One of the things I love about living in Salt Lake is having the materials of two awesome library systems (the city and the county) at my constant beck and call. For a girl who grew up with a library the size of a small house, this is heaven indeed.
I milk those two systems for all they're worth: we go to story time at both (Miss Annie at the county library is fabulous, but Max thinks Scott at the city library is his best friend); if I can't find something at the city library (always my first choice since it's a little bit closer), I can almost always find it at the county library; and, I'm not ashamed to admit, I signed up my boys for the summer reading program at both libraries.
It worked out perfectly: at the city library, there were four prizes, and you earned one for every seven days of reading. Theoretically, you could knock out all four prizes in just under a month. Then at the county library, they offered three prizes--one for June, one for July, one for August. This was great for making the fun stretch the entire summer.
Participating in two summer reading programs also aided me in my undercover efforts to get Aaron reading a little more. When I read to him, he got to fill in a picture on the city library's chart. But when he read himself, he got to count it for the county library. It was great.
Honestly, the prizes were not super impressive (someday I'll tell you all about the summer reading program at my same-size-as-a-small-house library, and then you'll all be jealous), but you would have thought they were gold from my boys' delight over them.
That is, not super impressive until the August prize at the county library came along. I already knew that it was going to be a book, and I was disappointed. In my past experience, the books have always been something along the lines of bilingual Clifford or bilingual Sesame Street. Thanks, but no thanks.
So you can imagine how surprised and ecstatic I was when I saw the book carts lined up with brand new, hardcover, no-Sesame-Street-in-sight picture books. I could hardly contain myself, and I had to really restrain myself from begging the boys to pick certain books (Art and Max by David Weisner?!).
In the end, even though neither one chose Art and Max, I was perfectly content with what they did choose: Aaron selected Pop! The Invention of Bubble Gum by Meghan McCarthy, and Maxwell went with, Betty Bunny Loves Chocolate Cake by Michael Kaplan.
I asked the librarian to write their names in the front of their books as a sort of reminder of when and how they got the books. This was something my librarian from home always did when I was growing up.
Sadly, she inscribed the wrong name in each book, but so far, the boys haven't noticed, and it just adds a little humor to the memory!
We're definitely sad to see the summer reading program(s) come to an end.