Saturday, November 24, 2012

Library Day (and Bonus: More Flashback Photos)

Every few Saturdays for the past couple of months, Tom has been taking Abby to the library to pick up some books for himself, and some new installments of Madeline for bedtime reading. Thus far, he has brought home Madeline in London, Madeline and the Bad Hat, Madeline, and Madeline's Rescue. We weren't sure what we would find this week, but the two books that we had out were due, and we knew that Abby would love the trip, regardless.

This time, Tom even got me to tag along with Michael. I tucked him into our newly purchased ErgoBaby carrier (which I love), and Tom pushed Abby in one of the umbrella strollers. Once we were situated, and had picked up Madeline's Christmas (perfect timing, right?) and Madeline in America, I let Tom wander off while I watched over Abby in exploration mode.

I wasn't sure what to expect. Normally, in public places, she is inclined to run off in unpredictable directions, and can be difficult to catch. But in the children's corner of the library, she was in her element, and had no apparent desire to flee. She started off browsing some books laid out on a workcenter/bench dealie, and showed off her familiarity with written numbers. Though she initially confused nine with six, she correctly identified numbers one through nine. Seems we'll have to work a little more to get down 10-12. She also has a little ways to go before she fully comprehends the concept of counting. Though she can list numbers in order, she doesn't seem to know when to stop. For instance, she'll see an open hand, and if you ask her how many fingers there are, she will sometimes count from one to five, but more often will continue beyond, and answer you with whatever number she stops at, be that six, or ten.

She then moved on to the back corner, by the windows, and began pulling books out willy-nilly, looking through them and then dropping them to the floor to search for another. What followed was a timely lesson about the importance of picking up after oneself, and not throwing things to the floor. Though I did get her to pick up the books that she had dropped (while I was standing there, anyway), I was unsuccessful in instilling the message that books do not belong on the floor in the first place. Baby steps...

Doesn't she look so grown-up, though- standing there, "reading" a book? {sigh}

Michael began to get a little antsy in the carrier when I got too tired to stand and walk around with him, so I let him out for a bit. He's too young to really get the point of a library, but he did appreciate the little tables scattered throughout. They were, after all, a perfect surface for banging and drumming, a favorite new pastime of his.

The whole thing drives me a little nuts, though, I must admit, because though it's cute when he does it, it's less cute when his sister mimics him, creating twice the noise. Many an attempt to sleep in, courtesy of my lovely husband's willingness to volunteer for breakfast duty, has been foiled because my children do not know how to eat quietly anymore, without accompanying percussion, and our dining room is situated just feet from the master bedroom.

All in all though, a successful and enjoyable trip. Michael's banging did not echo in the carpeted library, and therefore did not create much of a disturbance. It also did not last long, as it soon occurred to him that crawling around in a heretofore unexplored environment might be a more worthwhile use of his time.

I, myself, left empty-handed, as it has sadly been so long since I even stepped foot in a library (or read a book that I don't already own, for that matter) that I had no clue where to begin looking for something interesting. I wandered through the general fiction and Sci Fi sections, but gave up searching when I couldn't even think of a particular author to help me narrow my focus. It made me pine for my days as a library page (back when I was an early teen- though I can't say I'll ever wish to actually relive that stage of life), when so many interesting books passed through my hands on their way back to the shelves that I was perfectly positioned to come across all kinds of new discoveries.

When it came to it, Abby did not want to leave, but she held off on threatening any tantrums until we reached the car, and we were able to get her in the car-riding spirit by pointing out that she could now listen to fun songs on the radio. I made sure to sit and read her her new acquisitions as soon as we walked in the door at home, to which her response was the predictable request: "Again?"


And now, more Flashback Friday pictures. It suddenly occurred to me when I awoke this morning that several pictures (that I spent over an hour editing and watermarking in preparation) never ended up in yesterday's Flashback post. They only cover a singular event, which I didn't want to dedicate a whole post to, but I couldn't bear not to include them after all of that work, and because they document an event that I think was definitely worth noting in the grand scheme of things (there were a lot of "firsts" involved for Abby).

So, I bring you: Abby's Trip to Meadow Lane Park (April 20, 2012)

First ride in a Cozy Coupe

First tricycle

Really big ball

First trip down a slide

Picking dandelions

Last, but not least- first carousel ride