Ho ho ho!

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Saturday was our holiday party. Given that we had just planned and put on our Halloween party a scant 6 weeks before, I’ve been a little holiday-partied out, but time cares not one whit about what I think.

Our decorations were fantastic. Disagree if you like, but they were super-jolly.

We had Santa…

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and his sleigh…

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and some presents, of course.

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We had paper chains (don’t worry, they were made from books that were in poor condition).

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Even my cruddy dreidel from last year made an appearance.

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It was amazingly festive.

On the agenda were crafts, games, storytimes, and a visit from a special visitor from the North Pole.

Representing the Tribe, I read two of my favorite Hanukkah books:

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The Hanukkah Mice is a bright, easy book for younger children, full of colors and simple words. They loved it. Later, when we had some older kids, I read THE Hanukkah book, the #1, best ever, king of the mountain of Hanukkah books, Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins Of course, it’s still a long book, so I had to skip some of the main parts, but the kids loved the pictures (Trina Schart Hyman FTW, and it was a Caldecott Honor), and I explained a little bit more about the holiday and the traditions. (I read one book, then Coworker J read The Snowy Day, and then I read the other book.)

We wanted to keep the crafts fun and easy. It had hit us that we hadn’t done anything for New Year’s Eve last year, so why not do a noisemaker? (Why not send home something loud with the kids? What parent wouldn’t love that, right?) So with beans, paper plates, glitter glue, and a popsicle stick, you too can make a rattle to ring in the new year.

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Because our city is also so diverse, we wanted to make sure we had a Kwanzaa craft, too, and we found a great one that turned out to be exceptionally popular:

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But then, but then, but then, what are crafts and stories compared to Old St. Nick himself? One of our security guards, who is, and this goes without saying, a massively good sport, put on the Santa Claus costume and chatted with our little boys and girls as they visited him one by one.

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It was a sweet day. We had a great turnout and a lot of fun was had, by everyone, even your Grinchy Blogger.

In other news, friend J stopped by today for a surprise visit, because he was in the area, which was fun. I knew him at my pre-library job, and it’s always fun to show pre-library job friends my new self at my new job.

And then! We (us library folks, and everyone else in the city government) received an email from the mayor, who said that because we were all good little boys and girls, the government would be closed on December 26!  Hurray! Personally, I don’t mind working on the 26 (I take one for the team, the good Jew that I am, and work so that everyone else who really wants to be off for Christmas and the surrounding days can be), but I won’t say no to a bonus day off!

Links:

In the top spot: Clear your calendars – Toni Morrison has a book coming out in April, and Judy Blume has a book coming out in June.

When I sent this link to Mama Bear, she said, “Without a doubt, the books had a tremendous influence on me as a girl. I can’t think of any series that meant as much to me,” because they were so relatable.

There are sooo many hot buttons touched off with this one article. But let me say here: I support filters on public library computers for children and teens, and I support the right of adults 18 and over to watch pornography on public library computers, if that’s what, er, tickles their pickles. I’ve said that here before. But it is the library’s responsibility to think carefully about the building’s layout – in my library, the adult computer lab is in a room on the first floor; children’s and teen spaces are on the second floor – and the parents’ responsibility to be aware of their and their childrens’ surroundings. (If you are taking your children into the adult computer lab, you need to be aware of what they might see on screens.) I’ll get off my soapbox now.

Accio booty call!

Words are things of beauty.

I could definitely see Hermione listening to The Breeders.

The only HP character Rowling felt guilty about killing off is…?

From Friend D:

This could be great, depending on casting.

Never date a writer!

From Mama Bear:

By the Book… on Pamela Paul. Oh, how the tables have turned.

Some big (and new) names have books coming out in 2015.

Rowling starts off her days of awesome with some Snape.

From Sister A:

I never knew this! What a completely different spin on one of our favorite books.

In What’s Annabelle Reading, the Lizzie Skurnick streak continues with The Son of Someone Famous by M.E. Kerr. Meh.

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