Daniel has gotten into the lovely habit of picking a book from his shelf and waddling up to us, book held firmly in outstretched hands. As we open up the book to read to him, he'll nestle himself in our lap or perch on our knee, and announce images he recognises. "Truck!" "Car!" "Bird!" "Vroom vroom!" are common proclamations from the tyke.
I'm really pleased that there is a library within walking distance from our home. Laden with pram, diaper bag, and a 23-week old squidge in my belly, I can still make it to the library in 10 minutes flat. The College Terrace Library is so unlike the libraries in Singapore, I was a bit taken aback when I first saw it. It basically looks like a quaint bungalow from 1960s Singapore and is surrounded by a small garden with shrubs, shady trees, and birds. The children's section is humbly enclosed in a room the size of our living and dining area. And yet, honest to God, I have found more attractive and appropriate books for Dan in that section than in the main National Library in Singapore! There's even a comfy sofa, a carpet, and stuffed toys - for parents to read to their kids! Nice!
Don't poo poo this library just because it's quaint and small. It's really quite technologically-up-to-date too - for example, you can go online and search the catalogue of books and DVDs found in all four Palo Alto libraries and have the ones you want reserved and sent to the College Terrace Library for your convenient pick-up - all free of charge! (Can anyone tell me if such a service is available in Singapore?) The library also sends you a friendly email reminder a few days before your books and DVDs are due - once again, free of charge! And here's the clincher - guess how many books and DVDs you can borrow at one time? Not 5, not 10, not even 100. The answer is, "999" or "as many books as you can carry out the door". I kid you not. (The borrowing period for books is 1 month and it's 1 week for DVDs, so of course, that immediately limits how many books and DVDs any normal person could actually realistically borrow, but still! Technically speaking, there IS NO LIMIT!)
So, Dan & I now have a weekly ritual trip to the library. Here are some of his favourite books, which I've had to keep re-borrowing, and which I've pretty much memorised!
I'm really glad that Dan loves books. Let's hope that this trend stays for the long run!