Mihret receives her first, very own library card at the Appleton Public Library. Now, to complete her collection... (Appleton belongs to one of two library systems in our area, and Josh and I also have cards for the system that encompasses Neenah and Oshkosh. We truly do love our libraries.)
We've fallen into a pattern, not unintentionally, of reading books about milestones or situations in Mihret's life. (See "Diapers are not Forever," "Teeth are not for Biting," and "My Own Big Bed," for example.) One of Mihret's favorite books is called "Lola at the Library," by Anna McQuinn.
Mihret loves to hear about Lola, a little girl who looks a little like her, who goes to the library with her mommy. That book is not a library book at our house - It was a present from Grandma P. We've read it quite a lot this summer, and not so ironically, we go to the library quite a lot. It's a nice, barely-ten-minute walk further downtown from our downtown neighborhood, something fun to do when we all can get home and eat an early dinner.
The library is a place where Josh and I can easily lose ourselves for hours. I can't count the numbers of times I've been barely on time (even late) for appointments and meetings because I've been skimming the pages of new nonfiction, checking the shelves for a documentary or foreign film, scanning the sci-fi section or looking up "just one more" item on the computerized card catalogue.
Mihret doesn't know what to do first in the library. She zigzags across the children's department as soon as one of us unbuckles her from her stroller. She wants to sit in a cubby with daddy and flip through a book. Then she wants to watch an older child play a computer game. Then she runs between the stacks, grinning, like they're part of a corn maze, and expects us to chase her.
While I'd like her to just settle down and pick out some board books - we more often than not end up grabbing a small pile of interest just before the library closes - part of me is just glad that she's able to be in the library. It's like bringing her to church well before she can truly grasp the importance of being there. We do that, and we'll continue to bring her to the library, too, until she's older and can lose herself in the stacks by reading.