Friday, April 24, 2009

Spring Fever

Spring has sprung and I have a bad case of Spring Fever.  That's my excuse for not blogging for the past two weeks.  So, here is a round-up of the goings-ons as of late.  And there has been a lot of goings-ons.

•  On Saturday, April 11, Micawber's hosted children's author Laura Purdie Salas as our April "Second Saturdays" special guest.  Laura read from her new picture book, STAMPEDE! Poems to Celebrate the Wild Side of School.  A small, but enthusiastic group enjoyed her poems as well as the fun animal activities that followed.  Kids measured how long their "wing span" was in comparison to flamingoes and flying foxes.  Kids also measured how far they could leap.  (In case you were wondering, I can jump as far as a squirrel.)

•  On Thursday, April 16 the four Micawber's booksellers held a Book Chat.  Periodically we invite people to come listen to us talk about our most recent favorite books.  The three books I talked about were The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman, Mudville by Kurtis Scaletta and Katie Loves the Kittens, by John Himmelman.  If you haven't read any of these books, RUN to your local bookstore (or library) and give them a look.  The Graveyard Book and Mudville are novels for kids (and adults!) and Katie Loves the Kittens is a very cute and funny picture book about Katie (a dog) and the new kittens in her life.

•  Speaking of dogs, my family now has a second dog.  Apparently I thought we didn't have enough to do!  Lily, a 3 year-old Shih-Tzu, has joined Lucia, our 11 year-old Wheaten Terrier, Cheech, our crazy cat, and Otter, our rabbit as official pets in the Dokas household.  I admit, last week I told Paul (my husband) that we may have crossed the line into ONE PET TOO MANY land. Like I said, I have Spring Fever and that includes little, furry, new babies.  AKA a new dog.

• Last but not least, Laura Pudie Salas and I have been doing book talks together called Animal Antics.  It has been a lot of fun!  It is also a lot of work - we have four Animal Antics this week alone!  One was pretty much a disaster (not because of us) and the others have gone very well. Today we are off to the Saint Anthony Park Library to do story time.  And tomorrow, Saturday April 25 we will be doing Animal Antics at the Como Zoo.  Come by at 12:30 if you want to catch our "show."

That's all for now.  Enjoy the Spring weather.  I know I am!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

The Smell of Books

I have a very keen sense of smell.  I always have.  It can be a blessing and a curse, as you can imagine.  But, in relationship to my work, it has been a delight.  From day one, I have loved the smell of Micawber's.  Is it the old floors?  The ancient shelves? Is it all the books?  Most likely it's some wonderful combination of all these things and more.

Every day, especially first thing in the morning, I love to open the front door and breathe in the smell of the place.  I thought I was the only one who had this special olfactory relationship with the store.  But I was wrong.

Just this week, two people commented on the smell of Micawber's.  A customer entered the store, breathed deep and sighed, "I love to come here.  It smells so good."  And later, my daughter told me she loves how Micawber's smells.  I was amazed.  Perhaps my sniffer isn't so unique after all.  Or perhaps it's the power of all those books.

Have you ever opened up a brand new book, buried your nose in the crease and breathed deep? I bet you have.  It's a great smell.  Now imagine a whole bunch of those new books in a store that knows about books, that's old with books.  That's what makes the smell of Micawber's so appealing.  No Kindle 2 will ever smell as good.

So next time you're in the neighborhood, stop by for a smell.  You'll be glad you did.