Saturday, February 26, 2011

How Does Your Garden Grow?

I love spring anywhere, but if I could choose I would always greet it in a garden. ~ Ruth Stout

The days are longer, the temperature is slowly rising, and the snow is melting. Though there will still be plenty of slushy days ahead, we know many of you are fired up and ready to start gardening!

Here's a brief list of favorites recommended by the members of the East Hampton Belltown Garden Club**, accompanied by a few similar titles you might also enjoy.

One Magic Square by Lolo Houbein**
Lasagna Gardening by Patricia Lanza
Small Plot, High Yield Gardening by Sal Gilberti
Gardener's Color Palette by Tom Fischer**
365 Days of Garden Color by Philip Edinger
Color in the Garden by P. Allen Smith
Complete Guide to Growing Tomatoes by Cherie Everhart**
American Tomato by Robert Hendrickson
The Heirloom Tomato by Amy Goldman
Flower Arranging the American Way by Nancy D'Oench**
Decorating with Flowers by Paula Pryke
Flowers Chic and Cheap by Carlos Mota
Bloom's Best Perennials and Grasses by Adrain Bloom**
The Perennial Care Manual by Nancy Ondra
Native Plants of the Northeast by Donald Leopold**

More to come on the gardening topic, planning ahead for gardening season, and our ongoing collaboration with East Hampton Belltown Garden Club.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Are You Ready to Save Energy?

Let's Get Busy...
Our town recently signed on to the Neighbor to Neighbor Energy Challenge, an exciting new community-based program to promote energy efficiency and use of clean energy. The friendly competition is for a good cause: helping local residents save money, cut energy consumption and reduce pollution that may affect our health and the health of our lake.

Fourteen Towns and We're One of Them
East Hampton, along with 13 other towns in our state, won a highly competitive grant from the Department of Energy to help more than 400 residents in our town reduce energy consumption and increase their use of renewable energy. The Neighbor to Neighbor Energy Challenge also features a rewards program for the town and community groups (like the library) who are working to get the word out and help our community achieve energy savings goals. When you participate, everyone wins!

First Step
For a limited time, you can sign up for a free in-home lighting visit that will replace an average of 15 inefficient incandescent bulbs. Email your name, address and phone number to and please mention you were referred by the East Hampton Public Library.

Keep On Stepping Forward
Click here to join the Challenge (or sign up at the library) to be at the front of the line to receive information on the latest energy incentives and financing programs, energy savings tips as well as invitations to local workshops and events. Website features will be added as the challenge reaches further into our community. We'll keep you posted.

If you have any questions, you can contact Kayla DeCarr at 860-372-4406.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Ten-Four, 1040

While They Last
The much sought-after 1040 booklets have arrived. Click here for a pep talk from the IRS about filing or here for information about other forms affected by last December's legislation.

Also see our earlier post for clicks and links to federal forms, publications, and taxpayer assistance sites.

For downloadable State of Connecticut tax forms, click here.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Books for Kids : Find Your Zone @ your library

The Marvels of Time Travel
Another Whole Nother Story by Dr. Cuthbert Soup blends great humor, superior invention, silly history, and a government spy chase all into one book. Meet Mr. Cheeseman and his family as they travel back in time to try to undo their family curse. They hit some bumps along the way, literally!

Read this book if you liked :
A Whole Nother Story by Dr. Cuthbert Soup
Ricky Ricotta series by Dav Pilkey
Falling In by Francis O'Roark Dowell
The Ghostwriter Secret by Mac Barnett

Chocolate, Toffee, and Sugar....Oh, My!
by Wendy Mass is a book for your senses. The author describes a candy factory, where a candy competition is going to take place, with such delicious accuracy you may want to eat the book! The book follows four contestants who must come up with the best new candy to win this ultimate sweet challenge!

Read this book if you liked :
The Talent Show by Dan Gutman
The Gollywhopper Games by Jodi Feldman
The Candy Corn Contest by Patricia Reilly Giff

More Book News
To find out more about new books for kiddos, check our "New Arrivals" section located next to the reference desk in the Children's Services area. You might also like to read or subscribe to Book News Newsletters. Click here for younger readers or here for older readers.

Newsletters are updated by the 15th of each month if not before. Book News is also a featured tab on the library's facebook page.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Let's All Hula!

Think Warm...
The National Weather Service forecasts mostly sunny skies for Saturday, February 19th and temperatures approaching 40 degrees. If this sounds more weather friendly than what we have all experienced this winter, come on down to the library and celebrate the coming of spring!

Make a Hawaiian Splash @ your library

Join us for a culturally-focused program that includes Hawaiian Island info and a dance lesson! Tiare Kahana presents; she has studied hula dancing since childhood and has been teaching hula for 11 years. Click here to register for this free, all-age program. Please do wear your Hawaiian shirts or hula skirts if you have them...

Books for Kids
Hula Lullaby by Erin Eitter Kono
Wolfmen Don't Hula Dance by Debbie Dadey & Marcia Jones
The Belly Book by Joe Harris
Calvin Coconut Series by Graham Salisbury
Night of the Howling Dogs by Graham Salisbury
Hawaii by Deborah Kent
Lydia and the Island Kingdom by Joan Holub

Mix 'n Match
Armchair travelers will enjoy the video titled Hawaii : an Island Symphony, located in our travel collection. Try Hula Workout with Kili if you'd like to introduce hula into your exercise routine. Vegan cooks might also like to explore Vegan Fusion World Cuisine.

Online Services
If you are interested in learning more about Hawaii, try AtoZ the USA, an online service offered by your library. Login using your East Hampton Public Library barcode number. You might also like to bookmark the site if you are a business traveler or a student working on a school report about any of our 50 states.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Hobby Corner : Quilting

Designs and How-to Advice
Quilting combines artistic endeavor with creativity. Here's a short list of latest additions to our collection. What better time than this winter to take on a new hobby or hone your existing skills?

Quilters Academy : To take a personal quilting class at home, try Harriet & Carrie Hargrave's two-volume set : freshman year and sophomore year. Each volume uses an easy-to-follow lesson plan format.

Jelly Roll Quilts and More : Color and style join to make an exquisite fashion statement. Author Kimberly Einmo offers clear directions and the gorgeous photos are certainly a plus.

Secrets of Digital Quilting : Quilter Lura Schwarz Smith and photographer Kerby C. Smith together offer advice on using your digital camera to create fabulous, one-of-a-kind printed fabric quilts. A great book for quilters who'd like to step it up a notch.

Simple Shapes, Spectacular Quilts : One of the latest from renowned textile artist Kaffe Fassett. Here, he explains how to use simple geometric shapes to inspire quilt design.

The Practical Guide to Patchwork : Learn how to experiment with different styles and colors for dramatic effect. Author Elizabeth Hartman walks you through twelve projects.

The library also subscribes to the bi-monthly magazine, McCall's Quilting. Each issue offers patterns, DIY instructions, and inspiration for all levels. The magazine balances the needs of quilters using different techniques : piecing, applique, machine or hand-sewn, and everything in between.

Surf's Up
If you're interested in the history of American quilts and quiltmaking, visit the Library of Congress:
Quilts and Quiltmaking in America, 1978-1996 : Enjoy interviews with American quiltmakers by clicking on sound recordings link.
The Quilt Index : Browse an image collection of American quilts by style, time period, pattern and more.

Post by Bev Simmons

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Maple Sugaring Season...

A Sure Sign of Spring
In our state, sugaring season starts in early February and extends to late March, depending on the weather. Next time you stop by the library, pick up a copy of the 2011 Guide to Connecticut Sugarhouses; the 2010 version is available online.

Each brochure provides a listing of sugarhouses open to the public; the brochure is organized by county. Two such sugarhouses are located in East Hampton!

About Sugaring
If you are interested in sugaring as a pastime or as a consumer of sugaring's yummy outcomes, here's a short list of books that may be helpful. Two of the listed titles are due for release later this month* :

Backyard Sugarin' by Rink Mann
Sugartime by Susan Carol Hauser
The Maple Syrup Book by Janet Eagleson
Maple Syrup : Farmstand Favorites : Over 75 Farm-Fresh Recipes*
Maple Sugar by Tim Herd*

Books for Kids
Sugaring Time by Kathryn Lasky
Sugaring by Jessie Haas
Sugarbush Spring by Marsha Wilson Chall
Sugar on Snow by Nan Parson Rossiter
Maple Moon by Connie Brummel Crook
Sugar Snow by Laura Ingalls Wilder

Surf's Up
2011 Hebron Maple Festival
Cornell Sugar Maple Research & Extension Program
Maple Syrup Producers Association of Connecticut

At top is a public domain image of Currier & Ives print : Maple Sugaring

Monday, February 07, 2011

Got the February Blues?

Good News! It's a Short Month!
If you've grown weary of shoveling the snow, battling miniature glaciers, and enduring unfriendly weather in general, stop by the library this February and give yourself a break. Programs are scheduled for adults, kids, and families.

Saturday Afternoon Concert
Saturday, February 12, 2 p.m.
'New Folk' group Horizon Blue performs this Saturday. The band is led by award-winning songwriters and multi-instrumentalists Peter & Monique Hill and features Mark Annulli on bass and Jim Henry on resonator guitar.

Songbirds of the Northeast
Thursday, February 17, 1 p.m.
Naturalist John Root will present both recordings and photographs of our native and introduced songbirds. Learn how to recognize these birds by their songs and calls, and discover the roles of vocalization in bird lives.

Make a Hawaiian Splash
Saturday, February 19, 1 p.m.
Think warm and breezy. Think palm trees and soft sand. Think shorts and sandals. If you get the idea, join us for our February vacation 'luau show' featuring hula dancer Tiare Kahana. Program includes a participating sing-along, percussive fun, and a dance lesson! Click here to register.

An Afternoon with the Gillettes
Thursday, February 24, 1 p.m.
Learn more about William Gillette, actor and playwright, best known for his portrayal of Sherlock Holmes... and let us not leave out William's beloved wife, Helen. Harold & Theodora Niver perform as the Gillettes.

Just for Kids
Wonderlab, Vacation Week Edition
This simple science program, entitled Otis and the Elevator, is especially for kids age 4 or 5. Work with ropes and pulleys and discover how Otis created the first elevator.

Fribrary Time! What's a Brownfield?
Meet with members of East Hampton's Brownfields Redevelopment Agency to learn more than one answer to this question. If you are in 4th or 5th grade, be prepared to use your computer skills, solve puzzles, and learn a little something about local history.

Sunday, February 06, 2011

A Bit of Info for Kids...

Who Knew Homework Could Be Fun?
Need homework help or are you just looking for more info on your favorite topic? Check out Kids InfoBits, a database especially designed for beginning researchers in grades K-5.

Using Kids InfoBits
This database has a kid-friendly feel and offers lots of information about people, places, animals, and other subjects. The search engine uses colorful icons and a subject-tree search to help you find info on topics that most interest you. For example, click on the icon for geography and find subtopics; continue your info exploration from there!

Here are some of the other neat things you can do using Kids InfoBits :

  • type in a search term for a more precise or advanced search
  • find out how to cite your sources
  • learn how to evaluate information on the web
  • decide on a topic for a school report
  • look up a word in the dictionary.

Access Kids InfoBits
Click here and enter your East Hampton Public Library card barcode number to use the database.

About Kids InfoBits
Access to this database is provided by iCONN, a service of the Connecticut State Library and your local library in partnership with the Department of Higher Education.

Post by Kathleen Sands

Saturday, February 05, 2011

Boredom Busters!

The Latest in Wii...
Here's a list 'o games new to the collection; place your reserves.

Boom Blox -- Donkey Kong Country Returns -- Epic Mickey -- Just Dance 2 -- Kirby's Epic Yarn -- Super Mario Galaxy 2.

We'll keep you posted on the next batch, due for arrival within the next 10 days. Games circulate for 14 days; no renewals.

Gamer Magazines
The library subscribes to GamePro and Nintendo Power; great for those looking for tricks and cheats.

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

News From Our Favorite "Meteorologist"

Punxsutawney Phil Predicts an Early Spring!
Our nation's most famous and so it is claimed, longest living groundhog, today offered spectacular news to anyone who has grown weary of winter. Spring is on its way...

For more information about Groundhog Day, here's a few websites:

The National Weather Service
Groundhog Day (Official site of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club)
National Geographic Daily News

There's Another Groundhog In Agreement
Our state has its own weather predicting groundhog; thank you very much. Link to news about Chuckles VII, CT's "official groundhog" who apparently agrees that spring is near. Of note, the library has a circulating pass to the Lutz Museum in Manchester.

Books and Reading
Click here for a short list of Groundhog Day books for kids.

At the Movies
An amusing article about the Top 10 Groundhog Day Movies, courtesy of Vanity Fair. Click here to find the top 10 in our DVD collection. Oddly enough, all are rated PG.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Mothers and Daughters

"A mother's love for her child is like nothing else in the world. It knows no law, no pity, it dares all things and crushes down remorselessly all that stands in its path." ~ Agatha Christie

Since we're caught in the grip of cold, wintry, and relentlessly stormy weather, books about the more important aspects of our lives can help take the edge off. Here's a few recommendations for moms or their book groups.

Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother by Amy Chua
Goodness, gracious; this one sure has helped launch a global debate! So far, local readers say they weren't necessarily sure whether they wanted to phone the authorities or take notes...

Cinderella Ate My Daughter by Peggy Orenstein
How might popular culture influence girls? Listen to a podcast interview with the author courtesy of the Diane Rehm Show, broadcast on public radio station WAMU.

Curse of the Good Girl by Rachel Simmons
The author writes for mothers of middle school girls who, the author proposes, may think it is more important to be liked than to be an individual. Simmons also wrote Odd Girl Out.

Memoirs About Mothers by Daughters
The following might also spark conversation and debate. Click on the title and look to left for a plot summary and book review clicks.

Imperfect Endings by Zoe Fitzgerald Carter
The Center of the Universe by Nancy Bachrach