Monday, June 23, 2014

Yes, I'm a Children's Librarian

I'm feeling like a let's-take-a-gander-at-the-crazy-but-fun-day-of-a-YS-Librarian post. Since I was working the late shift today, my morning consisted of sleeping in until 6:34 (woot! woot!), watching Mr. B and Mr. Darcy enjoying each other's company (and by "enjoying" I mean Mr. Darcy attacking Mr. B's head, arms, hands...anything within reach, while Mr. B tried to distract him with the numerous amount of toys taking over our living room), and finishing up some last-minute chores and prepping for the hubby's dinner. You know, he'll be all by his lonesome tonight. I also sneaked in a half hour nap while Mr. Darcy was supposed to be taking his morning nap. Then it was a rush to get out the door and on to work.

11:30-1:00 p.m. It was slooow going today. I blame fun, outdoor summer activities, and the threat of a bursting thunderstorm, sure to make the rest of the day muggy as all get out. With the lack of activity in the children's department, I was able to get quite a bit accomplished. After spending 30 minutes tidying up the shelves and toys, I did email and organization stuff, like hanging new program fliers (we have a lot going on at the library this summer!), piling random stuff on one cart to take to the basement tomorrow (like googly eyes, bee puppets, tissue paper, Legos, and a million stickers...and I really don't think I'm exaggerating on that one), and making sure I know where Thursday's performer's check is located. We're having Outback Ray here (no Jungle Terry this year), and I'm sure it will be a packed, mad house Thursday afternoon. The show starts at noon, so get here early for a seat up front! I hear there's an alligator. :)

1:30-3:30 p.m. I spent these few hours making sure my Preschool Story Time program was ready for Friday (theme: How's the Weather?), and my backup Toddler Tales program was ready for Thursday. As a special summer treat, I'd really like to take the kids outside to play with chalk for the program, but if the weather doesn't cooperate, I need a backup plan. I'm really praying it's nice because I had 16 toddlers running around in a cramped room filled with 14 other adults, and let's just say CRAZY would be an understatement. They need outside time. I need outside time.

But I must not forget the parachute.

3:30 p.m. I took an early lunch because once the craziness starts, there will be no stopping until closing time. I consumed one of my favorite lunch meals like I hadn't eaten in a week. Honestly, I think last summer was the last time I cooked up a batch of this Chicken and Rice Salad. It's one of my favorites, and can keep in the fridge for days, making it perfect for work. So good. I must make this more often. Also, it makes for a great dish to take to your next cookout. Tasty cold or at room temperature, and this time I made it with brown rice instead of my normal wild rice; it's just as tasty.

4:00-5:00 p.m. Program set-up. This evening's yoga program is a collaborative effort between myself and two other of my library's YS Librarians. In staying with the Summer Reading Program's "science" theme (Fizz, Boom, Read), we're combining my "Yogi Kids" (body science) and Miss Jill's "Kidz Create" (food science) programs into one fun-filled healthy night. Because it's a combined effort (and we enjoy working with each other so much), we're rotating the program to all three of our branches this summer. Last week it was at Mrs. Rising's, and we had such a great turn out (even the parents were asking for their own program), and later in July it will be at Miss Jill's location.

Set-up includes clearing space in the meeting room so we can stretch out and get our yoga on, and finding room in the children's department for the kids to make and enjoy their smoothies without making too much of a mess...and finding some outlets.

Thankfully, I remembered to bring in my blender from home this time, and this time we made it through the entire program with two working ones! We also put out books and DVDs on yoga and making healthy food at home. Actually, for this program, the set-up is quite minimal, which is fantastic and allows us to catch up on what's going on at everyone's branches lately. You know, library gossip...what programs worked, didn't work, fun kid stories, interesting patron stories, etc. Also, we were quite busy handing out Summer Reading prizes while the kids waited for the program to start.

5:00-6:00 p.m. Yogis in the Kitchen Lab.

Due to the small space, we had to divide the kids into two groups of 10. One group remained with me for the yoga part, while the other group went with Miss Jill and Mrs. Rising for the smoothie part. For 20 minutes, I worked with kids on a yoga sequence focusing on back stretches, which included poses like Bridge, Cobra, and Wheel. We began the routine with a couple of Sun Salutations for a quick warm-up, repeated the six-posed flow three times, and finished with a five minute cool down, including a nice, long Relaxed Pose (I don't use the phrase Corpse Pose with the kids, it doesn't go over too well, haha) to some calming music and the lights out. Namaste.

Then we switched, and I did the whole 20-minute session again with the second group. Over in the children's department, Miss Jill and Mrs. Rising were teaching the kids about measuring and halving ingredients in order to make their very own Banana Berry Smoothies.

How'd it go? Excellent. Everyone participated and had fun, and there were hugs all around. The kids really, really had a blast. This group of yogis complained a little more about the poses (possibly because the majority of them were older than the kids we had last week at a different branch, and they were a little more self-conscious with their friends there watching them), but this group did better with making the smoothies. The sad thing: this program was the first time most of the kids ever had a smoothie AND the first time understanding how a blender works. This makes my heart sad.

At the end of the program, we handed out cards which featured the yoga routine and the smoothie recipe. I suggested they try their own yoga day at home, and hopefully we inspired a few kiddos.

6:00-8:00 p.m. Clean up. Clean up. Everybody clean up. We managed to clean up, tear down, and wash dishes in 30 minutes. Then we headed to the basement to grab more Summer Reading prizes (because the kids cleaned us out before the program). I spent my last hour talking to a few parents, cleaning up the children's department, and putting some last minute touches on my upcoming programs. I am spent. But, hey, at least I was able to fit in a decent workout ;)

Good thing tomorrow is a relaxing day digging through and organizing the basement. <---read with much sarcasm. At least I get to wear jeans.

With Love and God Bless,

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