2019 A Year of Reading

A New Year is a fresh start.  It’s the time to make those good old New Year’s resolutions, the time to pick up some new habits (and maybe even get rid of some old ones), and most excitingly, the time to start a brand new reading challenge full of possibilities!  This year, why not make your reading challenge the best one ever?

The first step in any well planned reading challenge is to set your reading goal.  How many books do you plan on reading in 2019?…25? 45? 105? This is your basis. There are many free apps that can help you keep track of what you read and even keep your reading stats from year to year.  One popular app is GoodReads, but you can read more about others here.  

The next step in any well thought out reading challenge is deciding what you want to spend your year reading.  Do you want to read more of those classics that everyone “should read?” Do you want to expand your reading tastes to other genres?  Or do you want to spend a relaxing year of only reading genres and books that you love?

Here’s some reading challenges that might inspire you:

Other Ideas:

  • A-Z Book Titles
  • A-Z Author Names

The possibilities are endless.  Comment below and tell us what you are looking forward to reading in 2019!

-Jessica Bielen, Adult Services Librarian

New Year, New You!


Dear Livingston Library Community,

2019 is a few days away, and as with the start of every new year, it is the time to reflect and make resolutions for personal improvement.  Do you want to get healthier? Maybe learn a new craft? Improve your chess game? According to an article written by Dan Diamond for Forbes, although approximately 40% of Americans make at least one New Year’s resolution, only about 8% stick to them.

The Livingston Public Library is here to help! To get you started on your personal journey, the Library’s first adult program for 2019, New Year, New Body, is scheduled for January 7th, 2019, at 7:00 PM. Chitra Rochlani, certified personal trainer and fitness coach will share lessons and strategies for fitness through nutrition, exercise, & mindset coaching.

For those with crafty resolutions, on Tuesday, January 15, at 11:00 AM, the Library is offering a Tunnel Book Workshop with the dynamic Creativity Caravan.  Participants will craft their own tunnel books, using greeting cards, postcards, photos, and other personal items to take scenes from their own lives and create a 3-dimensional memory book.

Remember our myriad of resources – in print, media and online – are available to help you achieve any goal you may have.  And our talented, dedicated staff is ready to happily assist you.

Happy New Year!
All the best,

More Than Just Books: December 2018 Adult Program Wrap Up

December may be a busy (and chilly) time of the year, but the library is still active with numerous Adult Programs.  

This month we had a bunch of exciting programs!  On December 3, we enjoyed a lecture Paul Cezzane: The Father of Modern Art. We learned about the ways that he used form, color, and structure in his artwork, as well as how he paved the way for 20th Century Modernism.

Our team of librarians also answered your technology questions at our Tech-Help Drop In.  Are you having trouble downloading that e-book from Hoopla or Libby?  We’re here to help!

Health is also important!  This month we learned about a Blueprint For Men’s Health and basic medical issues as presented by Dr. Rowland Chavez, MD and Dr. David Gallinson, DO of Summit Medical Group.  

And for those worried about sending their child to college, our 529 Plan lecture on December 8 put worries to rest by presenting a wealth of valuable information for prospective college parents.  

Our inner artists came out at our Adult Paint Night where we painted a “Nighttime Owl Landscape” with artists from the Art Kids Academy.  The results were absolutely stunning.

But this isn’t all!  We also met up for our Adult Coloring Group, hosted numerous Book Clubs, our monthly Senior Happening, and so much more!  

Stay tuned for more programs coming up in 2019 and don’t forget to check out our website to see what’s coming up.  We can’t wait to see you!

—Jessica Bielen, Adult Services Librarian

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Ready, Set, Create! Toolkits To Go

Did you ever think you would be able to borrow a sewing machine or a fully functioning robotics kit with your library card?  Well, at the Livingston Library you can, along with ukuleles, engineering kits, fiber arts, paper crafts, puzzles and more with our Ready, Set, Create! Toolkits for Emerging Artists and Inventors!

Each toolkit contains all the materials and instructions you need, just add your imagination.  Our available Toolkits include:

  • Ukulele:  Learn to play the ukulele with instructions on how to tune and play it.
  • Sewing:   A sewing machine, fabric and step-by-step instructions to get you started.
  • Code & Go Mouse Kits:  A fun way for children to develop foundational coding skills.  Create a maze, then program the mouse bot through it to reach the cheese!
  • LEGO Robotics:  Build and program a robot with LEGO WeDo and Scratch.
  • Snap Circuits:  This toolkit makes learning electronics easy and fun.  Follow the colorful pictures in the instruction book to  build projects such as FM radios, digital voice recorders, AM radios, burglar alarms, doorbells, and more.
  • Makey Makey:  Turns everyday objects into touchpads, limited only by your imagination!
  • Strawbees: use engineering skills to build projects with ordinary drinking straws.
  • Paper Marbling: everything you need to create beautiful swirled designs on paper.
  • Quilling:  Art form in which strips of paper are rolled, shaped, and glued together to create decorative designs.  Quilling can be used to decorate cards, pictures, gift bags or boxes — the list goes on.
  • Puzzles: Alphabet puzzles, dinosaur, number and animal puzzles and continent puzzles for those looking for a little more of a challenge.

The cold, winter months are the perfect time to experiment and learn something new.  Stop by the Youth Department and take home a toolkit today!

-Gina Vaccaro, Youth Services Librarian

New Year, New Body!

As 2018 winds down to a close and 2019 is quickly approaching, it’s time to start thinking about New Year’s Resolutions.  This 2019 why not make health your #1 priority.  The Livingston Public Library will be hosting a New Year, New Body program on January 7 at 7pm to help you with your 2019 healthy body goals.

Chitra Rochlani, certified personal trainer and fitness coach will share valuable lessons from her 80lb weight loss journey and effective strategies for weight reduction and fitness through nutrition, exercise and mindset coaching, especially for time starved women.  Registration is now open. Reserve your spot so you can get a head start on your New Year resolution to transform your body!  

Looking for some reads to get you into the health and fitness mindset? Check out:

The Gift That Keeps On Giving


Dear Livingston Library Community,

Still looking for the perfect gift for the literature lover in your life? Consider making a donation to the Library’s Tribute Fund in their honor. This gift of knowledge assists the Library in its efforts to provide the public with books not otherwise available.

Your gift to the Tribute Fund may be for any amount. If you wish to provide a new book for the Library, the minimum contribution is $35. You can select the category, perhaps a book on botany for the avid gardener, and a bookplate will be placed in each volume to commemorate your tribute. An announcement of the gift will be sent to your designated honoree to inform them of your generous and thoughtful gesture.

In the words of Bertrand Russell, “The good life is one inspired by love and guided by Knowledge.”
All the best,

Rock On! Musical Story Times with Guitar Joe

If you have attended a live performance of Guitar Joe’s Musical Story Time, then you know how lucky we are to have him at the Livingston Public Library! GuitarJoe

Joe O’Brien’s love of rock music started at an early age; he began playing guitar when he was only 12 years old.  Over the years, he has been in many bands, playing the usual NYC circuit.  He also performs in Brooklyn with his wife Ashley in the Dottie Parkers – Joe plays ukulele while Ashley sings.

Look for the next session of Guitar Joe’s Musical Story Time starting up again in February, 2019.  Until then, here’s a clip of Joe performing We’re Going to Be Friends at the library.

Rock on!

-Gina Vaccaro, Youth Services Librarian


Travel Companions


Our Digital Collection can travel with you.  They make great travel companions.

Music, comics, videos, magazines, books and audio books in digital format — streamed or downloaded — to your mobile devices, tablets, laptops and/or desktops.

They are light, luggage-wise, but hefty, selections-wise.  These travel companions are engaging, accommodating and always on-the-go 24/7.  They’re free and most importantly, advertisement-free!

Keep On Learning - Travel Companions
Travel Companions — RBdigital, Hoopla and Overdrive/Libby

There are plenty of choices.

If you’re the kind who likes immersing in music, Hoopla might be the biggest secret you’d come to know.  A lot of patrons have not realized that Hoopla is a vast resource of songs and music pieces.  It offers a ton of albums from new releases to old favorites, from well-known performers and from different genres.

You can find soundtrack albums from recent movies (e.g. Mary Poppins Returns, A Star is Born, Bohemian Rhapsody), from sought-after Broadway Musicals (e.g. Hamilton, Wicked, Pretty Woman), and from past movie releases (e.g. Purple Rain, Love Story, Saturday Night Fever).  There are tunes from animated features (e.g. Studio Ghibli music, Animania albums, Sailor Moon, cartoons) and even theme music from TV programs (e.g. Mad Men, Cheers, The Twilight Zone)!

Keep On Learning - Travel Companions
Hoopla is a great resource for music

You can enjoy this year’s music recordings as well from popular artists, holiday songs included (e.g. Twenty One Pilots, Taylor Swift, Andrea Bocelli, Lauren Daigle, Eminem, Michael Buble).  You can listen away to old time favorites from the likes of Frank Sinatra, Led Zeppelin, U2, Stray Cats, Bob Marley, Prince and John Coltrane.  There are amazing finds in classical and instrumental pieces from well-known symphonies and orchestras.  And for the much younger ones, Hoopla offers Kidz Bop, almost all the Disney and animated movie songs you can think of, Veggie Tales, Raffi, Sesame Street, lullabies, nursery rhymes and so much more.

So there you go, something like songs from The Greatest Showman or Tupac Shakur or Children’s Music and Lullabies can be played all day long.  In earbuds or whole-house loud privacy.  All playlists are selected by you,  u n i n t e r r u p t e d  by ads.  Through your Livingston Library card!

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Ebooks and Audio books are offered by Hoopla and Overdrive (also known as the Libby app)

Of course, when one combines music with some reading, you’ll be in travel heaven!  You can augment your listening experience with ebooks (graphic novels too!) or enjoy audio books from two sources with a comprehensive list of titles:  Hoopla and Overdrive (or Libby which is Overdrive’s app for smartphones and tablets).  Browse through their collections and you might be surprised at what you would find there for any age.  Hoopla has a great selection of recently published books and upcoming authors, all available immediately on demand, while Overdrive has numerous popular high-demand titles, available in different formats.

If you’d prefer materials with a mix of words and images, you can flip through digital magazines from RBdigital while lovers of comics, graphic novels, manga and some illustrated series can make great finds in Hoopla and Overdrive as well.

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RBdigital is a great resource for magazines

RBdigital has magazines that offer easy reads, substantial content and specific interests (e.g. popular beauty and style magazines, Reader’s Digest, The New Yorker, PCWorld, American Girl, Minecraft World, Boating, Newsweek, Beadwork, etc.).  It’s perfect as chill companions in crowded airport lounges or by colorful beach lounge chairs, and as distractions while commuting, when waiting during pick-up times, or while standing in long lines anywhere!

Keep On Learning - Travel Companions
Hoopla offers comics from well-known publishers

Now to spend time with alternate universes, browse titles in Hoopla under the comics category.  There you will find trending characters like Aquaman, The Walking Dead, Doctor Who, Naruto, Avatar, Big Nate, Saga, Garfield and numerous choices from DC Comics, Marvel and other well-known publishers.  Overdrive also has graphic novels and illustrated books, among which are Amulet and Dr Seuss.  A pleasant drive down memory lane comes with this one when you’re into something like Archie comics or Buffy the Vampire Slayer!

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Movies and television programs can be checked out from Hoopla

Then for those times when you’d rather watch something, you can check out Hoopla for shorts, kiddie videos, movies and television programs.  Some examples are the latest seasons of TV shows like Doc Martin and The Librarians (ahem!), mystery shows like Vera, Poirot and Agatha Christie, favorites like Shameless, Anthony Bourdain, Spongebob and Avatar, documentaries like Always at the Carlyle, Arranged, works by Ken Burns, learning options from The Great Courses and PBS, and exercise videos from Jillian Michaels.  Movies include 2018’s RBG, and The Miseducation of Cameron Post, foreign films like The Elephant and the Butterfly and Monsoon Wedding, classics like Charade and Chinatown, plenty of horror movies, plus tons for the kids like The Velveteen Rabbit and 10-minute shorts from Mo Willems.

At this point, we hope you can imagine being curled up in your cozy spots, or getting a much needed respite from stressful transits, with these wonderful resource companions.

There are plenty of options indeed.  For all ages.

Streamed or downloaded.  Totally advertisement-free.

To go on trains, planes, and automobiles, on dreamy yachts and fishing boats, too!  And the best part with these items is that you don’t have to worry about losing the copies.  They automatically get checked back in, at the end of the loan period.  Nothing more to worry about.  You can relax and just enjoy their company.

With these thoughts and now that you know more about these great resources from our Library, we wish you happy travels!

     — Janea Agbayani, Adult Services Library Specialist

For more information, visit www.livingstonlibrary.org/digital-collections/

Scan Smarter


Dear Livingston Library Community,

The Livingston Public Library is constantly looking for ways we can make your visit fun, fulfilling, and fluid. This includes searching for the latest technologies to improve your library experience. I am pleased to announce we have implemented new barcode scanners at our main desk!

What does this mean? For those of us who like to store our library and loyalty cards on our smartphone, our new scanners are now equipped to read your library card barcode number directly from your device.  As always, the Library wants our members to have a seamless experience. This upgrade will truly support our mission to offer the very best customer service. So please feel free to add a picture or store your library card barcode on your smartphone. We will take care of the rest.  We look forward to seeing you soon!
All the best,

Book Displays @ the Library

IMG_0024Are you looking for your next read but aren’t quite sure what that read is?  The Livingston Public Library has many book displays located throughout the building that you can browse.  This month our Librarian Archana has displayed books with red and green covers that begs to ask you, “Have you RED a good book lately? or How about reading GREEN?”.

Archana has displayed wonderful titles such as Geek Girl Rising, Thinking in Numbers, and many more. So why not try reading in the color of the season and give one of these books a try!  

Still unsure of what to read?  We have a surplus of other displays that you can browse, and when in doubt, you can always ask one of our librarians who are full of bookish knowledge.  So come on down to the library where your next read awaits!

P.S.  Don’t forget to let us know what you’re reading in the comments below!

-Jessica Bielen, Adult Services Librarian