Stewart Bell Jr. Archives
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Friday, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Saturday, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
This time of year is ripe with fruits and vegetables fresh from the garden, famers’ markets and farm stands. So delicious! You can save a taste of summer by making preserves or jellies, pickles, drying or freezing this summer’s bounty. The library has an extensive cookbook section which includes books on canning and preserving such as: Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving, Better Homes and Gardens You Can Can, The Complete Book of Small-Batch Preserving and Foolproof Preserving
Our non-fiction books are arranged by number (Dewey Decimal Classifica...Read Full Post
Maybe you have seen them too? Orange and black; flitting from flower to flower or gliding on the breeze, the Monarch Butterflies are beginning their annual migration. One of nature’s great mysteries, the Monarch Butterflies that migrate from the eastern U.S. and Canada have never visited their winter destination. They are several generations removed from the butterflies that over-wintered in pine forests located in the mountains of Mexico. Yet somehow they find their way. Chasing monarchs: migrating with the butterflies of passage is about monarch migration and the west-coast populations th...Read Full Post
This blog is about another nifty feature in the library catalog that you may not have found yet. I will use two books as an example. The first book “The Sherlockian” is a historical mystery with parallel narratives. When I type the name in the search bar for the library and then click on the title, I see the page below. Notice the link on the left titled “Series & read-a-likes”.
When I click on “Series & read-a-likes” I get another page with lots of useful information. The top tab has similar books labeled “read-a-likes”. Beside that are authors whose writings are similar ...Read Full Post
If you not have not read Job Searches Using Reference USA Part I, It would be good to familiarize yourself with that content, since it will not be repeated here. The previous blog may provide you with all you need to search for a job. Although we are in a pandemic with 20 million people unemployed, there are companies in our area that are hiring. A basic search (on August 11.2020) for the last seven days, within a 25 mile radius of the 22601 zip code results in 631 hits! This includes 500 full-time and 191 part-time (some are both which is why they add up to more than 663). It may sounds go...Read Full Post
Sometimes we need the advice of a lawyer, but their services can be expensive. Sometimes our problems come from a lack of funds which makes hiring a lawyer that much more problematic. Fortunately, there are reliable legal resources online, that can provide us with forms, information and help us determine if we need a lawyer or not. This blog will introduce you to some of these online resources.
The Library subscribes to Gale Legal Forms which gives you access to the information on this website. To utilize Gale Legal Forms, you must enter from the library’s webpages.
&nbs...Read Full Post
The Library of Congress (LoC) was established in 1880 to support the research needs of the United States Congress. Over time, its mission and reach broadened, allowing it to serve as the nation’s library. As you can imagine this is quite an undertaking, making the LoC the largest library in the world! Early in this century the LoC began to digitize collections and put them online. Recently, I attended a webinar that provided a tour of features on the LoC website. You can view this webinar by following this link. It is about 45 minutes with 15 minutes of Q&A. A few of the standouts from ...Read Full Post
Magnolia grandiflora (also known as the Southern Magnolia) is the tree species growing outside of the Bowman Branch of the Handley Regional Library. Its large white flowers, which are blooming right now, have the most delightful aroma. I encourage you anytime you are passing by the library, to stop and smell the magnolia. We are fortunate that our magnolia has branches with blossoms that are low to the ground so we can enjoy this fabulous scent of summer.
Did you know that the olfactory system (sense of smell) is intricately linked to memory? The human brain is an incredible organ...Read Full Post
Pollination is a process that transfers genetic material so a plant can reproduce. Why should we care about pollination? Plant reproduction involves the production of seeds, and some of those seeds are inside fruits like apples, cherries and peaches. Did I mention that strawberries, blueberries, chocolate, and coffee depend on pollinators too? It is estimated that 2/3 of crop species world-wide depend upon pollinators!
The most well-known pollinator is the (European) honeybee. The honeybee can be encouraged to nest in man-made hives allowing for the (relatively) easy extraction of...Read Full Post
The library subscribes to many useful services and databases so you do not have to. But, we still have to learn what these services are for and how to use them. One of these very useful services is called Reference USA, which provides a database of U.S. and Canadian businesses. This database not only provides lists of new businesses and historical business but job postings as well. Below is screenshot of the “Dashboard” page that you will be directed to when you click on the link for Reference USA.
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If you click on U.S. Jobs/Internships then you are taken t...
1. Write a letter: Not an email; a real old-fashioned pen (or pencil) to paper letter. One you will have to edit as you gather your thoughts and copy over to look presentable.
Why write a letter? It is a treat and a nice surprise to find a letter or note in our mail. When we think of letters, first to mind are ones for relatives who live far away, those who we do not see often. This makes sense, but you can also write to people you do see often (or used to). Perhaps a letter to your best friend thanking them for being such a great friend?
What do you want your young chil...Read Full Post
Poetry is a great example of Aristotle’s concept that “The Whole is Greater than the Sum of its Parts.” Individual words have their meanings but when they are strung together using cadence and rhyme to form a poem, the “whole” is definitely greater. Poems connect the head to the heart, ideas to emotions, and our senses to places. If you have a book of poems, this is a great time to pull it off the shelf. If not, like most everything, you can find poems online.
The American Poetry Society has a great website to explore. Their current and timely theme is called “Reading in the Dark”...Read Full Post
Water is life, yet we very much take water for granted in the developed parts of the world. March 22nd is World Water Day, a yearly reminder that this precious resource is vital to survival. Water as a subject is broad and deep. It appears in the title of books on spirituality and religion; flows through science; policy and current events; swirls around fish, oceans, marine mammals, birds and all the wildlife that also depend on water for their existence.
There are lakes, ponds and wetlands; places so important to life both human and animal. We also have our own speci...Read Full Post
Every year since 1998, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society have sponsored the Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC). About the GBBC (taken from their website): “The GBBC was the first online citizen-science project to collect data on wild birds and to display results in near real-time. Now, more than 160,000 people of all ages and walks of life worldwide join the four-day count each February to create an annual snapshot of the distribution and abundance of birds.”
Last year, members of the Northern Shenandoah Valley Audubon Society (NSVA) surveyed the...Read Full Post
Now that days are short there's more time for inside activities. Cold weather makes a warm kitchen that much more enjoyable. Why not try a new dish? It used to be ingredients featured in international recipes were hard to come by. A surprising number of exotic spices and international flavorings are now available in our local grocery stores. We have hundreds of cookbooks in the HRLS collection; dozens feature cuisines from other countries. Looking for a new pasta sauce? Korean BBQ? Real Irish food? Asian wraps and rolls? African Flavors? German baking? Mexican favorites?
Where to ...Read Full Post
What to read?
This age old question has new solutions. The library now subscribes to a feature called NoveList. NoveList can be reached from the HRLS homepage by hovering over “Research & Learn” then under “Subjects” click on “Reviews and Recommendations.”
Scroll down under the graphics and you will see a link for NoveList. (There is a NoveList for kids too!). Once you click on the link you will be taken to the NoveList homepage.
Along the left side you can find suggestions for fiction or n...Read Full Post