We’ve streamlined our registration procedures to make signing up for classes and events easier than ever! Read on to review the new changes we’ve made. [Read more…]
Pre-publication copies of books, also know as “advanced reading copies,” “ARCs,” and “galleys,” are one of the perks of being a librarian. Now, we want to share our perks with you! Introducing: Advance Readers Club.
Our Advance Readers Club is open to readers who love to read new things & share their love of great books. Read and review preview copies of books before they are released to the public. Your review may even be used on the Patchogue-Medford Library website or email newsletter! You must apply for membership in the club. Submit your application here!
The Patchogue-Medford Library is one of the top destinations for genealogists on Long Island and this May we’re excited to host our first ever Family History Day. Bring the whole family and join us on Saturday, May 6 from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. for this exciting mini conference. There will be interesting and exciting programs and activities for all ages! Check out our full list of programming below.
We’ll be closing out the day with a special program: Who Do You Think You Are?: PML Edition. During this interactive program, two lucky participants will be chosen to have their family history uncovered by our resident genealogist, Kathy Then. Whether inspiring, courageous, or tragic, what’s discovered is sure to change each participant’s life forever! To be eligible to be chosen, participants must fill out this form prior to April 29 either in person or online. The lucky winners will be revealed the day of the program.
On the half hour beginning at 1 pm, tours of the Library’s Genealogy area and Local History Room will be available. Don’t forget to stop by the Statue of Liberty selfie station!
All Afternoon in the Lower Lobby
Stop by the map and place two pins in the regions your ancestors hail from. At the end of the day we’ll post pics of our map – with the locator pins – to Instagram!
Stop by the Patchogue Historical Society’s table and learn more about Patchogue’s past.
Genealogy Federation of Long Island
Meet members from the Genealogy Federation of Long Island and discover how they can encourage your study of family history and assist you in your research.
Sign up for the specific programs below begins in the Lower Lobby at 12:45 pm. Packets, guides, handouts, and refreshments will be available.
Family History Day Storytime
Pop in and listen to a story with Ms. Alyson and Ms. Elaine. We’ll also have some fun and easy family history themed crafts for kids.
DNA Q&A with Toren & Colleen
Learn how two staff members used DNA to connect the dots of who they are.
Family History Recording Studio
(15 minute appointments)
Take this opportunity to record, and take home with you, a brief story from your past – a memory of holidays, special gatherings or meals, school, vacations, or important relatives, notable ancestors you remember or were told about, and your family’s roots and traditions!
The Document Doctor
(15 minute appointments)
Find out how to preserve a specific family document or photo. Bring your item to be examined.
Digitize and Organize Your Family Photos!
Learn easy ways to digitize and store the all those photos you have in albums and shoeboxes.
Family History Crafts
Take time out from more serious genealogy pursuits for some make and take projects – create an informal family tree, design and color your own family coat-of arms, and do a brass rubbing – all suitable for framing! (For adults and teens, grades 6 and up)
Don Eckerle from the German Genealogy Group will discuss all the wonderful genealogy records from the NYC area that his group has indexed. These databases are available online for free and contain everyone – not just Germans.
Parent/Teen Genealogy Workshop
Genealogist Kathy will show you how to start your family history search. This program will be held at the Main Library building and is for parents and teens to attend together.
Apps for Family History
Genealogy apps can make tracing your family tree a lot easier. Learn about the apps that are available and bring one to share if you can.
Learn how to begin your family’s genealogy search. Aprende a comenzar la búsquda de genealogía de su familia.
We are really excited about our very first Family History Day and we hope you are too! Remember, this event is free and open to all. Whether you are an experienced genealogist or just starting out uncovering your roots, there will be something for everyone!
If you’re not familiar with Cricut, let us introduce you! Cricut is an electronic cutting machine for DIY projects and crafts. It precisely cuts a wide variety of over 100 materials from paper to iron-on to adhesive vinyl—even thick materials like leather and burlap. Cricut’s slogan is “make something amazing,” and this machine makes it truly makes it easy to do!
The library has a subscription to Cricut Access which provides free unlimited access to over 30,000 images and 370 fonts to customize and cut for projects. The subscription also comes with over 1000 projects including cards, gift boxes, wall art, decals, party favors, and much more. These projects are ready to cut and can be sent directly to the Cricut.
Did you know that injury is the leading cause of death for children in New York State? While preventable injury is not the most cheerful holiday subject, toy safety is an important consideration when thinking about children’s gifts.
Here are some important tips on toy safety from the American Academy of Pediatrics:
- Select toys to suit the age, abilities, skills and interest level of the intended child. Toys too advanced may pose safety hazards for younger children.
- Before buying a toy or allowing your child to play with a toy that he has received as a gift, read the instructions carefully.
- To prevent both burns and electrical shocks, do not give young children (under age 10) a toy that must be plugged into an electrical outlet. Instead, buy toys that are battery-operated.
- Young children can choke on small parts contained in toys or games. Government regulations specify that toys for children under age three cannot have parts less than 1 1/4 inches in diameter and 2 1/4 inches long.
- Children can have serious stomach and intestinal problems – including death – after swallowing button batteries or magnets. In addition to toys, button batteries are often found in musical greeting cards, remote controls, hearing aids, and other small electronics. Small, powerful magnets are present in many homes as part of building toy sets. Keep button batteries and magnets away from young children and call your health care provider immediately if your child swallows one.
- Children can choke or suffocate on uninflated or broken balloons; do not allow children under age 8 to play with them.
- Remove tags, strings, and ribbons from toys before giving them to young children.
- Watch for pull toys with strings that are more than 12 inches in length. They could be a strangulation hazard for babies.
- Parents should store toys in a designated location, such as on a shelf or in a toy box, and keep older kids’ toys away from young children. Use a toy box with no lid or a lightweight, non-locking lid and ventilation holes.
The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission maintains a Recall Listing where you can search by keyword, specific hazard, or specific manufacturer. This is tool can help you ensure a product you have received or are considering purchasing is safe.
The American Academy of Pediatrics also has a great article about Holiday Safety Tips and Mental Health Tips which covers everything from food safety to holiday visiting to trees, lights, and decorations. These tips can help keep everyone in the whole family happy and healthy this holiday season.
Of course, as a librarian, I recommend purchasing great age appropriate books for everyone on your shopping list. Need a suggestion on what to buy? Librarians are knowledgeable about current trends in books, are trained to match readers with books, and love talking about books. Ask a librarian!
More Americans are getting their news from the Internet and social media sites. In the past week, there has been a rise in the number of fake news websites, hoaxes, and misinformation spreading across the Internet. While both Google and Facebook have announced plans to crack down on fake news sites, separating fact from fiction is getting harder.
Using coupons is a serious way to save money. Surprisingly however, only a small percentage of shoppers (about 1 percent) redeem coupons. My mother is the original “crazy coupon lady”. Being a single mom, with three kids, she was always looking for ways to cut costs and save money. As such, I grew up around coupons and learned many tricks of the trade.
Of course, to use coupons, you need to know where to find them. Some people may not realize there are multiple places to find coupons. One place to find coupons is the Sunday paper. There are three different inserts that come out on a regular basis: Smart Source, Red Plum and Procter & Gamble.
Couponing websites are another valuable resource. From Coupons.com to Facebook to manufacturer websites, you can find coupons online. The best part about it is they’re free. I like to check The Krazy Coupon Lady because she breaks deals down according to each store’s weekly ad. Of course you’ll need a computer and a printer. Don’t forget, you can use the computers here at the library. You can also print ten pages for free daily After your daily allocation, prints are just 10¢ each for black and white and 25¢ each for color.
Mobile coupons are now becoming popular. Programs and apps like Ibotta, Checkout 51, Cartwheel, Shopmium allow you to download coupons to your phone and redeem cash back savings after you’ve purchased a product.
Interested in learning more about how to get started saving money with coupons? Join us on Tuesday, October 11 at 7 pm for Intro to Couponing. Everyone is welcome to attend but we need to know how many people to expect, so we ask that you register. To register, stop by the library or call us at 631-654-4700 x220. You can also sign up online here.
I am obsessed with reading. I am always reading, thinking about reading, talking about reading, or planning what to read next. If you are a fellow reader, I have a great tool for you! Goodreads is an online platform that allows you to keep track of the books you have read, the books you want to read, and what your friends are reading. You can even get recommendations based on books you have read. If you are book obsessed like me, Goodreads is a great tool for you.
When you make a GoodReads profile, here’s what it looks like.
This is my profile. I include some personal information (like my age and where I live) because I like to know what people other people my age or in my area are reading. I also include a short description and a picture. You can control the amount of information you share. On my profile page, you can see a list of all of my bookshelves and a list of my friends.
My favorite part about GoodReads is the bookshelves. When you sign up, you are given a basic set of bookshelves (read, to-read, and currently-reading), but you can create as many as you want. A few of the ones I have created are memoir, cookbooks, and historical-fiction.
I use the to-read shelf to keep track of books I would like to read in the future. Whenever a library customer or one of the staff members here at PML recommends a book, I pop it on my to-read list. When I am looking for something to read, I go straight to this list. I don’t know if I will ever get to them all since I add books to my to-read shelf weekly, but I can certainly try!
When you finish reading a book
Once you finish reading a book, you mark it as “read” and give it a rating out of 5 stars. You can also write a review. When you pull up a book’s name, you can see all sorts of information about it, like the description and average rating information. On the right side of the page, you will see similar books. Scroll down and you can see comments from other readers, quotes, and trivia. If you click on the author’s name, you can read their biography and see their other books. So basically, everything you need in your reading life can be found in one area.
When you can’t decide what to read next, you can check out recommendations from GoodReads. For the recommendations to work best, you’ll need to have established a good track record of sorting your books by shelves and rating the books you read. The more you add to GoodReads, the more accurate your recommendations will be.
Do you want to know another great source for finding your next great read? The answer is your local librarian! We don’t like books. We LOVE them. We love to recommend books, talk about books, curl up with a good book….you get the idea. Recommending books makes our day. If there is a book you’ve heard about and want to read, ask us and we can get it for you.
GoodReads actually has a ton of additional features like a yearly Book Challenge, author events, giveaways and The Never Ending Book Quiz. I highly encourage you to give it a try. If you want to see my reviews, check out my GoodReads page!
If you are of a certain age, as a child you probably owned (or really wanted to own) a View-Master. Remember that chunky red plastic slide viewer with the circular slide disks that had all of your favorite cartoons? There were educational reels too that took you on a field trip of sorts. I had a ton of different disks but Seven Wonders of the World was my personal favorite. The View-Master’s 3D effects were really amazing, and you really felt like you were going on a journey. In some ways, the View-Master was the first virtual reality experience for many people.
Fast forward to 2016 where the technology behind virtual reality has advanced rapidly in the past couple of years. Right now, virtual reality is really taking off in the gaming world and several major companies including Facebook, Samsung, and PlayStation have developed virtual reality headsets. While these headsets are really cool, they are also pretty pricey, with the lower end Samsung Gear VR starting at $99.99.
If you want to experience virtual reality without breaking the bank, good news. You can do so with Google Cardboard. Simple, cheap, and good fun, Google Cardboard is a complete virtual reality platform that you can purchase for as little as $15 or even make yourself.
Cardboard works much like the View-Master but instead of using picture disks, it uses a smartphone. The phone is placed in a viewer at an optimal distance from the lenses and a 3D effect is created when the viewer is held up to your eyes. You can move your head around and the images will respond as if you’re in the same place as what is displayed on your screen. Plug in headphones and you can add 3D audio for a more immersive experience.
Cardboard works with both Android and Apple phones and there are numerous apps for games, videos, and more. You can get a taste of what Cardboard is capable of with the Cardboard app. This app comes with demos like Google Earth, where you can fly wherever you would like. You can also try Cardboard with YouTube and view popular videos on a seemingly massive screen.
Here’s one of the best things about Google Cardboard. Patchogue-Medford Library now offers Google Cardboard for a seven day loan. Check one out, take it home, and experience virtual reality for yourself! Visit the Adult Reference Desk to get for more information.