Showing posts from October, 2012

Halloween costumes

"A cheap Halloween costume idea for librarians is to come to work wearing the uniform from your second job at Starbucks, McDonalds, or Lady Foot Locker." A Librarian's Guide to Etiquette.
Happy Halloween ya'll!

the storm roaming the sky

Thinking about and praying for everyone affected by the storm.
"Little Exercise" For Thomas Edwards Wanning

Think of the storm roaming the sky uneasily
like a dog looking for a place to sleep in,
listen to it growling.

Think how they must look now, the mangrove keys
lying out there unresponsive to the lightning
in dark, coarse-fibred families,

where occasionally a heron may undo his head,
shake up his feathers, make an uncertain comment
when the surrounding water shines.

Think of the boulevard and the little palm trees
all stuck in rows, suddenly revealed
as fistfuls of limp fish-skeletons.

It is raining there. The boulevard
and its broken sidewalks with weeds in every crack,
are relieved to be wet, the sea to be freshened.

Now the storm goes away again in a series
of small, badly lit battle-scenes,
each in "Another part of the field."

Think of someone sleeping in the bottom of a row-boat
tied to a mangrove root or the pile of a bridge;
think of him as uninjured, barely disturbed…

a bearded, skinny jeaned city

Yesterday I saw more skinny jeans than at a Jonas Bros' concert, more beards and flannel than at a lumber jack's bbq...that's right folks, I was in happening Asheville, NC; met up with my friend Gary the Snail and his friend Ellen, who were kind enough to play tour guides and make sure I saw and tasted lots of the city.The day went something like this:

After breakfast with Mummy Dearest and family we headed to an apple orchard, but man were we under-dressed. The wind whipping through the orchard was too cold for North Carolina! We were all freezing, so we quickly gobbled hot cider and doughnuts and lunch we'd brought along and then left. Fastest orchard visit ever!

I headed to Asheville alone, getting to see remnants of fall colors in the south, and met up with Gary the Snail, Ellen, and some of their friends at Tod's Tasties, where I had the most amazing croissant and coffee ever. The place was packed and the food looked grood...I mean great and good, and I regret…

less library chatter

Not much posting this past week because all this moving and getting settled wore me out enough so that I caught that nasty bug that's been floating around:
Day 1 sore throat, congestion, runny nose, and fever
Day 2 cough, sore throat, runny nose, congestion
Day 3-7 cough and slight congestion

Now I'm almost better and on vacation! WAHOO!!

Today meant packing up and saying goodbye to Hem, and heading out after midnight; seeing the lights and bridges of Cincinnati after 3a.m.; crossing into Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina; sunrise over the Smokey Mountains; arriving to hugs from Mummy Dearest, Little Fish (6 years old), Big Fish (nearly 8 years old), and Mummy's Hubby! So glad to  be with my friends, so thankful to be experiencing a little bit of fall in the south.

Stay tuned for pictures! Have a great week!

now craving berries and berry picking

Today would have been Sylvia Plath's 80th birthday, so in her honor,

"Blackberrying"Nobody in the lane, and nothing, nothing but blackberries, 
Blackberries on either side, though on the right mainly, 
A blackberry alley, going down in hooks, and a sea 
Somewhere at the end of it, heaving. Blackberries 
Big as the ball of my thumb, and dumb as eyes 
Ebon in the hedges, fat 
With blue-red juices. These they squander on my fingers. 
I had not asked for such a blood sisterhood; they must love me. 
They accommodate themselves to my milkbottle, flattening their sides. 

Overhead go the choughs in black, cacophonous flocks --- 
 Bits of burnt paper wheeling in a blown sky. 
Theirs is the only voice, protesting, protesting. 
I do not think the sea will appear at all. 
The high, green meadows are glowing, as if lit from within. 
I come to one bush of berries so ripe it is a bush of flies, 
Hanging their bluegreen bellies and their wing panes in a Chinese screen. 
The honey-feast of the berries ha…

storytimes scream of fun

Since I will be away on vacation next week, we had our Halloween themed storytime this week (only had a family of three show up for my Toddlers group, no one for my Family storytime, no one for my 4s and 5s group). Still working at getting more people to attend!

Without further ado I give you,

Flannel Board: "5 Little Pumpkins" 5 Little Pumpkins sitting on a gate, 1st one said, "Hey, it's getting late," 2nd one said, "Witches in the air," 3rd one said, "Hey, I'm not scared!" 4th one said, "Let's run, let's run!" 5th one said, "Isn't Halloween fun?!" --author unknown
Book 1: Pumpkin Heads, Wendell Minor
*we talked about visits to the pumpkin patch; what different faces were carved into pumpkins
Book 2: Ghosts in the House!, Kazuno Kohara *we talked about ghosts being not real; what was going to happen to ghosts
Book 3: 10 Trick-or-Treaters: A Halloween Counting Book, Janet Schulman…

do me a solid?

Hey all,

Can you do me a HUGE FAVOR?

The Farm I used to work at is in the running for a Cit-Go giveaway for $5,000 worth of gas, which would be awesome--the farm is non-profit, so donations are ALWAYS appreciated!!

You can vote every day between today and October 28th, so will you!? At least once? Please! I will love you (even more) forever!

Click here to vote for GOULD FARM and THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU! This place means so much to so many people, myself included!

freaking amazing

I want to start my Monday with this energy.

Mumford & Sons - I Will Wait

a primer on the Mitten

B1 gave me this poem, it hangs on my fridge as a constant reminder that I came from one place and am now in another, and  those two connect me because they are connected. I'd read this poem several times when I lived in OHCity and had wondered why I never saw the mosque off of I-75. It was in the rereading that I saw my error: the mosque is off of I-75 in Ohio, not off of I-75 in Michigan--I was looking for it in the wrong place. I finally saw the mosque on my first trip back to Sticks from a weekend in Michigan, somehow it felt as though I had achieved something in the finding. Does that even make sense?

Anyway, about to leave my old home for my new...look for me on I-75 S, I will be the one waving at the "corn corn corn mosque..."

"A Primer"
I remember Michigan fondly as the place I go
to be in Michigan. The right hand of America
waving from maps or the left
pressing into clay a mold to take home
from kindergarten to Mother. I lived in Michigan
forty-three years. Th…

my entertainment until I make friends here...

Remember my kitten, Hemingway?  Look at how big he is getting! 6.5 months and he is loving our new home in Sticks.  However, he DOES NOT like having his picture taken--see?

memories longer than the road

Excited for my crazy, busy weekend that includes meals shared: dinner with my old high school teacher and his wife; brunch with an old college friend; a party at my bestie L's. A whirlwind weekend. I'm sure my head will be spinning when I get back to Sticks on Sunday, but I am so excited for the weekend away! 5pm can't get here fast enough!

Getting ready to get away makes me think of this song; I love this cover, and I love the Beatles original too.

The Beatles: Two of Us cover Aimee Mann, Michael Penn

challenged book part 2

Remember when I mentioned that book challenge on my 2nd day at Sticks? Finally finished the book, will review soon; going to scout out some articles/reviews online tomorrow and do some more researching before I call the mom back. It's staying on our shelves, I just want some other opinions and reviews to reference in our conversation!

Fight for your right to read!

my new home


an Ohio consortium story

You know how you have that list of about 20 things to do at work, and you start the day with the first thing on your list thinking, "I will have all of this done by lunchtime." Yeah, thing 1 on the list took over 4 hours, 3 calls to SEO, and finally the SEO IT guy going into our account to fix things. Thank God for SEO!!

SEO is:
"The SEO (Serving Every Ohioan) Library Center, located in Caldwell, supports a consortium of 87 Library systems at 198 physical locations throughout 45 counties across Ohio using the OPLIN network.

The power of this consortium resides in resource sharing among consortia members allowing small and rural library systems to have access to millions of items for their patrons free of charge.

SEO Library Center houses, maintains and supports a centralized shared catalog database that includes over 6.9 million items with a patron database of 905,000+ borrowers.

The SEO staff provides technical support as well as software …

doing the right thing?

I narced a kid out to her Mom today, telling the mother that her daughter has been with a group of kids that has been smoking outside our building recently. The girl is only about 13 years old and I am sure is going to get an earful, but I was trying to do the right thing. Hope I did.

On a good note, met with members of a city group that I will be joining--it will help me get to know the city better and make good community connections. Also, met with a college prof from a local college to discuss her students' future commitments to our library, as a way that they can meet their Education program hours for the semester. So excited for that, though we are in the very early planning stages!

writing for kids 101

If you've never witnessed Strong Bad or Teen Girls Squad...I'm sorry.

Strong Bad Email: Kids Book

I survived

Image first Board Meeting! And they were really impressed with how much I'd accomplished during my first two weeks. AND they complimented me on my Director's Report, which I'd typed up and mailed out with the Board Meeting Agenda. I was beaming!..and worried that maybe I set the bar too high. :)  Everything went great, except it's really hard sitting in a meeting with someone who looks like Kenneth Brannagh--just saying.

Post weeding the VHS and Books on Tapes I am still trying to figure out the best way to get rid of these things: checking with Salvation Army/Goodwill; looked into recycling, but still not sure about the cost; donating some to another library nearby for their book sale. Since moving the Audio/Visual Collection we've labeled the areas, and I had the Circ staff go through and relabel anything that is non-fiction with appropriate Dewey Decimals--these DVDs are now separate from feature films; it didn't take long since our collection is so small. …

happy birthday to a pig, a spider, a rat

Charlotte's Web--a story about love and friendship among an most unlikely crew: Wilbur, a pig; Charlotte, a spider; Templeton, a rat--came out 60 years ago today. Along with millions of other children, I loved this book as a child, and am always so glad when kids still come in and check it out!

I am thinking fondly of this beloved childhood book today, and wanted to share this quote from Eudora Welty's review of Charlotte's Web. It appeared in The New York Times Book Review:

"What the book is about is friendship on earth, affection and protection, adventure and miracle, life and death, trust and treachery, pleasure and pain, and the passing of time. As a piece of work it is just about perfect, and just about magical in the way it is done."
From Eudora Welty: A Writer's Eye: Collected Book Reviews, edited by Pearl Amelia McHaney, University of Mississippi Press, 1994.

And I also wanted to share a favorite passage from Charlotte's Web:
“You have been my frien…

the smells of roads still to be traveled

A3 and I are moving the last of my furniture out of my old apartment today; I am turning in the keys, and saying goodbye to what was life as I knew it in OHCity. I am glad that time in my life is now over--it was one of challenges and frustrations, but ultimately opportunities and growth. I am so glad A3 will be with me as I cliche'edly close this chapter of my life, and glad for his company on the road to corn country.

I stumbled upon this poem again, it's an absolute favorite, and it just felt right to post again  Enjoy it as much as I do:

"How to Like it"
These are the first days of fall. The wind at evening smells of roads still to be traveled, while the sound of leaves blowing across the lawns is like an unsettled feeling in the blood, the desire to get in a car and just keep driving.

A man and a dog descend their front steps.The dog says, Let’s go downtown and get crazy drunk.

Let’s tip over all the trash cans we can find. Thi

s is how dogs deal with the prospe…

it all starts with a curse

I realized today that I never reviewed the last couple of Newbery medal winners that I read before my move. Thinking of Newbery winners made me scout out ours at Sticks Library; all the Newberys are interfiled, not separated as a special collection, same with the Caldecott medal winners. I added that to my list of to dos. Anyway, with no further ado:

I hadn't read anything by Louis Sachar since the Wayside Stories, way back when I was a kid, so reading Holes was a nice reminder of Sachar wonderful sense of humor that seeps from all of this books! In his 1999 Newbery winner, Holes Sachar weaves a web of intersecting stories that cross back and forth between present and past, across an ocean and into a desert.
Stanley Yelnats' family (Yelntas is Stanley spelled backwards) is cursed, so it makes total sense that he was wrongfully accused of a crime he didn't commit and sent to Camp Green Lake--who can he blame but his, "no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing great-great-grand…

weeding maniac

Sticks Library is in the midst of being repainted inside and out. The inside's almost done, the outside nearly. Yesterday as I was examining the shelves by where the Playaways, books on CD, books on tapes, and VHS had been kept (all were on tables in the back due to painting), I made one of those lovely executive decisions I get to make now: WEED THEM! As far as I am concerned CD and DVD compatibility has been around for so long, why keep the old Books on Tape and VHS? They don't circulate much and they take up double the space, so, get rid of them.

And I did. I went in the back and weeded like this kind of a maniac--about 99% of both VHS and Books on Tape collections, only keeping a handful of both which I intend to have removed from our collection by March once we have more DVDs, books on CDs, and Playaways on the shelves, so things don't look too bare. I heart weeding. Out with the old, in with the new! The only problem now is what to do with all these discarded Books o…

glad to be stuck

Good morning Sticks, I'm glad to be stuck in the middle with you...though, I promise to never act, dress, or eat like ANY of the people in this video!

Stuck In The Middle With You - Stealers Wheel


Went for a walk with a new friend the other night. We walked around a small town college campus in the middle of nowhere and sat a while and talked of things. I am thinking of that now and enjoying this poem. Hope everyone's loving fall!

"The Beautiful Changes"
One wading a Fall meadow finds on all sides    The Queen Anne’s Lace lying like lilies On water; it glides So from the walker, it turns Dry grass to a lake, as the slightest shade of you    Valleys my mind in fabulous blue Lucernes.

The beautiful changes as a forest is changed    By a chameleon’s tuning his skin to it;    As a mantis, arranged On a green leaf, grows Into it, makes the leaf leafier, and proves    Any greenness is deeper than anyone knows.

Your hands hold roses always in a way that says    They are not only yours; the beautiful changes    In such kind ways,    Wishing ever to sunder Things and things’ selves for a second finding, to lose    For a moment all that it touches back to wonder. --Richard Wilbur

website news!

Worked a 10 hour day today, 11 hours if you count my "working" lunch. I was in Bowling Green, Ohio (not Kentucky!) meeting with the guy who helps facilitate our website; I'd set up the appointment to get a better sense of how to use/utilize/change our website, and left with him redesigning the whole website. He was so excited when I told him I didn't like it and would redo it if I could that I think he nearly fell out of his chair--apparently finds it boring too! Our website is old school and uninteresting, and like many other things here in Sticks Library, I want to give it the once over with some fresh, young eyes; I want some change. Excited to hear from our website guy; excited to see what we create! Being a director can be so much fun!

Now home for dinner!

library exodus

I follow job postings, even though I am not looking, and it's kind of a joke with us library young 'uns, how many of the recent posts are for Directors and Assistant Directors. I'm sure OPERs (The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System) changing their retirement benefits effective in January 2013 has nothing to do with it.

Anyway, if you're looking to bump up in the library world check out the Ohio Library Council's job listings here.

grinning from ear to ear

Thanks University of Washington Student Chapter of the American Library Association, you're not so bad yourself. :)

combining two of my all time favorites

No, not Ryan Gosling and bacon...Mumford and Sons and Simon & Garfunkel's "The Boxer," one of my all time favorite S&G songs. I have such a lovely memory of sitting on a train bound for NYC, watching the sunrise, and listening to "The Boxer." *Sigh* I miss living in New England and the proximity of NYC...


gnashing our terrible teeth at banned books

I remember reading Where the Wild Things Are when I was a kid. I don't know who gave me my copy, probably a relative, because we were poor, but I do remember the way that book made me feel. I knew exactly why Max needed to chase that dog around in his wolf suit, and why he would tell his mother that he'd eat her up. I envied him for being able to sail away from his problems to a land where he was in charge--and he wasn't even scared of the wild things! I wanted to hang in trees and howl at the moon...but eventually I wanted to be my mother's child again too. That book resonates with children because they understand it and see themselves as Max!

Iread that book to my nieces and nephews and I love reading it at the library with storytimes--I've never met someone who didn't enjoy, it felt apropos to wind down Banned Book Week 2012 with sharing quotes from this, one of my top 3 favorite picture book of all time.

Where the Wild Things Are was banned all over…

I wish I'd written this

don't ban steak!

"You're given the form, but you have to write the sonnet yourself. What you say is completely up to you" --Madeline Le'Engle, A Wrinkle in Time

A Wrinkle in Time has been challenged/banned  for a variety of reasons including: religious content, challenging religious beliefs, and witchcraft. Happy 5th day of Banned Books Week 2012:

Here are some inspiring quotes by some famous folks:

“Something will be offensive to someone in every book, so you've got to fight it.”--Judy Blume

“If there's one American belief I hold above all others, it's that those who would set themselves up in judgment on matters of what is "right" and what is "best" should be given no rest; that they should have to defend their behavior most stringently.” Stephen King

"There is no such thing as a moral book or an immoral book. Books are well written or badly written. That is all." --Oscar Wilde

"Censorship ends in logical c…

day 4, week 1, diary of a library director

Yesterday and today were absolutely full with trying to order books. Because the former director left nearly 6 months ago and assumed there would be a replacement by the end of the summer, he only ordered through August releases--I started October 1st. What people outside libraries don't realize is that librarians generally will order months in advance, so all the work I did over the last two days was just catch up. Just ordered books with September and October release dates. Haven't even touched DVDs or audio yet. Fortunately in small town libraries we don't order a ton of those things, so I'm not too worried.

Other highlights:
Met with the former director for an hour and a half yesterday, which was so great as far as hearing how he did some things; have a bit of a hand off, so to speak.Started making calls to others in the community to start building/rekindle some of our outreach efforts with a local college, the local school system, and nearby pre-school.Spoke tons w…

the son of a classic

Too tired to post much, but on today, the 4th day of Banned Books Week 2012, thought I would share this:

Did you know that Lois Lowry's 1994 Newbery award winning, The Giver, was one of the most challenged/banned books of the 1990s? The book has made its way onto lists for reasons including: its' scenes of violent and sexual nature, infanticide, euthanasia, and “sexual awakening.”

I chose to highlight this book because the eagerly anticipating sequel to The Giver has arrived--Gathering Blue (2000) and Messenger (2004) were what have been called "sister books," not sequels--Lois Lowry's latest, Son. I have my copy on order and CAN'T WAIT!!

“If you were to be lost in the river, Jonas, your memories would not be lost with you. Memories are forever.”  --Lois Lowry, The Giver

Interesting article in the NYTimes: "Lois Lowry: The Children's Author Who Actually Listens to Children"

day 3, week 1 the director diaries

The library closed at 5pm. I finished my work meeting at 7:30pm. I am about to go home. I am so tired, mentally drained, but happy. Two more days until the weekend.

day 2, week 1 as library director

Looks like this:
Haircut, asked for 3 inches off, I think she took off 5; my hair is naturally curly so, tomorrow it's going to look Shirley Temple short. Oh Lord. The upswing is that in Sticks it only cost $14 for a haircut, blow dry, and hair straightening. Love living in the middle of nowhere!Went through EVERY file and document saved on my desktop...HOURS of my life gone...Touched base with community members who wanted outreach programs set up.Spoke with Mom who put in a challenge/review of book. Nice conversation and she told me I should come to the schools Homecoming game this weekend. Love that small town camaraderie!Emails back and forth to board members regarding various thingsWorked on storytimes; there haven't been storytimes in over a month, since the Children's Librarian resigned and I am going to be doing 3/week until we hire a new Children's Librarian.  Posted my first announcement (announcing upcoming storytimes) on our library's Facebook page. Start…

celebrating Banned Books Week day 3 with a challenge

It is absolutely fitting that THIS week--Banned Books Week--should find me with a book challenged by one of our patrons. I know, I know, it probably doesn't count, since the library's book challenge form has been sitting in the Director box for a while before I even started, but it is COOL! I get to take this book to the Board and review it.

Also, went to ALA's website to report the challenge; sharing what is challenged/banned at your library with the ALA helps others stay informed, and helps the ALA's statistics of challenged/banned books. The form is here.

first day as a director

I feel like I have this deer-in-headlights-look today; still not believing that I have the keys, and the title, and the RESPONSIBILITY! I am a director. Holy cats! I am beat and have about ten million people to call to talk about my first day, so I will just bullet point what my first day looked like:
Spent 2 hours just wading through 6 INCHES of paperwork and 12 INCHES of library journals and collection development magazines and flyers that have accumulated since the last director leftSet up a meeting with the former director, to get aligned with a few things that need some overlap (he is kind enough to come during his free time and do this with me!)Set up my new Oplin email accountTalked to the WONDERFUL and very helpful folks over at SEO (Serving Every Ohioan) a couple of times! They were so nice.Made my first decisions: dealt with a fine policy discrepancyVisited with the President of the Board, she popped in to say hello. So nice. :)Talked with another Board Member about upcoming …

no pink princess here!

I start my new job today! So excited and nervous! Praying for a good day and Olivia-esque spunk! More on the new library soon! Ian Falconer’s done it again with his latest Olivia tale, Olivia and the Fairy Princesses! Another story that made me laugh out loud and reminded of why I like Olivia so much. She’s spunky, she’s got pizazz, and she’s got moxy.  In this story Olivia complains to her mom, “Why is it always a pink princess? Why not an Indian princess or princess from Thailand or an African princess or a princess from China? There are alternatives. (I particularly love the drawings of Olivia dressed as said princesses). 

 Maybe why I loved this particular story is because I was always the tomboy with the wild adventures and I never understood the other girls. This story is a great reminder that it’s ok to be different; ok to seek out who we want to be; it’s ok too to want to be part of that crowd of princesses—I love that Falconer says that even some of the boys at ballet wanted to …

books on trial--BANNED BOOKS WEEK

"Books on Trial" a video by the Mentor, OH public library
Today marks the 2nd day of Banned Books Week 2012--