Earlier this week we kicked off our new offsite book club Read It & Eat! A book club designed for busy people on the go who are looking to discuss a quick read while on their lunch break from work or running errands. For our first meeting, we met at Livingston Bagel during lunch time where we talked about Solane Crosely’s collection of light essays, Look Alive Out There, and we had a blast!
If you missed out on the book talk and lunch, don’t worry! You can join us next month where we will be discussing Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris, a collection of essays that the New York Times says “reveals a writer who is capable, not only of being funny, but touching, even tender too.” This next meeting will also take place at Livingston Bagel located at 37 E Northfield Rd at 12:00pm on Monday, March 25.
Books are available for you to check out at the library’s Patron Services Desk. And you can register here to ensure that a chair is waiting for you!
Hope to see you there!
-Jessica Bielen, Adult Services Librarian
*The Livingston Library staff provides the book and the discussion, the attendees are responsible for their own food and drink.*
We are super excited to announce that author Lynda Cohen Loigman will be visiting us on February 7 @ 7pm. Loigman is the author of two novels, The Two Family House (2016) and The Wartime Sisters (2019).
The Two Family House tells the story of two sister in laws who live in, you guessed it, a two family house! They end up getting pregnant at the same time by accident, and when a terrible blizzard strikes, end up delivering their babies inside the home at the very same time. But then something happens…something that changes their lives FOREVER.
The Wartime Sisters takes place during the early days of WWII and follows the stories of two sisters. One of the sisters is an officer’s wife and the other an army widow who takes a job in the armory campus as a soldier of production. As the war wages on, the sisters begin to harbor resentment towards each other. Then one day, a figure from the past appears, exposing secrets in their lives.
Loigman has received excellent praise for both of her novels. The Two Family House was chosen by GoodReads in March 2016 as Best Historical Fiction Novel of the month and was nominated in the GoodReads 2016 Choice Awards in Historical Fiction. Pam Jenoff, NY Times Bestselling author of The Orphan’s Tale has said “Loigman skillfully chronicles the complex sibling bonds and rivalries, the secrets we keep and truths that set us free. Loigman’s strong voice and artful prose earn her a place in the company of Alice Hoffman and Anita Diamant, whose readers should flock to this wondrous new book.”
The Livingston Public Library’s Get Lit book club read The Two Family House for their January book discussion and absolutely adored it, unanimously agreeing that the novel was extremely hard to put down.
The Friends of the Livingston Public Library will have a limited number of copies of The Wartime Sisters available for purchase the day of the event. For more information, check out our calendar here, we hope to see you there!
Life is busy. After a full day of working or running errands, cooking dinner, and getting everything settled for the evening, who really feels like coming back out at night for a mid-week book club? But what if there was a book club during the day, where you could stop in on your lunch break?
Adult Services Librarians Jessica and Katie are excited to announce the Livingston Public Library’s first Read It & Eat book club! An offsite book club that meets at a local restaurant during the afternoon. Perfect timing for those on their lunch break, those out and about running errands, and/or those waiting to pick up their children from school. After all, you have to eat lunch anyway, right? Why not spend it eating and discussing a great book!
The first Read It & Eat! book club meeting will take place at Livingston Bagel located at 37 E Northfield Rd., on Monday, February 11. We will meet at 12pm and the discussion will begin at 12:15pm. By now you’re probably wondering “But if I’m so busy, will I have time to read a book?” & “What are these library folk reading, anyway?”
The first book will be Look Alive Out There by Solane Crosley. It’s a collection of short essays Glamour raves about. Seriously, they’re quoted for saying “Whether she’s spying on a neighbor’s kid, crashing a shiva, or freezing her eggs, Crosley toggles effortlessly between hilarity and heartbreak.” Doesn’t that just sound wonderful?
So whether you have time to commit to reading the book cover to cover, or only end up reading a few essays out of the collection, pick up a copy at the Livingston Library’s Patron Services desk. beginning January 7, and join us!
*The Livingston Library staff provides the book and the discussion, the attendees are responsible for their own food and drink.*
–Jessica Bielen, Adult Services Librarian & Katie Neylan, Head of Adult Services
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!
Have you ever had dreams of running your own book club but ended up overwhelmed instead? The Livingston Public Library is here to help! We offer a Book Club in a Bag service that is here to end your book club frustrations once and for all. Book Club in a Bag contains everything you need.. In each bag there are 8 copies of a single title, an author bio and discussion questions. Current titles include Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, Jeannette Walls’ The Glass Castle, Graeme Simsion’s The Rosie Project (to name a few). Explore the full selection on our website at https://www.livingstonlibrary.org/book-club-in-a-bag. Just add some friends and get ready to host the book club of your dreams. This service is available to Livingston cardholders, and the bags can be checked out for 28 days.
Check out what the Livingston Public Library librarians are reading on our new book talk Instagram series, LiviLit! In the latest episode of LiviLit, librarians Jessica and Gina discuss this month’s Get Lit book club choice Funny in Farsi by Firoozeh Dumas, a memoir about growing up as an immigrant in America. To find out more about the library’s book clubs, check out our website here.
Be sure to follow our Instagram @LivingstonLibrary to be the first to see new LiviLit videos and other fun things that are going on in the library!
Dr. David Robinson was met with an incredibly interested audience for his informative and engaging talk on NJ’s changing weather. He touched upon potential climate change impacts on health, agriculture, water and other natural resources, species, and other areas. Dr. Robinson spoke about different factors affecting climate change, saying, “Preponderance of evidence suggests climate change is occurring and humans are responsible for a significant portion of recent changes.”
Dr. Robinson ended the presentation by providing information and brochures on how interested individuals of all ages can contribute to the monitoring of weather/climate conditions in the local region by participating in the Community Collaborative Rain Hail and Snow Network (Cocorahs is a community based network of volunteers of all ages and backgrounds working together to measure and map precipitation).
He also gave a list of useful websites to check out for anyone interested in learning more:
We all know that with April, comes the rain. After sharing stories about clouds, Miss Gina taught the class the science behind rain clouds. See the cloud rain!
4/26 | Mediumship Demonstration
Ordained Spiritual Medium and author of the book Speaking From Spirit, RoseMarie Rubinetti Cappiello gave a talk on mediumship to a crowd of ninety-eight people.
A professional in her field, Rosemarie conducts classes at different locations on various spiritual, psychic and energetic topics. She has done thousands of private medium readings and demonstrations throughout NJ, NY, and Conn. Currently, she is an Adjunct Professor at Montclair State University, teaching yoga in the Phys. Ed. Dept.
For the demonstrations, Rosemarie asked the audience if anyone had ever gone to a medium, and several in the audience raised their hands. She passed the microphone around to a few people who then briefly relayed their experiences. After, she began to tune into the energy around her and said she felt that someone named Daria was speaking to her. One woman responded that it was her deceased aunt.
Another instance of this was when a Chinese woman stood up and asked if Rosemary could sense anything about her. Rosemary said that either she or someone in the family was artistic. The Chinese woman then exclaimed that her brother did calligraphy, and in the eyes of her parents, was “the perfect son.”
4/30 | Get Your Woman On
Did you know that isolation can quickly turn into loneliness? Doctors, scientists, researchers and educators are paying close attention. In fact, loneliness has been penned “the next epidemic”, and is directly linked to a whole host of health issues, including dementia and mortality. This inspirational talk by Carol Kasperowitz, a renowned motivational speaker, Founder of Retreats Women Want, Life Coach, and Teacher of the Year, mainly focused on how women in their 50s and beyond can avoid the mistake of being afflicted by loneliness in their later years.
Carol spoke about how being alone, or a “homebody,” can be dangerous for women as they get older. She has found that when women age, their motivation, desire, ability and confidence to meet new friends and form connections, wane.
In her own words: “The older people get, the more isolated they become. The physical changes are just a part of it. Children and grandchildren move on, friends can no longer be relied on for connection, because they too, are transitioning to changes. Spouses pass away, or there may be conflict with children.”
Carol encouraged the women in attendance to become “doers”:
They’re patient: Friendship takes time and effort!
Avoids watching TV during the day.
Notices patterns in journal when bored.
Phones at least 1 person a day. Avoids texting.
“Comments,” Doesn’t “like” (on FaceBook).
Volunteers, gets involved and feels needed.
Schedules friendship dates on calendar.
Goes outside, exercises at least once a day.
Has courage to be imperfect.
Her tips for being physically and socially active:
Walk outside every day
Wave to your neighbors
Join a gym/yoga/meditate
Go to the local pub
Volunteer. Donate. Cook something for someone.
Host a fundraiser event
Have a girlfriend sleep-over
Go hiking, camping, trailing
Sign up for a class/event/retreat
Look at a stranger, smile, and hold it
Plant flowers, vegetables, herbs
Work that core and exercise!
Join a book club
Meet with congregation after church
5/1 | Yakety Yak
Eleven second and third-graders enjoyed discussing Debbi Michiko Florence’s Jasmine Toguchi: Mochi Queen. In the story, Jasmine is determined to help pound the sweet rice so that it can be used to make a dessert called mochi, even though her family tells her that she is too young.
Amanda and the children discussed rules and whether or not they agreed with Jasmine that this rule was unfair. Half the children felt that it was okay to limit some activities for certain ages, while others thought there should be no age limits. Amanda and the children compared how Jasmine imagined mochi pounding to be to what actually happened when she was allowed to pound the mochi. For the activity, Amanda guided the children in using mochi flour (no mochi pounding!), sugar, and water to make the recipe found at the end of the book. Everyone agreed that it was delicious!
Breath in…hold…breath out. Miss Gina shared stories about mindfulness in this week’s Little Bookworms Elementary Enrichment class. Gina shared the enchanting story, Anh’s Anger by Gail Silver and the inspiring tale, What Do You Do With An Idea by Kobi Yamada.
To help children relax and calm their minds, Gina taught the children how to make “Mindful Jars.” She used recycled water bottles, clear glue, water, food coloring, and some glitter to create beautiful jars for the children to use to help them relax before bedtime, or whenever they need to take a mindful minute.
4/12| Raw Food Workshop
With the assistance of raw food nutrition author, coach and chef Karen Ranzi, M.A, thirty-five eager attendees learned how they could incorporate the raw foods lifestyle into their routines and eat their way to healthier, energetic, and more vibrant selves.
Karen Ranzi is an award winning author, internationally renowned speaker, raw food coach, certified raw food chef, speech and feeding therapist, and the creator of SuperHealthyChildren.com and the NJ Raw Food Support Network. She became a passionate advocate for the raw food lifestyle when she saw that a plant based diet helped heal her family members from life threatening-illnesses.
During the workshop, Karen spoke about the general poor health that afflicts our families, including problems caused by processed and refined foods (with the consumption of acrylamide ), as well as nutrient loss. Karen explained that a whole plant nutrition is beneficial due to healthy protein sources, drinking more water, and fiber-rich foods that are dense in various nutrients and minerals. According to Karen, fresh, unprocessed fruits and vegetables offer many health advantages such as increased energy, stamina, resistance to illness, increased attention span, improved digestion, better sleep patterns, preventing diseases, feeling younger, and more.
4/14| Cell Phone Photography Workshop
The two hour session led by Heidi Sussman, an exhibiting photographer, instructor and mixed media artist who combines natural and digital media with her images, began with a slide presentation covering the cell phone as a photographic tool.
Discussing the elements that constitute a strong photo, Heidi explained that “Your cell phone is just another tool to create photos; you need to understand the rules of photography to create good images.” To help with this process, she went over the basic elements of a good photo, such as lighting, composition, contrast, and a focal point.
Heidi shared some important guidelines for taking better cell phone pics including keeping its simple, showing depth, shooting from a low or high angle, aligning subjects on a diagonal, and capturing close up detail. The second half of the workshop covered apps that can be use for the photo editing process to enhance images, or for creative and artistic results. Utilizing one of her favorite apps, Heidi ended with a hands-on session with the app Snapseed.
4/17| Get Lit Adult Book Club
“What’s the first thing you think of when you hear the word “mud?””
That’s how Librarian Karen deWilde kicked off our compelling Get Lit book discussion of Hillary Jordan’s Bellwether Prize winning debut novel, Mudbound.
Organic Granny Smith apples, organic sunflower seed butter, and sunflower seeds were used to create silly edible creepy creatures. Teen volunteers washed and cut the apples while Gina was reading, then the children used their imaginations to put their creepy creatures together. Various candies attached with the sunflower seed butter helped decorate and give the creatures some character. The children enjoyed eating their masterpieces and parents were happy it was (mostly) healthy.
4/18| Senior Happening: The Stephen Fuller Quartet
Over 120 attendees were treated to an afternoon of entertainment when the talented Stephan Fuller Quartet performed crowd favorites, such as Love is Here to Stay and Send In The Clowns. Composed of Nick Scheuble on drums (Rockaway, NJ), Belden Bullock on bass guitar, and Tomoko Ohno on piano, the quartet was a hit, with people remarking how wonderfully talented they all were. One woman reminisced with tears in her eyes as the band played Stardust, explaining that it had been her wedding song many years ago.
Enjoy a short clip from the performance, as the quartet plays their version of Frank Sinatra’s Fly Me To The Moon.
***Senior Happening is made possible in part by Funds from the NJ State Council of the Arts/Department of State, a Partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts, and administered by the Essex County Division of Cultural and Historic Affairs.
4/22| DIY Earth Day Terrariums
Teens had a wonderful time making terrariums with recycled jars, living plants, and cute animal figures. It was a beautiful spring day, so Teen librarian, Karen Dewilde, took the group outside to gather suitable plants. Karen used her knowledge of gardening to talk about the precautions necessary when gathering plants from nature. Each participant chose their plants and added layers to the terrarium to create a unique little world.
To do something different this month, the Yakety Yak members were asked to read and bring their favorite book to discuss at the book club meeting. Most of the second and third graders chose fiction stories, but one child brought his favorite book, a non-fiction book about the history of flight. To begin the discussion, youth librarian Amanda asked the children to share why the book they brought was their favorite. During the discussion, children rolled a giant dice that had questions printed on each side. They then had a chance to answer questions about their fiction book’s setting, genre, and their favorite character. For non-fiction books, the questions included what the child’s favorite fact from the book was and whether or not this book was a good book about the topic.
The Video Game Design program kicked off its first session with a great group of kids (ages 9-14) and some teen volunteers. These kids will meet every week through April and May to learn about computer programming while creating their own video games. During the first session, the kids created a simple animation as an introduction to the coding platform, Scratch. Next week, they will be making a racing game.
4/3 | Xtreme Readers Book Group: Grades 4-5
The group read Tim Federle’s hilarious and heartwarming Better Nate than Ever, a story about a Broadway musical-loving eighth grade boy who is sure his stardom awaits if he could just leave his unfulfilling small Pennsylvania town and dysfunctional family behind, and head to NYC. The group enjoyed the book and are eager to read the sequel, Five, Six, Seven, Nate!. Youth librarian Gina discussed topics such as families and siblings, best friends, bullying, musicals, and New York City. She also presented the author’s biography for a look into his own experience in Broadway. Readers enjoyed watching Federle promote Better Nate Than Ever in his interview with the president & producer of Disney Theatrical Productions, Thomas Schumacher as they ate their snacks.
To celebrate uniqueness, Miss Gina taught the children how to create salt painting name art.
4/5| Springsteen and His Layered Lyrics
Facing a crowd of Bruce Springsteen fans, Professor Prudence Jones from Montclair University presented a lecture on Bruce “The Boss” Springsteen’s music, focusing on the lyrics and the folk songs his own music stems from.
Some examples Professor Jones presented were: Blind Alfred Reed’s song “How Can a Poor Man Stand Such Times and Live” was about the hard times of the Depression, but Springsteen borrowed the last refrain from that song and used it in the context of Hurricane Katrina; Springsteen borrowed from Irish immigrant Patrick Glimore’s song, “When Johnny comes Marching Home” ; and other artists that influenced Springsteen were Woody Guthrie, Curtis Mayfield, Hank Williams Jr, Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly, Clarence Clemons, and Bob Dylan.
Another interesting fact Professor Jones pointed out was Springsteen’s use of Appalachian English in his lyrics, with words such as “we’uns,” “you’uns,” “y’all,” “them’s,” “young’uns,” and “hain’t.”
This was the very last meeting of Coffee & Crime, our popular, long-running mystery book club due to our reference librarian, Ariel Zeitlin, venturing out of the library to pursue other goals.
To wrap up the book club, Coffee & Crime talked about a St. Patrick’s Day selection, Ghosts of Belfast by Stuart Neville: an emotionally charged story of an IRA hit man being haunted by the ghosts of twelve innocent people who want him to avenge their murders. It was a customarily lively, sometimes impassioned discussion of a truly compelling book (though not for the faint of heart.) Longtime participant Helen Farber brought oatmeal cookies and the group all agreed to pretend they were Irish scones.
At the end, the members talked about their favorite selections over the years, including Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger, Still Life by Louise Penny, and Malice by Keigo Higashino. It was a bittersweet, but satisfying end to a great run. We wish the best of luck to Ariel in her new position and recommend our three other adult book clubs, Get Lit, Let’s Talk About Books, and The Cookbook Club.
3/26 | Tween Spring Holiday Origami: Gr 4-6
After finding out that her 4-6th graders had little to no experience with origami, Youth Librarian Anna guided the tweens through a fun experience of making origami frogs and rabbits, and gave them instructions to make an origami hydrangea at home. Several parents requested that more origami programs be held and said their children had a wonderful time.
3/28 | Little Bookworms: Gr K-1
In our successful first session of the Spring, Youth Librarian Gina Vaccaro shared some of her favorite picture books featuring birds, including the brand new, thoughtful, yet silly Wordy Birdy by Tammi Sauer, the sweet tale of friendship, Bird, Balloon, Bear ,written and illustrated by Il Sung Na, and Grumpy Bird by Jeremy Tankard.
Children used their math skills to measure out bird seed, and with help from Teen Volunteers, stirred in corn syrup, flour, and water. The children spooned the feed mixture into small paper cups that were prepared with string attached. Once the mixture dries overnight, the feeders can be hung up outside to feed our feathered friends!
The group had a wonderful time– children and parents thanked Gina for such a fun, educational program.