Tuesday, April 26, 2011

A Good (Read) Night Sleep

Spring Break is officially over for my family but after the long week at home and a busy Easter Weekend, I have decided to resurrect an old habit of my own. Reading. With the latest addition to our family and this past year full of both tragedy and joy, reading took a back seat to everything else. Well, at least my reading did. My 1st grade son is reading at the 3rd grade level and my husband reads everyday for his job. As I managed a household and tried to sneak in some alone time, which usually amounted to a long weekend nap, I was not reading. Guilt set in and then this past week, I decided to splurge and buy a book. Now, I usually encourage buying used or heading to your local library. I ran a local book club for two years and we managed book drives for the libraries around town. I am now staring at a stack of library books that are due back to the library about 2 days ago. We love our library and use it on a weekly basis. However, this weekend, with the true dawn of the Spring weather, I yearned for the feel, smell, and fulfillment of a brand new book. Something new and fresh that I could reintroduce my brain to it's literary side. I chose "Water for Elephants." This is a true departure for me and I doubt that I will see the new movie any time soon. These days, I am about a trillion months behind on movie watching. I definitely have my background movie staples, like Election and Gone With the Wind, but new movies are a thing of my past. Books are a new way for me to connect with movies that are in theatres today. This book is a departure for me because I enjoy gritty, social works that make me think. At this point in my life, I am done thinking in my free time. I think for my whole family all day long. I need an escape and this book will do the trick ( I hope). I spent the entire afternoon at my local Barnes & Noble shopping for books & gifts with the children. It was a wonderful outing and it actually took me back to my college days when we would meet up for study groups cramming for hours, fueled by endless cups of hot coffee.

The staff was knowledgeable and friendly. They not only suggested several Easter finds but helped me to locate enrichment books for 1st grade math. There was a children's table and low shelves in the children's area which invited them to explore new book titles. My children signed up for the B & N Kids Club, where you can receive discounts and loyalty coupons for children's books. This is a large retail chain and every one is run differently. This one hit the mark and my experience was top notch. I am a true supporter of local goods and services so I encourage you to find a book store close to your home.

I also encourage you to get reading.

Over 20 million Americans cannot read at all.Over 44 million can hardly read a simple book to a child. These statistics are staggering and sad. Say a prayer that you are able to read and expand your mind tonight. Grab a book. Any book. Start reading immediately. I am off to read my latest find and I'll let you know how it goes...