In Which I Become a Mom Again! (In An Unexpected Way…)

 Oh boy do I have an announcement to make… After a long love-affair (on my side), and a recent whirlwind courtship, I have become a part of the AMAZING Reading Rainbow family by becoming… THE READING RAINBOW MOM!

<Give me a moment while I dance and squeal with glee!>

For as long as I can remember I have loved reading, and I’ve always loved sharing that love of reading with anyone who would stand still long enough to listen. In fact, I consider it a point of pride to be able to find the perfect “gateway book” for someone who thinks they aren’t a book person. Eight years ago I took this literary pushing to the next level when I started Rediscovering the Classics, a project wherein I introduce adults to compelling classics in an appealing way. For example, I would never introduce a reader to Dickens by giving her A Tale of Two Cities, as so many schools do. I would start her with the ever-lovable David Copperfield instead. Likewise, I think readers should have a chance to fall in love with Steinbeck through Cannery Row before they are subjected to masterful—but inarguably dense and depressing—Grapes of Wrath.

After a few years of teaching classics to adults I began teaching classics through drama to my daughters’ elementary school classes. The kids engage with challenging literature such as Hamlet or The Iliad not as revered and sacred texts, but by playacting and performing the stories through age-appropriate script adaptations.

Through these activities (and this blog) I have happily shared my love of great literature with my own small community and circle of friends for many years.

Now I am pleased to announce that I have been given the opportunity to share my love of reading once more—and with a much larger audience! Earlier this week I had my debut as The Reading Rainbow Mom, a title I embrace with great joy and excitement! If you don’t know about Reading Rainbow, their mission is to inspire a love of reading in children, and connect them to the world they live in through quality literature. We are a match made in heaven!!

As the Reading Rainbow Mom I will be writing regularly for their blog, as well as posting to their Facebook page, Twitter account, and YouTube channel; and generally doing what moms do—sharing ideas, stories, advice, laughter, tears, and most of all… a love of books and readers of all ages. I hope that my Banquet of Books readers (especially those with kids) will come over to the Reading Rainbow blog, Twitter, or Facebook page and check out some of our wonderful writing and resources. (And if you have kids, or even just interact with someone else’s kids, I highly recommend you check out the app—it’s free to download and try.)

I just started this week, and so far I am honored, excited, and a little bit overwhelmed. But most of all I am just so happy to be able to do the thing that I feel is the most enjoyable and important thing in the world… helping kids LOVE to read! Now, I expect that some of my observations over at Reading Rainbow will spill into my musing on this blog as well, and in order to better facilitate that I will be adding a new category to my list: For Parents and Kids. Don’t worry, I don’t intend to change the format or subject of Banquet of Books, but I wanted to give myself the option to branch out a bit, I hope you will enjoy the result.

There is a saying that if you follow your bliss then everything else will fall into place. Books are my bliss, and I can never seem to escape them. Fortunately, I would never want to. I look forward to sharing this new part of my journey with my faithful readers, and with new readers of all ages.

Happy Reading!

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