Thursday, October 30, 2014

grateful for another year

Feeling truly blessed today. Nobody wants to work on their birthday, but today has been a blast, and yes, I have gotten very little done.
  • My staff surprised me with a cake
  • My dear friend Liz sent me a stunning bouquet of flowers
  • Mom, Prairie Dawn, and I went to one of my fav restaurants in Sticks for lunch
  • Two of my favorite kiddos surprised me a homemade card and chocolate chip cookies
  • And I get to be dressed in costume (one of my favorite things to do!) because Sticks Trick o' Treat Night is tonight and our FRIENDS group throws a huge party for kids passing through
Feeling so grateful, grateful, grateful today; thankful for a job I love, folks who care about me, and health and happiness to appreciate every day of this grand life!

Part of the card the kids made for me
Part of the card the kids made for me

October morning mild


O hushed October morning mild,
Thy leaves have ripened to the fall;
Tomorrow’s wind, if it be wild,
Should waste them all.
The crows above the forest call;
Tomorrow they may form and go.
O hushed October morning mild,
Begin the hours of this day slow.
Make the day seem to us less brief.
Hearts not averse to being beguiled,
Beguile us in the way you know.
Release one leaf at break of day;
At noon release another leaf;
One from our trees, one far away.
Retard the sun with gentle mist;
Enchant the land with amethyst.
Slow, slow!
For the grapes’ sake, if they were all,
Whose leaves already are burnt with frost,
Whose clustered fruit must else be lost—
For the grapes’ sake along the wall.
--Robert Frost
I know I've shared this poem here before, but it's one of my favorite poems and I love to reread it every year, multiple time a year. And since today is my birthday I can do whatever I want, right?

Off to a long day at work, as we have our FRIENDS of the Library Halloween Party in tandem with the village's Trick o' Treat night, so we'll be busy. Mom's here and my old roomie, Melissa is heading down too. Even though today's going to be a long day I get to have dinner with company and then have Halloween off to run errands for Prairie Dawn's wedding (next weekend!), and breakfast at my favorite restaurant near Sticks. Now off to pirate myself up!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

"Among the Rocks"
Oh, good gigantic smile o’ the brown old earth,
      This autumn morning! How he sets his bones
To bask i’ the sun, and thrusts out knees and feet
For the ripple to run over in its mirth;
      Listening the while, where on the heap of stones
The white breast of the sea-lark twitters sweet.

That is the doctrine, simple, ancient, true;
      Such is life’s trial, as old earth smiles and knows.
If you loved only what were worth your love,
Love were clear gain, and wholly well for you:
      Make the low nature better by your throes!
Give earth yourself, go up for gain above!
 --Robert Browning

Another lovely poem for another lovely autumn morning. 
Heading out soon for a gathering of Adult Librarians at the Upper Sandusky Community Library, where we will discuss creative programing for Adults in the Library--being a Library Director in a small library means wearing many hats. Looking forward to a day of brainstorming...and an excuse for a drive on the meandering country highways that will give me vistas of the autumn fields and trees. Happy Wednesday, all!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

fires in the fall

Fall is happening all around us and I feel so grateful
that I've seen so much of it's glory this year; 
the colors over our campsite when the leaves were first 
bursting, and then last weekend as cover and forest 
bedding for us as we hiked lovely Hocking Hills!
Last weekend I went home and to the town of Fenton,
MI, where I grew up and was greeted by downtown
Fenton in full autumn regalia. Beautiful beautiful!
With fall on the brain I've been seeking out more poems
that celebrate this favorite season of mine! Here's a gem: 
"Autumn Fires"
In the other gardens
     And all up the vale,
From the autumn bonfires
     See the smoke trail!
Pleasant summer over
     And all the summer flowers,
The red fire blazes,
     The grey smoke towers.
Sing a song of seasons!
     Something bright in all!
Flowers in the summer,
     Fires in the fall! 
--Robert Louis Stevenson 

Monday, October 20, 2014

Hocking Hills

Ben, Beth, Everett

Ben carrying my niece through one of the small caves.

My niece had a huge crush on Ben, asking him to carry her
through the park. She has good taste--Ben's a gem.

My brother A3's family: Alex (8mos), Dayna, A3, Savannah
Our weekend away was lovely. I took a half day on Friday and after 3 hours of fall colors alongside the roads meandering south and east, I wound up at the house we were renting. Right around the time I finished unloading my car and stowing all the food in the fridge, A3 and company were pulling up, followed 5 minutes later by Beth, Ben, and Everett, who'd traveled from the Farm in Massachusetts. 

The weekend was typical Midwest fall: colorful, blustery, rainy at times, perfect for being snuggly tucked away in a lovely house with friends and family. We were able to find a pocket of time when it wasn't raining and headed to Hocking Hills for a couple hours of camping. The kids were EXCELLENT the whole hike and only slightly fussy as we were trying to coordinate lunch.

Such a good weekend, though it did get me missing living closer to my brother like I did when I was in the Cleveland area, and also made me miss my dear Farm friends and life in New England. If only there were more time and more ways to split myself between many places!

Friday, October 17, 2014

another fun weekend

By the time you're reading this I will be on the open road, heading northeast for a weekend I've been looking forward to for about 6 months! My brother A3, sister-in-law Dayna, and niece and nephew, and friends Beth & Beth and their baby Everett and I have rented a house for the weekend near Hocking Hills State Park.

So excited to see my dear friends and meet their new baby! So excited for lots of laughs, shared meals, time with people I love, hiking, and fall colors!

What are you doing this weekend?

Thursday, October 16, 2014

new library card holders

I joined the Association for Rural & Small Libraries last year and have really appreciated the listserv, where professional peers reach out to one another with questions, and in search of support. I thought it might be cool to occasionally share these issues/questions, in case anyone out there is in the same boat and doesn't know where to look.

Today's question: We have a regional catalog in which librarians can see the records of patrons at other libraries. Do you have policies restricting the issuing of new library cards to patrons with bad records in other libraries? How do you handle this ethical issue?

I don't always respond, but I did share some thoughts today, which are:

We are in a consortium and are strongly encouraged to not give new cards to persons with accounts past due at any other libraries within our consortium; this is a rule we adhere to.

That said, we still were getting occasionally burned by folks who'd get a card and then leave town with $100 worth of DVDs, CDs, books, etc., so I came up with a new library card setting for new card holders: "AdultProbationary" or "JuvenileProbationary." With these cards patrons are only allowed to have 3 items checked out on their card at a time. After a 90 day probationary period, IF there are no accrued fines over $5, that person gets switched to a "normal" card. We've seen a sharp decrease in problems. Hope this helps.

Coming up with policy is one of my least favorite aspects of my job.