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Apparently, it’s the end of National Librarian Week.

Who knew?

As some of you may know, we love our local library here at Le. Rheims.

Currently, we’re trying to stay in the habit of going every other Wednesday, at least (partly because if we don’t go at least every other week our books

Newark Public Library, Main Branch, by wallyg

Newark Public Library, Main Branch, by wallyg.  This thing is huge.  A little too huge for me and my kids, just yet.

will be late, but I digress).  Living in Newark, we have a plethora (OK, 8, used to be 11 until some unfortunate but necessary budget cuts) of branches from which to choose, including the massive main branch downtown, but out preferred location is the North End branch, right in our own neighborhood.  The staff is welcoming and inviting, and, as any who know her would say, the librarian in charge of the children’s room, Heather Rivera, is unflappable.  Trust me.  Some days it seems as if my kids are trying to test this label, and she never even bats an eye.  “Miss Heather,” as they call her, just goes right on being awesome, calm, and helpful.  Often, the difference between a successful trip to the library and one where mommy vows never to return with the little is the librarian.

Lately, since we’ve stopped ignoring the massive pile of late books we’ve had out since last August because we just can’t seem to find the time to bring them back and face the consequences started making regular trips again, Miss Heather has been even more helpful.  On Wednesdays, our “usual” day, there is always a craft project.  Instead of making us wait until the usual 3PM start time, when all of the “school kids” arrive, she brings out a batch of supplies, just for us, and lets us get in and out before the crowds.  Again, awesome, right?  She also keeps us apprised of when the newest Skippyjon Jones books are in, so, right there, she deserves “Librarian of the Year” in my book.  This week, she let the kids take out the puppets and puppet theater and “entertain” us all with a little show.  I wanted to tell them all to STFU quiet down, but she didn’t even seem to notice the noise.  Seriously, unflappable. 

So, to any of you who may be thinking the library isn’t for you or at least isn’t for your kids, take this piece of advice to heart: Find yourself a branch where the librarian, at least the children’s room librarian, is awesome, calm, helpful, and unflappable.  Basically, find yourself a “Miss Heather.”  With someone like her in charge, the noise, the running, the taking-ever-book-she-sees-off-the-shelf-and-insisting-she-must-have-it-or-she’ll-never-never-never-be-happy-again-I’m-looking-at-you-Pirate-Princess-days, won’t seem so bad.  This might take some searching.  You may have to go to the next town (but if you stay in-county, this usually isn’t a problem), or try different times of day until you find a librarian on duty who is a good fit, but keep at it.  Libraries are important because they open up the world of books (yes I did just go there) to our children in a way most of us can’t afford to at home.  So long as there is a good librarian at the helm, it will be worth it.

The librarian makes all the difference.