Friday, May 20, 2011

Make time to daydream this summer

By S. Derrickson Moore
It’s almost summer. Do you know what your kids are planning? What they’ll do? Where they will hang out?
After working on today’s SunLife features, roundups of summer camps in the area and what’s new and popular at the library, I was amazed at the range of options. (And delighted to hear from Marian Elzi, Branigan’s Young Adult librarian, that “Kids still really like to read and want to read.”)
Reading has always been one of my favorite summertime pastimes, a great way to explore new worlds. I remember stocking up at book stores and on library visits and how kids went hog-wild when the Bookmobile visited our neighborhood.
Bookmobiles are long gone in most areas these days, but if you have a hard time getting to the library yourself, don’t forget about Books by Mail, a free service. Just call the Books by Mail department at (575) 528-4010 and request your titles, or go online to the library catalog at and put holds on the titles you want. When the system asks you where you want to pick them up, choose the “Books by Mail” option.
I also discovered that the library has thousands of e-book titles available for free downloads, so there are some good ways to stock up and save on time and gas money.
You may have to make an initial trip if you or the kids don’t have library cards. They are still free and one of America’s best bargains. Just show a photo ID. And nothing beats a trip to the real library. You can learn about new programs and services and enjoy the serendipity of browsing for books or DVDs.
I always try to make time to stop in at the Library Friends bookshop near the front entrance, a great source of bargain beach books.
If I have a road trip planned, it’s my routine to estimate my travel time and make sure I’ve picked up some audio books. I’ve “read” everything from bestsellers to historical and sci-fi novels and self-help books while driving to Santa Fe and Taos and San Diego.
Whatever your age, I think a break in routine is one of the great boons of summer.
I like to explore different kinds of music, books and movies.
When I was a kid, and now that I’m definitely not, trying something new and going someplace you’ve never been, could be the ultimate summertime goal.
I have fond memories of music camps and journalism camps at Michigan State University when I was still in high school, along with summer school sessions to pick up some extra credits.
But however tough the economy, even — and especially — in hard times, everybody needs and deserves some summer vacation time.
While we frantically multitask and master new skills, finding time for thinking, pondering and daydreaming can seem impossible.
It’s a perpetual, rewarding paradox that the “lazy” days of summer somehow inspire many of us to dream new dreams, try new adventures, explore new paths, meet new people and maybe even change our lives.
And I still believe, for our kids and ourselves, that some unscheduled freewheeling leisure time is the best way to nurture and encourage that spirit of adventure that makes life worth living.

S. Derrickson Moore can be reached at; (575) 541-5450. To share comments, go to and click on Blogzone and Las Cruces Style.

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