As a young child, my mom introduced me to the smell of a new book. It was one of the first things we did when we got books. I ran my fingers over the cover and the spine almost tingling with excitement to discover the world contained within. Then, I'd open the book, press my nose to the middle, and breathe deep.
I simply wanted to devour books with all their sensory goodness.
When asked what I wanted to be when I grew up the answers varied only between author or librarian. In particular, I wanted to be an elementary school librarian so I could share my love of books with children early in life and spend my days reading to the various classes that would visit me. I loved to learn about the authors and illustrators of my books and by third grade I could tell you about the person who wrote the book I was reading, what else they had written, what awards they had received, and a little bit about their life.
I want my kids to love and appreciate books as much as I do. In fact, all of the things I want to impart on my children this is only rivaled by my desire for them to love nature. I want them to be excited about the possibilities of a new book. I want them to dive into magical worlds and travel to exotic places all from the comfort of their bunk bed or a rocking chair on the front porch. I want to join them on some of these journeys, and others I can't wait to watch them set off for on their own.
|One of the many piles of books laid out in order waiting to be read in our house.|
We went to the library. We got library cards. I soaked in the moment when we walked into the children's section and my son looked around in awe saying they are just so. many. books. Do you think we could read them all? Oh what we have been missing. Now, it's not to say it was a perfect trip. Elijah, at 2, decided to freak out when he didn't have a balloon like the kids coming out of a children's program, and he was quite impatient with the idea that I had to give the book of his choosing to the woman at the desk to check out before he could take it home. But, Benjamin? Oh and Ben and I could have sat there for hours.... running our fingers along the spines, sitting at the table with a carefully selected pile, and reading every single one. In fact, as we did just this for a little while I had a few small children gather around us for our own little story time. Maybe, I am fulfilling those childhood dreams of imparting a love of books to children and spending my days reading to them after all.
I am excited to have a weekly library routine with the kids to nurture our love of books, connect with the community, and learn the responsibility of keeping borrowed books safe and returning them promptly. (I might not have been so good at that last part in my youth, so we'll work on that lesson nice and early.) And before I know it, I'll be begging for the boys to pay attention because it's time to wash up for supper and they are off fighting dragons or solving mysteries right before my eyes. I can't wait.