Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Family History Month Begins Tomorrow

We're getting ready for Family History Month, which begins October 1st. We're setting up family displays throughout the
Some staff members have brought in items that are more than interesting. Some I've seen before, like the elastic garter to hold up socks. I remember my Daddy wearing some. Eloise brought one that once held up a sock worn by her grandfather,
W. J. Plymel.
She also brought in a wooden and leather corn shucker, a black plastic syringe that was used for giving enemas (yuk!), and some red plastic rings for chicken legs. I couldn't imagine what they used the rings for, especially after seeing the black plastic syringe. I hadn't seen any of those items before, but the chicken rings interested me the most. Elois said the rings were put on the chicken's legs, so close neighbors could distinguish each others chickens. Of course, each family had a different color. Elois's family was identified by
red rings.
A few other items of interest were brought in by Aileen. One was a wooden Kraft American cheese box, like I remembered seeing in our kitchen when I was growing up. And, of course, we all ate syrup from a Log Cabin tin shaped like a log cabin. I also had a Brownie camera, but not exactly like the one Aileen brought in. And I'd never seen wooden Pick-up Sticks (with the directions) or a metal boot jack shaped like a black beetle. She said all these items were from her's and her husband's family.
Melody brought a baby doll that belonged to her aunt, Lucille (Sissy) Sieve. The dress on the doll had been made by Sissy's mother, Gustava Stinson, for Sissy to wear when she was a baby. Melody also brought grandmother Gustava Stinson's wool wedding jacket from the late 1890s and two white handmade slips that were embroidered with flowers and swirls and lovely decorations.
From talking to other staff members, I know we'll have old reading glasses and shaving mugs, thimbles, Zippo lighters, brooches and necklaces, as well as an old butter churn. From what I've seen already, there's no telling what amazing things we'll have
on display.
We'll even have book displays about family biographies, family cookbooks, and family reunions.
If you're into genealogy and family momentos, be sure to stop by during October and see the different displays we'll have for Family History Month. They'll bring back a lot of memories.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

We Always Like To See What Other People Are Reading

Once in a while I let my curiosity take me all over the library. The other day it made me stop in front of the "returned books" cart. I was somewhat amazed and impressed by what I saw. We're having a run on the Classics!
Look at these that had been checked out and returned:
The Great Novels of Mark Twain,
Edgar A. Poe's Selected Stories and Poems,
Steinbeck's stories (several),
Howard's End by E. M. Forester, and
Robinson Crusoe.
But the Classics weren't the only great books being read. How about:
Beloved by Toni Morrison,
Flower Net by Lisa See,
Dashing Through the Snow by Mary Higgins Clark, and
Dragonseyes by Anne McCaffrey.
Several of Anne Tyler's books had been checked out, including A Patchwork Planet. And several of James Patterson's books had been out, including Beach Road. Julie Garwood was another much-read author, including her book Fire & Ice.
There were other interesting reads that had been checked out also, such as:
Journeys of a Lifetime, a National Geographic book,
Who Moved My Cheese by Spencer Johnson, MD,
Hyper Kids by Lendon H. Smith, MD, and
Cross Creek Cookery by Marjorie Rawlings.
Now, isn't that an interesting bunch of books? We have a community with such a wide array of interests. It's also interesting to see how many people coming into the library will stop at the "returned books" cart before they go to the stacks.
We always like to see what other people are reading, don't we?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

The Controversy May Not Be Worth It

I told my friend Nancy the other day that I didn't think anyone read this blog. She told me it didn't create any controversy.
"Like what?" I asked.
"Well," she said (and I could see the wheels turning in her head), "like when we talked the other day about that woman with lipstick on her teeth, and that guy in the restaurant with food stuck in his teeth. Stuff like that."
"That's not controversial!" I said. "I talked about that woman the other day whose shirt tag was sticking up, and I politely tucked it in. I know I'd want someone to do that for me, and tell me about the lipstick on my teeth, as well as the stuck food. But that's not controversial."
"Yeh, but we both know it gets worse," Nancy said with a little smirk.
"Like what?" I asked. "Besides, I have to tie the blog in with library stuff."
She smiled. I thought it was a kind of evil-looking smile.
"OK," she said. "How about all those people who come into the library with B.O. and bad breath?"
"OK," I said. "There are some."
"And don't you have someone with toilet paper hanging from their shoe once in a while?"
"Well, haven't you seen a woman with her skirt hiked up to there?"
"Well, yes."
"And a guy who accidently forgot to zip up his pants?"
"Don't you have people come in with dirty eyes and boogers and long nose-hairs and hairy ears?"
"Oh, yeah. I do remember a guy like that."
"And how about all those old guys that sleep on the couches all day long."
"Well, they do that for sure!"
"And those people who sit at the computers with their pants down to there and their shirts up to here, and you can see their plumber's anatomy!"
"Oh, yeah! We do get to see that!"
Nancy smiled her evil grin again. "See, I told you so. Now, those are things you can write about that are controversial."
After she left, I sat there thinking about what she said. But you know, even if we do have people come into the library like that, the controversy may not be worth it.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Flavor of Fall and Food

It was my intention this morning to write about apples, because apples seem to symbolize autumn more than anything else. At least, to me.
I was lured into this thinking by my new copy of Victoria magazine and the gorgeous pictures of a Waldorf salad, a mug of apple cider, baked apple chips, a jar of apple butter, an apple crumb cake, and a lip-smacking deep dish apple pie.
So, I sought out the cookbook stack here in the library just to see what we have. What I found was better than writing about apples. I was amazed at the interesting cookbooks I found, and that's what I want to share with you.
When I saw the cover of Food for the Settler by Bobbie Kalman, it looked like a Christmas book, all red and green, with a woman of early times holding a steaming ball of something on a platter. But the inside was a surprise! Lovely old-fashioned, sepia-toned pictures of long ago, etchings and photographs and drawings. The contents spoke of Fishing the clumsy way, Sugar from the bush, Bread made with a loving touch, and (ah!) The apple harvest. Best of all, it has recipes.
I also found Campbell's Easy Holiday C0oking for Family & Friends, The Old Farmer's Almanac Blue Ribbon Recipes, and Cross Creek Cookery by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings.
Of course, I had to peek in the Confederate Receipt Book, a Compilation of Over One Hundred Receipts, Adapted to the Times. (Notice, it doesn't say recipes.) There are no pictures, but you'll find recipes for Apple Pie Without Apples, Slapjacks, and Spruce Beer, as well as remedies for dysentery, chills, sore throats, and camp itch. Oh, and for destroying warts.
One cookbook I really like is Cooking with Southern Celebrities, such as Teddy Gentry, the bass guitarist for the music group Alabama, tennis favorite Chris Evert, and author Alex Haley, as well as these people we all know: Richard Petty, Naomi Judd, Ted Turner, and Dolly Parton.
Another book is called Red-Flannel Hash and Shoo-Fly Pie. I shouldn't have to say anything else about that one, except it's great reading with lots of recipes.
For those who need a few modern appliances, I looked into the Better Homes and Gardens Good Food on a Budget, Slow Cooker Cooking by Lora Brody, and Country Kitchen Microwaving. Those seem to be about my speed now days. They all have apple recipes.
And last but not least, I looked in The All Seasons Cookbook, The Market Place by the Augusta Junior Woman's Club, and Keeping the Harvest, Preserving Your Fruits, Vegetables & Herbs.
It seems if I'm going to get carried away and buy a bushel of apples, I'd better have some good apple recipes and learn how to preserve apples. Of course, I could always do my old standby...wash and cut them up, splash them with fruit preservative, and bag them for the freezer.
Well, that's after I make that deep dish apple pie from my new Victoria magazine.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

I Can't Believe Today Is The Beginning of Fall

Where has the time gone?
I know there are lots of things to tell you about the library, but today I'm just piddling along, I guess.
You know how you feel when Spring comes, the breeze is warming up, the birds are crazy, and the flowers are popping out of all their little green leaves? Well, that's the way I get when Autumn arrives. I seem to have Fall Fever.
Now, don't get me wrong, it doesn't make me lazy. It just makes me...well, like I want to get outside and take a long walk in the fresh air, stare up at the blue sky (which doesn't have those big white, fluffy Summer clouds) and daydream. You know, the sky this time of year is really a different color of blue than it is in Summer.
So, as my poor brain struggles to write this blog, my "other" brain is thinking about outside.
By the way, if you get a chance, take a look at the display in the main lobby foyer. It's all about outdoors...hiking, rock climbing, historic sites, parks and nature. You can't miss the display. You'll see a small green camping stove and a pair of tan hiking boots.
We are gearing up, however, for October. We have big plans for October. And that's just around the corner. Eight days to be exact. The ninth day is October 1st.
I promise I'll do better tomorrow. Well, maybe not. Fall lasts a long time. Right up until Winter and we really don't have Winter here in South Georgia.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

What Is A Life? Genealogy Tells!

We've been working on next month's displays and events, because next month is Family History Month. All this made me think how much it ties in with genealogy and digging up the past.
Lots of folks don't like to do that. However, there are many of us who do and because of that, October will be an interesting month here at the library.
But more about that later.
There is also a group of writers who meet here once a month. This month author Keith Taylor will talk to them about memoirs and how to write them. That's getting your past down in writing, even if you don't leave it for the whole wide world. But I bet your family will be interested in what you have to say. They'll be interested to see if it's the same as they remembered it.
If you need help in writing those memoirs, check out Writing Your Life Story by Bernard Selling (808.066S). We have a few other books along that line also.
I've always been interested in other people's lives, which make me a lover of biographies. If you check around in our bookshelves, you'll find a great many, such as these:
The Woman Said Yes: Encounters with Life and Death Memoirs by Jessamyn West (B West),
The Story of My Life by Clarence Darrow (B Darrow), and
Rebel Prince Memoirs by Louis Ferdinand (B Ferdinand).
Be sure you look in the Odom Genealogical Library also. There you'll find:
Memoirs of the Life of the Right Honorable Sir James MacKintosh (G16.4 MI, II) and
Memories by Robert Barr (G16.3B). And a great many more.
We have biographies of many famous people...Tennessee Williams, Gloria Vanderbilt, Liz Taylor, Norman Vincent Peale, Willie Mays, the Kennedys, Robert Frost, General Eisenhower, Martin Luther King, Jr., Princess Di, the Bush Family, and Alan Alda, to name a few.
We even have biographies of people just as interesting, but whose names you might not have heard of until you see them on our shelves. Interesting reading, all of them.
Maybe reading biographies will make you wonder if you should write your memoirs.
What is a life? Why not tell your loved ones about yours? Leave something for the genealogy buffs to enjoy.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

I Want To Tell You Today About Thursday

That's right! Thursday!
In fact, do you know what the week of Thursday, September 17th, until Wednesday, September 23rd, is all about?
Here's a has to do with your rights as a citizen of the United States.
Maybe some of you guessed. It is Constitution Week and the 222nd anniversary of the Constitution's adoption.
Most of us who completed high school had to study the Constitution. But many of us who are now adults have forgotten what it said. This would be the perfect week for all of us to read the Constitution, a document for which our forefathers so painstakingly labored to create and perfect.
If you don't have the time to read the entire Constitution, you should at least read the first 10 amendments, because those paragraphs are collectively known as the "Bill of Rights."
Our library has volumes of information about the Constitution. And right now we have a display in the main lobby's foyer by Moultrie's John Benning Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution with posters and the flags of the original 13 colonies. You can pick up free handouts about the Constitution, as well as laminated bookmarks.
The library isn't the only place in town where Constitution Week is being celebrated.
On Thursday, September 17th, at 4 p.m., the First Presbyterian Church will be ringing its bell to mark the day and time when the Constitution was first adopted by the Continental Congress on September 17, 1787.
Then on Saturday, September 19th, at 10 a.m., a celebration will be held on the courthouse square. Members of the DAR will be dressed as patriotic symbols, such as George Washington, Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson. The Colquitt County High School choral group and the ROTC will also participate.
Why not put on your red, white and blue T-shirt and join the group on the Square on Saturday? Hold a copy of the Constitution in one hand and wave the American flag in the other.
After all, if it weren't for the Constitution of the United States, you wouldn't have any reason to be here.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Has The Flu Got You Scared?

Lots of people are scared of the flu this season. Me included. I know when the time comes, I'll be in line for my flu shot or shots, I should now say.
But this H1N1 flu stuff has a lot of people more scared than they normally are. And because of that, we here at the library are trying to help the public in any way we can.
In the long white hallway we have a wall display giving our patrons information about the H1N1 flu. I'm sure you've heard all this before, on the television, in magazines, and maybe even in your doctor's office. But it's important enough to say again.
The symptoms are fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, headaches, chills, fatigue, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.
So, what can you do to help yourself? Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially right after you cough or sneeze. Drink lots of fluids and eat food that's good for you. Avoid people who are sick, and try to stay calm.
One thing a doctor on Good Morning America said was, "Don't touch your eyes, nose, or mouth with your hands, because that's the best way to transmit germs." Keep that in mind.
When do you need to call for a doctor's appointment? When you have these symptoms.
And what will the doctor do? Well, he'll test you to be sure you have Influenza A (H1N1), and then treat you with anti-virals to help you get better fast. However, it would greatly benefit you to get those flu shots when offered.
I think one of the scariest things I've read is that you can make other people sick from one day before you have any symptoms to seven or more days after you feel sick. Just think how many people you could infect without even knowing it!
OK. So what are we here at the library doing to help curb this infection?
Our janitor goes around all day long disinfecting all the main "hand" areas. That means with a disinfectant-cleaner-deodorant he is wiping down all the entry doors, water fountains, restrooms, counter tops, computers (keyboards and monitors), walls, tables, showcases, windows - you get the idea. He even sprays a special disinfectant throughout the library.
And today I saw our shelver in the Children's Library taking books off the shelves and wiping them down. That's a job and a half.
We're hoping that between the two of us, you and us, we'll be able to help prevent the H1N1 from becoming worse in our community.
Has the flu got you scared? What are you doing about it?

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The Nines Are Here

I understand there are a lot of people out there who have made big plans for this once in a lifetime day...09-09-09.
My coworker said it's also going to be a big day for those who geocach. She said she and some friends are going to Tallahassee to an event on this 09-09-09 to a nine-minute meeting.
I bet if you look online, you'll see a multitude of blogs about this day, and there will be a multitude of marriages on this day also. There might even be a multitude of births.
So, what's so special about the number nine?
Well, nine is a composite number (do you know what that means?), its proper divisors being 1 and 3. It is 3 times 3 and hence the third square number.
Nine (9) is a Motzkin number. (What does that mean?)
It is the first composite lucky number. (Hasn't brought me any luck yet!)
Nine is the highest single-digit number in the decimal system. 9 = 1001 in binary. (OK.)
Nine is the atomic number of fluorine. (I remember that from school.)
A human pregnancy normally lasts nine months. (I remember that, too.)
Nine ball is the standard professional pocket billards. (Interesting.)
Cats have 9 lives. (At my house, that makes 18 lives.)
"Love Potion No. 9" was originally performed by The Clovers in 1955. (Yep.)
The word "K-9" pronounces the same as canine and is used in many U.S. police departments to denote the police dog unit. (And they're great dogs, too!)
Well, that's the end of my "nine" facts for now. If you have more you know, add them here.
(Wonder if anyone will notice I said only one thing about the library?)
Hope your 09-09-09 is a special day for you.
(Source: Yahoo!)

Thursday, September 3, 2009

It's Silly Frogs And Warty Toads

Since we have this hiking thing going on in our front foyer on the round table, it only seemed appropriate to have the glass cases filled with frogs and toads. After all, they're things you see when you go hiking and camping.
The cases fairly gleam with brilliant colors all the way from teal green to bright orange. And the frogs are made from wood, fabric, metal, glass, plastic, rubber, ceramic, and quite possibly stuff that we can't even describe. Oh, yes! There is a real petrified bull frog holding a harp, too.
There are three green ceramic frogs sitting in a circle around a candle. There's a three-foot, deep-green fabric frog, who can wrap his arms and legs around you. There's a wooden frog with ridges on his back, from Mexico, that can be played with a short stick as a musical instrument.
There's a key chain, a tall mug, a water globe, two jewelry boxes, a soap dispenser, salt and pepper shakers, a cookie jar, a cup and saucer with matching spoon, and several toys.
The frogs and toads have big eyes and silly grins. Don't all frogs?
The frogs and toads belong to our staff members. They represent remembrances from birthdays, anniversaries, vacations, children's gifts, whatever. Each frog and toad has been lovingly placed in the case and represents a special memory.
We couldn't leave it there, however. Since we're a library, we just had to include some books. So, across the top of the glass cases are a few books you can check out. Some are:
The Absent-minded Toad by Javier Rondon,
Grandpa Toad's Secrets by Keiko Kasza,
Jennifer Murdley's Toad by Bruce Coville,
A Frog Prince by Alix Berenzy, and
The Frog Prince Continued by Jon Scieszka.
And of course, my favorite, I Took My Frog To The Library by Eric A. Kimmel.
The next time you're in the library, take a look at our display of beautiful and interesting frogs and toads. They may be silly and warty, but we decided to share them with you. They'll bring a smile to your face!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

We're Gearing Up For Our Hiking Days

You know, we live just down the road from the Reed Bingham State Park. It's out there off the Adel Highway, probably about 40 minutes from town. Well, by the time you get to the Park Rangers office, anyhow.
If you've ever gone to the Catfish House to eat, then you know where Reed Bingham Park is. And if you haven't been to the park in a while, now's the time to gear up for great hiking days.
We have a neat display in the front foyer of the library filled with books about hiking. The fun part was when we set up the Coleman two-burner stove with the black frying pan and stuck a pair of hiking boots beside it. It gave me the excitement of getting out in Reed Bingham Park and walking the trails, looking for the gopher turtles and the butterflies and pitcher plants.
I want to tell you about some information at the circulation desk that I think you might be interested in if you love hiking.
It's a folder is full of information about Georgia State Parks and Historic Sites. It's part of the Library Loan Program. There's even a family pass which will allow up to four visitors to be admitted at NO CHARGE to any historic site operated by the Georgia State Parks, Recreation and Historic Sites.
The magazine in the folder covers all the information you'll need for camping accommodations, discounts, field trips and programs, and historic site listings. There's a calendar of events, as well as information about golf courses (they DO hike on golf courses!), pet policies, and reservations.
There's also a vehicle parking pass that you hang on your rearview mirror. But there is a catch to that one. It's only valid at certain parks, not at State Historic Sites, the Chattahoochee River NRA, Jekyll Island, Lake Lanier Islands, or Stone Mountain Park. But think of all the other places you can use it.
So, just come to the circulation counter and ask for the Georgia State Parks folder. It's on the bookcase behind the counter.
And you can also check out the Georgia State Parks website at or There's no telling what good hiking and camping stuff you'll find there.
Clean up those hiking boots and drag that back pack out of the back of the closet. September is a great time for hiking.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Do You Have One?

All across this great nation of ours, September is Library Card Sign-up Month. This morning we put up our wall displays and table displays. We've sent public service announcements to the radio and television stations, as well as the local newspaper. When the multitudes of people come in to get their new library cards, we plan to be ready.

Of course, I have some very interesting facts about Georgia's public libraries that I bet you don't know. How about these...

  • In FY2008, Georgians checked out more than 43.6 million items from their public libraries.
  • Almost 1.5 million kids attended one of the 41,300 events that Georgia's public libraries offered for children in FY2008.
  • 100% of Georgia's public libraries provide free high-speed Internet access to the public.
  • More than 6,300 public-access workstations are currently available at Georgia's public libraries.
  • In FY 2008, more than 270,000 individuals used public-access computers at Georgia's public libraries each week - more than 14 million annual users.
  • The numer of annual visitors to Georgia's public libraries in FY2008 far exceeds the number of visitors to many of the state's other attractions - combined.
  • There are 9.68 million people in Georgia; there are 3.8 million total households; there are 3.7 million Georgians with library cards, 2 million of which have PINES cards.
  • 3,109 Georgians work in public libraries.
  • 2,500-plus Georgians volunteer with public libraries.
  • 1,400-plus Georgians serve as trustees for local public libraries.

How about that! Public libraries are accessible to virtually every community in Georgia. There are 386 public library branches and service outlets, as compared to 388 golf courses, 178 Publix grocery stores, 168 Starbucks stores, 134 Walmart stores, and 63 state parks and state historic sites.

So! Do you have a library card? In these tough economic times, your library card will give you free access to books and computers, homework help, assistance with resumes and job searches, accurate financial information, adult education courses, assistance for new Americans, CDs, DVDs, and much more.

It's the smartest card you can have in your wallet or purse.

(Sources: Georgia Public Library Service, American Library Association