Friday, February 19, 2010

I love my library!

I have so many things I feel like I can't live without: chocolate, good friends, indoor plumbing, diaper wipes are just a few of the many. Then, there are other less tangible things, like regular sleep, some alone time and peace and quiet, that I imagine I couldn't live without, yet I manage to do so on a regular basis.

The one thing in my life that kept coming to mind as I thought about this topic was my library. My topic probably reveals, yet again, how completely geeky I am, because, seriously, I am addicted to my public library. Where else can I take home the Heroes complete first season DVD, a book on how to cut my kid's hair, the Baby Einstein videos my kids are addicted to, a book on cooking once a month, How to Get Your Picky Kid to Eat, and The Professor and the Madman: A Tale of Murder, Insanity and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary all in the same day?

And let's not forget, it's all free, free, free!

Reading is one of my biggest pleasures in life. I would call it a hobby, but it is actually a bit of an addiction, to be honest. If I notice I don't have a book at hand, I get a little twitchy. Typically, I have a pile of books waiting to be read, and most of these I get from my library, because there is no way our finances could support my habit. I think I would need a part-time job just to pay for books, and then there would be the storage problem. The last time we moved, my sister said that she would never help me pack again if I bought any more books. And you know, she had a point.

The great thing about our library, though, is the librarians. They are super helpful and know my entire family by name. Granted, we visit them at least once a week, sometimes more, but still they are extremely friendly and seem delighted to see us on each of our visits.

Almost like the Cheers bar, only without the hangover or smell of hops.

Our library has great programs for the kids and adults and our interlibrary loan system is excellent. I can order almost any book or movie online and then they call me when it comes in. This is priceless when you have kids who never give you the time to browse properly!

My dad always says that the great thing about books is you can learn about anything when you read them. You can travel to other places and times in history, all without leaving the comfort of your armchair. I like reading for that reason and so many more: I love the escapism, but I also love that I can learn about any topic I want to. I can research a problem that is perplexing me (SPD and autism and potty training have been the big ones lately) or I can learn about topics that fascinate me (Oliver Sacks' books about neurological disorders have been popping up in our home a lot lately). And I love the beauty of the well-written word; I can't get enough of -beautifully crafted classics, like Pride and Prejudice, the suspense-filled The Moonstone or the achingly romantic Jane Eyre.

The children's group "Lunch Money" (whom I highly recommend!) sums it up best in their song "I Love My Library":

I'm going to the library to see my librarian
She'll send me home with 60 things
As if I could carry them
Passing out the picture books
Like my granny hands out food.....

And my brain's getting fat on stories and facts
And it feels like love

Oh, the librarians
They say, "Come, follow me!"
They're looking straight at me
They take me seriously
And all the things that I'd never read
Become my new favorites.
I show them to my friends at school
And they get addicted too.

Oh, my brain's getting fat on stories and facts
and it feels like love.....

All the things that I could ever wonder about
Are waiting here for me
And all the places I could ever wander to
I've got a ticket for free
And guess who tossed me the keys......

For more posts about what these fabulous bloggers can't live without, visit the Spin Cycle!


Maureen@IslandRoar said...

Great Spin! Reading is my favorite thing in the whole world! And now I work in a library, so I'm in Heaven! I constantly have to hold myself back. Our library is small town and we know everyone, like you described. It's the best job!

Heather said...

Thanks for dropping by and commenting.
I used to love going to the library. I haven't gotten around to checking out the one in my new town. Thanks for the reminder.

Sprite's Keeper said...

Awesome Spin! I need to get Sprite over to our local library more often. In fact, thanks to you, tomorrow will be the day. I do want her to love to read as much as I do. You're linked!

Pines Lake Redhead said...

Great Spin! I'm passionate about reading as well. I'm never without a book. Unfortunately, our local library isn't that great. I often find myself at the Goodwill bookstore or the local bookstore on Main Street. Perhaps I keep them in business.

Elizabeth Channel said...

I get so addicted to a certain library that I don't like to go to other libraries, so since I've moved I can't seem to get back into the library swing of things.

OK, that was a boring comment.


Anonymous said...

Libraries are, hands down my very favorite place. When I was a teen I worked in one & I used to sit at the end of a row in the basement. That spot gave me a clear view of 3 floors of books. I was surrounded by FLOORS of books. It was like my wall of safety.

Camille said...

Wow. This makes me miss my hometown library. I grew up in a big city, and my library NEVER failed to supply me with whatever I needed---chick lit, movies, research, whatever---from the time I was in kindergarten until the day I moved away.

Now I live in a small SMALL town, and the local library consistently fails me. On a regular basis. It's so frustrating. On top of that, there's a yearly FEE!!!!! It's only fifteen dollars, but that is fifteen dollars per year more than I've ever had to pay before, and for far worse services.


Thanks for the spin!

Natalie said...

We love the library at our house too! Right now we currently have 57 items checked out! Some weeks we have many more than that. I also know what you mean about having a lot of books. When we moved last year we counted the number of boxes that the movers labeled books and there were 32 of them! That's a lot of books. I think we are book addicts here. We buy lots and check out even more at the library. What would we do without books. I suppose there are lots worse things to be addicted to.

danette said...

Dh and I are big readers too, as are our boys :). Their rooms are all packed with a variety of children's books that we've collected over the years. They don't really do well in the library though, so when we take them we have to pretty much be in and out before they start running around squealing... we can't really do much browsing if we take them. The only thing is once I start reading something I get obsessed and can't put it down until I finish, so I have to space out my books. :)

bernthis said...

I love to read. It is one of my fondest memories. Sad to say though, that the librarians here are overworked, underpaid and not at all happy.

When I was young, we had a library just for kids and it still exists. It was so so special

Ginny Marie said...

It has been way to long since I've visited your blog! I love that picture in your's perfect! And I love Natalie Merchant, and I love libraries! We have a great library, too. I really have a long list of books to read that I haven't gotten to yet, because real life has been keeping me so busy. Great spin!

Mrsbear said...

I never buy books any more if I can help it, I just request whatever I need from the library. I love it, I love that it's free. And I always support them by losing paperbacks and returning our stuff very late so as to incur significant fees and help keep the libraries funded year round. ;)