(This is not my library.  I'm so sad.)

I have five different library cards:
  • Smalltownville Library
  • The Town In Which We Used to Live library
  • Cute Historic Town Library
  • Town With the Grocery Store Library
  • Big City Library
Why?  Because libraries really, really Work for Me!  Here's why:

Free Books!  This is obvious, but I think we tend to take this for granted.  Think of it: An entire building filled with books that you are welcome to take home and read, for free!  It's the perfect opportunity to try something new without worrying about the cost.  I currently have about 50 books checked out of various libraries.  Assuming the average book cost is $12, that's $600 worth of books sitting in my living room.

No Clutter!  Sure, some books are worth owning.  You'll read them over and over again, or they're reference books.  Most books, however, are read once and then placed on a shelf to collect dust.  Why not let the librarians do the dusting instead?

Any Book!  If you can't find the book you're looking for, many libraries offer an Inter-Library Loan program.  They'll find a library that has the book you want and will have it shipped to your local branch.  Some libraries do this for free, while others charge a small fee.  (My library will do it for $1 per book.)

Just Pick 'Em Up!  I love this one!  If your library has an online catalog, you may be able to reserve the books you want.  The librarian will gather your books and have them waiting behind the circulation desk.  This is such a timesaver!  No more running all over the library with a scrap of paper filled with call numbers.  It's especially awesome at my Big City library.  It's actually a network of five or six libraries, and I can use the online system to reserve books from any of those branches.  They'll deliver all the books to the central branch without charging me ILL fees.

(Oh, and two final tips: Keep all of your library books in one spot and mark the due dates on your calendar in red ink.)

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(Library photo from Radioher's Flickr photostream.)

11 Responses
  1. { L } Says:

    Thank you for bringing up AWESOME points as to why we should take advantage of libraries. I appreciate it and you are SO RIGHT! :)

  2. Amanda Says:

    I love libraries... to read your blog this time I just highlighted everything and could read... so weird that it does that to me!!!

    Come stop by my blog ~ I’m sharing a tasty thing I found that works for me and my daughter, which you’ll see LOL. Plus I have a little info on a Non-BlogHer party going on with GIVEAWAYS and fun!! http://www.garibaysoup.com (NOT LIKE YOU HAVEN'T HEARD ME RAVE ABOUT IT ON TWITTER LOL!)

  3. Rachel R. Says:

    I love your blog title. (Love libraries, too. lol My husband used to joke that there was a reserved parking spot there with my name on it!)

  4. Chocolateer Says:

    How do you keep track of which books are due back when? We have a set library day each week...and yet every month I'm *still* getting burned with library fines. Granted, they usually aren't big fines, but when I'm couponing and sale shopping, getting hit with even a 50 cent fine is frustrating.

  5. MrsMomma Says:

    We're at our library at least every other week if not every week! I love it! I've enjoyed several of the points you've mentioned, especially love the online service. I love to browse, but it comes in handy when you just don't have the time.

  6. Kate Says:

    L- Thanks! Libraries are one of the few things for which I don't mind paying taxes. ;-)

    Amanda- I'm sorry you're having trouble reading the blog. I have no idea why it's doing that, because it started suddenly. I may have to change my template and see if that works. And I love your blog! =)

    Rachel- Thanks =) And I think frequent library patrons should get a reserved parking spot. Lugging two tote bags full of books to the back of the parking lot is tiring!

    Chocolateer- Our Big City library charges 25 cents per day per overdue item, so DangerBear has threatened to revoke my library privileges if I rack up fines! I write the due dates on my calendar immediately. (Ex: "Big City Library books due today") I also mark a reminder on my calendar a few days before the due date, so I know that I have to renew or return the books BEFORE the due date. All of our library books stay in one spot, and when we finish a book, it goes in a tote bag so they're ready to return.

    MrsMomma- I also love to browse, but DangerBear's not one to linger in libraries, so sometimes I have to be fast! I just recently discovered the online service, and I've fallen in love with the library all over again. =D

  7. mub Says:

    I miss having access to a FREE public library! I do have my library card from the US which I use to download audiobooks, which I LOVE! Most libraries now seem to have a lot of online content too if you're after that sort of thing.

  8. Kate Says:

    Mub- I know my library offers online stuff, like audiobooks, but I haven't tried it out. I think I need to fill out a form at the library or something. I'll have to look into it, though. It's also really neat that you can still take advantage of that!

  9. Veronica Lee Says:

    Hi! I'm visiting from MBC. Great blog.

  10. Kate Says:

    Thanks for visiting! I hope you'll come back again. =)

  11. Chris Says:

    Libraries are the best. My 2 year old son loves going to the library and hanging out in the play area and at story time. He even knows how to check out a book.

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