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Little makes big decision
Longtime children's librarian retires
Emi Little visits with boys, from left, Sabastien and Alec Smith at Magness Library. She has announced her retirement as children's librarian, but plans to volunteer at the facility.

When Emmaly Little started volunteering at Magness Library in 2006, she had no idea she would go from volunteering, to part time, to becoming the children’s librarian. Actually she shared the title with friend and co-worker Mary Albritton.
When Mrs. Emi (as she is known at the library) was asked by then-library director Mary Robbins if she would take the position, she adamantly said no.
“Even though I loved the position and working with children, I didn’t want to do it alone,” said Little. “So I talked with my friend Mary and we decided to do it together.”
Even though she still loves the job, she is retiring from the position, but has no plans to stop volunteering at the library.
“I will be back,” said Little. “If I want to do a story time, I can, as well as be involved in other activities at the library.”
Little has retired as a counselor with DCS, but feels it’s time to lay down the work schedule and spend time with her husband, Windell. They hope to travel and spend more time with their three grandchildren and great-grandchild.
Little says she comes from a generation where girls were not encouraged to further their education, and it was something she always strived for. In fact she earned her criminal justice and psychology degree at the age of 54.
“I love learning and love books," said Little. “I believe being around children will keep you young.”
Parents that have come through the library programs offer much positive feedback concerning the benefits of the children’s library.
“The parents tell us they feel it helps their children prepare for school, dealing with the structure of the one-hour story time,” said Little. “We help them with the social aspect, and with the structure of a classroom setting.”
Sabastien Smith, 9, and brother Alec Smith, 11 were enjoying books at the library recently. The boys recently got their library cards and were anxious to use them.
Sabastien said he enjoyed reading scary books and “The Diary of a Wimpy Kid” series. Alec is into Greek mythology and the “Percy Jackson” books. Their little sister Leelou Grissom, 5, also enjoys library time. She enjoys working the puzzles and books for her age level.
“We come here often when school is out,” said their mother Leslie Caldwell. “I want to continue the learning process and make improvements. I want them to stay in school, and this is a fun way to do it.”
She continued to say, “Mrs. Emi is so sweet to the children and everyone is so helpful and friendly,” said Caldwell. “The community should be thankful for the children’s library.”
Children’s story time is each Thursday from 10 – 11 a.m. for children birth through 4 years old. They recently completed a Summer Reading Program, with children recognized for reading throughout the summer.