When your child meets a hero, or For the love of books

Much to my delight, Jack is an avid, voracious reader. Reading came to him easily, so he's been at this for a while now, and I consider it a great gift that curling up with a book remains one of his most beloved pastimes. 

He relishes the feel of paper and the weight of a bound work -preferably hard cover- in hand. He enjoys series and wants to have every volume of his favorites: Harry Potter; Big Nate; everything Stuart Gibbs has thus far written. 

I try not to give the boys too many random gifts, but only rarely can I turn down a request for a new book "for my library, Mom." And I love me a full set.

In these ways, Jack is most definitely my son.

Last night, Stuart Gibbs was scheduled to give a presentation at the library near us, and today, to visit and speak with the kids at Jack's school. Several months ago, I got a sitter for Ol and planned on last night being a Mom and Jack date so that I could see him meet a hero for the first time.

To prep J, I said, "you know, every author presentation is different. Some are formal and some aren't. Some will sign all your books and some limit you to one. Some will disappoint you and others will be just what you imagined."

Last night was perfect. We snarfed pizza (dinner) in the car and arrived to the event an hour early. We bought three additional books (well, I bought two and J one), got front-row seats, J's best friend sat next to him, J asked multiple questions and he got all six books signed plus one for a friend who couldn't be there. We also got a photo.

 Stuart and Jack, and all the books

Stuart and Jack, and all the books

Once home, Jack's feet continued to dance above the clouds with glee. I finally gave him a melatonin, kissed him goodnight and wished him luck getting to sleep: I was going to bed immediately. 

Today at school, Stuart remembered J and said "hi, Jack." I'm not sure life gets better. As it turned out, today was my library volunteer day, and Stuart and I got to hang for fifteen minutes. "I can't believe you got there an hour early," he said, smiling.

"It's not every day you get to take your child to see a hero for the first time," I replied.

I'll remember it always