After spending nearly eight years in college, it was really hard for me to want to pick up a book. I always viewed it as a project. This tiny gift changed everything.
My mother is the ultimate do-it-yourselfer. I aim to be such a person, but it seems the unachievable task. She can cook, bake, needlepoint, crocket, and all of the above plus the organizational skills of a superhero. A retired elementary educator, she’s wired for hands-on activities, with a lot of patience. (Another skill I have yet to learn)
One year, for Christmas, I got this little package in my stocking. (Yes, she still does these. I know I’m completely spoiled.) Inside was a black and orange, crocheted, book worm with googly-eyes. Now, you might be thinking, “what’s so great about that?”
When I was a kid, reading was a big part of life. We read every night before bed. We did the local library challenges where we read books and we earned points towards a variety of things. I had several of these book worm bookmarks, along with others in a variety of colors.
But this one was black and oange. Oregon State University colors. I’d graduated (two Bachelor’s of Science degrees) and moved on, left most of my things when I took to the road following my husband and his job. In college I used those neon sticky-markers, not this cute, yarn-fuzzy, googly-eyed marker.
The eyes still make me laugh. Sometimes he looks at me like he’s waiting. Other times he rolls his eyes as if to give me attitude. Now and then, he goes cross-eyed and it makes me laugh. He’s a symbol, a reminder that while reading may take time, invoking the page-marking function, it can still be fun and colorful. And it should be.
In a world of electronics, and trying to keep pace with trends, sometimes I miss the good things, simple things, traditional things.
There is nothing better than opening a print book for the first time, smelling the fresh ink, feeling the crisp pages between my fingers, and the stiffness in the binding like it’s got a secret it doesn’t want me to find.
And I can’t speak for everyone, but I have to admit paper is easier on my eyes. With so many heading inside for the upcoming season, picking up a book is the best way to venture out when the weather keeps us in. Sure we have phones, computers, and TV. But when you use your imagination to create what you read, you can make the world your own. The story takes on your own personal flare.
With Googly-eyes staring up at me, I feel like he’s waiting, like he’s my little friend just as impatient and curious about the adventure between the pages as I am. He’s like my first friend in elementary school, always saving the place beside him just for me, reminding me what fun we’ll have together.
There are tons of DIY patterns online if you want to give it a try. It’s listed as “easy.” I did once. I still use the one from mom. (I’ve discovered crocheting isn’t my thing.) 🙂 If you try it, best of luck to you!
Hope you can find someone to share in your literary adventures with!
PS: I enjoy James Rollins: heavily focused on the future of mankind. If you haven’t picked up one of his books, I recommend you do.