Yesterday saw not one, but two monumental events for Montessori Handwork. The first was a legal requirement, the second was a celebration.
In New Zealand publishers are required by law to submit two copies of every book they publish to the National Library. One is placed in the National Archive and the other goes into the library system for people to read.
Books may be submitted by mail or in person and, as the National Archive is in the next city to ours, we decided to submit our copies in person.
Notice I use the plural here. 'We' being my husband and children, my parents (who flew up from the South Island) and my entire class.
When I rang the National Archive to ask if it was acceptable for so many people to attend the submission ceremony, the archivist told me this had happened only once before in her whole 29 year career, when another teacher brought her class to submit her book and guess where they were from - yep - a Montessori School.
They were so happy about us coming that they arranged a tour of the underground archives for us before the submission ceremony. This was a huge privilege as members of the public are not normally allowed into the basement archives. When we arrived they led us down several flights of narrow stair into the 'bunker' where the national treasure trove of books is housed. We got to watch as mechanized boxes traveled along train tracks mounted to the ceiling, retrieving and returning books for the library users above. it was fascinating! Several of the children declared they would like to live down there!
After the submission we had a pretty fast turn around to get the children back to school and everything in place for the official book launch in the local library that night. I had never even been to a book launch so really didn't know what to expect!
The Library Launch was truly a celebration of everything that has gone into the Album's creation over the last few years. Yahvi, one of the cover models, introduced me with her natural pizzazz......
....and I took some time to talk about what the Album was, and thank those who have supported me along the way
Freya, my lovely daughter, sat proudly at her stall, selling books with a cheeky smile and a loving grandmother.
One of the parents from my class brought a huge basket of home baking and another set out drinks for everyone. Children from my class, past and present, brought along handwork and invited people to have a go.
Members of the community stood around chatting - discussing the value of handwork and sharing stories of the crafts they used to do as children. It was a wonderful community event.
The library staff were amazed by the high turn out and had to rush about, moving shelves and finding extra chairs - they hadn't experienced the strength of a Montessori community before!
When the formal part was done, those of us who weren't ready for the evening to end wandered across to a nearby restaurant to continue the celebrations with food and drinks. It was a lovely way to round off a very long and emotional day and a great excuse to spend more time in each others company.
So there is it - The Work of Wool, is officially launched and available to all. If you didn't manage to use your 20% prelaunch discount in time, don't worry, I will be offering a 10% discount on all orders placed by subscribers in the next two weeks. You will receive an email with the discount code to use at checkout.
I would love to know how you use it. Please share your handwork experiences in the comments section below or on the Montessori Handwork Facebook page.