"A library book, I imagine, is a happy book." Cornelia Funke

"Everything puts me in mind of a story." Ben Franklin

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Food Storytime for Families

Food Storytime. Yummy!


  1. The Runaway Dinner By Allan Ahlberg
  2. Lunch by Denise Fleming
  3. Orange Pear Apple Bear by Emily Gravett
  4. Armadilly Chili by Helen Ketteman
  5. The Cheese by Margie Palatini
  6. Who Stole the Cookie from the Cookie Jar? illus. by Christine Schneider

Thing 29: Google Tools

For this Thing, I chose:

Search Tools: Alerts & SearchWiki
Productivity: Calendar


I have never used Google Alerts or any alert service before. Yesterday, I tried to find a narrow enough topic to request alerts on and I came up with Steampunk. I am interested in reading more steampunk books to recommend to teens and I love the costumes and steampunk items people put together, so I'm happy to see more. Look at an amazing laptop here .

It was very easy to set up the alert, so no problem there. As of yet, I haven't received any alerts ( I set it to once a week), so I'll have to report back later.


I'm pretty impressed with this and I've already used it in a day to day search as a librarian. Yesterday, I played around with it, tailoring searches for Helen Humphreys (my favorite author), Edwardian gowns, and broadly, teen books. It was super helpful in getting just the results that I want when looking at topics that I Google often. With Helen Humphreys, I was able to eliminate another author with the same name. When looking at antique and reproduction gowns, I got rid of any made for fashion dolls. And with teen books, I could weed out commercial sites advertising certain books, and stick to lists from libraries and those in the know.

Tonight I'm doing a Family Storytime about food, and I looked for a song or action rhyme to use and I narrowed my search accordingly. I think that this is great!

I set up 2 Google calendars, a public one that has the Wentworth Public Library's teen summer programs on it (June-August) and a private one that has my workout schedule. I embedded that one in my IGoogle page so I can see which days I'm supposed to go to the gym and cycle or lift weights and which ones I can sit around and be a glorious slug.
I liked all these tools, but I think that they'd be most helpful to us personally or as individual librarians, rather than as general tools for the library. The calendars would be good to share if needed, but our Outlook calendars probably fill that function professionally. Of course, we could explain some of them to patrons who come to use the Internet. I bet many of them would love to hear about the SearchWiki.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Thing 28: Customized Home Pages

In our last round, I set up homepages in Yahoo and Google (top and middle). Yesterday, I changed my Yahoo page a bit by making my color lavender and adding a Flickr widget that shows off my pictures (note the tiny little wedding photo in the top left corner).

Moving on, I went back to Google and made a few little updates. I remember that this was a lot more fun to set up than the Yahoo page, with many more choices, and loads more widgets/gadgets.

After the touch ups, I opened a brand new PageFlakes page, which is far and away my favorite. It had the best background choices for me and I my pink floral pattern. Then I went crazy adding widgets, including ones for Twitter, Facebook, Netflix, and Delicious. I also put in ones just for fun such as Bakerella baking blog, virtual Fish pond (you choose the fishes' colors) and Librarian Mom's blog. next, I set up my profile, then went looking for pagecasts and people. I kept 2 pagecasts tabbed, one on Steampunk (Chock Full O' Steam), and one by a librarian with all kinds of great booklinks (Book Clicks by Leanne). I chose a few librarians and marked them as favorite people, but I see no sign of this anywhere.

I do need to say that when I was trying to view pagecasts, the site froze up on me and I had to close the program a few times. This was irritating, but searching Pageflakes was enjoyable enough that it didn't permanently put me off.

Gertrude Stein for children

Once a university professor announced to our class that Gertrude Stein wrote The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas, a book about an imaginary person. My friend John and I were completely horrified. I took for granted that Stein was widely known as a writer, Toklas as her partner and supporter in creative endeavors, and both as associates of such artistic greats as Pablo Picasso, Ernest Hemingway and the like. Although the prof. meant it innocently enough, we were very disturbed by the invisibility of this important couple. Geez.
So, I was excited to see Gertrude is Gertrude is Gertrude is Gertrude written by Johah Winter and illustrated by Calef Brown. Intentionally written in a style suggestive of Stein, with bold and colorful art done in acrylics, this is a somewhat odd and pleasing little book. My favorite parts include Basket the "popular poodle," the car named Auntie, and the quiet cow that ends the book. According to the publisher, this book is targeted to 4 to 8 year olds, but it seems to me that it would be better enjoyed by elementary age kids who are learning about art and creative writing.
Even if you don't normally read picture books, you should check out this loving tribute to Stein, Toklas and their society. Then tell me what you think!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Thing 27:Twitter

I love cupcakes! Twitter cupcake from http://www.tempyra.com/
I made a Twitter account in Round 1, but I haven't put it to any use since then. I have a Facebook page, and it has a built in Twitter (if you still call it that), so I use that instead. In truth, I don't even update that much because I never know what to say. I just don't lead such an exciting life.
Today I visited my Twitter account, and I began to follow others in the library and book world. I'm now following 15 people and groups including author Holly Black, YALSA, Harper Teen and interesting librarians such as your friend and mine Floating Lush. I have one follower. Yeah for my follower!
I picked out a cute yellow and pink background from Twitbacks to glamorize my Twitter page and added a Tweet about the book I'm currently reading. I also added a widget to this blog. More as things happen.
As of 2/27 I have 4 followers and have made 7 updates. :)

Visit me at http://twitter.com/cleery and follow me!

Thing 26: Join the 23 Things Ning

I joined the 23 Things Ning in the first round. Honestly, since then I have not used it much. Lately, I looked at the photos posted and left some comments on cute animals and a creative display for Banned Books Week, wrote a comment for a friend who just joined the Ning and added a BuddyPoke! avatar with changeable moods. Check her out Here

Looking for a group to join, I found nothing suitable so I screwed up my courage and started a new group called: Teen/Children's Librarians & more Things
Peer support for Youth librarians working on More Things on a Stick. We'll see if anyone actually joins it.
As of 2/27, no one has joined my group. :(

Friday, February 20, 2009

Thing 25: additions

The four things that I (officially) added are:

  1. For Statistics Collection: reader map from Clustrmaps
  2. A useful feature: contact form from Contactify
  3. From Widgetbox : a "This Day in History" widget
  4. Getting Social : I joined MyBlogLog
See my other changes in the posts below.
Adding my gadget from Widgetbox went smoothly. The only real effort it took was choosing the widget. I thought about adding one that is a searchable dictionary, or another that is a GRE word of the day, but I though that history would be most fun.
I joined My Blog Log because "When you visit MyBlogLog-enabled sites, "your photo shows up on the widget - a virtual calling card. Clicking on your photo leads to your profile and all the stuff you share." It took me awhile, since I needed to set up a profile, and I still don't know if I'm utilizing all the features that I could. I'd like to add a screen shot of this blog. The communities to join were slim pickings in the library department, so I joined a history one called "Edwardian Promenade."
I just checked back with My Blog Log, and 5 people have viewed my information. I had 2 contact requests, but one looked kind of shady and had sex as a tag, so I blocked her. I'm not sure what will come of this. Maybe more accidental blog hits. :)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Blinkx Video Search

As part of Thing 25, I went to http://www.blinkx.com/ and made this "wall" of Teen Book Trailer videos. I was able to search and "wall" all the things that they pulled up or go through and put my chosen videos in a play list that I was then able to wall. I chose the selective method and have trailers for you from Shattering Glass, 13 Little Blue Envelopes, Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie and lots more. Just mouse over to see what's what. What do you think? Do you like this? I think this would catch a teen's attention if it was on a library site or blog.

It was very simple to get the code for this widget, but getting it to work wasn't as easy. I made this yesterday evening, and when I pushed "publish post" in Blogger, it kept finding fault with the HTML code and wouldn't work. Today I did the same thing and everything went smoothly. Go figure. New technology requires patience. :)

Okay, what in the world?! When I published this before, it played what I had saved. Now that I've added commentary and I swear I didn't touch the HTML code, it's playing random video. This is starting to seem like more trouble than it's worth, or maybe I just have a low boiling point.

Okay, I did it over.

How many have you read? 43, I think

100 Books

Apparently the BBC reckons most people will have only read 6 of the 100 books here.

Instructions:1) Look at the list and put an 'x' after those you have read.2) Add a '+' to the ones you LOVE.3) Star (*) those you plan on reading.4) Tally your total at the bottom.

1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen (part)
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien X
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte X+
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling X+
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6 The Bible - (part)
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte X
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell X
9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman (First 2)
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens X
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott X+
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy X
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller X
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare (many, not all)
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien X
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulk
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger X
19 The Time Traveller’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell X
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald X
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens (skimmed)
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky X
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck X
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll X+
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy (First half)
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis X
34 Emma - Jane Austen
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis X
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden X
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne X
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell X
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving X+
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery X+
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood X+
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding X
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley X
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck X
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov X
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy X
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdi
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens X
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker (parts)
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett X+
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce
76 The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath X
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola X
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession - AS Byatt X+
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens X
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchel
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker X
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web - EB White X+
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (some)
90 The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint X+
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams X
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare X
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl X
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo
101. Portrait of Dorian Gray -
102. Last of the Mohicans - James Fenimore Cooper
103. Odyssey - Homer- X
104. Iliad - Homer-X

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

My blog=?

Using http://www.typealyzer.com/ to analyze me based on my blog, I learn I am:

ESTP - The Doers

The active and playful type. They are especially attuned to people and things around them and often full of energy, talking, joking and engaging in physical out-door activities. The Doers are happiest with action-filled work which craves their full attention and focus.

They might be very impulsive and more keen on starting something new than following it through. They might have a problem with sitting still or remaining inactive for any period of time.

Thing 25: Blogger's Toolkit

Due to advice in Thing 25, I've added a focus statement at the top of my blog telling people what it is about and a "Contact Me" widget (from http://www.contactify.com/ ), so people can reach me without adding a public comment. I've also put in a widget from http://www.clustrmaps.com/ showing a map of my reader's locations. The map is especially exciting! I love to see that I have readers at all, and their origins are just the icing (an inch think and delicious). Hopefully, the new "Labels" list will help folks find their way around more easily, as it lists my topics by the amount I've written about them.

I watched the videos on widgets by Robin Good's Master New Media and am reminding myself to go to Widget Box, Google Gadgets, and Blinkx and to maybe put in a wikipedia widget.

This Thing has a lot of possibilities. I could spend days on this one!

More to come.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

More Thing 24

How much have you blogged since you finished the 23 Things On a Stick?

On my library blog, I have blogged whenever I read I book that I really like or something notable happens in the book world. So, fairly faithfully, but not daily.

What do you like about blogging?
I like being able to share titles and information with others. I learn about such interesting things on other's blogs, and it's fun to think that some may enjoy mine. Thanks Floating Lush and DawnLorien!

Have you found other blogs to read?

I sure have. See my blog list at the bottom of the page.

Do you comment on others' blogs?

I do, if shyly.

Book Besotted Meez

Meez 3D avatar avatars games

I got my Meez to work, and I have to say that I like her. She won me over even though I didn't want a new avatar. I got to put her together choice by choice and then pick out her clothes. I think that the vintage outfit options are fun! Cleery Meez is supposedly plus size, which is laughable. I think they need to work on that. I wish she could hold some books, but I didn't see anythiing like that, yet. Apparently, I still like to play with "paperdolls!" Do you like the new Meez?

Monday, February 9, 2009

Thing 24: Refresh Your Blog

As you can tell by looking at my original blog (click link in the post below), my blog look has drastically changed. I've gone from a brown & parchment style design to my favorite color and lots of it. I previously used a Yahoo avatar and I changed this to a photo of myself. I will be changing the photo again soon. Unless I'm missing something, the information that you reveal about yourself and photo avatar that you choose in Blogger shows on all of your Blogger blogs. I wish that wasn't so, because I'd prefer to reveal only professionally relevant details about myself to the library world, but sillier and more individual things to those that want to to read about me rather than librarian me. See? Conversely, I don't want to put my unusual name up where anyone can read it, so I'm not going to. If it was to my library peers only, I would.

Even though I won't use an avatar doll as the blog avatar, I thought that I'd play with the suggested choices:
  1. Otaku Avatar Maker worked fine, but it's not my style.
  2. Meez shut down in the middle, and made my window close, but it was fun and I may go back and try it again.
  3. Pimp My Doll won't display the page.
  4. Dopple Me worked fine. Cute, but...
  5. Horoscope Avatar Maker: see above. She has a rabbit on her head because I was born in 1963 ( the year of..guess what?). I like her.
  6. The Doll Palace was a little confusing to use, and those dolls are just too darn skinny!
  7. Mess Dudes seemed easy. Not my favorite pictures, though.
  8. Doll Maker Code on first inspection, this is over my head.
  9. Aim Icon Maker easy to use, but I hate the pictures!

More Things on a Stick!

I will now be participating in the second part of the Library/Web 2.0 exercises originally known as 23 Things on a Stick. Last year, I completed round one in my former blog Libba Bray, Cormier and Me It was fun, and I wanted to go on, so I split my blogs by purpose. I now have a personal one and this renamed and redesigned library blog. So, keep your eyes on my page for more blogging changes and fun.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Minnesota Book Award Finalists Announced!

The finalists from the category near and dear to my heart, Young People's Literature:

  • Black Box (Delacorte Press/Random House Children’s Books) by Julie Schumacher
  • Julia Gillian (and the Art of Knowing) (Scholastic Press/Scholastic Inc.) by Alison McGhee
  • Saturday Night Dirt: A Motor Novel (Farrar, Straus and Giroux) by Will Weaver-
  • Twelve Long Months (Scholastic Press/Scholastic Inc.) by Brian Malloy

I am very excited to hear what will be chosen as the winner! My husband and I will be attending the April gala. If you are a Minnesotan, then you should too. It's fun!

To find the finalists in other categories: Click me