Library Like a Boss: Our Best Tips and Tricks


Summer is here which means the older kids are home from school and the younger kids (and their parents!) are soon going to find the park a bit hotter than anyone would like. What will save the day as we all adjust to summer in Phoenix? The Library of course! I was asked by my MOPS (Now MOMCO) group this spring to do a presentation on my best tips and tricks for using the library. I titled the presentation How to Library Like a Boss, and received so much wonderful feedback from it, I realized it may be helpful to share some highlights with our Phoenix Moms community as well.
I have said many times throughout my years as a contributor here that I am obsessed with the library. So without further ado, here are my top three tips on how to library like a boss this summer and straight on into the next season. While this article is specifically about Phoenix libraries, most of the libraries in Maricopa County work very similarly, so check your local branch as these apply to other cities like Scottsdale and Glendale as well!

Tip 1: Make sure EVERYONE in your family has a library card
Yes, even your very little littles can get one! From the day they are born, any Phoenix resident is applicable to get a library card. Why have separate cards for each family member? Well, the first reason is if you want to library like a boss, you never want the library to feel like a limited experience. While I never hit the maximum number of allowed check out with my longer books, kids books go by in a snap, so having more items I can check out to keep my kids occupied is a huge plus and now we limit books only by what we can fit in our library bags each week. (PS: looking for books that will make you AND your littles giggle? Check out a few of my favorites HERE.)A bookshelf in the background. A table in the foreground with stacked books and one open book. Possibly in a library.
Tip 2: The Library is NOT just for books:
If you want to library like a boss, you must familiarize yourself with library resources either via the website or your local librarian (I promise they are amazing resources and if you don’t click with the first one you talk to, please try to connect with another. My family uses the library to rent movies, get seeds for our garden, and even to stock up on kids crafts! Plus, it’s the best time of year for one of my favorite library perks- the summer reading program! My kids love earning a free personal pizza each year, and my absolute favorite prize is the state parks pass so we can visit places like Tonto National Bridge and other notable state parks.

picture of various books and gift cards as well as a medal and harkins cup
Just a few things we’ve won from the summer reading program in prior years (Yes, we won the Hawkins drawing! They have some really cool drawing options this year too.)

Tip 3: Use the holds system and the digital options such as the libby app to maximize library value and your time.
If your kids are like mine, they tear through books the second they get home from the library. When I really started to library like a boss, I realized having a running list of book requests and putting them on hold through the library website (a super simple process if you log in with your library card and just search the book you want) and then I could sweep in, pick up my holds, and run back out when our schedule didn’t accommodate spending an hour at the library to pick out books. I also love the digital library options such as Libby so I can read ebooks on my phone during school or summer camp pick up or while I’m hanging out at swim lessons, or audio books for family road trips. You can use it on most tablets as well.

Happy reading this summer! We’d love to hear about how you library like a boss. 


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