Books! I have always loved books and loved to read. As a child, there weren't always other kids around for me to play with, so I found friends in the books I read. Nan and Bert from The Bobbsey Twins were some of my favorites. Of course, I loved Nancy Drew. She was so clever and brave, doing things I could never do. Then I went to elementary school and guess what was waiting there?? The Library!! I can just imagine my first venture into that vast array of books. Wonder who picked my chin up off the floor.
At the school library, I found biographies of Clara Barton, Dorothea Dix, Betsy Ross, Florence Nightingale, Dolly Madison, and others. I still remember those wonderful stories and wish I could find those particular books today. I also found great books that I have in my personal library now and still read occasionally. Like "Island of the Blue Dolphins", "A Wrinkle in Time", and "Black Beauty".
As a teenager, I would visit the library weekly with an elderly neighbor. It was fun for both of us. We'd stop for lunch on the way home at a little burger joint that's still there. When Darrell and I went to Italy, the first thing I did was find the library. The kids and I went to get library cards as soon as we moved back to Tennessee.
My mother used to complain that I always had my nose in a book. And when I had young children at home she couldn't understand how I could let things go (housework) in order to read. She doesn't like to read and didn't get the outlet reading provided for me. I tried to teach my kids to love books and love to read. I think that's something I succeeded at. When Holly was in 4th grade, she won an award for reading the second most books (over 400) in the school--not just her grade, the school. And I think Lauren and Clayton both have extensive libraries of their own. Lauren would rather spend money on books than anything else. I believe we're passing our love of books on to the next generation as well. Melody is almost as bad as the rest of us.
If you're a reader, check out Goodreads. It's a great place to find good books to read and share your own reviews.
To paraphrase Oliver Twist and his gang: "Books, wonderful books...."