If you haven't yet read Charlotte's Web, by E.B. White, now appears to be the time. At least in Tompkins County. It's been 60 years since the classic tale about a girl, her pig, and the special little spider who can spell ,hit the presses. People across the county are devoting the month of March to celebrating this tale of pig and arachnid love.
The aim of course, is to get kids and their families reading together, which I can tell you, is a pretty fun thing to do. No, it doesn't rank up there with thrills such as watching "Real Housewives" or bungee jumping, but it does make being a housewife a little more bearable, and tends to keep one from wanting to throw oneself off a tall bridge-something that for me, the "Real Housewives" fails at.
We have begun reading Harry Potter aloud with Cedar, and have come to appreciate, once again, the sweetness of sharing a story with our kid. That half hour before bedtime, settling in, cuddling up, and listening to a beloved story together has reminded both Rob and me that this is something we absolutely must do more of. It relaxes us after a long day, calms Cedar down, and gets us all, literally, on the same page. It is a simple and effective way to share something real, something fun, and something that does not involve a screen or plugging anyone into any technological apparatus.
I picked up a free copy of Charlotte's Web at the Tompkins' County Public Library. Right after they grumpily told me I had at least ten books out over the regular limit. And I have added it next on our family read aloud list, for as soon as we finish Harry Potter.
Thankfully I didn't have to check this book out, it is being donated by the Family Reading Partnership and is free for anyone who wants a copy. Also, through Cedar's birthday, April 14, the Library has a exhibit of special White memorabilia and papers. To top it all off, on April 1st, the State Theatre is showing a production of Charlotte's Web, for full on family friendly fun.
So, pick up a copy of the book, sit down with your wee piglet, and share a tale that is about love and friendship and giving of yourself to others. There are no "Real Housewives" in it, but I think we might all be better off for it.
For more info here is an Ithaca Journal article, and the Library blog.