I've been having kind of a hectic day: work, laundry, doctor's appointment (with shots!) for my daughter, etc. But finally I sat down to my personal email, and found this email from Reading is Fundamental:
"A gift was given to Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) in your honor. The nation’s largest children’s literacy nonprofit, RIF helps get books to kids in need. For many of the kids RIF serves, their RIF books are their only books. The books provided through this gift made in your honor can spark lifetimes of ambition."
There was an accompanying note from Mary Lee Hahn and Franki Sibberson. When I traveled to their wonderful blog, A Year of Reading, I found this post: Celebrating Jen Robinson with a donation to RIF. I had been following Franki and Mary Lee's year-long celebration of their blog's eighth birthday, in which they highlight fellow bloggers whose work has inspired them, and make donations to relevant charities in those bloggers' names. But it never even crossed my mind that they might pick me. I feel so honored and grateful that I am nearly at a loss for words.
Their post is full of reminders of my very earliest days of blogging, when those of us who discovered blogging started coming together. My lists of Cool Girls of Children's Literature and Cool Boys of Children's Literature helped lead to Mary Lee and Franki's list of 100 Cool Teachers in Children's Literature. And the rest is history! We all had so much FUN blogging back then. I mean, I still do, but there was such a relief for me when I first started in finding kindred spirits, other adults who cared about children's books even more than I did.
Later, when my daughter was born, Mary Lee and Franki were among a group of wonderful online friends who had become real friends who gave me a virtual book shower. Franki and Mary Lee sent me two books that remain among my favorites (though my daughter now declares them to be for babies): Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes by Mem Fox & Helen Oxenbury and Ten Tiny Babies by Karen Katz. I have in turn passed on copies of these books to many other friends and family members in the four years since.
I've been fortunate enough to meet Mary Lee and Franki in person at a conference or two over the years, and I hope to see them in person again before too long. They have brightened my blogging experience over the years, and today they made me stop in the middle of a not so fun day and remember the value of finding kindred spirits. I hope you'll check out their post. Thanks, Franki and Mary Lee! It's an honor to know you.