Tuesday, March 25, 2014

bits and pieces of true things

A while ago, I showed you the creation of Front Door Library, a little library housed here in the unused entryway to our house.  This weekend, while the sap was boiling outside and it was a bit too raw and cold to be sitting around the wood stove for very long, Julia and Elliott decided that they needed to remodel their workspace.  Here's what's happening.

A book drop has been initiated for late night drops.

Ways to make the space more cozy and inviting have been addressed, with the addition of a fuzzy window seat.

And its uninsulated drafty coldness has been temporarily mitigated until more permanent solutions are completed.

The librarians have thought to add incentives for patrons to visit more frequently, including the addition of a library pet.  No risk of spilling water for this one.

They have kept things feeling new and interesting by rotating displays.

Their collection has grown, and they have therefore added more descriptive and specific categorization systems.

Fiction has become the most popular genre, and so, it has been divided into people fiction and animal fiction.

My favorite, and a category in which I always find something I need to check out when visiting, is this one: bits & pieces of true things.

Their most significant upgrade involves their check out system.

They have added a check out station.

The librarians are clearly identified.

And everyone has been given their very own personalized library card.

The more forgetful amongst us are allowed to keep our cards at the library, to help avoid those awkward moments when one must dig frantically through one's pockets while the line builds up behind you.  They keep these cards for you just beside the handmade bookmarks with their own patented logo.

Upon further consideration, they decided to embrace some 21st Century Information Technology norms and enlisted tech support from another Front Door Library devotee, their daddy.  Rest assured that the check out procedure is now the envy of a number of neighboring institutions..

With card in hand, and having taken into consideration the recommendations and guidance of the lovely staff employed there, one can now approach the desk.

And hand the books to the staff where they will scan your bar code with an iPod -- coincidentally on loan to them from their father's collection.

Julia has perfected her librarian's pursed lip expression, which will serve her well when I next commit a library patron faux pas.

Books scanned, they can now view each patron's record.

During this process, should it for some reason take longer than one might anticipate due to a librarian needing to run to the bathroom, or the iPod battery dying, or a mild but unfortunately timed moment of sibling rivalry, there are blank bookmarks available at the desk to doodle upon.  If you are interested, FDL is in the midst of a competition to choose a new logo for the library.  This ingenious distraction helps parents with young children avoid the oh-so-embarrassing library departure meltdowns.

These librarians are good at their job, because they are focused on making everyone's library experience as successful as possible.  Each book comes with a handwritten sticky note reminder of when it is due.  And just this morning, at breakfast, I was reminded that today was the day my books were due back, and that they would be open for a few hours this afternoon after school.

A few hours after checking out my selections the other day, I happened upon Julia and Elliott discussing the challenges of modern Librarianship.

Julia:  It is kind of boring here when there is nobody coming to take out books.

Me:  That's why librarians do story times.

Elliott (channeling Miss Merriweather):  And why librarians allow lions into the library.

They now have their eyes on repurposing some unused space.

And they are thinking of story times here and book related crafting activities in the hopes of boosting patron statistics.  And to address the inevitable mid-morning lull.

Front Door Library, as all libraries must be these days, is ready to evolve again.


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