Friday, July 23, 2010

Storytime aka Free Therapy

If you are, or are planning on becoming a stay-at-home parent you must, MUST go to your local public library (or any in a 50 mile radius - it's worth the drive) to see if they have Storytime.  If they don't, ask the librarian and write your local congressman, if necessary, to demand that they start one immediately.  Your psyche will thank you.

When Sweet Pea was about two months old, I happened to be in the library one Tuesday morning and saw a large number of parents and wee ones leaving a previously unnoticed room off of the children's section.  The adults were smiling and chatting and the children were happy.  I wanted to be one of them.

So the very next week, I invited two of my fellow new-Mommy friends to come so that I wouldn't be the new kid and we went to Storytime.  There was singing, fingerplays (think Itsy, Bitsy Spider if you're not a parent yet), musical instrument playing, and naturally a couple of stories.  Of course, being deaf and still at the bump on a log age, Sweet Pea didn't get a whole lot out of it but I was hooked.  I got something to do for 30 minutes (50 if you include the getting ready to go time and travel time) and I got to see and talk to other adults.

For a little while, my friend with her Munchkin and I would call and e-mail each other to see if we wanted to go to Storytime.  Then, we found out that it was not just on Tuesdays, but Tuesdays AND Thursdays!  That's a whole hour a week of activity that requires no preparation on our part (minus the getting ready)!  Soon we were only calling if we WEREN'T going to Storytime.

We also discovered that there is a Pre-schooler Storytime 30 minutes after ours is over.  No, we haven't yet progressed to staying through both, but I wouldn't rule out the possibility in the future.  But we do commandeer the room for the 30 minutes between Storytimes and have our own little Mommies Club.  It started with just the two of us (and Sweet Pea and Munchkin of course)  but we are growing our membership and have made new friends whom we have welcomed into our club (read: group therapy).  Now, if you are mathematically inclined, you have figured out that this is now at least 2 hours!  a week we get to spend away from home, with other adults, and doing something way more fun for Sweet Pea than hunting the dollar bins at Targee`.

What started out as something I did for Sweet Pea's enrichment (which it still is) has turned out to be free therapy for me.  On occasion when S.P. was having a particularly whiny or grumpy day, I've thought: "That's it, we're not going to Storytime today (as if a something-month-old would get that)."  Then I realize I would only be punishing myself by missing out on therapy on a day where it is most definitely going to be needed.  Plus, maybe the Storytime will make her not so grumpy and/or whiny. 

I haven't made use of it yet, but I have knowledge of Storytimes at another library in the area and at Barnes and Noble on other days of the week.  We could, potentially, have Storytime 5 days a week!!!  I'm not that crazy yet, but maybe if there's ever a Baby #2.


  1. Yay Storytime! Let's hope the library doesn't get a hold of this blog. They might start charging! It would be worth it.

  2. I would find a way to pay, but let's hope it doesn't come to that.