Amber meeting Harry Potter of Harry and the Potters during the Eastern Ave Branch Library Opening DaySit back, curl up with a blanket, and hug a book–It’s time to reminisce about the library:

Five years ago, did you take a selfie with your favorite band, Harry and the Potters, at the Eastern Ave. Branch Library Opening Day celebration? Yup, that’s me!

Twenty years ago, did the children’s librarian know you by name and always have the newest Garfield book ready for you? I loved those books. Hmmm maybe I should check one out again…

Fifty years ago, how did you feel when you learned Davenport’s Carnegie Library would be torn down? I imagine that the Carnegie’s Reading Room was both glam and cozy.

We absolutely love when people share their favorite memories of the Davenport Public Library with us, and this week we hope you will share your favorite memory with everyone! This week is National Library Week and Davenport Public Library asks you to help us celebrate by sharing your favorite moment, photo, quote, feeling, book that reminds you of the awesomeness of your local library.

Hands holding up copies of aYes Please by Amy Poehler book and audiobookWe will be choosing two of our favorite memories posted between April 12-18, 2015 to win an autographed audiobook or book of Amy Poehler’s Yes, Please (provided by @harperaudio) and one kid’s memory to win a Jelly Belly Bean Machine. Post your memory and use the hashtags #DavenportReads #YesPlease so we can collect it (If you notice that we have not liked or favorited your post, it may not have appeared in our feed. You can always message us or email us directly at marketing@davenportlibrary.com)

Follow us all week (and all the time) on:

 

It’s that time of year again – great weather and important events have arrived! Graduations, weddings, reunions, holidays, vacations – they’re just around the corner.  Time to brush up on your photography skills so you can capture all those special moments.

There’s no better place to start than BetterPhoto Basics by Jim Miotke – whether you’re an enthusiastic amateur or an absolute beginner you’ll find lots of inspiration. The great thing about this book is that the majority of tips and ideas work with virtually any camera – Miotke even talks about using the camera on your iPhone! (proving once again that the best camera is the one you have with you) Tips are simple but effective – making the best use of available light, fill your frame with your subject, using the rule of thirds to compose a shot, checking the background. Throughout Miotke encourages creativity and experimenting – often simply looking at your world from a different angle can produce amazing shots. A series of simple photo assignments will help you apply these ideas. There’s even a chapter on easy fixes you can do with your photos on your computer.

Now there’s no more excuses for blurry, uninteresting photos – this book will fix those problems and make capturing memories fun!

More favorite books from 2009 from our Blogging Librarians.

Lynn: Home Safe was my favorite book of the year because, once again, Elizabeth Berg writes so beautifully about the small moments of daily life. I loved the writing group that the main character teaches and was intrigued with her dilemma – to stay in Oak Park or move to a perfect house in California that her late husband built for her. Lynn blogged about Elizabeth Berg speaking at the Moline Library here.

Tana: My favorite book this year was The Glass Castle, a memoir by Jeannette Walls. I couldn’t put it down – I found it incredible that she not only survived her childhood, but that she was able to become a very successful adult who still obviously loved her parents. I can’t wait to read her new book about her grandmother, Half-Broke Horses.

Ann: My choice is The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein. Narrated by Enzo the dog, it is about a family that is torn apart by tragedy and betrayal, then slowly brought together again by love.  It is by turns heartfelt and heartbreaking and it’s a book that I still think about often, months after reading it. It made me cry, but it also made me laugh and it made me hopeful. You can read more about it here.

Now it’s your turn. What was your favorite book that you read in 2009? Don’t be shy – we’re always eager to hear about good books! AND, one lucky commenter will win two tickets to the Figge Art Museum! Leave a comment with your favorite 2009 book and why it was your favorite by midnight January 3. We’ll draw a random number and announce the winner on January 5. (Sorry, Davenport Library employees and their families are not eligible!)

Once all the presents are bought and candies and cookies have been made, it’ll be time to relax with a good holiday book to keep you in the spirit.

The Christmas Train – David Baldacci

Tom Langdon is a former war reporter who now writes feature articles for various magazines. Banned from flying on airplanes, Langdon is forced to take a cross-country train from Washington, D.C., to L.A., where his girlfriend is waiting to spend Christmas with him. To Tom’s shock, the former love of his life, Eleanor, is also aboard the train. Sparks fly between them, bringing up old feelings along with the unresolved issues from their relationship. Tom realizes this might be his second chance with Eleanor, but a series of unexpected events may derail his plans.

A Christmas Memory – Truman Capote

A Christmas Memory is the classic memoir of Truman Capote’s childhood in rural Alabama. Until he was ten years old, Capote lived with distant relatives. This book is an autobiographical story of those years and his frank and fond memories of one of his cousins, Miss Sook Faulk.

A Redbird Christmas – Fannie Flagg

Lured by a brochure his doctor gives him after informing him that his emphysema has left him with scarcely a year to live, 52-year-old Oswald T. Campbell abandons wintry Chicago for Lost River, Ala., where he believes he’ll be spending his last Christmas. Befriended by Frances Cleverdon, this quirky story takes a heartwarming turn when Frances and Oswald become involved in the life of Patsy Casey, an abandoned young girl with a crippled leg. As Christmas approaches, the townspeople and neighboring communities rally round shy, sweet Patsy. Flagg is a gifted storyteller who knows how to tug at readers’ heartstrings, winding up her satisfying holiday tale with the requisite Christmas miracle.

Christmas at Fontaine’s – William Kotzwinkle

Tis the night before Christmas and all through Fontaine’s department store something mysterious and magical is happening. For into the lives of the department store Santa, the harried employees and the worried owner has come a mysterious presence, a silver streak, hiding in the darkened stockrooms and empty stairwells, appearing for an instant – now in the Toy Department, now in an unfinished window display – turning the chaos of a department store on Christmas Eve into a wonderland of miracles.

Tidings – William Wharton

This intimate family novel by takes place during a few days around Christmas. At an old mill in rural France, philosophy teacher Will, wife Lor, and four nearly grown children reunite for the holidays. The scene and the season are so lovingly detailed that the novel’s atmosphere is almost palpable, yet each family member brings to the festivities some personal trouble that he or she will try to resolve. As they struggle to make this a Christmas to remember, the people and their celebration come alive in an unusual, entertaining, heartwarming evocation of the magic, warmth, and underlying strains of family Christmas.

The Great Santa Search – Jeff Guinn

When TV producer Bobbo Butler tries to save his ailing TV station, FUN-TV, with an American Idol-inspired talent contest intended to find the real Santa, the man himself throws his hat into the ring. Guinn’s clever premise draws on the historical roots of the commercialization of Christmas, and his Santa, who narrates, is sanguine when faced with the prospect of facing off against street corner Santas.

Still looking for the perfect gift? Try making something handmade – it doesn’t have to be complicated or time consuming, it simply needs to come from the heart.

You’ll find lots of inspiration in Stitches in Time by Alicia Paulson. Alicia gently encourages you to keep memories alive and part of everyday life through your own handcrafts. For instance, after going to see The Nutcracker ballet with her niece, she created a Clara doll (seen on the cover of the book) Other ideas include taking a child’s artwork and creating a stuffed toy (such as the adorable Molly the horse), making a pillow using family photos or creating a baby’s mobile using cards given at the baby shower. Alicia encourages you to take her ideas and projects and inject your own special touches; for instance, she shows several versions of the Clara doll and suggests that you create your own doll to look like a favorite book character or family member.

Alicia celebrates the domestic and the homemade, urging you to look for alternatives to manufactured perfection. Basic sewing and embroidery skills are all that’s required and clear and detailed instructions are included. The writing in this book is fun too – Alicia writes with a warm and personal voice and you’ll soon feel like she’s a close friend.

Be sure to check Alicia’s popular blog at Posie Gets Cozy where you can follow her ongoing stories of her family and crafts.