Wednesday, December 07, 2016

Story time, a love letter.

I am kicking myself for realizing this a decade into parenting, but FREE library story times are the BEST.  And also?  They are FREE.  Dorothy and I have been going every Monday since the beginning of school, and we both love it.  We had to take a couple of Mondays off because story time moves in 6-week chunks with 3 weeks off in the middle.  This coming week is our last one until after Christmas, and Dorothy is not handling the pending change in routine very well.  We found a few things to fill the late October-early November gap, and I think having the big kids home will help her cope with the December-early January absence, especially because there are a few holiday-themed library events on the horizon.

Have I mentioned that I LOVE our local library?  It's a gorgeous building, and they have a huge collection of new releases available on a walk-in basis and a great statewide computer network through which I can request books for delivery.  I love going there by myself to do work on days I don't need to drive all the way to the office.  I love taking the kids there on rainy afternoons after school so they can read in the castle or play on the computers and iPads or play with the play kitchen or the puzzles or the trains or the slide.  And of course we all love coming home with armloads of books.

Story time, though, is the best.  Every week the librarian picks a theme and reads a stack of books about the theme with rhymes, stories on the felt board, and songs between each book.  The kids review colors and numbers on the felt board, learn interactive rhymes, and do silly dances.  She asks them good questions about the stories she is reading, and they chime in with adorable answers, and at the end of the 30-minutes, everyone does a small craft that she has prepped ahead of time.  The story time room is cozy with little plastic circle cushions for the kids to sit on, huge windows that look out on trees and prairie, low hooks for them to hang their coats, and a darling little craft counter with tiny stools under it that runs all around the perimeter.  Dorothy hasn't made any fast friends, but she does like hanging out with a rotating group of kids every week who laugh and dance together and share glue sticks.  And when story time is over, we grab a few books for Dorothy and Cooper, pick up my teetering stack of library holds, check out (where Dorothy always stamps herself a million times up and down her arms), put some coins in the wishing well in the lobby (because Dorothy loves to watch them roll down the sides) and go get Cooper at school.  It's the perfect way to pass a morning.

Working on her family tree craft after listening to books about families:
 Making Mama Llama's quilt after listening to books about being sick:
 Story time this week-- a sloth theme-- and her last one without a broken wrist.
 Our first story time.  The theme was clearly elephants.
 Before the winter.  Obvs.
 A story time about royalty-- her favorite one to date. Except for sloths because everyone loves sloths.
 She always wants to pose with the statue.
 See what I mean?
 Halloween story time was actually a dance party, which got a little overwhelming, hence the seeking refuge in the train table.
 Another statue pic and our last story time before Trump was elected president.  (side note:  WHAT THE FUCK, America?)
I wish I had known about the wonders of story time when the other kids were little.  I remember taking Harry to the one at Barnes and Noble a few times (but I could never leave that place without spending a million dollars), and Harry and Jack and I went to one at a library that has since been demolished and rebuilt, but we didn't fall in love, probably because we weren't in the 'burbs at the most lovely library I can imagine and maybe also because Harry and Jack could never sit still.  Still, I wish I had stuck it out with the other kids, and I am cherishing this time with Dorothy because next year, Harry will be in junior high,; Jack and Cooper will be in elementary school all day long, and Dorothy will have 4K 5 mornings a week.  Our story time days are numbered, and we are going to love each one of them, damnit.


  1. The thing I missed most when I went back to work was library story time with the girls.

  2. One more reason for JeddBaby5