I’ve always been fond of the library – but in fall 2008 our financial rug was pulled out from under our feet – and it was in those confusing, fearful days that I found out the importance of our local library.

We downsized to a 1200-square-foot house with one closet for five of us. Yep. One closet. Five people.

But with three elementary-aged children watching my every mood as well as move, I was determined to make the best of our situation. So I went to the library. A lot.

I learned how to check out books and movies with complementary music, magazines and cookbooks (lovingly referred to as Beautifully Balanced Collections).

My daughter and her friends bonded at our dining room table after school, crafting and painting from art and design books from the library.

Decorating books inspired me to redo our laundry room into a laundry library.

Best of all, I took my children on adventure after adventure without even leaving our home by reading aloud with them each night.

In preparation for the library summer reading program, we made Library Passports that encourage the children to choose their own topic or interest and conduct a library treasure hunt of finding books, cookbooks, music, movies and magazines that complement their subject. You can’t be bored at the library!

Our financial picture is better now, but we continue to spend less and share more, thanks to the library. And thanks to the librarians and their custom tailored book selections, our children are becoming prolific readers and equally important: they understand the value and beauty of sharing.

Want to learn more? Visit me at www.thegreatread.blogspot.com for fun ways to library with your family, or stop in and visit your local library.

Live. Learn. Library.

– Michele Trovato, Davidson