posts tagged with 'library'

joyful day

After all my talk about how much we missed the library, you can imagine my delight last week when, stapled to our paper bag of remote-pickup books was a flyer announcing that we would be able to visit and browse again beginning June 2 at 10:00! The boys had an online book group meeting until 11—many pandemic features are still hanging on—but as soon as that finished up we made a picnic lunch and headed up to the library and playground. Just like old times! Only not quite. After we greeted Ms Bethany and Murphy the Turtle and told them how glad we were to be back, the boys settled in to read the vast selection of graphic novels that had been denied to them for so long (I browsed picture books; joy!). We hadn't managed to leave the house until after 11:30, so I figured our lunch would be a little late... but 12:30 passed without a murmur, then 12:45, and then finally at 1:00 I told them eating could wait no longer. That's not something I ever would have had to say back when we were taking library time for granted!

The other difference is that I forgot that carrying thirty or so books is hard work. Last time we did this I had the cargo bike! I didn't even think about how much has changed in our family cycling setup in the last 15 months, and I just brought my backpack like I always do now. Well, it didn't really matter: the boys had their doubts, but I managed to get all of mine and Elijah's checkouts in the bag, plus our lunch tupperwares (Harvey and Zion brought their own backpacks). Well, they weren't actually all in the bag: four ended up strapped to the outside. It worked.

my backpack with library books strapped to the back

none of them fell off!

Of course, before we packed everything up we had lunch at the playground, and we all read right through lunch. Then I dragged them away from books for a little climbing, but when we got home Harvey and Zion read straight through til 5:00. Some of the time in the hammock! Life is good.

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our reading lately

As I think I've mentioned, we managed to get through a year-plus of pandemic without any interruption to our chapter-book readaloud practice, even if it did lead us to read some selections that I might not have tried if we had all the variety of the library available to us. Most recently it was A Wizard of Earthsea, but Ursula LeGuin. It's a great story but the telling of it isn't straightforward; Harvey actually tried to read it himself six months ago or so and couldn't get into it. But as a readaloud it was a hit, for whatever reason, and with two reading sessions most days we got through it pretty quickly. I'm not sure how much of the exact progression of the story that Elijah was able to grasp, but he liked as much as anyone—enough that he's now doing a lot of playing wizards.

Now, though, the library is once again an option, and just in time for finishing Earthsea we took delivery of our first shipment of chapter books. So today we started The Moffats, by Eleanor Estes—different in every way from Ursula LeGuin but also very good. And more at Lijah's comprehension level. And when that's done, I've got other holds in at the library. Thank goodness!

a momentous day

In former times the library was pretty central to our lives. Both because we all love having a constant stream of new books to look at, and because it's great to have somewhere to go in any sort of weather that's a) not the house, b) inside, and c) free. As I've noted before the second biggest trauma at the start of this pandemic—after having to cancel our long anticipated co-op music day—was that the library closed down before we had a chance to lay in a big store of books. It was my fault; I thought of it on that fateful Friday the 13th but told myself that Saturday morning would be a fine time to browse. Nope: they closed that evening and haven't opened to the public since. Of course, books have been available since last May or so, but in order to get them you had to know what you wanted in advance, put a hold on it, reserve a pickup day and time, and then be there in the specific half hour you put in for. All of those steps are hard for me! Well, the procedure hasn't gotten any easier, but my desire for new books has reached a breaking point (and I've been properly shamed by friends who do regular library pickups) so I'm proud to report that, yesterday evening, we received our first library books in over 13 months.

picture books on our coffee table

library books at our house!

I was super excited to go and pick them up. In retrospect, I could have extended that excitement to the boys by requesting some books that would be particularly delightful to them; I didn't do that. Mostly it's picture book biographies of poets, since that's what I've been thinking about. Still, such is the demand for reading material around here that Harvey has now read every word of all of them (he accomplished the feat in just slightly under 24 hours). Good thing there are more coming! Including some requests from the boys. What I need now is some way for them to access the library website and put in their own holds when they want something... any chance I can manage that before the library reopens for real?

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