Books I love(d)

The Babysitter's Club! <3

As an English teacher, it comes as no surprise that I was a voracious reader growing up. This stems from my wonderful parents taking my sister and me to the library multiple times per week, with the only rule being that we followed the 12-book check-out limit. Many of my favorite memories are from the Jackson Public Library- that was the sacred place I first fell in love with reading. The smell of books takes me right back there, and in my mind, it will always remain an incredibly magical place. I remember sitting for hours at the small, child-size tables, sifting through book after book, making piles of the ones I wanted to check out, and then teetering, tottering out of the building, carrying a stack of precariously perched books atop my little hands. My parents would offer to help, but I was adamant that I could carry them all on my own. Then came the glorious afternoon, when, arriving home, I could spend the entire day reading my new treasures, exploring, and feeling so inspired. My earliest memories are books- my mother and father reading to me, my sister and I reading to each other, the aforementioned trips to the library. Lauren and I would join the library's book club, summer reading groups, and we especially loved "Book It," which was a reading-reward system that Pizza Hut sponsored. Personal pan pizzas for reading books? Ok! To me, reading was always cool. And it still is...there isn't a time in my life when I haven't enjoyed it, and I am so grateful for all of this.

Being at my parents' home, I am surrounded by my past. Old photos, old letters, and namely, old books. Tonight I was reminded of so many of the old titles I used to hold so dear, the books I would devour in a single sitting. Some of my favorites: The Babysitter's Club series and The Sleepover Friends. I couldn't get enough Judy Blume or Beverly Cleary either. A couple of my favorite titles: "Are You There God, It's Me, Margaret?" and "Ramona Quimby, Age 8."

With that said, what are some of your favorite childhood books or series? This is on my mind as I've decided to embark on a nostalgic journey and begin reading a long list of my personal favorites, and I'd love to know what some of yours are. So feel free to share some series or books you adored growing up! I'm so curious! :)