January 11th, 2010

Wanted: A New Year’s Resolution

I am looking for a New Year’s resolution. As a person who never even manages to stay awake to see the ball drop, I have to be realistic. So far, my search for inspiration has shown that realistic is not the name of the game. It appears, only radical, seemingly stress -inducing change will do.

Julie and Julia: 365 days, 524 recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen sounds good with all that food, but having recently burned myself again getting cookies out of the oven, a resolution to spend every day cooking sounds too dangerous. Even needing such a goal may mean your cooking is more likely to appear in The Year of Eating Dangerously: A Global Adventure in Search of Culinary Extremes. Maybe I could just forget the cooking part and simply aim to buy and eat locally as in Plenty: One Man, One Woman, and a Raucous Year of Eating Locally.

Simply doing nothing by skipping the shopping all together might be more up my alley. Both Not Buying It: My Year Without Shopping and Give it up: My Year of Learning to Live Better with Less could be inspiring as long as “giving it up” doesn’t extend to toothpaste or milk chocolate brownies. Such deprivation would be nothing compared to having to stone adulterers and not wear clothing with mixed fibers as the author attempts in The Year of Living Biblically: One Man’s Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible.

Perhaps my lack of direction implies a need for an all-over makeover. Living Oprah: My One-Year Experiment to Walk the Walk of the Queen of Talk would certainly cover all the bases—health, wealth and what to do about my inability to read and enjoy any of her book club selections.  Why stop at Oprah when I could observe the effects of combining Canfield’s “Chicken Soup” philosophy with management guru Steven Covey and exercise legend Richard Simmons in Helping Me Help Myself: One Skeptic, Ten Self-Help Gurus, and  a Year on the Brink of the Comfort Zone.

Guilt aside, in the end, a New Year’s resolution is about finding validation.  I’m a librarian surrounded by information and books all with the potential to amuse, educate and inspire any given person. Thus, I resolve to begin the year with So Many Books, So Little Time: A Year of Passionate Reading and see where it takes me.

What are you resolving to do—or not do—this year?

January 4th, 2010

How do you indulge yourself?

How do you indulge yourself?  According to Dictionary.com, indulge means “to yield to, satisfy, or gratify.”  Too often we focus on our family and job to the point that we don’t take time for ourselves.  Add in the economic constraints we’re all facing, and there’s even less opportunity for indulgence.

Have you ever thought of the library as a place of indulgence?  Some people only think of the library when they need information; but think about it – we have best sellers, popular movies and TV series on DVD, music and magazines.  Why buy or rent when you have free access at the library?  Add in the service of placing holds on materials you want and being able to pick them up quickly at the circulation desk (or even the drive-thru at the Perryville branch), and you have quick and easy access that you can easily incorporate into your weekly errand running.

Not sure what you’d like to read, watch or hear next?  Talk to our librarians at the information desk and they can hook you up with services like Book Mate and Interlibrary Loans, as well as offering recommendations for great reads on the spot. If you’re more hands on, you can use our databases and find things yourself or download to your computer or MP3 player from our digital library.

My favorite indulgence is reading bodice-ripper romance novels, leaning heavily toward the paranormal and historical (handsome, arrogant English lords and brawling Scottish Highlanders, oh my!) with a smattering of stories that focus on ex-special forces heroes – I do like those alpha-males!  The selection we have here allows me to indulge frequently and heavily.  I love to curl up on the couch with a book and have a nice glass of wine, maybe some dark chocolate or cheese, and let the movie play out in my head.  This works equally well with mysteries and cookbooks.

So now that I’ve shared my not-so-secret indulgences, what are yours?  Bodice-rippers like me, true crime, cozy mysteries, sci-fi, westerns, celebrity gossip magazines – what’s your favorite indulgence?