Showing posts from April, 2013

Fours and Fives

Book recommendations for FOURS and FIVES:

the twos and threes


Bark, George, by Jules Feiffer
Barnyard Dance, by Sandra Boynton - actually lots of her books!
Brown Bear, Brown Bear, by Bill Martin Jr.
Dear Zoo, by Rod Campbell
Dig, Dig, Digging, by Margaret Mayo
Dinosaur’s Binkit, by Sandra Boynton
Chugga Chugga Choo-Choo, by Kevin Lewis
Edward the Emu, by Sheila Knowles
Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed, by Eileen Christelow
From Head to Toe, by Eric Carle
Gossie, by Olivier Dunrea and sequels
Harold and the Purple Crayon, by Crocker Johnson
How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight, by Jane Yolen
If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, by Laura Numeroff
I’m a Big Brother/Sister, by Joanna Cole
Jesse Bear, What Will You Wear, by Nancy Carlstrom
Lady with the Alligator Purse, by Nadine Bernard Westcott
One Duck Stuck, by Phyllis Root
Please Baby Please, by Spike Lee, illus. by Kadir Nelson
Sheep in a Jeep, by Nancy Shaw
Silly Sally, by Audrey Wood
Snowy Day, by Ezra Jack Keats
Tails, by Matthew Van Fleet
The Very Hungry Cate…

a magic lady and book recommendations

My friend Becca is engaged to someone with a 4 year old; a couple weeks back Becca asked me for book suggestions for said 4 year old. I thought I would pass along the list in case anyone else is looking for ideas...but then I thought, no, I must share the entire list, not just the 4s/5s list... this list made its way to me via a strange route. The short version is, back in the day in Rochester Hills, MI there was this wonderful little privately-owned bookstore--whose name eludes me now (Halfway Upstairs? Upstairs Downstairs?)--whose owner was wonderful; one of those gifted souls who always had ready recommendations that always wound up being perfect. I am fairly certain she was magic. Anyway, apparently she'd made up this great list of book recommendations based on ages and grades, and somehow, someone at some point gave it to me. And I can't tell you how many times I've referred back to it and been thanked profusely for it. So, wherever you are, wise creator of this list,…

a poem lodged in my brain

My friend read this poem aloud the other night and I can't get it out of my head. Oh, Lord Byron, you knave!

"She walks in beauty" She walks in beauty, like the night    Of cloudless climes and starry skies; And all that’s best of dark and bright    Meet in her aspect and her eyes; Thus mellowed to that tender light    Which heaven to gaudy day denies.
One shade the more, one ray the less,    Had half impaired the nameless grace Which waves in every raven tress,    Or softly lightens o’er her face; Where thoughts serenely sweet express,    How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.
And on that cheek, and o’er that brow,    So soft, so calm, yet eloquent, The smiles that win, the tints that glow,    But tell of days in goodness spent, A mind at peace with all below,    A heart whose love is innocent! --Lord Byron
Much to catch up on about library land! More soon!

aided by several detours

“Coming back is the thing that enables you to see how all the dots in your life are connected, how one decision leads you another, how one twist of fate, good or bad, brings you to a door that later takes you to another door, which aided by several detours--long hallways and unforeseen stairwells--eventually puts you in the place you are now.” --Anne Patchett

Anyone who has truly left home--ventured out into the world and tasted it; lived away, with enough distance between you and that place to forget the view of the horizon; gone long enough to remember what the city or town or village looked like--will understand the nostalgia of going back. The sadness and sinking when the city looks less like it did in your years, and more like every other city in America, suffering from that same disease which grabs hold and spreads chain restaurants and chain stores like sores. Gone are many of the Mom & Pop family owned stores, replaced by those where they pretend to know you, asking yo…

murders in the morgue

Did you know that on this day in 1841 the first detective story is published: The Murders in the Rue Morgue, by Edgar Allan Poe, which appeared in "Graham's Lady's and Gentleman's Magazine." 
Sometimes I miss being a college student and having someone assign authors and stories to me; the semester that I took 19th century U.S. lit meant I spent a good deal of time reading Poe. Though all I can scrape together from my memory are fragmented lines from "The Raven," I remember enjoying what I read...I think I need to revisit him soon. 

"...Our first meeting was at an obscure library in the Rue Montmartre, where the accident of our both being in search of the same very rare and very remarkable volume, brought us into closer communion..." --Edgar Allan Poe, excerpt from The Murders in the Rue Morgue

For the full text.

Simon says

Just received this bit of news this morning:

Apparently Simon and Schuster announced the launch of a one year ebook pilot program with three of NY Library's systems. 
The statement.

"We are pleased Simon & Schuster has recognized the vital roles of libraries in supporting reading in all its formats by announcing a library e-lending pilot in New York City. As we celebrate the 55th annual National Library Week, it is a particularly fortuitous time for the publisher to join its Big Six colleagues by providing access to e-books through our nation's libraries. We hope that Simon & Schuster will extend its pilot to libraries beyond New York City in the near future. Books and knowledge-in all their forms-are essential. The ALA and our members welcome new and expanded digital access for all." 
--Maureen Sullivan, ALA President

sluggish like the ocean

Harper Simon - Wishes And Stars (official)

I am so ready for the weekend...more soon...


Today's events in Boston made me so sad. I am aware of all the terrible and sad things always happening out in the world, but when terrible things happen in a familiar place, with familiar streets I've traveled, it really brings it home. As I pray for those hurt and killed, for their families, for all the hurts in our world, and our fractured world too, I looked for words to comfort me and wound up finding these; I offered them up tonight, my own borrowers little prayer...I am praying for more kindness in the world.

“I hope you will have a wonderful year, that you'll dream dangerously and outrageously, that you'll make something that didn't exist before you made it, that you will be loved and that you will be liked, and that you will have people to love and to like in return. And, most importantly (because I think there should be more kindness and more wisdom in the world right now), that you will, when you need to be, be wise, and that you will always be kind.” --N…

pungent memories

Today when I ran out to my car to grab something, I was met with a pungent odor of onions. Not just any onions, but wild chives, growing all along the porch and in the sidewalk cracks lining our parking lot.

I was reminded of a couple years back when I was in South Carolina with my sisters family, at a park, not far from a pen of piggies when I encountered that familiar smell and realized the whole field we were walking in was wild chives. I explained to my niece S (age 6.5) and nephew A (age 5) that we were walking in a field of wild onions and handed them each a tuft. They watched as I ate mine and then both bravely followed suit. We all laughed in oniony delight and ate handfuls of the stuff until we were rank with onion odor. Amazing the power of food to bring a memory to the surface.
Hope everyone had a good weekend, sorry to see it coming to an end.

dark endeavors and nail biting

Just finished Kenneth Oppel's This Dark Endeavor: The Apprenticeship of Victor Frankenstein #1 yesterday. Loved it.

Though Victor and Konrad Frankenstein are twins, they couldn't be more different. After Konrad grows gravely ill with a mysterious sickness Victor, cousin Elizabeth, and Victor's best friend Henry set out in search of a cure. After stumbling upon a "dark library," (rife with books on the study of Alchemy, an outlawed subject), Victor discovers a recipe for "The Elixir of Life," and against the specific command of Victor and Konrad's father, the trio seeks for an infamous alchemist to help them.

In their quest for the ingredients, Victor, Elizabeth, and Henry experience close calls and some nail biting moments--I already am a terrible nail biter, but somehow managed to gnaw my nails into smaller stumps during a certain scene. I must have looked nuts as I sat at a stop sign, pounding the steering wheel and screaming, "RUUUUUNNN!&quo…


We're closed today because we're headed to the Northwest Ohio Library Conference! Ohio does a yearly state conference, but also now does regional conferences to catch more people who can't make the state conference in the fall.

I'm pleased as punch to have a break from the library, and definitely looking forward to listening to speakers on a variety of Library topics. Maybe I'll post later about all the wonderful things I learn today!

Unrelated, but GREAT news! Prairie Dawn starts next week! I am SO happy! Happy weekend everyone!

get by with a little help

Thank God for helpful library friends; stressed out last week I got a hold of "Sunshine," the school librarian, and met her at "Beans," a favorite coffee shop that makes you forget you're in the middle of nowhere! Sunshine listened as I vented about library stuff and admitted to my homesickness for friends and family. She really heard me. And it felt nice to laugh and smile--I feel like I seldom do that much outside work these days. I left feeling lighter.

The last few weeks have meant working really hard, playing an endless game of Pong between all of these computer and computer-related items representatives. And I'm tired. After nearly a month I feel like I've made little progress, other than ensuring we have Deep Freeze ready. I am still working on getting quotes for our new computers; need to purchase our new scanners; need to purchase a new receipt printer; am waiting for yet ANOTHER quote for Microsoft Office Pro 2013; need to check in with …
Spring has finally arrived! It's been in the 70s the last couple days and April showers are hitting us hard now! The sky is dark and we've had tons of rain, thunder, and lightning today, and hail too!
Wanted to pass along this great poem that my old boss Super Sue passed along. Get out there and enjoy spring!
"Philosophy in Warm Weather"
Now all the doors and windows
are open, and we move so easily
through the rooms. Cats roll
on the sunny rugs, and a clumsy wasp
climbs the pane, pausing
to rub a leg over her head.

All around physical life reconvenes.
The molecules of our bodies must love
to exist: they whirl in circles
and seem to begrudge us nothing.
Heat, Horatio, heat makes them
put this antic disposition on!

This year's brown spider
sways over the door as I come
and go. A single poppy shouts
from the far field, and the crow,
beyond alarm, goes right on
pulling up the corn.

-- Jane Kenyon, from The Boat of Quiet Hours

can't stop laughing


Sunday mornings

All Sunday mornings should all be as good as this one.
I am enjoying coffee and the smell of cooking bacon, waiting to sit down to breakfast and sample my sister-in-law Dayna's brussel sprout and potato hash. My mouth is watering.
My Savannah Banana turned 1 yesterday, a party attended by some of our dear friends and my Mom, who came into town from SC this week.
Marveling at home fast this past year flew by.
While I enjoy this slow, sleepy morning and watch my niece take steps on still wobbly, chubby legs I share this song with you.
Happy Sunday.

interviewing 101

A few things about interviewing I've learned from being on the hiring end of things.

10 INTERVIEW TIPS: Really prepare for an interview by reading over sample interview questions (Google). If you're really an overachiever, have your friends drill you so that you can work on your responses. If you have a phone interview have notes that you can refer to, the interviewer can't see those, so really go to town!Come prepared. Look at the company's website, read newspaper articles about that organization. Find a way to show that you know what that company represents and how they've made an impact in their profession and in the community! Bring samples of your work with you, or offer to send along a Powerpoint or other notes, anything that came up during the interview which seemed to peak their interests. Shoot your interviewer these things as soon as possible after the interview. DO NOT BLOW UP THEIR INBOX! I interviewed one woman who sent 3 emails after the interview wit…

remedy for work stress

Oh, holy hell. The Children's Librarian starts in 11 more days, thank God. Except that means training.

The schedule is approved by all. Now I am figuring out coverage for vacay requests through August.

Computer buying process is still back and forth like Pong. The company sends me quotes, I go over those with our IT guy, he tells me what we should ask for/change, and I send it back. As if this process hasn't been hard enough, one of our cataloging computers died last week, another cataloging/CIRC (of two!!) computers is on the fritz (choosing when the scanner or keyboard or both will stop working at random), and I just learned that our barcode scanners and receipt printers are so hold they will need replacing. Every time I think about the cost I hear money bleeding out of this place. Urgh.

On the upside: Summer Reading donation requests went out a few weeks ago and we've been getting a good response so far, over $1,000 in our first two weeks! I received word last week tha…