Showing posts from August, 2014

Bruges by night


Amsterdam to Bruges

We went for a long walk through many districts of the city last night, also taking the tram (street level trains that run on the streets, amidst cars and bikes) and bus. We made it as far as Red Light District, and discovered the lurid window booths that scantily clad women dance and shake in, showing off their wares to men; I honestly thought the area would be seedier and dirtier and more dangerous, but found it instead full of lots of other curious tourists, and also stocked with kitschy little shops and bars and restaurants. Had my first Amsterdam beer at a small cafe in the Red Light District.

This morning we took the city on again, walking around for nearly 4 hours, seeing different neighborhoods in hunt for the Anne Frank house. Much to my chagrin--though previously warned by the internet that the lines can be long and advanced tickets are suggested--the line was enormous, so we just stopped and examined the outside of the building, which sits on a beautiful canal way, and I th…

Berlin to Amsterdam!

After an 8+hrs flight (6+ hrs was full of screaming babies. Ugh!) I made it safely to Berlin this morning, coming in over the city as the sun was on the rise. After a delicious breakfast in a hip little restaurant, where the waiter was charming and sweet, as I stumbled through ordering my food in German, our epic roadtrip began and we spent the afternoon driving the Berlin countryside on the Autobahn to Holland. It is exhilarating and terrifying how fast some people drive!

We've showed up at and booked a 4 person room in a hostel for tonight: $18 Euro/person ($23/person U.S. if I'm guessing correctly)--in an old industrial building, turned hostel, called WOW Hostel. It's super hip and modern arty, very clean and wonderful. Clean beds and free Wifi--that's all I need!

Tomorrow we head downtown and hopefully to the Anne Frank house (that's on my list); we're talking about the Red Light District tonight, as we're all a little intrigued by the real seedy-…

Packing for 2.5 weeks in Europe

You remember Joan Didion's epic packing list post?
Because I'm a dork I inventoried what I've packed for 2.5 weeks travel in Germany and beyond:

1 skirt
1 pair jeans
1 pair khakis
1 pair black capris
Enough underwear, bras, socks for 1 week
5 blouses
1 thin sweater
Bathing suit
PJs: 2 pairs shorts, 2 t-shirts
Bag with: shampoo, conditioner, facewash, bar of soap, face astringent, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrush, hair brush, floss, tweezers, jewelery, prescriptions

2 journals
5 pens
Copy of Fodor's essential Europe (2014)
Copy of Lonely Planet's Europe on a Shoestring (2011)
3 books
Camera & charger
Phone & charger
2nd pair of shoes
flip flops
Passport, Birth Certificate, License, Credit Cards, Cash
Laptop & cord
European power converters
Chewing gum

I only am packing for a week, as Yannick said I can do laundry at their apartment and we can probably do it at hostels along the way while we're road tripping. IN E…

2 Midwest library job postings

Crown Point Community Library, with its two locations in Lake County, Indiana, serves 42,000 residents and is governed by a seven-member Board of Trustees.  Thirty-nine staff with a $1.6 million annual budget provide excellent library service. In 2010, the Library passed a successful $12 million bond issue and the “new” Crown Point Library opened in 2012. This position requires an ALA-accredited Master's Degree in Library Science; the ability to obtain and retain an Indiana Librarian Certificate 1; and ten years progressively responsible library experience (or six years library experience including three years of supervisory experience). The community of Crown Point offers excellent public schools, strong neighborhoods, and affordable housing. Please visit Crown Point Community Library Announcement for complete information and the supplemental links to learn more about the Library, Crown Point, and Lake County. The starting salary range is $62,000 to $74,000 (with placem…

sad state of affairs

It can be AMAZINGLY frustrating to hear how much entertainers and athletes make when libraries all across the United States are in a constant state of struggle and penny pinching!

This November on the ballot across the state of Ohio 30 libraries will put up levies requesting the support of their local patrons. So, I beg, think kindly on us, remember all that we provide and VOTE YES!


Joan Didion's packing list

Meetings, meeting, and more meetings this week. I'll be heading out soon for another meeting, and as I drive I'll be thinking about my packing list for Germany! 2.5 weeks of travel packing! Any time I pack for a real vacation--not a I'm going home to Michigan for the weekend trip--I think of Joan Didion's packing list. Maybe I'll share my packing list before I go, but it WILL NOT be as epic as this. I generally don't travel with a mohair throw, my typewriter, or bourbon...

2 skirts
2 jerseys or leotards
1 pullover sweater
2 pair shoes
nightgown, robe, slippers
bag with: shampoo
toothbrush and paste
Basis soap, razor
face cream
baby oil

mohair throw
2 legal pads and pens
house key

“This is a list which was taped inside my closet door in Hollywood during those years when I was reporting more or less steadily. The list enabled me to pack, without thinking, for any…

worky schmorky, where's vacation!?

Been so busy lately. Feels like I can't catch up on work because I've had to cover the desk more due to illnesses and vacation days. Back in my office for a full day yesterday and finally caught up on
Purchase OrdersBudget stuff,Book ordersTidying up my office (TONS of books ready for the FRIENDS used book sale in September!)Financial Subcommittee work for a board I'm on Now if I could just get super motivated and creative enough to start putting together my Powerpoint for my OLC Conference presentation. I'd like to have a good chunk of it done, but knowing me, I'll get inspired post-vacation when I'm rested and really feel the less-than-a-month-until-my-presentation-panic!

I just need to get to vacation. So hard to be at work!


Favorite bookdrop find I've found lately!

encouraging STEM loving kids

The big push in libraries and schools these days is S.T.E.M. (or S.T.E.A.M.) based curriculum
Science, Technology, Engineering, (Art if it's STEAM), Math--since we're apparently behind other countries in our math and science proficiencies. We began weekly S.T.E.M. projects last summer reading, keeping them on as periodic after school programs, and again as weekly events during this summer reading. Anything can be fun if you get creative; we've:
Built nuclei from candyBuilt structures out of toothpicks and marshmallows and then tested their withstandability to a simulated earthquake--this simulated by placing structure on a bed of Jello in a pan and me shaking the hell out of it. The kids thought this was AMAZING.Built structures to protect raw eggs, then dropped the eggs from 8 feet in the air to see how strong the structure was in protecting the contentsCreated robots from household materials like yogurt cups and aluminum foilEtc... What makes something S.T.E.M.? Activitie…

O.A.R. "Peace" Official Audio

Damn, OAR, I. LOVE. This.

This song makes me want a cool morning under a warm blanket, snuggling with a boy I love spending my weekends with...

the open road (in Europe) soon

Going out of town the last 3 weekends has been lots of helpful practice for when I go to Germany in LESS THAN A MONTH!!! Lots of opportunities for how/what I am going to pack, and what I am now deeming unnecessary.

Last year when this was still a pipe dream, Yannick, Magdalena and I were talking about what I'd like to see if I made it to Germany. Me, the ever crazy one blurted out, "EVERYTHING. I want to see as many countries as I can, in the time I have with you." We laughed about this not too long ago, until we got to talking in a Facebook message between the 3 of us where we all agreed that we'd be game for an EPIC roadtrip. I LOVE roadtrips. They are one of my absolute favorite things on the planet. And doing it with some of my friends IN EUROPE! Could my life be any better!?!?

So, I read travel books and make half-assed notes in my journal. I shock people when they saw, "So, what are you going to see? Which cities are you going to hit up" to which I re…