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Saturday, November 26, 2005

Happy Thanks-reading!

I've just got to do a better job blogging!

OK, now that that's out of the way...on to the discussion!

Big success decorating for Thanksgiving at ACA. Showed the kids "A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving," and I enjoyed catching up on that as much as they did!

I've also pulled hundreds of Christmas books, but I haven't gotten around to doing anything with them yet. It's just that there are so many decorating options I've actually been having trouble making a decision AND having trouble making time to do it!

For all you movie buffs out there, I did find an interesting link about librarians in film. I think my favorites were Tim Robbins in "The Shawshank Redemption" and Kristin Chenoweth in "The Music Man."

Since Christmas is getting close, I'll soon be watching "It's a Wonderful Life," and, of course, Donna Reed is a librarian in Jimmy Stewart's "what could have been" world. But, I don't like that she's the stereotypical old maid with a bun and orthopedic shoes.

I much prefer a different stereotype! And, remember, just because I link to a site here, that does NOT mean I endorse every aspect of that site!

OK, Happy Thanksgiving, and I will try to be more up-to-date for the rest of 2005!

Thanksgiving

Well, it's hard to believe another Thanksgiving has come and gone...and that three weeks have gone by since my last post! I've got to get better about this. Maybe I'll make that one of my New Year resolutions, that I'm so good about keeping. ;)

Jason and I had a great first Thanksgiving together. My dad and his parents were in town. I actually cooked, and they actually ate!

After all the folks were gone and all the leftovers were put away and the kitchen was clean, I told him I felt like a real grown-up! It's not that I don't feel that way most of the time, but sometimes you just have those adult moments!

We're now looking ahead toward the holidays. I'll be "contracting" with Alabama Public Radio and Heritage House. That's the coffee shop my boss owns, and it doesn't have a web site yet because my husband hasn't yet created one for it!

Other than that, we're looking forward to more family time, hopefully some creative time. Jason and I are both excited about finishing up his project for this semester and starting on the one for the Spring.

Again, I'll try to do much better about this blogging business! I don't know why it's so much easier to keep up with Fred's than with mine!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Oral Histories

It's important for libraries to have different types of materials, but I think we need to look beyond the traditional ones--books, newspapers, DVDs, etc...

I think there's a real need for hearing voices of the past (and present) in communities today. The University of Kentucky has an impressive program, as does a public library in New Zealand and most of the presidential libraries.

However, I had a hard time finding any oral history collections in average American public libraries (not to mention school libraries).

What an incredibly valuable resource this would be!

Imagine if the Tuscaloosa Public Library kept an oral history collection. We could not only find primary source material about George Wallace's stand in the schoolhouse door (why can't we LISTEN to it through that link?), but patrons could also hear a first-hand account from someone who was standing right there in the crowd.

Or, we could listen online (once the Tuscumbia library gets an online catalog) and hear Helen Keller's nieces and nephews talk about her influence.

It's just an idea, a brainstorm. I was fortunate enough to participate in an interview this week that will ultimately be archived in the Library of Congress!

Why not give anyone who has access to a public library the same opportunity? Or what a great project that would be for a school, especially one that's been around for a number of years (with lots of alums still in the area).

So, keep listening (and talking), and definitely keep brainstorming!

Story Corps

Big week here in Tuscaloosa.

Jason and I have been as busy as usual with work. We've had some answered prayers this week, so we're quite thankful for that!

Mainly, though, I'm excited about getting the opportunity to interview my Aunt Ruth. She's actually my great-aunt, my grandmother's sister. We send e-mails back and forth everyday, and we share a common love of literature, a good cup of coffee and family stories!

So we sat down and archived some of those family stories today in the Story Corps mobile booth that is located this month in downtown Northport. (You can also find more information at my brilliant husband's web site!)

It was a great bonding experience for us, but I'm even more thankful that we've talked about and written down many of these stories over the years.

It's so important to me to know about my family and to connect with members of another generation. That's a big part of how I have developed my sense-of-self. There's something concrete about looking back and saying, "Oh, that's how he got his name" or "That's how she got through that extremely difficult time." That's incredibly valuable to me.

So, I suggest you sign up for Story Corps (quickly)! Or do a little Story Corps project of your own, just with your family. That's what I want to do at next year's family reunion!

Read from the beginning...