while to get to the point I was brave enough to venture out with Shelby after she was born, but one of my first stops was to find out when story time was.

Imagine my disappointment when I found out our library not only didn't have a story time but seemed rather opposed to having children in the library period. What??? I thought ALL librarians LOVED to introduce a love of reading to little ones??? How else will they learn? Despite a decent alcove of children's books, the solemn silence of the library deafened my disbelieving ears. The once inviting smell of books turned musty and stale, sour and unwelcoming in my nostrils. I was crestfallen.

I offered that perhaps I could start one? No. Perhaps we could have it outside? No.

Though I have no idea what happened (nor do I care to) after Victoria was born there was a complete changing of the guard and the library hired someone specifically to start a story time! And we've been going ever since.

But there is so much more to it than teaching my girls to explore books. As our group grew, the moms got too loud and they separated us. On Wednesday from 10:30 till about 11:30 the library is not so quiet ... there is singing, talking, laughing, maybe the occasional crying. I've screamed at least once.

And this group of noisy moms? Despite varied backgrounds we have become friends. We do things outside of the library. We promise to have one another over even when our houses are a mess. And we forgive those of us who might clean anyways as long as they promise not to judge. (I won't tell you which group I fall in).

So I'm very thankful for local libraries. They've been a part of my life as long as a can remember. Even if you aren't a mom ... I encourage you to go check your's out ... you never know what you might find.

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