Archive for April, 2007

I need a book on…

Thursday, April 26th, 2007

uncluttering and organizing my mind. I have all these things that I need to do and need to get off my mind and onto paper, but there’s so much, I sometimes can’t remember what I need to do. Or even who I am. Well I guess I know who I am.

I do want to try and do more book reviews on my book and comic blogs, plus I want to use librarything more often. Oh and I want to spend more time learning my ukulele and playing ddr and reading to Jack and reading my books and cleaning and blah blah blah.

Anywho. Here’s a poem I wrote on my kids blog:

single blade of grass
tickles my delicate nose
Achoo! Goodbye grass!

New committee

Thursday, April 26th, 2007

I’m on a new committee to explore new avenues of technology the library can take advantage of. I think I’m going to enjoy myself, because we have quite a cross-section of librarian-ship involved in the group. Plus I think it’ll be nice to bounce ideas off librarians that feel the same way I do about technology. Whether or not we will get the support of the other library staff will be a whole other thing. People in libraries seem to be very set in their ways, so it’ll definitely be interesting.

The committee will give me the opportunity to play around with a lot of new technologies, which, of course, I love. For example I’d really like to play around with wikis a lot more, and Adrienne’s “series binder” wiki has given me the perfect opportunity. I’m thinking that I may do a series wiki of my own and include comic titles we own as well. It’ll help me keep track of the series we own a lot easier. Plus I can have the kids and teens remind me when I’m slacking in my updating.

OH and I just had a brainstorm! Because we now have WIFI, I can bring my… err my husband’s laptop to work and create the wiki right where the books are without having to drag the books around! LOVE IT!

Anyway, the committee should be a lot of fun, although I did notice that one of the other committee members and myself may have been speaking a lot more than we should have, because I don’t think everyone else had much time to talk. We may have to remedy this somehow, but I don’t really know how… well I mean I can shut up a little more, but I don’t think we can bring it up to the other person…

Oh well, I’m grateful to Sally for letting me join the committee. Thank you Sally!


Thursday, April 26th, 2007

We got a “new to us” piano. Its a 1918 upright. And it was FREE! I’ll post some pictures soon, and I think there may be one on Jeff’s site.

Jeff’s dad and his uncle helped move it. I don’t know how the three of them did it alone since the thing must weigh a ton. But they did it, and I didn’t have to help. Thank you, you strong beefcakes, you!

Jeff said that the man who gave it to us was having “freecyclers remorse”, because he was playing the piano as they moved it into the trailer. Poor guy.
BTW, I have no idea how to play the piano, and Jeff barely remembers. We really got it because Jack LOVES pianos, so what the hell? Why not?

YSS Conference

Thursday, April 26th, 2007

I went to the conference. The sessions that I went to really didn’t blow my mind. In fact I don’t think that I gleaned much new information from them. 🙁 There were three sessions:

If teens want to listen, why do we shut up? or Reading Aloud to Teens Presenter: Alison Follos, Author and Lake Placid Media Specialist
This was seen from the school librarian’s point of view, and much of the talk was wasted on me. She was a school librarian, and therefor had an outlet where she could “force” the students to listen to her if need be. I think that if I had a program like that, no one would show up. She suggested having local “celebrities”… coaches, mayors, teachers… read to the teens for the first time, however I think that could be as much of a disaster as anything. It really takes a special person to be able to read out loud and not make things dull. Oh well, she did what she could. I had the same problem when I spoke to some school librarians and they said the same thing about me. The biggest complaint was that I “focused too much on public libraries”. I think I talked about comics in general, but I didn’t talk about how they could use it in their curriculum. Oh well.
I have been toying with the idea of an all ages read-aloud. I would read a short story or selections from a classic novel to anyone that showed up; kids, teens, adults and the wee old people. ;^) I really like the idea of reading to senior citizens, I’m just wondering if I could pull it off. I know that I like being read to, why shouldn’t they.

In regards to the teens, I was thinking that I might take a selection of next month’s book for the discussion group and read to them, in order to wet their appetites.

Energize Your Image
70% of first impressions is visual and 90% of that is what we are wearing. The image you project is what you want people to know about you. You make an impression before you say a word, shake a hand, or begin a presentation. What does the way that you dress say to the world?
Presenter: Certified Beauty & Image Consultant, Rebecca Kopcienski, Mount Sinai

I really hoped for more from this one. I’m not totally sure what I expected, maybe more about the image of librarians and how we can change our image as a profession. What it was, was a presentation about body shape, face shape and what clothes we should be wearing. However we only dipped into a little bit of what we could have gotten into. I felt really bad for the guys in the group, because they benefited even less from it than I did. Men don’t tend to have hourglass figures, if you know what I mean.

The Lost Art of Flannel Boards: a hands-on workshop
Check out this demonstration of some flannel board stories and make a flannel board to bring home.
Presenters: Raquel Cavalcanti and Terry Rabideau, White Plains Public Library, NY

I took a course at Brighton Library taught by one of the children’s librarians and I went to a couple early literacy programs. All of the stuff that they talked about in this program was covered in the other programs. However the librarian’s seemed A LOT more animated than I ever am in my story times. Baby voices and everything. I don’t care to talk in the baby voice, because I feel its demeaning, even to babies. However, I guess it was a little useful, because Jenny was with me and she got to learn about flannel boards, as well as make her own which she hadn’t done. I’m not sure that she was into it enough that she changed her mind about not wanting to be a children’s librarian, but I think she had fun.

The most fun at the conference was when I talked to the other librarians and when I listened to Libba Bray. OMG! How much fun were some of these librarians? Tons. They had lots of energy and a great love for their jobs. How much am I in love with Libba Bray? OODLES! I loved her book “A Great and Terrible Beauty”, and I couldn’t wait to meet her. After listening to her speak, I think I could listen to her talk for hours. I clung to EVERY word. She was fascinating and extremely humorous.

The Pinkwaters also spoke. They were very sweet and you could tell that they really loved each other. However they paled in comparison to Libba Bray. I LOVE YOU LIBBA! I embarrassed myself thoroughly at her talk, but it was well worth it. I screamed “I LOVE YOU” at a quiet moment during questions, but I did, so I said it. SO THERE. Phht.

Next week… well really this week now

Sunday, April 15th, 2007

Wednesday is my 28th birthday! How special am I?

I visited the parental units yesterday, so they gave me my present early. They gave me the special 25th anniversary edition DVD of the Last Unicorn. I’m already on my second viewing… of course I’m not following it very clearly… I’m trying to prepare books for a book list committee I’m on. They also gave me some pac-man socks, which I’ll have to find a cute outfit for. Maybe I’ll save them for the trip I’m going on at the end of the week. Jenny gave me a DVD to help in teaching me how to play the ukulele. I fallen behind in my practicing, but I want to get back into it.

Yesterday we also visited people in Fairport that have an old upright piano from 1918 we are going to get for FREE! Some of the keys are broken and we’ll have to find a way to get it into the house, but its free! The guy played it for us, and it has a beautiful sound. While we were there, we met their two daughters, and I was such a librarian nerd. I started talking to them about some books that they should get out of the library. Of course I told them that they should read, Catalina Magdelina Hoopensteiner Wallendiner Hogan Logan Bogan is Her Name. Of course I had to show off my mad librarian skills and I told them to talk to Ms. B from Fairport and make sure she got them the book.

Thursday – Saturday I get to go to the YSS spring conference, or for those not in the know, the Youth Services Section of New York Library Association spring conference. I won a scholarship to go, which makes me very happy, since money’s been so tight the past couple of months. Plus, I get to go with Jenny! Yippee!

The conference is in White Plains, which is a little over 5 hours away. Fun times… especially since I’m going to be driving my car because it has:

1) less miles
2) a navigation system
3) sirius satellite radio
Unfortunately, it’s also a stick shift, which I love driving. However Jenny doesn’t know how to drive stick, so I’m driving the whole thing. poop.

April is

Wednesday, April 11th, 2007

April is the month that we celebrate poetry… unless I get mistaken and start it in the middle of March.

Anyway, I’m going to have a “blog only” poetry contest for the kids, and I wrote them this poem as an example of what they can do:

turtle in the sun
dances on the warm rock face
be still, you may fall!

Then later on, I wrote this poem. I like trying to string haiku together. Although that probably doesn’t follow the form strictly. Oh well. It is a little sad and depressing, which I’m not really except when I hit those patchy moments. Okay so maybe there’s quite a few of those moments, but who’s counting? Not I!

Here it is:

sitting with no smile
I am alone, pondering
why I am alone

they walk past and and stare
seeing the strange girl, sitting
still they say nothing

I cannot ignore
the pain and grief within me
no one there to tell

the night grows colder
surely someone will help me
the road is empty

the fierce cold takes me
until the pain has left me
I am gone for good

Lowdown on the Teen Book Festival

Monday, April 2nd, 2007

Wow. Talk about amazing and crazy.

I was one of Svetlana’s helper bees. We had to make sure that she was comfortable and had enough water, that she knew where she was going, and that she didn’t get attacked by rabid teens. I knew that it would be a little crazy, since I do know how you guys are when we get a new manga, let alone meeting the artist! She was very easy going and put up with a lot more than I might have been able to. She even wore one of the teens’ hats for a second!


Here’s some images of the group of teens I worked with. They were CRAZY! One of the girl’s had a huge bag full of sugar: cookies, candy (including a gigantic bag of pixie sticks) and a 3 liter bottle of soda. However it was a lot of fun hanging out with them too.

cat grrrl

They spent quite a bit of time singing songs… some of which I knew.
when teens attack!

I think the mixture of sugar and adrenaline may have had an adverse affect on them.

peace out yo!

They were all smiles the whole day, making it a lot of fun to work with them.

red carpet for the authors

Yes that’s them in the corner, a big pile of blue t-shirts… we put out a red carpet for the authors, and when they came to Fairport High School in their HUGE limo…

author limo

and we all SCREAMED at the top of our lungs. By the end of the day I did’t have much of a voice left. It was SO much fun.

Lauren Myracle and Cecil Castellucci

Here’s a picture of Lauren Myracle and Cecil Castellucci.

Unfortunately the lighting wasn’t always the best, so I didn’t get too many good pictures. :( Although I did get this great picture at the end with most of the volunteers in my group with Svetlana. Svetlana was quiet, but a lot of fun to talk to. She was very laid back, and knew all the manga and anime the teens were talking about and when they started singing some of the songs from the anime, she could sing along to quite a few of them.

group photo with Svetlana

All the authors were super nice. And they were all down to earth. Not at all like the scary stories you hear about actors. I listened to Tamora Pierce and Cecil Castellucci.

Tamora and her husband both spoke. They played off each other nicely. Bantering about in a fun lighthearted way. You could tell very quickly that they bounced a lot of ideas off each other. Tamora was full of stories and spoke in a very conversational way. I was so happy that she wasn’t scary or awful. Sometimes I worry that the authors I really like are actually mean or nasty. You can get your hopes up and then in a couple of sentences your joy at meeting an author/actor can be dashed.

Cecil read from her book, Queen of Cool. I could have listened to her all day. She read with such enthusiasm. Sometimes author readings can be up in the air. They could be great writers, but lousy when they read out loud. It was not at all like that with her. She talked about how being cool all depends upon perspective. You could be really cool in one group or situation and then totally not in another situation.

She also talked about her family life, and how we might think that it would be awesome to be the daughter/son of a rock star, but once in that situation it could be annoying or bothersome. Cecil was the daughter of two researchers. I thought that sounded really great, but she had a different perspective; the crazy hours, the expectations, her parents’ idea of fun.

The whole experience was exciting. I would be lying if I didn’t say I was exhausted by the end of the day, but it was well worth it, and I can’t wait until next year.