What’s Ashley Reading?: Best Wishes, Warmest Regards

Best Wishes, Warmest Regards by Daniel Levy and Eugene Levy

First line: When we were first approached about putting a book together we asked ourselves the same question that was raised when we first started making Schitt’s Creek over seven years ago: what can we do with this opportunity?

Summary: In this delightful coffee table book the creators of Schitt’s Creek look back on creating and the legacy of this show that took over awards season. It is filled with pictures, character features and insights into episodes.

My Thoughts: I LOVE Schitt’s Creek! But it took me several months of being told about how much I would love it before I started watching. Once I did, I binged it. I have re-watched the show several times, can quote many pieces of the show and have a Christmas ornament with David Rose on it.

This book is not something most people would sit down and read. It is more something to look at the pictures but I read it from front to back. I loved hearing from the cast about their experiences and insights into their characters. Each person brought something different to the show, the town and their characters.

But I think my favorite part was when they showed all of David’s knits and Moira’s wigs. There are so many! And then each was put with a quote from the scene the costumes were used in. I never realized how much thought went into each piece. This gave me a lot of new information about the show. It seems like a good time to re-watch Schitt’s Creek again! Best wishes, warmest regards!

FYI: Very heavy coffee table book but wonderful to look through if you love the Rose family!

The Lineup: Tami

Tami’s Lineup

Podcast: The Villian was Right

My latest fun listen is a light-hearted romp. Comedians Craig and Rebecca take a look at movies and television from the villain’s perspective and dare to ask if they were really all that bad. The hosts go into detail about movie or series characters and their motivations, and theorize whether or not they deserve to be the hero or villain.

Was Ariel really innocent? Or was Ursula just trying to run a small business?

What I find especially fun is that Craig and Rebecca don’t just review the obvious movies. They look into Father of the Bride, Legally Blonde, Bridget Jones’ Diary, the Magic School Bus, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Friends, Mary Poppins and many, many more. I recommend you start with Ferris Buller’s Day Off, Jurassic Park or the Incredibles.

*Available on Spotify, Apple, or here: https://www.fromsuperheroes.com/the-villain-was-right

Book: Project Hail Mary

I whole-heartedly recommend this recent read. If you like science fiction with actual science, this is for you. If you like stories with interesting, well developed characters, this also has that. If you want excitement and a thrilling plot, here you go. If you want romance and sex, well, there you’re completely out of luck.

I challenge you to read the first five pages and NOT want to keep reading. What an opening! Ryland Grace wakes up alone with no clue where he is or how he got there. His body isn’t responding the way it should and he struggles with the fog that is keeping rational thoughts at bay. He slowly comes to the realization that he’s hurtling through space and his crew mates are dead. While that opening alone is enough to keep me turning pages, Weir infuses Ryland with unique wit and humor that elevates the story beyond the run of the mill science fiction thriller.

As Ryland’s memory returns, he flashes back to the past and slowly reveals how he ended up as the sole-survivor of this last-chance mission to save Earth. And as things seem hopeless, he finds glimmers of hope in unexpected places. He also just might be the perfect person for the job.

This well-written novel is a mix of things: science fiction, mystery, fantasy, thriller. There’s a diverse cast as the entire planet comes together to save humanity. And I can only hope Hollywood takes notice.

*Available as a physical book in the KanShare catalog or as an ebook via the Sunflower eLibrary/Libby app.

Music: Equals by Ed Sheeran

Okay, so this one hasn’t completely been released yet, but I am eagerly awaiting it. And fortunately, I have heard a couple early release tracks, so I think it’s fair to add to my line up list.

The album is set to drop October 29. It’s been 4 long years since we last heard songs featuring solo artist Ed Sheeran playing and singing all by himself (no collaborations). I have read interviews about this release and it appears the songs are all personal to him as a recently married man and father who has experienced loss. Sheeran says the album is a reflection of those experiences. For a man to state that this is a coming of age album, I feel it should be chocked full of nostalgia, eye awakening moments and experiences that make us who we are. Bad Habits, one of the early release titles is dance music story of late night bad choices while Visiting Hours is a heartfelt, personal sort of song you play in the bluest hours. It’s raw and emotional.

*I believe the library will be purchasing and adding this title to the catalog for checkout. I don’t see it there yet, but all the other Sheeran albums are, so it’s a good guess it’s coming soon.

Television: Below Deck Mediterranean

In another year, where I haven’t been able to travel abroad like I planned, I am “escaping” via my television and “reality” TV.

What I like? No dull waiting period–this is entertaining IMMEDIATELY.

This show has it all: attractive people, vastly different personalities, relatable protagonists, loathsome antagonists, money and a BIG yacht. It’s fun, interesting, and has changing locals (Greece, Croatia, Italy, South of France and Mallorca). The guests are interesting. There’s TIGHT quarters (GREAT for drama), a social element and very merit-based workplace element.

I think the two most important components of any reality show are the “characters” and the editing. The characters here are in spades, but the editing brings us the stories, and man do they make the stories POP! Hats off to the editing staff. I think we all like to see justice because we so rarely get it in real life, and the editors don’t let anyone get away with ANYTHING. When someone does something stupid, we get to see the consequences, which is a great little respite from real life. I also love the insight you get, to see all that goes on under the surface of a luxury yacht.

*Available on Bravo network or free on Peacock

Family Outing: Wild Lights at Sedgwick County Zoo

This one I am super excited to get out and see for myself. Recently, when I volunteered at the Zoo for Zoobilee and the new Asian Big Cat exhibit grand opening, I discovered that Sedgwick County Zoo has a new “Wild Lights” exhibit in the works.  Think Asian lantern sculptures illuminating paths throughout the zoo. 

The company who has provided and set up the exhibit brought in 13 semi-truck loads of giant animal lanterns.  These creatures are spread out throughout the zoo. They are everywhere! Installation began in early September.  The exhibit has filled the zoo with 47 glowing Asian lanterns, most of them larger than life.

They’re in the shapes of animals.  Guests will find pandas, elephants, turtles, rhinos as well as other displays in the shapes of flowers, bugs, fish, butterflies, and plants. Many of them are animated: A peacock’s plume of feathers goes up and down every five minutes. A baby panda spins with a ball on his head. A massive crocodile opens and closes his giant jaw. About six people accompanying the tour, which travels to zoos all over the world, spent a month erecting the wire frames that form each sculpture’s “bones” then covering them with translucent fabric and filling them with colorful lights. It will take visitors about an hour to walk the path where the sculptures are set up, which stretches from the zoo entrance to the gorilla exhibit and back to the exit.  Not only do they set up the lights, but they stay here in Wichita throughout the show to maintain the exhibit.

I plan to enjoy the zoo like never before with this larger-than-life Chinese lantern festival!

*Wild Lights will light up the zoo Wednesday through Sunday nights 6:00-9:00 p.m. through December 5, 2021. Tickets are on sale now at scz.org/event/wild-lights.

Food: Seasonal Soups and Stews

It’s that time of year – fall (or maybe the fringe of fall with our ever changing Kansas weather).  Maybe you’ve noticed the chill in the air, or that the leaves are starting to turn shades of orange and red. The first pumpkin spice lattes of the season have already been sipped, and perhaps you’ve taken out the sweaters that make you feel like Cameron Diaz courting Jude Law in a cozy cottage in the English countryside. But is it really sweater season without a pot of soup bubbling away? Or a hearty stew on the table, served with a fistful of crusty bread? A few veggies, possibly some beans, aromatics and broth are just about all you need for a satisfying meal.

So let this be my reminder to you. If you have yet to avail yourself of all the ways your local library can help you be a better, more inquisitive cook (or simply save you some money) there’s no better time than now. With many of us cooking at home more than ever, we could all use a little jolt of inspiration and novelty. Or just some escapist reading. Take a look at our KanShare catalog for in print cook books, Sunflower eLibrary (Libby app) for eCookbooks and magazines, Pinterest and the good ole internet for general browsing!  You are sure to find something new to try.

I’m sharing my easy-peasy Taco Soup recipe.  It’s a go to my family always loves.  Hope you will too!

Slow Cooking Taco Soup – 6 to 8 servings

1 lb ground beef

1 large onion, chopped

16 oz can Mexican-style tomatoes

16 oz can whole-kernel corn, undrained

16 oz can red beans, undrained

16 oz can black beans, undrained

16 oz can ranch beans

16 oz jar picante sauce (your choice on mild, medium or hot)

Optional additions when serving:

Sour cream

Shredded cheddar cheese

Corn or tortilla chips

  1. Brown meat and onions in skillet. Drain.
  2. Combine with all other vegetables and picante sauce in slow cooker.
  3. Cover. Cook on low 4-6 hours
  4. Serve with corn or tortilla chips, sour cream and shredded cheese as toppings.

Quotables

Ah, yes, the long lasting literary quote. We all know them. They are beautiful and meaningful and eternal.

They aren’t usable in everyday conversation, though.

Here are a few lines us library-workers have clung to over the years, beautiful or not. These are the lines we use in our everyday conversation. The ones our spouses hear, and may or may not know actually come from one of our favorite pieces of media.

Ah, yes, the long lasting literary quote. We all know them. They are beautiful and meaningful and eternal.

They aren’t usable in everyday conversation, though.

Here are a few lines us library-workers have clung to over the years, beautiful or not. These are the lines we use in our everyday conversation. The ones our spouses hear, and may or may not know actually come from one of our favorite pieces of media.

Justin:

Oh, The Weather outside is weather! | Favorite movie quotes, Forgetting  sarah marshall quotes, Weather quotes
Paul Rudd as Chuck in “Forgetting Sarah Marshall”

It's not a lie if you believe it – SDI Guy
” Jason Alexander as George Costanza in “Seinfeld”

Eric:

21 Alone in my principles ideas | i movie, movies, favorite movies
From “That Thing You Do”.

Whenever someone is being stubborn [we say this] to give them a hard time.   It’s normally modified a bit [to fit the situation] but the quote is essentially the same. 

Singin' In The Rain Sunset and Camden - YouTube
From “Singing in the Rain”

We say this whenever arriving home.

Megan:

Cousin Eddie Griswold - Caption | Meme Generator
Eddie from National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

YARN | It's a good, quality item. | National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation  (1989) | Video clips by quotes | 44ba6b30 | 紗
“That’s a Good, Quality Item”– Eddie, from National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

(and I always say it in his voice too)

YARN | I think they're cheating. | Heavy Weights (1995) | Video clips by  quotes | 0ae4de0e | 紗
“I think they’re cheatin'”, from Heavyweights

My sister and I always use this one… at least twice whenever we are around each other.

YARN | Good luck with that. | I Love You Man (2009) | Video clips by quotes  | c1d48021 | 紗
“Good Luck With That” from “I Love You, Man”

Dawn:

This Is Bat Country GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY
From the Book (and Movie) Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas

Terese

Grool Mean Girl GIFs | Tenor
From Mean Girls,

I do awkward things like that a lot. 🙂

Hannah:

Pin on Movies, TV, Disney, Pixar, Etc.
Keanu Reaves in The Replacements

Specifically, we say “chicks dig scars” from this moment in the movie.

YARN | Ronnie, don't fall off! | Secretariat (2010) | Video clips by quotes  | 9a967400 | 紗
Ronnie, don’t fall off. -John Malkovich from Secretariat

Ashley:

9 Things You Should Know Before Coming Out | Feminism In India
Ron in the book (and movie ?) Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Compilation Of Every 'That's What She Said' From 'The Office' Is Hard To  Beat - BroBible
From the Office

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel Season 2 Trailer Is Just Divine - E! Online
“Tits up!” – The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,

beyonce pad thai ⋆ BYT // Brightest Young Things
From The Mindy Project

Chelsea:

Goonies Never Say Die! - GIF on Imgur
“Hey, you guys!” Sloth, from the Goonies

From Bridesmaids

20th Anniversary: Lessons from 'Sister Act 2' - J.Says Online
“I guess you know what that means.”– Sketch, from Sister Act II

The Princess Bride Quotes | POPSUGAR Entertainment
From The Princess Bride

Bloxi — So get this, Supernatural trivia.
Sam from Supernatural

Super Troopers Quote | Quote Number 554804 | Picture Quotes
from Super Troopers

Do I need a rug? - Patina
The Dude, from The Big Lebowski

It's a race! - GIF on Imgur
From Rat Race

He always has a creative way to bail out of danger. | Supernatural  playlist, Supernatural bloopers, Supernatural quotes
Dean from Supernatural

go with god crispy | Explore Tumblr Posts and Blogs | Tumgir
from Sister Act II

Yeah, well, you know, that's just like, your opinion, man. - MagicalQuote | Big  lebowski quotes, The dude quotes, Mom humor
From The Big Lebowski

Celebrating a Decade of our Library Director!

It’s not difficult for a staff member to find library director, Eric Gustafson, in the building. All one has to do is pause and listen carefully, because you can hear him just about anywhere. His voice can travel a mile, at least. And there’s comfort in the sound of his sometimes loud voice.

In September, the staff of Derby Public Library celebrated ten years of Eric Gustafson’s tenure as library director. And what a ten years it has been!

Melanie Turner, library board chair, presents Eric with his 10-year plaque.

Many of our patrons can recognize the booming success the library has had under Eric’s careful guidance. In the last ten years, Eric has helmed many library projects that have enriched the lives of the citizens of Derby.

Eric brought more ebooks and digital content to library patrons with the apps Hoopla and Libby. Thanks to Eric the library is now a one-stop shop for many services outside of checking out materials. Services such as passports, mobile printing, notary services, and business center databases. Eric started Santa’s Village and then expanded it exponentially into Christmas in the Park. Viewed by many as his crowning achievement, the amazing KanShare library consortium was Eric’s brainchild. With careful negotiations, Eric brought eight regional libraries together in one shared catalog with room for additional expansion.

But what the patrons perhaps don’t see is the work culture Eric has created for his staff. He is often heard telling new employees, “If you aren’t having fun, then I’m not doing a good job.” Eric has fostered a work culture of productivity, creativity, and fun. He has made change a positive experience, not one of dread and frustration.

Eric is honest, transparent, and sincere. These qualities make him a great boss man, Supreme Overlord, and fearless leader.

So cheers to 10 years of Gustafson! Here’s to many more successful years for Derby Public Library.

The Lineup: Chelsea

Chelsea’s Lineup

Music: Spotify playlist: ConfiDANCE (Song spotlight: Not 20 Anymore by Bebe Rexha; Okay Okay by Alessia Cara)

We all have our struggles. Two at the top of my list are mornings, and confidence. In an attempt to kill two birds with one stone, I created a Spotify playlist to start my mornings with a little pep. As soon as I turn off my alarm in the morning, I try to queue up this playlist, and keep it playing during my morning routine & trip to drop my oldest off at school. I sought out about half of the songs, knowing they already help me improve my mood on bad days. The other half Spotify suggested to me! A couple of my *new* favorites include Not 20 Anymore by Bebe Rexha, and Okay Okay by Alessia Cara.

  • Available on Spotify

Movies: He’s All That

I suppose I’m a shameless millennial. I was scrolling through the Netflix “coming soon” tab when I found this. She’s All That was one of my favorite movies for the years after it came out. I mean, Paul Walker you guys. Even as the jerk bad guy, he’s dreamy. Anyhow, it gave me all the teenage angst lovey-dovey vibes that I wanted. I had such high hopes for this movie. I watched it the day it launched onto Netflix. A little overzealous, I know. Anyway, they did a great job of giving the story line an update and making it current to today’s youth. The characters have the same personalities and attributes of attraction that the original actors did. Matthew Lillard and Rachel Leigh Cook even make an appearance! It didn’t live up to the original’s hype, for me, unfortunately. Perhaps that is just because those were my people, and I suppose that makes these ones my kids’ people. Whatever. Worth the watch—but maybe just once.

  • Available on Netflix

Television Show: Curious Creations of Christine McConnell

Some might say I’m a bit of an oddball. I would say I just really love Halloween, and spooky stuff, and all things weird. This Netflix series is all of those things and more. Christine is kind of a Martha Stewart of the…spooky variety. She shows the audience how to make beautifully creepy creations like cakes, tea services, and edible tree ornaments. She also has a host of strange Jim Henson-like creature friends who are always getting into mischief while she tries to teach us about her creations. It’s a strange show, but I suppose I’m a strange person.

  • Available on Netflix

Kid’s Television Show: Dug Days

My son is two, and I stay home with him during the daytime. It’s a fun age riding the line between constantly having to tell him, “no”, and staring at him with a big goofy grin on my face because he’s just SO wonderful. Watching him watch Dug Days does that second one to me. He just loves Dug. I’m not sure what it is—he’s not very verbal just yet—but the grin on his face when I turn it on just melts my heart. There’s only five or six shorts in the series, and they are short, but they are adorable and definitely worth the watch.

  • Available on Disney+

Audiobook: A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas, narrated by Amanda Leigh Cobb

I read this series a couple of years ago and truly enjoyed it. I must have talked about it quite a bit, because when my husband decided to start an audiobook series (and the book he was hoping to read was checked out), he started listening to this series. I became very excited to enjoy the story with him—a tiny book club for two. The story was just as good the second time around! I’m not a huge fan of the narration of this series, but I am glad they got the same narrator for all of the books (so far); it made it a consistent read. I’m a sucker for a few specific things in stories, and this series seems to check all of those boxes.*sigh*

Apps: Chirp Books

Are you a fan of free and inexpensive? I am a fan of free and inexpensive. Chirp is an audiobook application I learned about through their sister (e-book) company Bookbub (which you should also check out if you haven’t heard of them). After creating your account, you can select favorite genres, authors, and narrators. Based on these favorites, you will receive a daily e-mail with a list of books you can purchase at discounted prices! The only disadvantage is you have to listen to it through their app. It’s a free app and subscription, though, so I’d call that a win! All books suggested to me so far are $5 or less. You can also put audiobooks on a wish list, and the app will alert you if they ever go on sale! I, um, I’ve purchased more $5 audiobooks than I care to admit so far.

Hobbies: Spare Room Remodel

*NOT* my office but what it aspires to become

About two years ago we moved into a new place to make room for a new little addition to our family. It had everything we were searching for, if it was a little higher in the price range than we were hoping for. Anyhow, the basement was unfinished. This might be daunting for some (read me), but the benefit was worth it. I aspire to write– and when I’m not writing, I’m usually reading—so, one of the unfinished rooms in the basement has been reserved as an office/writing space for me sometime in the distant future. I guess I decided I wanted less distance, because I moved all my books back into storage and started working.

Man I underestimated the work that goes into a project like this. I was excited to paint, but forgot about the dry walling and mudding that had to occur first. I did a decent amount before deciding a garage sale to fund a professional to finish the work was probably the best idea. Now that is done, and I’m in the painting process. I love the gothic library look I’ve chosen, and I’m excited to decorate now. Again, I forgot how much work has to occur before that step can be taken, though. Baseboards, crown molding, door trim, window trim, carpeting, and installation of shelves ALL have to occur before I can decorate. Picking those items out is enjoyable, and the installation isn’t unenjoyable—but the bill that accompanies it? That’s is for the birds. So, my project is somewhere in the in-between now. Not exactly the distant future anymore, but further away from the now I was eager for. These things take time, I suppose.

ON MY RADAR: books on my “TBR” shelf, movies and television shows on my “Queue”, podcasts I’ve been eyeing but haven’t had the time to listen to yet. Things I haven’t bit the bullet and purchased, but really hope to sometime soon.

  • Books: Writing Picture Books by Ann Whitford Paul
  • Podcasts: The GIST of it; Ologies
  • TV Shows: Sexy Beasts; Tattoo Redo
  • Movies: The Fundamentals of Caring

The Lineup: Monica

Monica’s Lineup

Audiobook: The Duke and I (Bridgerton #1) by Julia Quinn

After seeing this series become popular on Netflix, I decided to give a shot at listening to the books. I am currently enjoying listening to the first book of the Bridgerton series on Libby. Although regency/romance isn’t typically my top choice for books, I find that Julia Quinn has done a great job at adding humor and suspense to the story. Despite the melodrama undertone of the whole thing, I find myself absorbed in the fictional world of 1800s high class.

Book: Emily Post’s Wedding Etiquette by Anna & Lizzie Post

As my October wedding approaches, I have found myself studying how a wedding should be conducted. On top of everything else to buy, send, or make, there are also certain behaviors expected at a wedding ceremony and reception. Honestly, I have never been married before, so this whole wedding planning business is all new to me. I found this book extremely helpful in deciding how to plan my reception and have an easy flow to the evening!

Podcast: RELAX! with Colleen Ballinger & Erik Stocklin

 I have been a fan of Colleen Ballinger for quite some time now. Her typical content is on YouTube as a family lifestyle video blogger. However, this year she and her husband, Erik, started a podcast to talk about life and current events. I typically turn this on when I am doing chores around the house. It is such a fun and lighthearted podcast, which makes it very easy to listen to. Both Colleen and Erik are famous actors, and they even met on set of Colleen’s Netflix series. They talk about what life is like in their careers, with their two-year-old son, Colleen’s current pregnancy with twins, and so much more. They also post their podcast video recording on YouTube, so you can sit down and watch it like a talk show.

Album: Battle at Garden’s Gate by Greta Van Fleet

Recently, the up-and-coming rock band, Greta Van Fleet, has been all over my social media. This album has been on repeat for me for at least a week now. My favorite song, which constantly gets stuck in my head, is “Heat Above”. They are a group whose sound is reminiscent of the 1970s band Led Zeppelin. Battle at Garden’s Gate is their most recent album and is available here at the DPL!

Television: Manifest

My fiancé and I are not avid TV watchers, so to have a show we both enjoy is rare. This week we started watching the series Manifest on Netflix. From the start, it had us both a little mind blown and confused. Essentially, it is about a group of people on a plane that supposedly had been missing for five years. However, for the passengers, it was only a few hours. We are finding that there is a Christian story line in the series. I am excited to see where the plot goes and to see if it keeps both of us entertained.

  • Available on Netflix.

The Lineup: Ashley

Ashley’s Lineup

Podcast: Not Just the Tudors with Suzannah Lipscomb

I am a huge history nerd.  I love to read, see, watch and listen to anything historical especially if it pertains to the Tudors.  Recently one of my favorite historians started her own podcast called, Not Just the Tudors, which covers all sorts of history during the sixteenth century.  I have learned a lot while listening, such as about the teenage werewolf, the story of beards, and the witches of Lorraine.  Most episodes are 30-60 minutes which make for a quick little dip into the sixteenth century from the comfort of your home.

Find it here or where you normally download your podcasts.

2. Television show: Expedition Unknown with Josh Gates

As I said above, I love to learn about history.  This adventure show looks into some of the world’s most fascinating and enduring legends and mysteries.  The host, Josh Gates, travels the world meeting with experts and locals to uncover why these legends still fascinate people today.  His corny “dad jokes” and willingness to do just about anything makes for a fun watch.  I recently binge watched it while babysitting my nephew.  And now my parents and I are addicted to the show and watch it together every week.

Find it on Discovery Channel or the Discovery+ app.

3. Magazine: Discover Britain

I have been to England 3 times (in 2006, 2007 and 2011).  Each time has been wonderful!  I love the country, the history and even the food.  Even with all three trips there is still so much I have not seen in this gorgeous country.  My cousin and I have been planning to travel to London and Edinburgh but it had to be pushed back due to COVID.  But we are hopeful that this next spring we will finally be able to travel.  This magazine has been helping feed my wanderlust.  It features different sites to see, events to attend and some of the history around Britain.  If you miss traveling as much as I do then I would recommend you check it out plus many other travel magazines available on Libby.

Find it on Sunflower eLibrary or on the Libby app.

4. Class: Petco dog training with Riley H.

This summer I was able to have my dachshund puppy, Dudley, come live with me.  As with many dachshunds they are stubborn little barkers.  And Dudley is no different.  But in the future I would like to be able to take him on road trips or visit friends without having to deal with too many behavioral problems.  Thus, I signed him up for training classes at Derby Petco with Riley H.  The first class was very scary for him but he has already made tons of progress.  He has learned lot of new tricks like sit, lay down, stay and leave it.  Riley has been very patient with him.  I would highly recommend her and the classes.  There are different levels.  Dudley is nearly done with session one and will start session two this fall!

Find out more about their classes at Petco.com.

5. Planning Tools: Microsoft OneNote

Recently I found a new tool to help organize and plan my trip to the UK.  It is called OneNote.  It is a Microsoft program that allows a person to divide up things into different sections and pages.  I have broken my trip into different categories like location, flights, hotels, and budgets.  But then under each category I can have more pages with more individualized information.  I put links, photos, and charts that give me a more detailed view of my trip.  I like to show people that this is my “beautiful mind”.  I have several itineraries, places we should visit, and restaurants to try.  Plus, it has been a life saver during COVID.  I have felt like I am doing something to plan my trip even though I cannot plan my trip yet.  If you have access to OneNote I would recommend checking it out.  It seems like a very useful tool for many different things. 

Find out more about OneNote by checking out our database, Learning Express, where you can watch tutorials on using the application.

The Lineup: Megan

Megan’s Lineup

  1. Movie: Rocky written by Sylvester Stallone, directed by John G. Avildsen

My dad introduced Rocky to me as a kid. We would watch all 5 Rocky movies together, just the two of us because no one else in the family liked it. It’s my all-time favorite movie series. The scene that gets me every time is at the end, when Adrian is trying to get to Rocky right after the fight, and Rocky is yelling for her, cue the music and it’s guaranteed to get me sobbing each time.

  • Available for checkout through the Derby Public Library.

2. Video Game: Super Mario

I’ve always been a Mario fan, playing a variety of them on the various consoles throughout the years. My favorite will forever be Super Mario 64. Recently my daughter and I have been playing Super Mario Galaxy together on the Switch. I’ve never played this one, but my husband loves it, so I thought I’d give it a try. I enjoyed it, but not as much as other Nintendo games.

3. Audiobook: Dark in Death by J. D. Robb

This is no. 46 in the “In Death” series. I would describe this series as futuristic crime. I have listened to them on audio since the first one. The narrator, Susan Ericksen really brings the characters to life. If you have read the books, I would recommend listening to them on audio as well, because it gives you a sense of who the characters really are. My husband is now also a fan, which is pretty amazing because we have such different taste in books.

  • Available for checkout through the Derby Public Library.

4. Podcast: NPR’s Up First

This is one I listen to every morning. It’s a nice 15-minute news update on current events that doesn’t overwhelm me. I can catch up on what’s going on in the world while making breakfast or driving in the car.

5. Television: History Channel’s Alone

A friend of mine told me about this series. I don’t usually like American reality shows, but this one is different. Each season 10 participants get dropped off at a location with 10 approved survival items and camera equipment and are completely alone. They then have to record themselves using their survival skills to see who can make it the longest, all without knowing if the other participants have “tapped out”. I really enjoy it because at some point, they aren’t putting on a show for the camera anymore, and you get to see who they really are as they try to overcome solitude, starvation and living off the land.

  • Seasons 1-7 available on Hulu.

Teen Volunteer Book Review: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

Book Review by Claire Stewart

Claire Stewart is fifteen years old and a 2021 Summer Teen Volunteer.

In the beginning, the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and has been widely regarded as a bad move.

Douglas Adams

Though this isn’t the first line of the novel, it’s one of the first mentioned in the film, and as soon as I heard it, I knew I was going to love this movie (and, later, the book). Douglas Adams has a unique way of writing that is just so indescribably hilarious; some more honorable mentions are, “the ships hung in the sky in much the same way that bricks don’t” and “a common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.” I mean, aren’t those lines just amazing? 

    This book, as the title suggests, is a guide for someone to use in the event that Earth is “demolished to make way for a galactic freeway” as the summary on the back of the book suggests. The story follows normal dude Arthur Dent (played by one of my favorite actors, Martin Freeman) as he is plucked from his garden, bathrobe and all, and is suddenly touring the galaxy with some of the oddest folks you’ll never meet. Complete with two-headed, three-armed ex-hippies, chronically depressed robots, and grad students obsessed with the disappearance of ballpoint pens, this tale keeps you laughing while also vaguely wondering what the meaning of life, the universe, and everything is – that’s an inside joke for those of us who know the story.

    This absurd tale follows Arthur as he hitchhikes through space, unintentionally saves the world (well, part of it), encounters infinitely knowledgeable supercomputers that answer questions with more questions, and learns that his boring life on Earth was nothing compared to what the rest of the galaxy is doing. Adams uses cynicism and wit to spin this tale, and it’s quite enjoyable for anyone who’s humor is just a little dry and, from time to time, enjoys wondering what else the universe might have up its sleeves. 

    I definitely enjoyed this story, with its unique characters, confusing backstory, and random lines that, to this day, sort of leave me reeling. It’s the perfect read for, as I said, dry-humored folks, in addition to science and fiction lovers (or science fiction lovers!) with big imaginations.  This book is also the first installment of a five-part series by Douglas Adams, all of which have interesting titles and even more interesting beings. There is also a sixth novel, written by Eoin Colfer (Artemis Fowl fans, anyone?) after Adams’ death, plus a 12-part series on BBC radio. In short, it’s a beloved story, and quite famous for it, that everyone should read once in their lives. I really enjoyed it, and I hope you do too!

The Lineup: Xochitl

Xochitl’s Lineup

1. Book: Best Skin of Your Life Starts Here by Paula Begoun

I am really big into skincare and have enjoyed the brand Paula’s Choice, so I knew I had to read this advice book written by her. She’s informative and blunt, so she doesn’t just promote her brand but other brands and different procedures as well. Paula debunks rumors and makes sure everything she recommends is backed with science, so this often means her opinion can change as science evolves, which I appreciate. Her honesty and knowledge are refreshing. I really liked how she doesn’t over-complicate things, so everyday consumers can read and have an understanding of what they should look for. My favorite piece of advice was about wearing sunscreen, which she reiterated throughout the book.

  • Available for checkout through the Derby Public Library

2. Documentary: Osage Murders: The Reign of Terror

After finishing up Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann, I went to look for more information about what the Osage people went through back in the 1920s. I ended up finding a documentary about the Reign of Terror, the name given for the period scanning three decades from 1910 into the1930s, which resulted in over fifty unsolved murders of wealthy Osage people in Oklahoma. The documentary was provided by the Oklahoma Educational Television Authority, a public broadcasting service network. The video is only about 28 minutes so it is not a long watch. It’s an interesting and important part of history that I’m happy I did more research on.

3. Podcast: Red Collar (episode: Superdad Psychopath)

The whole show takes a look at murders and crimes committed by seemingly well-off and great people. It is hosted by Catherine Townsend and the episodes are usually about thirty-five minutes long. The episode I took a listen to recently was about the Watts family murders in Colorado back in 2018. She really went into the financial troubles that the couple had always experienced. The podcast brought some details to light that I thought the media and the popular Netflix documentary skipped over. Townsend makes sure she’s thorough with her explanations and has facts to back up some theories and motives to consider. It was an interesting listen for sure and I plan to listen to more episodes.

4. Television: Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends

This was hands down my favorite TV show growing up. Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends is a Cartoon Network original animated series about a foster home for imaginary friends no longer in need by their creators. It centers around a kid named Mac, his witty imaginary friend Bloo, and all the other residents and workers at Foster’s. It’s a really silly show that does center around comedy, but the serious moments are really heartwarming. The show is honestly just as great as I remembered it to be. The episodes are only about 25 minutes long, so it is an easy show to binge.

  • Available on the streaming platform HBOMax.

5. Article: The Day Treva Throneberry Disappeared

I am fascinated with true crime cases, especially the bizarre ones. This one really took me by surprise. Treva Throneberry decided to run away from her life in a small town in Texas, at the age of eighteen, all the way to the state of Washington to start anew as a sixteen-year-old. Through the article, you learn of her family life and her mental problems she was dealing with back in Texas as you get to know the life she was living in Washington. You also learn that she made impersonating a young girl her habit. I really liked that the article switches back and forth from her past and her life elsewhere all the way until her final arrest. It also talked about her unfair trial she had to go through given she was clearly mentally incompetent. Treva Throneberry’s case is a sad one, but I’m glad I took the time to read it.