Monday, November 30, 2015

12 Days of Library Christmas

one of our library book trees from last year

I read this awesome blog post from the fabulous Amber Teaman and it got me thinking.  I love her leadership style and love that she thinks about how to give to her staff so they know they are appreciated during this holiday season.  

Inspired by this post, I've been thinking about how I can incorporate this idea in my library.  I have some really amazing senior student library assistants this year.  I can celebrate the last 12 days of school before Christmas break with this idea by starting THIS Thursday.  AmberTeaman mentions in her post that "if I can make these three weeks a little less stressful, then that's what I want to do." I feel the same way about my library.  For my seniors, these weeks will be filled with research papers and testing, not to mention the family, relationship, holiday expectations, and other various life stressors they carry.  Yes, Virginia, stress is REAL for our students, too.  

I can't spend a ton---I have about 20 assistants this semester throughout the day--and I don't want them to really think that is what it is about anyhow.  More than anything, I want them to get a smile, and know they are thought of and appreciated.  Based on her list, here is my list of things I'm considering for my student assistants celebration days. 

embossed #2 pencils (I'm thinking of having some made that say "Like a Boss")
donuts (yeah, a new Dunkin' Donuts just opened here making this an especially exciting option)
homemade pumpkin bread mini-loaves (I have a pan that makes 18 at one time)
candy canes (maybe traditional AND pickle juice flavor just for fun?)
hot chocolate bar
cinnamon roll waffles (easy if you take your own waffle-maker & use store-bought dough)
handwritten card of appreciation
TicTacs (maybe minions or the snowman poop idea?)
Nacho day (queso in a crock pot, perhaps?)
Stockings (Dollar Tree!  and we will get those day 1 and decorate them with names during class, I think--that way each day's goodie can be put in them.)

Who knows what all I'll end up after a trip to the Dollar Tree (I'm a huge fan of DT!) but I know I want to have a few interactive things and I know free food is always a hit with teens.

Basically, I want them to remember in the midst of all the chaos & busyness,  life is FUN and full of JOY & WONDER. I hope it will be a lesson they carry with them as they leave me and go out into this big wide world in June. And then, I hope this will be a lesson they share with others in their adult lives, as well.  

Saturday, November 28, 2015

I've been thinking

It is fabulous to have an entire week off for Thanksgiving break.  Add that to the list of things for which I am thankful. Generally I make a huge to-do list of things that must be accomplished when I have a break. As a solidly Type B personality, I don't really ever expect to finish that list, but it does help me to have a framework so that perhaps I am able to get something done.  

This week I allowed myself to just let the week unfold, and it was GLORIOUS.  I'm going to take a virtual page from this blog post that is new to me as of today despite the fact that it was written about 3 years ago.  Eh.  I'm Type B, what can I say?



My week untethered to clocks and "musts". I went to bed whenever I wished and woke up the same way.  I drank all the coffee.  I cooked what I pleased. I read what I wanted whenever I wanted. Divine, really. 


I had primo reading time this week.  Joy! I read Libba Bray's The Diviners, which is a work of genius.  This had been on my TBR list for quite some time, but when the sequel arrived in my office last week I knew the time had come to move it up to the Read Now section of the list.  I've had the pleasure of meeting Libba Bray on more than one occasion. I've heard her speak and attended dinners with her at librarian bookish things.  I adore her, and while I absolutely don't fool myself into thinking she remembers me or this incident, we have shared a "Foxy" satin jacket joke and that counts for something, right?  This book is just the most.  The abso-tute-ly most.  Paranormal historical fiction set in NYC in the Roaring Twenties with badass female characters?  Yes, please! I was completely swept up in this book.  

On the l-o-n-g journey "back home" for Thanksgiving with the in-laws, we listened to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, which is now available on Audible.  Anyone who knows me knows I love me some HP, and the audiobook makes it easy for the whole family to enjoy it on the road. 

I'm still working on Brene Brown's Rising Strong.  I read this in bits and spurts because there is SO much amazing brilliance in it that I need to ponder and give myself time to really take it all in so that it becomes a part of me. 

I've also caught up on several blogs/sites I follow like YA Buccaneers (which is how I came across the Katy Upperman site) and Austin Kleon (who never fails to inspire). 


Hubby and I rented Love & Mercy last night.  Even though I had heard parts of Brian Wilson's life story, this movie really brought it to life.  Wow! What a story!

I watched the Pretty Little Liar upcoming season teaser show, too.  Not worried about the haters, y'all.  I love this show and am eagerly awaiting the coming season.

I have become completely obsessed with watching these videos this week, too.  Watch with earbuds. I was especially touched by Giulia and Elijah's story (perhaps because I work with high school kids) as well as this one, and this follow-up---which for some reason isn't showing up on the main site for me anymore, so I had to go to youtube.


Homemade chicken noodle soup  that is truly amazing and will spoil you from eating any other recipe (I'm pretty sure the sherry, cream, and rosemary are the real stars of this show) and pumpkin bread that is as perfect for breakfast as it is for dessert.  Both are easy & fabulous & make my home smell scrummy.

Thinking about

So many things. Do you ever feel as though you are quite possibly on the cusp of something amazing?  Like just over the edge of your current thought is an idea that is really something special? That pretty much explains where my thoughts are right now.  I wrestle a lot with balance in life.  I feel like I have a fairly good handle on it most of the time, but only because I am continually mindful. Striving to attain goals vs. mindful living. It can be tough. Maybe this is why that idea dances on the peripheral rather than bounding fully-formed into my conscious. I'm a work in progress, y'all. 

I'd love for you to share what YOU are currently doing!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


This is the latest edition of our NISD Library Showcase.  Each school librarian in the district contributes a few pics of some of the amazingness going on at the library. I hope you enjoy it!