What does Flannel Friday mean to me?
In one word:
Let me just start by saying that you would likely not be reading this right now if not for Flannel Friday. My first FF post was in September, 2011. Before that I only blogged about baking. I wanted to start blogging about storytimes to help me get more organized, but just didn’t see the point of sharing my outlines-why would anyone care what I did in storytime? After following Flannel Friday for a few months and borrowing lots of ideas it occurred to me that maybe I did have something to offer. My good friend Nik had been blogging for a while and I always found her posts useful so maybe others would find mine useful, too. Turns out, they do! But I couldn’t have gotten out there without the help of FF.
Which brings me back to community. This likely won’t surprise you, but I don’t use Flannel Friday for just flannels and props. I use it for the people. Every day I have an exchange with someone I “met” through FF. EVERY DAY. Many of these people have become my friends, even if most only virtually (hopefully more IRL meetings in June!) and I can’t thank FF enough for that. We can never have enough friends.
What the FF community means to me:
–networking: seriously, there are 100’s of amazing librarians participating and though I only know a fraction of them, I’m so excited about getting to know even more!
–inspiration: obviously, there are million ideas for storytime “extras” generated from this group. The FF community on twitter and Facebook goes WAY beyond storytimes to include all kinds of programming, displays, and other library stuff
–opportunity: this group gives folks the chance to start blogging in a safe environment and a chance for those of us who were already blogging to build a readership. To me, being part of FF is like being a really big committee where you don’t have to be nominated for anything, many people get a chance to be “chair” (or fairy godmother in the case of FF), and everyone takes turns hosting, happily. AND, you don’t even have to participate every week. BEST COMMITTEE EVER.
-support and collaboration: these are the nicest people you will ever meet. It’s about kids, parents, and each other and it takes us all working together to make great things happen. FF’ers get that.
–compassion: some library groups are so full of judgement I don’t feel comfortable asking questions for fear they may be “stupid” ones (because others have gotten reamed for asking “stupid questions”). I have NEVER felt that way in this group. There is no stupid question. WE all understand that there are days when the obvious solution is just not coming to you. When all you’ve heard for the last hour is screaming children you get a little frazzled and maybe your googling skills just aren’t working so well as a result. No problem, just ask a FF’er. They’ll answer your question, and if they make fun you know they don’t mean anything seriously and have totally been there themselves (come one, we work with children!).
I’d really like to just hug Flannel Friday. For an inappropriately long time. That’s the best way I can describe how much it means to me. Flannel Friday is everything I always thought librarianship should be.
I’d also like to give a huge THANK YOU to Mel for starting this whole crazy group. And for being an exemplary human being and friend. Seriously, lady, you rock and have no idea how lucky I feel to know you. And I promise not to hug you too long if I see you in June.
And thank you ALL Flannel Fridayers (especially Mollie, Anna, Anne, Sharon, Amy, K Leigh, Library Quine and all others who have been fairy godmothers) for so enthusiastically participating in this group. Your enthusiasm is contagious and helps keep me jazzed about being a librarian. Especially thanks to Nik and Seth for convincing me to finally get involved.
Hey, that was like an Oscar speech (hopefully not too sappy!). And I didn’t even win anything! Hey Anne, another option for that YMA celebration in the library-writing acceptance speeches for the books. After a few glasses of faux-pagne, anything could happen.
Sharon has the round up today on Rain Makes Applesauce. Can’t wait to read everyone’s posts!
My FF contributions: