We love our library

March 22nd, 2010

We love our library

Wire & Twine is located in a rural community, a place that Tom and I call home. (Chris works here, but lives a bit closer to the Big City.) There’s a local university, which greatly expands our opportunities, but we wouldn’t be able to live here if it weren’t for two things. One, of course, is the internet. Not only do we get a window on the great big world out there, but with a few clicks, things from all corners of the Earth arrive on our doorstep. This internet thing is truly magical.

But the other thing we couldn’t live without? Our local library.

When the recession hit, it made most of us examine how we were living. As the headlines got gloomier, I looked around at our house, full of far too many things. I began to think how we could have the same rich experiences, but without acquiring as much and spending far less.

Which made me think about our library, which we frequented for story hour and occasional borrowing, but never really fully utilized. It’s just a tiny building, your standard red brick fare. No impressive columns or historical significance, it’s a bit like a geode. Rather unassuming on the outside, but you should really crack it open and see what’s inside.

We have three children. They often grow tired of things in short order. There are their cherished toys, books, and movies, but most other items are relegated to a dark corner after a few play sessions. But at the library there are countless books and DVDs to borrow. There’s even a huge selection of puzzles, stuffed animals, and puppets to check out. And after a week or so, when we’ve grown tired of them, we return them for someone else to use.

The inter-library loan is another phenomenon I find nearly as magical as the internet. If our library doesn’t have an item you need, another branch likely does. And if another branch doesn’t have it, they have connections to other bigger library systems. A few clicks and several days later, a bundle of things are waiting for me on the hold shelf, ready to be checked out. The other day I left the library with an 18″ mammoth puppet, a comprehensive book on felting, an obscure Japanese children’s movie, and the complete set of Elephant and Piggie books.

And once we find that perfect microscope for the kids this summer (suggestions welcome), I’ve heard rumors that I can check out slides of tissues and cells for study and examination.

So that little red basket that sits in our hallway? Quite possibly the best used real estate in our house these days. Hooray for the library!


March 23rd, 2010   7:33 am

Wendy and family — You might consider a document camera — or make your own — Tom would love making the homemade tripod — you put a digital video camera on and zoom, zoom, zoom — connect it to a projector and viola you’re in business!

Have you found this amazing digital children’s library online? http://en.childrenslibrary.org/

Thanks for sharing.


March 24th, 2010   12:15 pm

Ooooo! Good ideas! Bookmarking the online children’s library now…

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