Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

127. My Own Personal 48-Hour Book Challenge

Monday, October 10th, 2016

This weekend started for me last Thursday.  I had two days off, then worked a day, then had two days off.  (This was because I worked 6 days in a row the previous week.)  So — I scheduled my own personal 48-Hour Book Challenge.  I managed to read and blog for 31 hours and 40 minutes out of the 48!  And it was just a lovely thing to do!

I got a great head start on Cybils judging.  And I had a lovely time.

126. I Should Be Reading!

Saturday, October 1st, 2016

What I love about Cybils judging — I really should be reading right now!

I’d better get offline and go do that!

124. A Cybils Judge!

Friday, September 23rd, 2016

Hooray!  I’m a first round judge for the Cybil Awards in the category of Young Adult Speculative Fiction!

I’ve been a Cybils judge four times before, but this is the first time for this category.  I’ve done Middle Grade Speculative Fiction and Fiction Picture Books.  This will be a LOT of reading!

The cool thing about that:  For three months, I need to feel guilty when I’m not reading instead of the other way around!

Another cool thing:  This is going to be much easier since I’m single and have an Empty Nest.  So it’s a *good* thing about those two things!  Yay!

90. Story Time at Old Town Square

Wednesday, April 20th, 2016

The first two weeks we tried, the weather didn’t cooperate, but on Tuesday this week the weather was lovely and we had a huge crowd of parents, grandparents, and kids at Old Town Square in Fairfax for Storytime.

I haven’t done a storytime in more than a month.  This is going to change in coming weeks, since one of my staff just retired.  But having a little time off from it reminds me just how much fun it is to read books to small children.

And I get to do this on my job!


85. Books, Books, Books!

Tuesday, March 8th, 2016

I have more books than I can possibly read in my lifetime.

But I love it this way!

My cup overflows.

82. Seussathon!

Thursday, March 3rd, 2016

Today’s Dr. Seuss’s Birthday!  I’m proud of our annual Seussathon at the City of Fairfax Regional Library.  And I just love carrying it out!

The idea was mine — spend the whole day reading Dr. Seuss books in the children’s area — and ask customers and staff members to sign up to do so.

Then my co-worker added to the idea by putting on Seussian activities in the meeting room in the afternoon — including Hopping on “Pop” — bubble wrap — and playing with Oobleck (cornstarch solution) and making Daisyhead Maisie headbands and things like that.  She also ordered Seuss bookmarks and temporary tattoos and bags, as well as Cat in the Hat hats for readers and Thing One and Thing Two headbands for kids.

One of the fun things is how great the readers are!  We had kids participating, staff members and patrons — all of whom were wonderful readers.

I personally took a turn when I noticed we didn’t have anyone available.  Let’s see, today I read <em>Fox in Socks</em>, <em>The Sneetches and Other Stories</em>, <em>Horton Hatches the Egg</em>, <em>The Foot Book</em>, <em>The Butter Battle Book</em>, <em>One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish</em>, <em>Green Eggs and Ham</em>, and <em>The Cat in the Hat</em>.  (And I didn’t think I’d been out there very much!)

Oh, and some of the children I got to read to were completely adorable!  They weren’t necessarily the usual story time crowd.  And unfailingly a joy to read to.

And don’t tell, but before the library opened, I sang a few songs from <em>The Cat in the Hat Songbook</em>.

It’s the sort of day that, looking back, definitely makes me smile.

I do have the best job.

80. What’s New in Children’s Books?

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2016

This afternoon I gave a talk at the library for a group of teachers on “What’s New in Children’s Books?”  It was so much fun to have an interested audience!  I went over the latest award winners and told about some new books I’m excited about and let them take Advance Reader Copies away with them.

It feels so good to share something I’m passionate and knowledgeable about with a group of interested people!

67. ALA Midwinter Meeting

Sunday, January 17th, 2016

Last weekend I got to go to ALA Midwinter Meeting in Boston!e

The first $500 toward the cost was paid by a scholarship from the Friends of George Mason Regional Library for staff to go to training.  I’m very grateful!

At the conference I learned lots of things, met fascinating authors, got to attend the Youth Media Awards, and sent home 101 books!

I was so blessed to be able to go!

66. Manuscript Submitted!

Friday, January 15th, 2016

WOO-HOO!!! Happy Dance!!! I just sent my math-related children’s book manuscript to the editor who requested it!

This does not mean she’ll accept it for publication.
It does mean that I finished it, and it’s in good shape!
And I’m very happy!

58. My Mom

Tuesday, December 15th, 2015

This year I was a judge for the Cybils Awards, in the category of Fiction Picture Books.  Publishers sent me many picture books to consider (the ones my library didn’t have).

The majority of those are going to the library.  But I selected the best to send to my two toddler nieces — and to my Mom.  My Mom has Alzheimer’s.  My sister, who helps my Dad care for her, requested board books or very simple picture books for Mom.  Apparently she can still read those.

I’m not sure the ones I sent are simple enough.  But I hope so.  I hope they will bring her some joy.

And that got me reflecting.

My Mom was the one who taught me to read.  Long before teachers got hold of me.  (I can still remember when I could read a particular set of word cards she’d made for me.  And her delight.  One of the words was yellow.)

My Mom was the one who taught me, by example, to read aloud to small children with expression, with joy, and with love.

I am sure I still slip into her cadences when reading aloud to children at the library.

It was my Mom’s idea to have all her kids take naps for an hour every day — but we could read during that time; we didn’t have to sleep.  Thus she got me in the habit of reading for at least an hour each day.

My Mom always wrote in each book she read the date she finished reading it.  (At least books she owned!)  Whenever she gave a book, she wrote to the giftee in the front, and insisted we do the same when we gave books to her.  So each book chosen last night was inscribed to her.

Yes, parents can instill a love of reading in their kids.  My Mom sure did!

And now, I hope that reading these simple, lovely books I’m sending will give her some joy.

And I have to also say that I’m so thankful for my Dad, who takes tender loving care of her, even though she’s definitely not the woman he married any longer.  And I’m thankful for my sister who lives there and helps.

Merry Christmas, Mom!  Thank you for the positive way you shaped my life.