By: Peter Holwitz
Draw two eyes and a push-up nose. Ten little fingers and ten little toes. Just a stick kid, a quick little stick kid . . . Until that stick kid starts to grow. And change. And before you know it, your little stick kid isn’t so little. He isn’t even a kid anymore. But he is still yours. And in your heart, he’ll always be your kid, your quick little stick kid. And you’ll love him.
Ever heard of The little free Library? They are small little hubs with books in them that neighbors put up. Our community had 4 and 2 were within walking distance of our home. With one we passed every day on our walk to the bus stop. So naturally, we had a lot of books to reads.Which was great for my youngest 2 little people because if they got bored with the book they knew they would return it and get a new one the next day. This is how we met Stick Kid. Every time we went I crossed my fingers my children would pick it out. When they finally did I was ecstatic. The cover was just adorable. But the story was one I hadn’t expected. This is a story of growth, of parenthood and of change. Right….? How did I take all that from a children’s book? But I did. This book found a place in my children’s book favorites. And all my kids saw in it was a drawing of a stick kid.
So the sad news. I borough offices decide that they were essentially a nuisance and a danger to children. That a child would somehow or reason climb in and become stuck. That the pages of the books would be littered in the streets by a few delinquents. That they caused driving hazards because people would gather around and exchange books. ( One owner of the little free library threw a summer reading party every year in her yard offering books, puzzles, bookmarks and yummy snack for the children. ) It was hard in the community when it was announced they had to be removed or reduced in size ( on was about the size of a mini-fridge). The community banned together signing petitions, going to town meetings and asking for the existing structures to be grandfathered into the new amendment they created. Denied. Everything as denied. Eventually, the toll took its place on the elderly women who kept and maintained the 2 within walking distance and she removed them. Upon removal, she posted all books were now free to stay permanently in our homes. To take whichever books, puzzles or coloring pages we wanted for in 1 week whatever was left would be donated.
So while my little people gathered their books they wanted to keep. I gathered up a few books of my own, books I added to my to be read pile, books I knew if I would take I possibly wouldn’t get to know that they may find a new home. And there he was. Sitting in the basket of bags she provided to carry our finds was Stick Kid. I gathered him up and now he has his book ever home here on my shelf amongst my many books in which he stands out as the only children’s book in the bunch.
For more information on Little free library click here.