I’ve been connecting kids with books for almost twenty years. It is the most satisfying part of my crazy, boring life. When a 13 year old boy thanks you for the book choices you gave and asks for more, you know you’re doing something right.
Here is how it started…
In 1990 I started working in a children’s bookstore. I knew a lot about the workings of a bookstore, but the children’s literature aspect of it was new. I read and read and read enough that I could help people buy books for the children in their lives. During that time I finished my Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Ed and worked as a reading aide in a local school district. I would bring new books from the bookstore to teachers and the school librarian. At recess when we (the kids and I) spotted a blue heron flying high in the sky, I brought them to the school library to look up the bird in an encyclopedia. Then one day someone said to me, “You should get your Master’s in Library Science”. Since I didn’t know what that was, I pursued that thought and decided that it was a pretty good plan.
During library school the bookstore closed (1995) and I found my first library job—the first day felt like I was coming home. I finally found the place for me! I’ve been working full-time as a children’s librarian in a medium-sized public library in the Chicagoland area since 1997. I met my husband six years ago and on our first date I read to him Olivia by Ian Falconer. Dave thought it was cute, but he really had no idea what he was getting: library conferences, summer reading decorating, and loads of puppets. We live with our adorable bichitzadoodle Grace Murray Hopper (Gracie) in the far western suburbs.