Heather Sanders

Living, Loving and Learning – Wrapped In God's Grace

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January 2011

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Books in the “Big City”

Posted in: Homeschooling, Kids and Parenting

olivia-at-barnes-and-noble

Friday I took my three kids and our cousin Olivia, and Emelie’s boyfriend (Luke) into Houston to visit the “Real Pirates” exhibit at The Museum of Natural Science (more about that on another day) and then to tackle a few errands before we headed home. That’s what you do when you don’t live in a big city–you make a list of everything you need to do when you get into the “big city”; that and try not to get hit by all the drivers texting on their cell phones.

Admittedly going into the “big city” can make for a “big day”; one in which you leave home at 9:00 am and don’t return until 9:00 pm. Yep, one of THOSE days. Thankfully, there are plenty of iTunes, DS games, and conversation to keep everyone hoppin’ along at a feverish pace while we skip here and there, doing this and that.

The bitter cold helped as well–no one lingered long in the ‘burban once the heater was turned off; nor did they shuffle their feet to get from the car to the store or vice versa. That was, in a word, GLORIOUS.

Of course, one of our stops was Barnes & Noble. While I appreciate our town’s bookstore, it has nothing up on the aisles and aisles of books available in the “big city” bookstore. When Jeff and I are alone we can spend hours in bookstores. We walk in the door, linger together in the coffee shop line, and then split-up; it’s all very romantic.

We’re both pretty random in our aisle “hits”. Jeff can be tracked down perusing the Bible/Christian aisle, then Biographies or perhaps his own field of study, Psychology-wherein he primarily pokes fun at several of the self-help books. Sometimes if he has a wild hair up his bum he actually reads fiction–though it is a fleeting fancy. The man is about details.

I typically head first to Journals–something about pages and pages of blank paper bound in an array of different covers lures me; there’s just so much potential for each one. Then I peruse cards, move over to the Graphic Art, Photography, and Home Decorating aisles. I never miss a chance to scour recent magazines to feast my eyes on their choices of fonts and lay-outs, perhaps moving from there to the Health or Adult Fiction aisles, but I always wind-up in Children’s Books. There I flip through picture books and marvel over the illustrations and simplicity of the storyline. In other words, I tour the entire store and then return “home” to my roots. Aren’t we all kids at heart?

The kids have grown up in bookstores, but we’re just getting to the point where Jeff and I can set them free to pursue their own interests. Kenny typically tags along with Emelie–she likes to sit and read to him. Meredith heads to chapter books–currently reading through the Nancy Drew series. Typically everyone returns home with a book, because Jeff and I have a hard time refusing book purchases; thankfully, we’ve nourished some pretty avid readers.

Meredith reading in the children's area of Barnes & Noble

So, on Friday when we hit Barnes & Noble the kids launched into their normal routines and our two “guests” were along for the ride. Funny that. Olivia, also a book worm, hit the ground running in the Children’s section with Meredith.

Olivia Reading

Olivia is my cousin, my kids’ second cousin. She is my Mother’s baby sister’s child. She is also an aunt–which totally cracks me up. I am not even an aunt, but Olivia is an aunt.

Luke, Emelie and Kenny ended up in the Children’s section as well. As I sat in the Children’s section looking through my new Clean Start recipe book I could hear Emelie reading to the both of them.

Habits are strong folks.

She said the three of them received a few strange looks from passer-byers. Emelie even invited the onlookers to sit and enjoy the book with them.

They refused.
She kept reading.

It was our last stop, but a good one. Bookstores always wrap things up nicely. I’ve never left a bookstore feeling anything but indulged and inspired.

Friday was no exception.

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