The Books I Carried With Me

Sometimes I marvel which childhood bents will carryover to adulthood.

For me, the love of a good book is probably foremost.

I remember one occasion where I alphabetized my home library. I must have been in third or fourth grade. Perhaps I also instituted a check-out operation, though for whom I cannot say.

My love of reading was birthed in part by my third grade best friend, Holly M. Holly challenged me to complete my homework before school was dismissed each day, eat mustard and ketchup with french fries, and to read for fun. My first grade teacher, who also happens to be my mother, made sure that I read and was read to daily…even during the summer. However, a peer modeling such good study habits truly challenged me and changed me for the better.

Outside of a dog a book is man’s best. Inside of a dog it’s too dark to read. Groucho Marx

The first book that clicked with me I checked out from my school library. The name of the text has long eluded me. For years I looked in the same corner of the little school library for the book with the girl and the wagon wheel on the front only to be evaded.

It is of little importance what the book was or even its content. What matters is that the love of reading and learning was unlocked. Perhaps it had been evident to my parents earlier than it was manifested to myself.

Be as careful of the books you read, as of the company you keep, for your habits and character will be as much influenced by the former as the latter. Paxton Hood

My mother loves thrift and antique stores. One particular store in our community we would frequent monthly. As my mother rummaged through piles and shelves and rows of china, nick-knacks, and furniture. My sister would look for antique keys. I was found digging through treasure troves of books. The hardcover, yellow paged volumes were my favorite. Black Beauty, Little Women, Nancy Drew, and Old Yeller soon became reading companions which I have kept.

Books are not made for furniture, but there is nothing else that so beautifully furnishes a house. Henry Ward Beecher

Today, our home library exceeds the shelf space allotted. Now as then, I continue to find searching used classic and modern volumes therapeutic. Many childish ways I left behind, but the books I carried with me.

“If you would not be forgotten, as soon as you are rotten, either write things worth reading or do things worth the writing.”  Benjamin Franklin (1706 – 1790)

In honor of romancing our children with the love of reading, this week I will highlight the children’s reads:

For some time, I have been referring to Emily as flutterbudget or half-pint as Pa does Laura. Each time Emily replies, “I am not flugerbuget, my dad calls me Sport!”  She tells me herbrudder (brother) is Champ and she is Sport. Glad we have that settled!

That is what we are reading this Wednesday. What about you, how did you first fall in love with literature?

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  1. Growing up, I can’t remember being read to except by my kindergarten teacher…but I was more interested in the girl sitting next to me than I was to any of the stories being shared. My love for reading didn’t develop until my second year of college. I’ve been reading ever since!

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