Sunday, 29 June 2008

Sunday June 29th, 2008 Newfoundland

Newfoundland is one of our most scenic provinces and rich in history. I first visited it in 1984 with my father and sister. As I stood looking at the ocean, from my grandfather's birthplace in Heart's Delight, I understood why my parents had fallen in love with it on their first visit. The landscape is spectacular and it felt like we'd come to a place where time had slowed down just a little. We were made to feel welcome by family and strangers and I returned for a few more visits. This is my tribute to The Rock.

Based on the novel of the same title by Bernice Morgan, Random Passage first aired as a mini series on CBC. It is the story of Mary Bundle, and her life from an English workhouse to a small Newfoundland outport. The movie featured former Codco members Andy Jones and Mary Walsh. If you’ve never seen Codco, you might know Mary from the television show This Hour Has 22 Minutes. So if you missed seeing the mini series, or want to see it again, the library carries it on videocassette.


Sylvanus Now by Donna Morrissey is the story of a young fisherman. Set in the 1950's in a small fishing village, Sylvanus pursues and marries Adelaide. While he is happy to fish and follow in the footsteps of his ancestors, Adelaide longs to escape the small village. Latitudes Of Melt by Joan Clark is the tale of a baby girl found drifting on an ice pan off the coast of Newfoundland, after the sinking of the Titanic. Her new family names her Aurora and people think she could be a changeling due to her white hair, pale skin, two different coloured eyes and the fact that she never gets cold. It’s a wonderful tale about love and loss, set against a great backdrop. Was she from the Titanic? You’ll just have to read it and find out. Either title would be a great summer read. Stop by the library and pick one up.


You are probably familiar with corned beef and cabbage, also known as Jigg's dinner. In our family we just called it boiled dinner. I grew up with this Newfoundland favourite and after my mother passed away, I taught myself how to make it. It's simple to make and delicious to eat, especially with dumplings. You can whip up a batch to enjoy while
watching Random Passage. It could only enhance the experience. You can find a recipe by checking and searching for corned beef and cabbage.


In 1993 Great Big Sea burst into the Canadian music scene. They play a blend of traditional Newfoundland music, as well as original materials. Not all of the band members hail from Newfoundland, but one of them, Séan McCann was born in Carbonear, one of my favourite towns. The library carries several of their compact discs.


Newfoundlanders have a language all their own, as you can see by visiting the online version of the Dictionary Of Newfoundland English. At some time or other you’ve probably wore a pair of scroopy shoes and didn’t even know it. This is a reference to the squeaking noise made by a new pair of shoes or boots. Perhaps you have seen a cracky. A
relative in Newfoundland referred to a dog as a cracky. I didn’t really know what that meant, but the dictionary tells us that a cracky is a small, noisy mongrel dog. Now that’s something I’ve met a few of. Source:

If you've never been to Newfoundland, you don’t know what you’'re missing. It has great scenery, friendly residents and whales. What'’s not to like? There’s also fresh fish for the seafood lover. Who knows, your one week stay might turn into two. If you haven’t decided where to spend your summer vacation, keep The Rock in mind. Have a great
Canada Day and enjoy the rest of the summer. Hopefully it will be sunny and warm, with relatively few mosquitoes.

Karen Craib Library Technician

Sunday, 22 June 2008

Sunday June 22nd, 2008 Read 'Em and Eat

The first official day of summer! Or is it the second? Either way, summer is officially here. After the cold and rainy spring we’ve had, I’m glad to hear the forecast is for a hotter than normal summer. Summer is the perfect time to get caught up on your reading. We, at the library, would like you to have a little fun while you do that, so make sure you pick up the Adult Summer Reading Game Menu at any branch or print it off our website – www.tbpl.cawhat’s on – contests – summer reading game. Reading with the Summer Reading Game could get you a dinner of two at the Valhalla – books and food, what a great combination.

Here’s how it works. You get a menu and read a title of your choice that fits into the menu plan. Like a fine chef, the library strongly encourages you to expand your tastebuds and venture out into new genres. The menu will help with some suggestions. Each course offers you something different, and again, like fine dinning, the dinner conversation contributes greatly to the dining experience. We would love to hear your thoughts on your course selections. You can do that right on the menu, or to expand your dinner party, try our new blog at

What is a BLOG you ask?

According to Wikipedia, the online Free encyclopedia, a “Blog (an abridgment of the term web log) is a website, usually maintained by an individual, with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material such as graphics or video. Entries are commonly displayed in reverse chronological order. "Blog" can also be used as a verb, meaning to maintain or add content to a blog.” It’s a great way to discuss books. We look forward to your contributions.

Here are some suggestions to help get you started:

For the Wine selection, I recommend A YEAR IN PROVENCE by Peter Mayle.

“An amusing account of an English couple's first year as residents of rural Provence, from the unpleasantness of the winter mistral to the transgressions of summer tourists. Since the old farmhouse they purchased needed repairs, they were immediately beset with problems in dealing with the foibles of local craftspeople and officialdom, not to mention the neighbors--human and animal. Nowhere in France is the consumption of food and drink taken more seriously, and food preparation, dining, and wining anecdotes are prominent in virtually every chapter. “ (Library Journal) This title is the first in a series of Provence books and was very popular when it first came out in 1990. Well worth revisiting!

My Appetizer recommendation is THE TIME TRAVELER’S WIFE by Audrey Niffenegger.

“Audrey Niffenegger's innovative debut, is the story of Clare, a beautiful art student, and Henry, an adventuresome librarian, who have known each other since Clare was six and Henry was thirty-six, and were married when Clare was twenty-three and Henry thirty-one. Impossible but true, because Henry finds himself periodically displaced in time, pulled to moments of emotional gravity from his life, past and future. His disappearances are spontaneous, his experiences unpredictable, alternately harrowing and amusing.” I thoroughly enjoyed this read, and not because Henry is a librarian!

The Salad I recommend is a Magazine.

Many people forget that we loan more than just books! I recommend Canadian Living magazine. No matter what month you get, there are always great recipes to try and interesting “factoids” to read. PS, do you know what else we loan? Pedometers ! You can work off all the calories you have consumed over the summer holidays!

The Entrée I suggest is THE SECRET LIFE OF BEES by Sue Monk Kidd.

It “tells the tale of a 14-year-old white girl named Lily Owen who is raised by the elderly African American Rosaleen . Lily and Rosaleen find shelter in a distant town with three black bee-keeping sisters. The sisters and their close-knit community of women live within the confines of racial and gender bondage. In a series of unforgettable events, Lily discovers the truth about her mother's past and the certainty that ‘the hardest thing on earth is choosing what matters.’ The stunning metaphors and realistic characters are so poignant that they will bring tears to your eyes.” (Library Journal)

My dessert selection would be anything in the “Chick Lit” genre.

Humour is a hallmark characteristic of a Chick Lit read. Think of Bridget Jones’ Diary, and you’ve got the idea of what a Chick Lit read entails. Some names to look for are Sophia Kinsella, Emily Giffin, or Carly Phillips. If you pick up one of their works, you are bound to have a laugh or two - A nice way to end a dinner party. Well, I hope you can join the library on this culinary/literary game and have some fun while you are at it. Good luck and happy reading!
Barbara Philp, Head of Adult Services

The library is always a perfect temperature, so escape the heat and visit your local branch, or log on to from the air-conditioned comfort of your own home – you’ll be amazed at what you’ll find @ Your Library.

Barb Philp, Head of Adult Services

Sunday, 15 June 2008

Sunday June 15th, 2008 Who's Who in the Library Windows

When the current Brodie library first opened it's doors to the public on April 29th 1912, the exterior was adorned with stained glass fanlights depicting popular authors of the day. With your indulgence this week, the library detective is interested in preempting the traditional book related questions and concerns in search of some biographical tidbits; Specifically who's who in the Library windows. From the front of the Brodie building to the lane behind city hall, here's an historical and literary who's who.

Thomas Moore (1779-1852)

Born in Dublin Ireland and the son of a Grocer, Thomas Moore rose to prominence as a singer, songwriter and poet. Considered to be the National Bard of Ireland, the works of Thomas Moore include the song Believe Me if all of those Endearing Young Charms, and The Last Rose of Summer. On a foray into Canada in 1803, Moore penned “A Canadian Boat Song” the full text of which can be found in the ebook, Poems of Thomas Moore.

Charles Dickens (1812-1870)

Not only does he adorn the building, but Dickens work is well represented in the library collection not only in print, but with screen adaptations like Nicholas Nickleby and Bleak House. Synonymous with classic English literature, Dickens' Great Expectations, David Copperfield and Oliver Twist are common works for highschool English assignments and we have plenty on our shelves for summer reading.

Robert Burns (1759-1976)

Another Poet and Lyricist, Robbie Burns is regarded as the national bard of Scotland and a pioneer of the romantic literary movement. The inaugural ballad of the new year, Auld Lang Syne, is his poem and has unofficially served unofficially as the national anthem of Scotland for years. The anniversary of his birth, January 25 is celebrated in Scotland, England and Newfoundland as Robbie Burns day or Burns night.

Oliver Goldsmith (1730?-1774)

If you have ever called someone a goody two shoes, you are borrowing the phrase from a children's tale penned by Oliver Goldsmith entitled The History of Little Goody Two Shoes. Known primarily as a dramatist and poet, Goldsmith's only novel, The Vicar of Wakefield was one of the most widely read of all 18th century novels and remained popular for nearly 100 years after its initial publication in 1776. Curious readers will find a digitized copy of the History of Little Goody Two Shoes is available through the Internet Archive (

William Shakespeare (1564-1616)

So you may feel like you are already familiar with the Bard of England, but here is an interesting tidbit of TBPL Trivia that in some small way reinforces the significance of his literary contributions. There are nearly 1000 items in TBPL's collection that were written by or about William Shakespeare.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882)

One of the most wide read American poets of all time, Longfellow's nostalgic and inspirational verse was popular both in his native country and in Europe. According to his journal, his popular poem Song of Hiawatha, was inspired after he entertained an Ojibwa Chief to tea. According to the Wikipedia, Longfellow was the first American poet to have an honorary statue installed in the poets corner at Westminster Abbey.

Tolstoy 1828-1910

Some refer to War and Peace as one of the greatest novels of all time, but Russian born Leo Tolstoy was not only an important figure for his literary work, but for his writings on various aspects of morality; including religion, vegetarianism and civil disobedience. Under the philosophical umbrella of Tolstoyism, his cultural influence extended far beyond Russia and is known to have influenced great minds like those of George Bernard Shaw and Mohandas Ghandi.

Walter Scott 1771-1832

Poet and writer Walter Scott is the author of the quotable quote; O what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive; lines taken from his poem, The Marmion. Scott was a prolific writer of historical novels set in Scotland but published under the pseudonym the Author of Waverley. Later, finding inspiration in English history, he produced Ivanhoe, a popular historical romance set during the period of the crusades in England.

Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832)

Encyclopaedia Britannica describes this poet, playwright, novelist, scientist and amateur artist as the greatest literary German figure of the modern era. Initially a student of law, Goethe took an interest in the literatures of England France, Italy and Classical Greece and is the originator of the concept of World Literature. The best known of Goethe's works is The Writing of Faust, a project it took him 57 years to complete.

Information on these and other inspiring thinkers and literary giants can be obtained in the Biography Resource Center or the Literary Resource Center through our online virtual collections. Almost one hundred years after the Brodie library was built, I am wondering how our contemporary authors and thinkers will stand the test of time.

Who would you consider a literary giant in 2008? How might you honour their contribution to intellectual thought and modern culture? We would be happy to hear your thoughts as part of our adult summer reading game. Kindly contribute to our discussion through the read 'em and eat discussion blog at

Classics in the library are not exclusively related to books and the stained glass gems at the Brodie branch really are best viewed from the inside, so do pay us a visit to admire them in our main floor reading room.

Sunday, 8 June 2008

Sunday June 8th, 2008 Make a card for Dad for Father's Day

I love to make cards. Birthday cards, get well cards, thank you cards or just because cards - I've made them all. I've even made a birthday card for a cat (much to the owner's delight) and a welcome to your new furry addition card for a puppy shower. There's something incredibly personal and gratifying about making and giving a handmade card. Often times I will try to personalize the card for the specific individual in question and incorporate their hobbies or their passions in life. I once made a Mickey Mouse themed card for a retiring bank VP who was crazy about DisneyWorld.

The library offers a wonderful assortment of card and paper craft books to inspire your inner creative being and get those artistic juices flowing. An initial search under the subject heading greeting cards resulted in 28 entries including a few that I've never seen before (how did that happen?).So if you're game to get out the paper and glue and make a card for someone special (like Dad for Father's Day) here's a few ideas to get you started.

Each section of this inspiring book provides full information about the materials and techniques needed for a particular card making craft, followed by step by step demonstrations showing how to make beautiful greeting cards. The crafts covered include card and thread, quilling, watercolour, silk ribbon embroidery, beading and using glitter.

This is a wonderful book by local author Elizabeth Joan Black (known to many locally as Joan Black) a delightful, lovely lady with an incredible enthusiasm for artistic and creative ventures. Perfect for beginners, this book allows one to explore their creative imagination and paint lovely expressions of joy, serenity and friendship. Providing guidelines, advice and helpful hints, this book makes watercolour techniques easy and fun. There is even a section on techniques using household items such as plastic wrap, onion bags (yes-onion bags) and even drywall tape. A definite must try for everyone.

100 GREAT WAYS TO MAKE CARDS by Shirley Toogood
Whether you are a beginner or an expert, 100 clever cardmaking tips is sure to expand your repertoire of skills. Discover 25 essential cardmaking techniques including rubber stamping, paper embossing , tea bag folding and quilling.

Add pop-up appeal to your papercrafts for attention grabbing cards and keepsakes. Dynamic pop-up include interactive elements such as pull tabs, slider bars, concertinas and envelope reveals.

Creative Cards offers a collection of stunning projects for cards, invitations, gift wraps, boxes and tags that can be made quickly and easily. Basic techniques are clearly explained and illustrated step by step instructions show you how to put it all together.

Now if the above titles didn't strike your fancy, the library also offers two magazines brimming with new and fresh ideas for cards and papercrafts.

magazine is published 8 times/year and is available for loan at the Brodie Library. Full of helpful hints, unique ideas and new techniques, this magazine also offers a variety of quick and easy cards to make.

SCRAP AND STAMP ARTS magazine incorporates both passions for the paper crafty. Glossy pages of scrapbook layouts, new stamping techniques and lots of great ideas would appeal to those who do double duty; cardmaking and scrapbooking. This magazine is available for circulation at the Waverley Library.

I hope I've given you a good start to your card crafting. If you do attempt to make a card for Dad for Father's Day just remember any effort is from the heart and will be appreciated. But, just a disclaimer - I will not be held responsible for any crafting addictions that result from this article.

Noreen Dafoe is a library assistant at the Brodie Library. This column appears Sundays on this page. If you have a comment about today's column we would love to hear from you.

Sunday, 1 June 2008

Sunday June 1st, 2008 Passport to Adventure

To say that this is one of the most dismal Springs EVER, is not an exaggeration - weather-wise I mean. It is wet. It is gloomy. It is cold. It is NOT NICE! At our house, for the first time in years, the May long weekend has come and gone sans flower-planting. My cats still yowl miserably when they are left out for more than ten minutes. And then there are my kids. They keep 'phoning me from Toronto to complain about the heat. Apparently their air conditioner is on the fritz. I send my sincerest regrets.

Enter books, one of the few pleasures unaffected by climate. Strangely enough, my reading choices lately gravitate towards the travel genre - books that transport me to far-away places with strange-sounding names and co-operative weather. And, like any experienced traveler (armchair or otherwise), before I choose my own adventure I need to consult an agent with a good selection of up-to-date, inexpensive guides. Logically then, the first stop on my itinerary is the Thunder Bay Public Library.


This resource is one of the INSIDERS' GUIDE series, travel books that transform mere tourists into informed visitors wherever their destination may be. Here, it offers tips on restaurants, wineries, shopping, annual festivals and events, places to visit and places to stay and, all prices and rates quoted at the time of publication are in Canadian dollars. At this time of year, beautiful Victoria is sure to be balmy and with this guide as your companion, you cannot fail to enjoy yourself.


FROMMER'S GUIDES have a way of giving you a real feel for the place. They are amazingly easy to use, portable, complete, detailed and accurate and include information for all price ranges. In this guide to Las Vegas, you are given the lowdown on all major casino games, advice on what's worth your time and what's not,listings of top attractions as well as off-the-beaten path experiences and unexplored gems, and exact prices so you can plan a trip to fit your budget.


FODOR'S travel publications employ a team of over 700 writers and are revised annually to include new hot spots and to ensure that current listings still maintain a high standard. For these reasons, they have long been the first choice for travelers, both neophyte and seasoned. This guide to England and Wales lists exceptional hotels, restaurants and sights, as well as innumerable activities for every traveler, from hiking, biking and canal-boating, to shopping in local markets and exploring castles and stately homes.


Rick Steves spends four months of each year exploring Europe and his candid, humourous advice will steer you to its very best sights and museums. Here, he offers you the most current information on Venice. Using his guide, you'll find budget-friendly hotels and restaurants and you'll be able to navigate the city and experience the culture like a local.


Eyewitness Travel guides are touted as the guides that show you what the others only tell you. In other words, they are visually beautiful, packed with colourful photographs, maps and illustrations. This guide to Beijing and Shanghai is no exception but it is also filled with practical travel information on when to go, what to take, where to stay, what to eat, visas and passports, customs information, permits, immunization and much, much more.


Packed with his trademark insight and wit, Michael Palin's latest adventure sees him venture into once forbidden territory - the new Europe previously shrouded behind the Iron Curtain. His journey takes him through 20 countries, some Central European, some Eastern Europe, some straddling continents, all utterly compelling.


Peter Greenberg, travel editor for the TODAY show, has explored more than 146 countries. He is an expert at securing the best accommodations, fares, and services at the lowest possible prices and in this book he shares tips on which airline seats are the best and the worst and which overcharge for excess baggage, which countries won't let you in even with a valid passport, how you can avoid hidden fees at your next hotel and everything else you will need to know to have a superlative travel experience.

Whether you decide to venture abroad or enthusiastically explore the wonders of our own Canadian Backyard, let the Library be your first port of call. The rest of your adventure is up to you, limited only by your imagination -- and your budget!

Jill Otto, Library Technician