I've been working hard at not posting to this blog. Why? Because I tell myself I don't have time. But in the three years since I've posted, I've read some truly amazing kids' books (The Book Thief comes to mind--if you haven't read it, read it) that I've had to ignore the itch to write about. I have finally realized that this was a stupid move, so here I am, writing my first post in three years with baby number three (who helps me find writing and reading time by getting me up at 4:45 a.m.) cooing on the floor beside me. I'll make this one quick, as cooing baby and unfolded laundry await.
Yesterday the kids and I drove the hour-and-a-half-ish to Niantic, Conn., to visit the Book Barn, which is simply the most awesome used book store in the history of the world. There are the usual used-book-store cats and the excitement of the search that make it awesome, but there are also some great touches, like toys indoors and outdoors (which occupy the kiddos so you can--what else?--look for books), free cookies and coffee, and--in good weather--a goat. I am not making this up. Those of you who live anywhere near Connecticut must visit this place asap. Anyway, for the long drive I decided to play Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. My four-year-old son once loved this book but got turned off by the movie (the Gene Wilder version), which I made the mistake of letting him watch a couple of months ago. Even though I skipped the boat scene, he was freaked out. And, he complained, "Things were wrong. Instead of squirrels, there were golden geese." So, to repair his relationship with Charlie, Willy, and Grandpa Joe, I popped the audiobook in the CD player while my boy was held captive in his car seat. Success. An occasional glance in the rear-view mirror confirmed his enraptured delight. Two-year-old sister enjoyed it, too. (Baby sister slept or cried, depending on mysterious factors beyond my control.)
As for me, I was reminded to use cruise control on the interstate when, as Charlie unwrapped the fateful bar of chocolate, I noticed I was going 85 mph. On the way home, with children dropping "like rabbits" (whatever that means, Wonka; why not flies?), I missed an exit.
As for the book-shopping, I scored some cool stuff, including a stack of Louisa May Alcott, an unabridged audiobook of Anne of Green Gables for $4 (woohoo!), a copy of Mufaro's Beautiful Daughters (truly one of the loveliest picture books ever), and a hardcover edition of Rip Wan Winkle illustrated by Arthur Rackham. At the last minute I resisted buying Christopher Milne's The Path Through the Trees. It tortured me all the way home, and I am still not sure I did the right thing.
Good to be back.
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