“Donating” To Your Library

So I just paid my latest library fine, or fines, I should say.  It was over $10 on our homeschool card (We have four different cards in our family).  Yeah, if it’s over $10 then you have to pay it down to under $10 to be able to check out anything else.  I do try to keep up on renewing books online, since it’s so easy.  I even have a reminder sent to me 3 days before any of my books are due.  Still, we check out so many books…

I don’t limit my daughter on how many books she can check out. We do try to keep all the library books in one place in her bookcase (er, one of her three bookcases) but otherwise, I just let her check out whatever she’s interested in.  I just can’t fathom being a kid and having my mom tell me I can only check out three books.  The horror! I remember checking out scads and scads at a time.  The whole Beatrix Potter collection of tiny animal adventures.  Ten Encyclopedia Brown books at once.  Of course, we didn’t live super close to the library, so we only went once every couple of weeks or so.  But still, I just don’t want any limit on her interest in reading, none.  Check out 50 books, that’s fine. Whatever we can carry out of the library.

So I don’t really mind too much that I’m giving extra “donations” (air quotes) to the library via late fines.  No library police will be knocking on my door.  My library credit rating will not suffer.  I asked our librarian at my local library where those late fees go, and she said as far as she can tell, they go back into the operating expenses of the library.

I probably pay late fees over $10 an average of once every three months.  (I’m guessing because I’m a little afraid to add it up.)  How much do you pay in late fees?  Do you feel guilt?  I don’t anymore, because I see it as yet another way I’m helping the library, in addition to all my volunteering. So there.