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Showing posts from January, 2012

Overlooked Treasures in the Collection

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Silent movies are back! Well, at least one silent movie.  The Artist is out in theaters now and is generating a lot of Oscar buzz. With silent films being back in the news we would like to highlight a couple of silent movies that the Mercer County Library purchased in 2010 that might have slipped by unnoticed.  These overlooked treasures are certainly worth checking out.

The first up for discussion is Metropolis.  This is a German silent movie from 1927, directed by Fritz Lang.  A film director of Austrian descent, Lang got his start in the German film industry as a screen writer and quickly worked his way up to film director. He belonged to the Expressionist movement in film; this movement wanted to focus on telling a story from a highly subjective viewpoint distorting reality to express the inner turmoil people face.  Expressionist films used highly stylized set design, sharply exaggerated shadows and high-contrast lighting, and off-kilter camera angles to represent this turmoil.  La…

Glitz and Glam – another easy bracelet you can make!

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Liven up your winter wardrobe by adding a little glitz and glam. You can personalize this simple bracelet by choosing your favorite sequins. I had flowers and stars on hand, but craft stores offer a wide variety of shapes and sizes, so pick out your favorites and get started…

Sequin Bracelets
Materials needed:
Sequins - assorted sizes (make sure they have a small hole in the middle)
24 or 26- gauge wire (36 inches)
Wire cutters or nail clippers
1 large seed bead (size 6/0)

Creating a clasp –
Choose a larger sequin to act as a clasp at the end of your bracelet. Bend your 36 inch wire in half to make a loop the large sequin can fit through. Remember if the loop is too big the bracelet could unclasp. Twist the wires at the base of the loop to close it.

Threading the beads –
Thread one of the wires through the hole in the sequin then thread the other wire through in the opposite direction. Carefully push the sequin toward loop. Be very careful not to cross your wires as you slide it. Secure…

New Year … New Outlook!

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Happy New Year to all the MCL blog readers out there and with the New Year here are some ways to change your Outlook email!  Why not add some sparkle to your email messages by including a colorful background? You can also create a signature that’s as distinctive as you are by adding a picture, a quote and even hyperlinks. How about automating your signature so you don’t have to do a lot of repetitive typing – your name, contact information, etc. - each time you send an email? Want a receipt that lets you know if your email message was received? And how about setting up a contacts list for that book group of yours? Now you don’t have to remember and retype each member’s email every month! You can also make your email messages easier to find by creating and assigning color categories. Sound good?  Then read on – this is the first in a series of blogs regarding Microsoft Outlook.

For this blog, I will start with showing you how to add a colorful theme to your email.

Open Outlook, and the…

I Prowl Cemeteries

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A Mystery in Three Parts

(Not a Whodunit, but two Who-are-theys and one Where-is-he)

I prowl cemeteries.

I’m neither a vampire nor a zombie. I’m that third creature of current popular culture: an amateur genealogist. And as any such person knows, cemeteries can yield a wealth of information, especially if, like mine, your interest in genealogy came late enough in life that there are no longer people around who can answer your questions.

Part I: The Mystery of the Italian Relatives
I am lucky enough to have one ancestor with a unique surname.  My father’s mother’s father, Gregorio, was the first Damaturco, and his granddaughter, Josephine, was the last -- which means that every Damaturco who ever lived is somehow related to me.

So when I searched the New York State newspaper archives and found an obituary for Gregory Damaturco, I knew I’d found my great-grandfather.








And it gave me two valuable pieces of information: the exact date of death, and the last sentence: “Interment family  plot…

eBook Help

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If you are new to eBooks on eLibraryNJ, we have a few tips to help get you started borrowing eBooks from MCLS.  First, we will take a look at how to download to some popular devices and then take a look at how to navigate the eLibraryNJ website.

The first thing you want to make sure to do is download and install any software you will need to check-out an eBook.  If you have a Kindle, Sony Reader WiFi or tablet, you do not need to download any software on your PC.  For all other devices, you will need to install Adobe Digital Editions (ADE) on your PC, see the Adobe website to download.  In order to use the software, you will need a free Adobe account.  Nook users must make sure to use the same e-mail address and password that was used to register the nook or you will not be able to transfer titles to the nook.

For tablets and Smartphones, such as the iPad, you do not need a PC at all, but will need to download the OverDrive app from the App Store on iTunes or from the Android Market. …

Wrap up with a cozy book this winter

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There is nothing better on a cold winter’s day then to snuggle up under a warm quilt and read a book. Here’s a collection of cozy winter stories from the MCLS catalog to share with young readers.

One winter's day by Christina Butler (E BUT)
When a wintry wind blows away Little Hedgehog's nest, he sets out for his friend Badger's house, and the generosity he shows to others during his journey is returned to him when the snowstorm is over.

Snow  by Cynthia Rylant (E RYL)
Celebrates the beauty of a snowfall and its happy effects on children.

A Kitten Tale by Eric Rohman (E ROH)
As four kittens who have never seen winter watch the seasons pass, three of them declare the reasons they will dislike snow when it arrives, while the fourth cannot wait to experience it for himself.

Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson (E WIL)
On a cold winter night many animals gather to party in the cave of a sleeping bear, who then awakes and protests that he has missed the food and the fun.

Mouse and Mole, a…

Books to Get You Thinking

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As the year 2011 slowly recedes into the past, we remember the special moments and events that made the year memorable - the Uprising in the Middle East, the Economic Crisis of Europe, the earthquake and tsunami that triggered the nuclear disaster in Japan.  Throughout these tumultuous times, several books emerged as timely reflections on both current events and topics of historical importance. This month’s picks for our readers feature notable books that have received recognition by the editorial boards of top publications across the world. They range from reflections on current events to in-depth exploration of significant moments in our history, as well as some more personal reflections of individuals who have faced extraordinary challenges.
New York Times
A Boy in the Moon: A Father’s Journey to Understand His Extraordinary Son by Ian Brown
A truly poignant and  hauntingly beautiful book, where the author offers readers a  glimpse into his life as he and his wife care for, and brin…

New Year’s Eve in Times Square

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Throughout my childhood, the tradition was to gather at Aunt Antoinette’s house on New Year’s Eve. The grown-ups would socialize and the kids would be glued to the television, watching the festivities in Times Square. It just wasn’t New Year’s without seeing the ball drop…
I didn’t think about it then, but recently I’ve wondered about the history of New Year’s Eve at Times Square. How did that spot become so synonymous with New Year’s Eve? And what is the reason behind the big lighted ball?
According to the Times Square Alliance, the first New Year’s Eve celebration at Times Square took place in 1904 to commemorate the official opening of the New York Times’ new headquarters. Then owner Alfred Ochs decided he would offer a “party for the ages” and he did – 200,000 people attended a day-long street festival and fireworks display. It was said that the noise from the crowd at midnight could be heard 30 miles away. The success of this first celebration made Times Square the place to …

Reader’s Advisory: The Infomercial

Are you confused about the proper reading order of your favorite series? Are you fed up with not knowing when the next book is due to come out? Would you like a faster way to keep track of which books you’ve read and a greener way to track them instead of using notebooks full of lists?
Hello. My name’s Amelia. I’m a librarian at the Twin Rivers Branch Library.
If you’re in need of a resource to track your treasured book series then pay close attention because I’m going to share with you the amazing power of FictFact.com
Let’s list the benefits of FictFact.com… You can keep track of the books you’ve read in a series with your personal Next Book List. This list shows you the next book you should read in each series you follow.You can see when the next book is due out in each series you follow with the Coming Soon list.You can get updates when a new book is added to a followed series or if one of your much cherished, series writing authors has started a new series.
Here’s what one of our patron…