The book haven without overpriced coffee

When I lived in Spain one of the things I missed so much, besides mint chocolate chip ice cream, and my family and friends, was going to the library. Yes, there are libraries in Spain but they aren’t the same — for one everything is in another language. You weren’t expecting that were you? I read in Spanish; however, I can’t get into a book the same way in Spanish as I can in English. Plus, the book choices weren’t so hot.

So, back to the library. I appreciate the library–I consider the library one of the top underappreciated benefits of living in the United States. Isn’t it written somewhere — life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, and the access of a public library?

My kids are learning to love the library as well. At first, they really weren’t so sure about it. My son would take forever to choose one book — he kept thinking he could only get one “to buy”.  Now that the concept of borrowing has sunk into his head, he picks out around 6 and complains because he didn’t have time to get more–I throw in a few Spanish ones too (that aggravates him some which I’m not sure why because he reads perfectly in Spanish). My daughter thinks the library is the place were she plays while I pick out books for her — she is happy with everything and reads them all so it could be worse. she doesn’t complain when I throw in the Spanish books.

There is a contest of sorts this summer at the library–to get kids to read. They have a chart and everytime they read for 20 minutes they get to mark a spot — they have 45 spots –15 hours of reading I think. My kids think this is a race. My son has his stopwatch out and will remind his sister when they are close to 20 minutes so they can run to the chart and mark it. If I go into the living room to ask them something he stops the watch until he is done talking to me and then says “Okay, ready, set, go”  and they return to reading. I explained that he didn’t have to have a stop watch that it was “approximately 20 minutes”, but he has his system in place. It isn’t a race –they have until August 11th to complete the chart.

Believe me, it’s a joy to see my kids reading — because they are finally quiet they are learning so much. I was just hoping this reading program would last until August 11th — not a straight 15 hours, 0minutes and 0 seconds.


8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Heather
    Jul 11, 2007 @ 13:14:18

    I am right there with you. I think the library is top of my list for things I miss too. Oh yeah, and you!

  2. chocolatechic
    Jul 12, 2007 @ 02:40:20

    Your son is your first born, right? 🙂

  3. Momma Knows
    Jul 12, 2007 @ 08:06:37

    Ahh the library! Affectionately referred to as “The Free Bookstore”. I don’t know what I’d do without it, either. As homeschoolers, my kids have grown up at the library. I think it would be really hard for me to live in another country, just for that reason. So did you just buy books online?? (Did you have the internet in Spain? THAT would really kill me!)

  4. Diesel
    Jul 13, 2007 @ 20:09:36

    That’s great that your kids are such big readers. Mine are too, and I appreciate it — for both of the same reasons.

  5. Luisa
    Jul 14, 2007 @ 03:30:23

    That the library exists is one of the ways I know God loves his children.

  6. Bud Weiser
    Jul 14, 2007 @ 12:33:38

    It’s good that you are doing this now. They say by 2025 all librarys will close due to the availability of the internet. When your kids have kids they will say, “In our day we had libraries.” and the kids will respond, “Yea. And you walked a up hill both to and from school in the snow. And what’s a library?”

  7. Kara
    Jul 15, 2007 @ 06:22:19

    Libraries are one of the few perks left to living in a society. Where else is the emphasis solely on improving the individual through art and literature?

  8. rjlight
    Jul 15, 2007 @ 06:40:47

    Heather — love ya too!

    chocolatechic — you can tell?

    Momma Knows –we did have internet after a few years and yeah, we did order books at times–but that gets too expensive. The UK was a treat for English used bookstores!

    Diesel — awww the quiet of bookreading–of course my son has to make interjections throughout his reading. “Yes!” “Oh No!” “No, that can’t happen!”

    Luisa — Yes, the library is a picture of God’s love!

    Bud Weiser — Perish the thought! I know they say things like that but since the internet there are more magazines and more books being read.

    Kara — Exactly! It is a beautiful place filled with stories and adventures and I sound like a commercial for literacy.

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