You have to understand that I had never been an business trip or a trip without spouse and/or children until this year. There were a couple teacher workshops where I had gone with a couple other colleagues for a night or two, but hadn’t traveled by myself until this year. With that time away, came a little (or a lot) mom guilt for being gone-that part wasn’t different from the times I had gone away overnight for a teacher conference. More often than not, when I came home from one of those events, I had an autographed book for them from one of the speakers. It helps my kids know I am learning things to help teachers and students in our districts and that those things are linked to literacy, reading and writing. When I came home from NCTE it was like I’d won the lottery of books-galleys, promotionals, ARCs-my kids of course assumed it was all for them, like the mother load of souvenirs. I guess that’s better than coming home with junk I’d bought in the airport kiosk for them.
This time I was very strict with myself and refused to buy any book for myself, professional or pleasure reading, that I would be able to easily obtain at home. Dragging my luggage up and down the hills of Columbia’s campus, and not just pulling it out of the back of my mini-van has shown me the wisdom of packing light, among other things. On the other hand, I can’t come home empty handed or I will have disappointed children. I prefer to return home the hero-mom who was missed dreadfully AND bears a new book rather than having my youngest look at me with disappointed eyes when I announce there is no new book.
My son is easy-I found a new Geronomio Stilton book-A Fabumouse School Adventure and knew he’d love it. While I was at, I even bought a book for my husband who usually gets short-changed. He is getting The Demigod Files by Rick Riordan as he has torn through the first four books in that series in the last two weeks. I love that he reads KidLit as well!
My daughter is harder and I’ve been thinking about her choice all week. Her favorite book has been The Magic Half by Annie Barrows for a couple years now and while I’ve gotten her to read much more than in past years, she still doesn’t have that passion for books that I wish for her. Well I am darn pleased with what I found for her when I returned to the bookstore today-a new Moxy Maxwell book! Moxy Maxwell Does Not Love Practicing the Piano-but she does love being in recitals. Yeah! She will be able to power right through it, already find Moxy funny from her previous books, AND has her own history with not loving to practice the piano. Perfect! It just came out yesterday which is why I couldn’t find the perfect book for her when I found my son’s.
Now, just to fit them into my suitcase.
P.S. Book 5 of the 39 Clues Series-The Black Circle also came out yesterday. I haven’t read of any of them, but I did help a mom find it for her son as she came in frantic that it might be sold out-I love that a Children’s Book can cause a stir. Her son had even informed her how many days until Book 6 comes out (November 3rd if you want to know).