Reaney Days

Reaney Days

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

A Good Read!

Joyfully, there are still days of excitement in Libraryland even after 38 years!  A patron came by today to stock up, she is an avid reader.    A few weeks ago I had recommended a book to her, Forty Acres by Dwayne Alexander Smith.  I had not seen her since she borrowed and returned it and was disappointed not to get her opinion. I am always curious how a book is received based on my recommendation; obviously reading tastes are all over the board.  Did she like it?  Did she hate it?  Did she even read it?????   

Long story short she was absolutely thrilled by the novel giving it 5 stars on the

Goodreads website!   

If you are sitting poolside or have sought the shade of a tree and are looking for a page turning summer read consider Forty Acres.  Come borrow it from us or download it to your electronic device but, as we like to say here in Libraryland, check it out.

Speaking of finishing a book……..years ago a patron, a very conservative, pillar of society, ladylike woman, borrowed a book.  When she returned it she was appalled by the content; seems it was a bit risqué.   Wanting to diffuse the situation I asked the horrified soul “Did you finish it?”  Her reply?  “YES!”  Oh. My. Word.  I still laugh every time I think about that dear, gentle woman and her unintentional adventure to the seamy side of reading

Monday, July 27, 2015

Community Pride

When I came out of the bank this morning and looked up and down the street how fantastic it was not to see a proliferation of weeds growing out of the sidewalks! Instead, what I saw was a neat and tidy quiet stretch of sidewalk; a welcome sight not only for us who live here but also for those passing through.

Early this afternoon I ran into Mayor Barnes and he wanted me to be sure and express profound appreciation to the many volunteers on behalf of the village board for a job well done on Saturday.

There are many small communities struggling in upstate New York for a myriad of reasons and we have to be realistic when it comes to finding “easy” solutions. There are none. Complaints and criticism comes easy; proactively working together to move a community forward involves hard work.

Having said that, a community who takes pride in itself stands a better chance of finding “renewal” as opposed to a community who simply does nothing.

St. Johnsville has exhibited this necessary “pride” on any number of occasions. The hundreds of people who came out for the Memorial Day parade and service is a perfect example. Another would be the selfless work undertaken at the Benefit Club to help those with needs greater than their own. The Methodist Church recently hosted VBS and it is my understanding the numbers were excellent. These kids were not just coming from the Methodist Church but were representative of the various congregations throughout the village. The summer park program is also a great source of community pride. Every morning I see kids either walking or riding their bikes eagerly headed for the park; headed for another great day of games and crafts with the occasional field trip tossed in. I understand the marina concerts are seeing outstanding crowds and justifiably so. We are so fortunate to have that lovely green space and what a perfect way to spend a summer evening; music, fellowship and food. It does not get any better than that.

Think of ways for you to show your community pride. When school starts up plan to attend a sporting event. I’ve not seen a basketball game since Steve Zimmerman played. What I knew about basketball then would have filled two lines on an index card. However, I was smart enough to realize that when “our” side of the bleachers cheered I should start shouting with the rest of them; you could do the same Do you like bingo? Head down to the American Legion on Tuesday nights. If you can’t stay to play, grab some supper to go. Veterans need our support and Tuesday evening bingo is one way to show it. After tonight, there are two more concerts at the marina. The music begins at 6:30PM; take a lawn chair and enjoy the evening.

When you can, patronize the businesses we do have instead of bemoaning what we don’t. As an example, someone was discussing insurance on another post recently. My car and house insurance are held by Steve Stortecky at Judy King Insurance on Main Street. Why? I’ve known Steve since high school and while I might be able to get it cheaper somewhere else or on line I find it of great comfort to know that when I have a question I can pick up the phone or drop by and discuss my concerns face to face with Steve and his staff. When business is over, we talk about chickens, haying and country life.

My pal Barbara Stagliano and I breakfast together 6 mornings a week. We bounce between the Hungry Bear Café and Bridge Street Bakery. Sure, it would be cheaper to stay home and eat a bowl of Cheerios but what I would miss would be the comradery and conversation to be found in a hometown restaurant. When you go to places like Parkside, Lombardo’s or Ripepi’s you are not just a customer, you are welcomed as a friend whose business is appreciated.

We are richly blessed with outstanding emergency services; police and fire departments and ambulance. On more than one occasion their professionalism and skills have provided me with a necessary steadiness in the face of overwhelming crisis. You will see them all at the upcoming Fireman’s Fair. In between your bowls of clam chowder and plates of fried dough be sure and say thank you. These fine men and women stand in the gap so the rest of us don’t have to.

I could go on in this same vein but I think you get my point.

Finally, the ultimate way to show community pride is to treat each other with respect and tolerance, kindness and care ALWAYS, even in the face of tremendous differences of opinion and philosophies. We are never all going to agree on everything but we can work towards building consensus with regard to the issues that separate us. It will not be easy, but anything worth doing takes commitment and hard work. Some people saw Saturday’s clean sweeping weed pulling project as just that; a chance to get rid of some dirt and debris. I saw it as an opportunity to take one step down the road towards a more positive St. Johnsville; one step by which we can all be proud.

Monday, July 6, 2015

What is Up With the Numbers!?!?!?!?!?

You may notice as you wonder the stacks that some of our books are numbered. There are many contemporary authors who write series of books repeating the same, central character. A good example is James Patterson and his Alex Cross character. Since the release of Along Came a Spider in 1993, introducing Cross, there have been close to 30 novels based on the character. Stone Barrington, the lead character in Stuart Woods’s novels, is approaching 40 books. Popular author David Baldacci has four or five series. In that case, we number and letter. For example, his King and Maxwell books are all numbered followed by the letter (B). These series are not limited to adult fiction; it carries across juvenile and young adult fiction. Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney comes to mind as do the vampire books of Stephanie Meyer. Many of these books build on the action of the previous novels. As a reader, there is nothing more frustrating to realize you have read them out of order. We can also provide reading lists so patrons can keep track of what they have read, what is coming up next in case we don’t have the next title and need to interlibrary loan it. Today was particularly busy here in Libraryland and, to quote Martha Stewart, that is a good thing!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

End of School

Today I had two absolutely wonderful experiences at a couple of local schools. This morning I was pleased to be invited to a special morning program at DH Robbins Elementary School. My three co-guards and I were recognized for our service in playing a role in keeping our children safe on their walk to school. I know I speak for us all when I say it has been an immense pleasure, a great honor and tremendous fun; even in the occasional torrential downpour and subzero temperatures! This evening found me at the Johnstown High School for the 8th grade promotional program. It is official; my great niece Emma will start high school in September. I am so proud of her. Throughout 7th and 8th grade she has carried a 94+ average keeping her on the high honor roll. More importantly, she is a kind, thoughtful, and respectful young woman. The end of a school year can be bittersweet and that was evident this morning at DHR in the face of its upcoming closure. The flip side of that profound feeling of loss and disappointment is hope; hope and excitement for the future. In the faces of all the children I saw today, from the wiggly giggly students of Kate Yoder to the newly minted high schoolers in Johnstown, I saw potential, potential for great things, both big and small, and that should give us all hope for a very exciting future.

Photos Wanted

Speaking of graduation……In the St. Johnsville Room of our museum, we are missing in our collection of school group photos senior class graduation pictures from the following years: 1943, 1948, 1949, 1950,1951, 1953, 1954,1955,1956, 1957,1958, 1963, 1966, and 1968. We would LOVE to have copies of these missing years. If you have an original, we can make a copy and return the original to you. If you can help us out please call the library @ 518-568-7822.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

It is here!

Our beautiful wooden quilt block has been installed. Drive by and check it out. It is lovely!

OESJ Wolf Pack Nation

We had a howling good time here in Libraryland today when 63 members of the OESJ Wolf Pack Nation stopped by for a visit. The students were accompanied by their teachers; Mrs. Eakin, Mrs. Blanc, Mrs. Pedrick, Mrs. Snell and several assistants. Like a caravan of nomads riding a camel train two busses, one big one small, rumbled up and out piled dozens of happy, excited children. I spoke to the children about getting library cards and how to take care of the books they borrow. Always a hit is when I mention the most dangerous creature on earth for books; babies! Endlessly drooling, chewing, ripping and occasionally having “diaper issues” babies can be terrors, BUT, I stressed how incredibly important it is to begin sharing books with them at an early age. The diaper talk always makes them giggle After we shared a story the kids then had the opportunity to browse. This is always a blast as dozens of books came flying off the shelves were eagerly paged through. Each of the kids received a book bag containing a library card application, book marks and a brochure listing our hours. I hope to see them over the summer. As I told the kids, your brain is like a muscle and you have to keep it exercised and reading is a good way to do that. When they left, it was quiet as a tomb and I spent the greater part of the day re-shelving. Kindergarten comes to call on Thursday; good times!