Library Column for January 20, 2023

@ Your Library

READ! I know I probably sound like a broken record player (how many get that dated reference) but reading is an important part of our humanity. Reading allows us to learn, increases our empathy, can decrease our stress and anxiety levels and help us sleep better. Kids also need to see the adults in their life choosing to read regularly. I’ve also often said, read together. It is so much easier to do something if you do it together. What you read isn’t important, just read. Digital reading is fine, once you are a fluent reader, beginning readers may need to stick with physical items to read at least most of the time. Several studies have encountered reading issues with new readers learning to read digitally, the brain doesn’t treat the text as reading and many don’t develop reading comprehension. But listening to audiobooks is different. The brain seems to register the story as a book and uses the same parts of the brain to listen to a book as to read a book, but it needs to be an audiobook as the cadence and structure is different than other audio forms. So download an audiobook of that classic, or other book you’ve been meaning to read and listen to it as you clean, exercise, wait for the kids, etc.

I don’t know about you, but the seed catalogs have begun to arrive. That means I’ve begun thinking about the next gardening season. Here are some gardening books to help get the ideas flowing and the planning process started for the best garden yet. The Garden Refresh by Kier Holmes seeks to ‘give you yard big impact on a small budget.’ The book is packed with tips on design, plant selection and maintenance reduction. While Plant Grow Harvest Repeat by Meg McAndrews Cowden provides guidance to ‘grow a bounty of vegetables, fruits and vegetables by mastering the art of succession planting.’ Sow seeds continuously to get a steady stream of fresh food from spring to late fall. The book contains detailed, seasonal sowing charts to maximize your results.

If you prefer to grow houseplants, then check out The Plant Coach by Nick Cutsumpas for a ‘beginner’s guide to caring for plants and the planet.’ Learn what kind of plants are best suited for your home environment and learn your new plants ‘love language’ so you can identify what is wrong and right with its growing conditions and help it thrive. This is a book I need to read as I regularly kill house plants.

If you request materials through MNLink, the statewide book loaning system, you will now need to use your PIN to login. The PIN is the one you use to login to the Arrowhead Library System catalog. This change is being implemented to increase security and privacy. Contact us is you don’t know your PIN, but it is generally the last four digits of your phone number (or at least the phone number we have on record).

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