When I became a SAHM 6 years ago, we gave up over a third of our income. That meant cutting out lots of little things that we used to buy without thought. The biggest expense in this category was books. I had a 2 book a day habit before I had kids. UPS regularly brought boxes from Amazon to my house. I drove an hour or more to go to a Borders or Barnes & Noble. I knew the owner of the local used book store very well. And it all had to stop.
This wasn't that big of deal for the first 2 years. I had 2 kids 15 months apart. The first one didn't understand the word 'sleep' no matter what language I said it in and while the second one did sleep, the first one had to be constantly prevented from waking him up. So there wasn't much time to read or even think about books.
Things eventually slowed down and I thought to myself a new book might be nice but $24 for the latest by one of my favorite authors seemed a bit much. Then one day as I came out of Safeway I noticed that building at the other end of the shopping plaza. wait a minute! That's a....a... whadya call 'em...book lending thing...LIBRARY! That is is a library! They will GIVE me books!
Oh and they have demon watching classes, um... Toddler Story Time, as well! I can browse for 30 minutes in peace!
I have been a regular visitor there for the past 4 years. Rarely does a week go by that I do not stop in, drop off some books and leave with new ones. I read books I never would have if I had had to buy them. I love having the freedom to pick up whatever catches my fancy and not feel I've lost anything if I hate it. I've found so many new books that I like because of that, books I never would have read if I had to buy them. They even order books for me, through inter-library loan or buying them outright.
The boys have attended drop in story times off & on until this year when school finally intervened. I think we have read every dinosaur book in the juvenile section. The boys come out with stacks of books and videos. The library has a nice selection of kid TV & movie videos and they are free!
I love our library. My life would be emptier without it.