Wednesday, February 24, 2016

It Ain't Your Mama's Library Anymore!

In my on-going quest to gain control over my over-crowded bookshelves, I faced a conundrum. I have placed a rule in effect that I have to read & purge more books from my shelves than I buy this year. In fact, I set a minimum 4 to 1 ratio. And even then, I want to limit purchases to very special books that have a chance to remain on a "keeper'' shelf.

So how can I read new-releases that I've been waiting for? Gifts are, of course, a way around the rules (but the purge rules still remain in effect. I have to read books I already own and get them off my shelves to make room for sparkly, new awesome books I receive from friends, family and OTSPSecretSister). But...there is another great way to read books and not have them end up on my shelves. I recently re-discovered the joys of the Library!!

Local libraries are no longer just shelves of books and magazines, organized by the Dewey Decimal System. The area library consortium (a group of several libraries over 4 counties) where I live all share their collections via a website. I can borrow books, audio books and DVDs from any of the consortium libraries, and place holds or renew items I have checked out from my laptop at home. That is so convenient! Not only that, but they belong to the NC state Digital library as well. So I can check out ebooks and audio books online from the NCDL. I can read them on my laptop, or transfer to the kindle app on my phone. Add in OpenLibrary that offers even more ebooks online, and I've got a huge library at my fingertips at any time. Sweet!

But that's not all....  In the past month, I have attended a couponing class at my local library and enjoyed an adult coloring session. My husband and son have discovered the joys of 3D printing at the library. We now have awesome custom-made Settlers of Catan pieces! And, they offer a monthly book club meeting! Our county has been without a book store for several years now (the shop moved to another, larger town about 30 minutes away), and I was really missing book group discussions. Now, once a month, I can bring what I'm reading and talk about it to a group of bookish, awesome people! Yay!

My writer's group is now meeting at the library once a week. It's the perfect place for us to meet! Each Monday they have a "maker night'' for people to come work on crafts in their maker-space room. Thursdays is teen night to come to the library and work on crafts or hobbies together, or use the 3D printer. They recently had a 3D printer design contest for teens....the projects were all amazing!! This summer they are planning a "summer camp'' for all ages of kids, not to mention the usual story-hour events and other classic library offerings.

So, I can still read books that I don't own but know are just one-time reads, and enjoy all sorts of bookish activities as well! I'm saving money, keeping to my "book diet'', having some fun, and staying on track to re-organize and gain control over my personal library!

The Library has come a long way, baby! :)

No comments:

Post a Comment