This past weekend was an exciting one for me as I welcomed my first grandchild. Isabelle Renee was born healthy and beautiful and I know there will be many happy days ahead as we get to know each other. My son says she is lucky to have a grandma who is a librarian and will encourage her to enjoy books and read.
My kids have watched with interest the past few years as I have assembled a book shelf of favorite children's books just waiting to be shared with grandchildren. Many of them are notables from past story times that have had their day at the library and were withdrawn due to age and condition. I've been tickled to pick them up regardless of how they look as they hold a special place in my memory from the days when I was the children's librarian. 'Tales About Tails', 'Funny Bunny', 'Blossom Bird Goes South', 'The Magic String' and 'The Best Nest' are all sitting safely on my shelf along with 'Binky McNabb Learns to Drive' and 'Round Robin'.
Others set aside include ones that were part of the reading experiences I had with my own children when they were small. I have several copies of Freight Train, which my kids would tell you can't be read without all of the accompanying chuga- chuga -choo -choo sound effects. That book, along with The Berenstain Bear's 'Spooky Old Tree', 'Old Witch Saves Halloween', 'The Grumpus under the Rug' and 'The Mystery of Sara Beth' were read over and over at our house.
I truly believe a love of reading and books starts with parents. It's never too early. That's why the Cherokee Public Library provides a book for each new baby born at the Cherokee Regional Medical Center. In the bag, along with the book, is a letter encouraging parents to read to their child and explore the resources at their local public library. Funding for the books is provided by the Cherokee County Supervisors.
If you are a new parent or grandparent (or even an old one) I urge you to pick up a book and share it. I got very tired of reading Baby Goes Around the Block when my son was a toddler, but it certainly paid off. I'm sure his enjoyment of reading and learning will be passed on to his baby daughter and I will love watching it happen!
Check out what's available in our children's department. We have a great collection of "board books" for our youngest patrons. Ask about Toddler Story Time and start a lifelong library habit for a child who is special in your life.
The library is open Monday, Wednesday and Thursday from 10 a.m. -- 8 p.m., Tuesday and Friday from 10 a.m. -- 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. -- 2 p.m.