This was the third day in a row that we’ve been wanting to go to the big downtown library, and finally it happened. After a quick breakfast and a bit of writing (Noah) and math (Zahra) and walking around with no pants on (Leila), we piled into the van and drove to the Grande Bibliothèque. I love that it’s called the Big Library.

The kids asked if we could stay all day, and what parent is going to tell their kids that they can’t stay at the library all day? Zahra had reserved the third book in the series The 39 Clues and it was in. Noah looked for more books in the series Agent Jean, but they were all out…as usual. He picked up some Marsupilami instead. Leila collected a stack of books so tall that I could only see her legs at the bottom. Bliss. Meanwhile, I crawled around the stacks looking for books for Story Time at the Nook on Monday.

paradiseThis “all day” the kids were talking about ended up being two-and-a-half hours before their tummies started growling. We checked out our books (another lesson on money as I let Noah count out the change to pay our library fines), plugged the meter again and then walked a couple blocks to go have lunch. On our way back to the car, I was sucked into the paradise that is sheet musicArchambault and found the sheet music to Grieg’s “In the Hall of the Mountain King”, a composition the kids love to listen to and one that I played in a piano recital years (ahem, decades) ago. As we walked up and down the aisles of piano books and sheet music, Zahra sighed, “Wow, so many great things to play…” I could have done a happy dance right then and there.

paradiseWe also went downstairs into the kids’ section. As Noah descended the last step, he came face to face with a row of Agent Jean books. He begged me to buy him the second one in the series, but I argued that he hadn’t finished the first one yet. He persisted, “I promise to read some to you every day, and then to myself at night, if you will please, please, please buy me this book.” That moment when you realize your kid is begging you for a book instead of the toys or candies on the next shelf over.

So I left the store with some sheet music and two books—one for Leila, too. Zahra had three books in an Amazon order scheduled to arrive today. So even though I keep telling myself to save money by using the library instead of buying books, we somehow arrive at home with stacks of library books and boxes of Amazon orders. I can live with that.

raincoatsOn the way home, I needed to drop off a symphony orchestra booklet at my friend Karen’s house and, as usually happens, we ended up staying. We played outside, we loved on baby Thomas, and we stayed for dinner. Legos and Star Wars, or Star Wars Legos, rather. Girls complaining about too much Imperial March being played. The little joys in life.








Near 7:00pm, we headed home and picked up the mail. All for Zahra today: her books and a “puzzle” letter from her Aunt Janice. She was tickled pink by it, and I remembered having those puzzle letter sets when I was young. It wouldn’t surprise me if Janice had held onto one to send to my daughter years (ahem, decades) later.

puzzle letter