My name is Rachel Murphy and I have two boys, Fraser and Anderson, ages three-and-a-half and two. They are growing up with a love of reading and Calgary Public Library is a big reason why.
I spent a lot of time at the Library during my maternity leaves. We attended Drop-in Family Storytimes, and signed out each of the six themed Read and Play kits at Quarry Park Library. The Library was a place where I felt very comfortable bringing my boys because kids are encouraged to learn through play.
When my oldest was two, I asked him what his favourite place in Calgary was. I assumed he would say an indoor play place but he said the Library, and that made me feel so happy and proud.
Now that I’m back at work, the Library continues to be a big part of our lives. I place holds on books online and then pick them up on my lunch break. My boys’ eyes light up when I come home with Library books as if it’s Christmas morning. My oldest even sleeps with Library books at the foot of his bed for the three-week borrowing period.
Currently the boys are very interested in hockey and trains. I love being able to borrow books because as their interests change, so can their selection of books.
We also visit several Library locations every month or two to enjoy the Early Learning Centres, as each one is interactive and centred around a different theme. We love the Early Learning Centres at Fish Creek, Shawnessy, and Quarry Park Library, but our favourite is definitely Engine 23 at Central Library.
You can’t beat being able to sit inside and pretend to drive a real firetruck. We also love reading firetruck books in the upper reading area. My boys were both firefighters for Halloween because Engine 23 gave them their love of firetrucks.
We are SO excited for the New Central Library to open later this year! Calgary Public Library understands that healthy development in early childhood sets kids up for future success. My family and I are so lucky to live in a place where reading is so accessible and lifelong learning is encouraged.
Follow Rachel and her boys on Instagram at @newwestmom.