I must admit that once I heard the sad news that Borders was going out of business, my husband and I headed over to our nearest one (we were so lucky that it was mere minutes away) and perused the bookshelves with heavy hearts. We LOVE bookstores. Doesn’t matter if they are giant chains or independent stores, we simply love places dedicated to all of the wonderful stories written in the world. I mean, we even watch “You’ve Got Mail” so often that we can recite most of the lines to each other. So it is no surprise that one of our favorite places to take our boys is bookstores…in particular, Barnes and Noble and it gives us bookstore bliss.
Barnes and Noble
We tend to visit our local Barnes and Noble most often because it is conveniently located next to Buy Buy Baby, where I feel we are always going with 20% coupons in hand. My boys love that our location features a stage and benches to read and play on, and I am thrilled that it is a clean, quiet environment with tons of great quality books at fairly reasonable prices.
We love the bargain books in particular, and my boys know that they can most likely sway us into buying them each a book if they behave well in the bookstore and treat the store toys with respect.
The train table can get mighty crowded because Thomas is so popular, so when that happens we stroll on over to either the Lego building tables or the Cafe to share a juice and sweet treat. You would think that two little boys would scream and shout with excitement while playing, but I am convinced that the tranquility of the bookstore chills everyone out to just relax and enjoy all that there is to offer.
We just finally signed up for the Kids Club program (I have no idea why we were fighting it for so long), and have been enjoying the perks of free birthday treats for the boys and discounts on the “kid’s book of the month.” I highly recommend it!
One thing that has been a bummer, though, is our experience there for story time. I’m not sure if we just got a grumpy reader or what, but when my friend and I brought our boys to celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday with a reading of his most famous work, the lady just about refused to read to them because they were the only ones in attendance and she claimed they were “too young.” As a Reading Specialist I had to kindly disagree with her, and from now on I avoid story times at B&N and instead attend ones at my library that you can read about here.
So whether independent or chain, head to your local bookstore and crack open some new books with your little one. I can’t recommend a better way to spend a few hours.
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