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.

The morning comes too early –why I can’t be a farmer

Morning has been coming too early this week. I think the harshest punishment you could give a prisoner would be to make them wake up at 5:00am every morning and run for three miles. After their run, they would be allowed to smell coffee and watch other people drink it in front of them. They couldn’t have one drop. We’d call it the morning torture. Could you hear the cries of agony? “No, not the morning torture, not this early, what is that smell? No, s-t-o-p. Just a little drink–I can’t take any more, put me in solitary confinement anything but this! NOOOOOO!”

My youngest son has been waking up early this week to give him a head start on his crabbiness. Okay, I’m the one who’s crabby. I try to reason with him, and explain to him that it’s just too early, that unless you need More

Return Line in Spain

I hated returning anything in Spain. Customer service is nonexistent when you want to spend money–hopeless if you are returning something. The customer is never right; the customer is barely important. You can find quality, but sometimes it might take a few tries. I still miss Spain and love the Spanish people, but I don’t miss shopping in Spain–I miss the fresh bread, coffee and chocolate–but not the shopping experience.

If you want to match a color, make sure you have enough paint.

We were so relieved in our first few months in Spain when More