Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. -- Mark Twain
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-grandfather!" The family curse is only the tip of the iceberg in a story that also includes: the mystery of why the kids at Camp Green Lake spend their days digging holes; the drought
that destroyed Green Lake; the infamous Kissing Kate Barlow; deadly lizards, onions, and more. This book is funny and interesting and I LOVED it. And I think kids will enjoy it.
As Book Cellar said, this book doesn't need more good press, it has tons, but you HAVE to read Book Cellar's Top 10 Reasons to Love Holes.
I first discovered Helen Ward when I bought a copy of her The Tin Forest--the story of a man who in his solitude creates for himself a tin forest; once he builds a replica of the real things he desires, it is only a matter of time before real plants and animals begin to appear in the tin forest--at a used book sale at one of my old libraries when I was in grad school. What makes Ward stand out is that she always paints an intimate story, including details that pull you into the world of the story. I just love her!
We recently got a copy of Helen Ward's The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse; not a
new story, but merely a retelling and re-illustrating of a Aesop's classic. I LOVE
Helen Ward's artwork, which is a feast for the senses, so full of color,
lavish artwork that leaves you feeling as contented as that adorable
The hardest part of being the Director in a small library is that we don't have an HR person, so on top of everything else we do we also get to do the paperwork for the new hires, and retires. Thank God for the internet or these processes would take a lot longer!
One of my board members pointed out that though I'd been informed of staff retirements, I had to officially accept them with a letter...I am finding that a paper trail is an important thing. So, I found a short and simple letter on one university's HR website (sorry forgot which!?) and honed it to work for us. Attached is my sample of a retirement letter.
Is anyone else out there going through this process too?