Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Up from the Ashes

Ash trees are seen on the right

Daniel and Maya building a tower

Tessa on the Rocking Eggplant
Glass sculpture that Maya always visits


Bird puppet props for a story
Maya outside the library

The library
A few years ago, most of Michigan was invaded by the emerald ash borer, a very pretty beetle that left a wake of dead ash trees. In some parts of our neighborhood, 50% of the city trees were ashes and thus killed. What to do with all this wood? Build a library branch out of it.

Now I hear there is a pine beetle that kills a specific type of pine. As the tree dies, the wood turns blue. What to do with blue wood? Market it for floors and furniture. A company formed that does just that. Bad Beetle, they call themselves.

Almost every Tuesday, I take Maya to story hour and Shanna brings her three. Lately Naomi has been using her time off to swim laps. We have quite the international crowd as our sector of the city is the most diverse. As story hour targets preschoolers, sometimes it is the first exposure to English. For a half hour, a storyteller alternates with a guitar player. The story teller tries to have as many props as possible. The kids are encouraged to dance at least once. Then it is free time as the kids haul out a closet full of toys. Daniel and Oliver favor building things, Tess likes to rock on the eggplant and Maya collects dinosaurs and tries to help the boys in their building projects.

Maya loves routines. She loves to press the elevator button, walk along the wall pictured above, swing on the bicycle stands and pat the glass sculpture. She is intimidated by all the other kids and usuallyits quietly holding Oliver's hand or sitting on Shanna's lap. Then they stamp the kids' hands.

Shanna will move out of town soon. I suppose she'll go to a new story hour.
But it has been fun for the past year.

Soon we are to have strong storms here. It has been raining on and off all morning. I biked anyway. I don't mind getting wet but the brakes down't work as well in the rain.

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