For the Love of Reading

She got hacked.

Everyone who knows my daughter knows she doesn’t go anywhere without a book.

Can't Stop the Reading
Can’t Stop the Reading

Her case in a nutshell?

Abibliophobia: the fear of running out of reading material

Yep, she’d be close…

So when I saw this post from her Facebook account, I knew someone had hacked her page…or she’d been taken over by aliens ;-):

“I was sitting in class thinking today and I realized, I don’t believe there has ever been any book that is better than its movie remake. All movies that I can think of, far and away have more depth and artistic merit than the books.” 


Nope, definitely NOT her. A friend had found my daughter’s computer open and decided to have some fun, but I wasn’t fooled for a second, and neither were most of her friends: “I knew such blasphemy would never come out of your mouth!” and another: “MARY HACKED MARY LOVES BOOKS.”

It wasn’t always that way though. Honestly, she didn’t come out of the womb reading Pride and Prejudice!

So what happened between her entrance into this world and her now-ever-with-her love of books?

Lots and lots of hours of reading to her when she was young… and finding ways to foster her love for reading as well. In many ways I was just passing on my own passion. Okay, and, yes, perhaps, I was a bit self-motivated. After all, if I could get my kids reading on their own, I could get some cleaning done… and maybe read a book or two myself. Or write. Or get a nap.

So when I looked for ways to encourage my kids to read, I only had to think back to how I learned to love it myself. Back when I was little. You know, when the world didn’t have color yet. 😉

I remember sitting at my kitchen table with one of those Dick and Jane style books that everyone criticizes today. I had an incentive. Mom would take the 6×9 white cardstock that came with a pair of pantyhose and carefully printed the title of each book that I read. For every book, I got a sticker. For every ten, I got a special treat. Before you criticize my mom for bribery, ask yourself how quickly you’d go to work if you didn’t get paid. I worked hard for my wages, and I loved collecting those white cards!!

But Mom went beyond the sticker and earned treat. She made the book come to life! In one of those, it was June and her mom and June’s doll.

June’s mom made a red coat, and it fit the doll. June gave her mom a kiss…and her doll a big hug.

A simple story. “The Red Coat.” Just one page in an I Can Read book. And yet I’ve never forgotten it– because after I finished the words, my mom told me to climb off my chair and open the blue floor-to-ceiling cabinet next to me. Hanging there, in all its adorable tiny-ness, was a little red coat that my mom had sewn. Just the right size for my doll.

Yes, my mom got a kiss, my doll got a hug…and I got hooked on reading!

There were other things we did with books–because, heavens, as a mom, you don’t always have time to be sewing little doll clothes! You can read some of those ideas in my latest mom-post on about Inspiring a Love of Reading.

Inspire a Love of Reading

If you know someone who is in need of some inspiration, feel free to share. I don’t guarantee they’ll immediately long for books more than movies, but it sure worked for us!

For me, it was the beginning of loving words…the stories they told–and the stories I could tell with them.

For my daughter, it was a free ticket to all sorts of new places, travelling pages and spines. All clearly shown because her friends knew just how funny it would be to hack her like they did…  There were a few people out there who got ready for a debate. But most of us just laughed…and my daughter changed her passwords.

Looking back, the hack was harmless. And anyway, it serves her right.

Once she hacked my phone. So every time I tried to type the emoticon “:-)” Siri changed it to “Greetings, Earthling”  …All fun and games until you accidentally send it to your BOSS!

Ahh, the joys of computer technology, social media, and the people who love you….

I think I’ll just go read a book!

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