Monday, 20 October 2014

Seniors Week is October 19 – 25, 2014.

Seniors Week week is an opportunity to focus on programming and services for seniors provided by public libraries. The goals are to increase seniors’ knowledge of public libraries, and to increase seniors’ usage of the public library system and services. Last year was the first year of this celebration. 

There are 120 programs happening in Nova Scotia during this week. Click this link for information on other regional programming. Branches of the Annapolis Valley Regional Library are offering 23 programs. On October 20 the Port Williams branch is offering an estate planning workshop. Come and learn about GPS in Kingston, or healthy eating tips for life in Middleton on October 21. The Windsor branch will have games and puzzles available every day during seniors’ week and a live performance by Dewey and the Decimals on October 23. The Hantsport branch will host an informational session with a local physiotherapist, and Kingston will host an open house of services available for seniors in the community. Some branches will be hosting RCMP senior safety workshops. Click here to view our events for this week, and to register for special programs.

Submitted by Wendy Kearnes, Outreach Services Manager

Monday, 13 October 2014


It’s  harvest time in the valley.  This is when we head to the u-picks, the markets, farmers roadside stalls and stock up.  What to do with all of this bounty?  This is the time to plan for the rest of fall and the winter to come.   I think we all have gone overboard at one time or another and then find ourselves with a bushel of apples or quarts of plums and pears and finding that we cannot eat them fast enough.  
  Pickling, Preserving and Canning are popular ways of keeping fruits and vegetables. The kitchen pantry, cold rooms and root cellars are also making a comeback.  If you aren’t lucky enough to have these consider building or having them built.  It can be easier than you think to put aside some food to enjoy over the long winter months.   Fermented foods are also making a comeback, think sauerkraut, not only for the taste but the health benefits as well. 

Whether you want to start small with a little bit of jam or want to preserve your whole harvest look to your local library for help.  We have titles like the Complete Root Cellar, ClearlyDelicious an Illustrated Guide to Preserving, Pickling & Bottling,  or IndependenceDays : a guide to sustainable food storage & preservation.  There are so many other books we can offer whether you are a beginner or an experienced food  preserver.  Recipe books too!  With the award winning Best of Bridge home preserving : 120 recipes for jams, jellies,marmalades, pickles & more being one of our newest additions.

There is nothing like the feeling of looking over a counter filled with jars of pickles or jam that you have made yourself.   Have fun exploring this activity and who knows you might be planting your own garden next spring.  We have books for that too.

--Patricia Milner, Head of Reference Services

Monday, 6 October 2014

October is Autism Awarenss Month

 Did you know...

  •  Autism now affects 1 in 68 children.   
  • Boys were almost 5 times more likely to be identified with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) than girls. 
  • About 1 in 42 boys and 1 in 189 girls were identified with ASD.
  • This new estimate is roughly 30% higher than the estimate for 2008 (1 in 88), roughly 60% higher than the estimate for 2006 (1 in 110), and roughly 120% higher than the estimates for 2002 and 2000 (1 in 150). 
  • Most children identified with ASD were not diagnosed until after age 4, even though children can be diagnosed as early as age 2.
  • Autism costs a family $60,000 a year on average
  • There is no medical detection or cure for autism

One of the most recognizable groups to raise public awareness and fund global research is Autism Speaks CanadaStarted by the grandparents of a child with Autism this is now North America’s  largest research and advocacy organization. Their message that Autism speaks and it’s time to listen is a simple but serious one.  With the prevalence of ASD growing every year it is important to keep up with the needs of these children.

What Is Autism? What is Autism Spectrum Disorder?
 Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and autism are both general terms for a group of complex disorders of brain development. These disorders are characterized, in varying degrees, by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and repetitive behaviors. With the May 2013 publication of the DSM-5 diagnostic manual, all autism disorders were merged into one umbrella diagnosis of ASD. Previously, they were recognized as distinct subtypes, including autistic disorder, childhood disintegrative disorder, pervasive developmental disorder-not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS) and Asperger syndrome. 

ASD can be associated with intellectual disability, difficulties in motor coordination and attention and physical health issues such as sleep and gastrointestinal disturbances. Some persons with ASD excel in visual skills, music, math and art.

Autism appears to have its roots in very early brain development. However, the most obvious signs of autism and symptoms of autism tend to emerge between 2 and 3 years of age.

Do you want to learn more?  Do you have a child with ASD?   Do you want material for that child to use? Your public library has print, downloadable books and sound recordings for adults and children.  Use the term Autism in the search box and click on subject to get results for books such as Point to Happy, A Full Life with Autism, or The Reason I Jump

Let’s take this opportunity to listen and learn as Autism Speaks.

--Patricia Milner, Head of Reference Services

Monday, 29 September 2014

Breast is Best

The La Leche League of Canada is a group that aims to promote and support breastfeeding.  We all know mother’s milk is the superior infant food and breastfeeding is an essential part of developing the bond between mother and baby. 

A local Le Leche League group recently received funding through the Thrive! Community Breastfeeding Project to purchase books and dvds on breastfeeding which are now available for the public to borrow at public libraries across Nova Scotia.  It’s partnerships like this that make public libraries an essential way to promote health literacy.

To celebrate this new collection of breastfeeding resources, there will be a celebration at the Windsor Regional Library on Saturday, October 4th from 10-12.  Books purchased through the grant will be on display, there will be a special Babies & Books Storytime, and there will be some treats too!  So plan to stop by the Windsor Library on the morning of October 4th to show that you support breastfeeding.

Posted by Frances Newman, CEO

Monday, 22 September 2014

NSLA/LBANS 2014 Conference: Communities Start Here

NSLA/LBANS 2014 Conference: Communities Start Here
September 26 – 28, 2014
Amherst, Nova Scotia

Since 2002 the Nova Scotia Library Association (NSLA) Annual Conference has been a joint conference with the Library Boards Association of Nova Scotia (LBANS). Each fall, NSLA and LBANS hold this conference in one of Nova Scotia’s nine library regions.

What is NSLA? NSLA is an association for those involved in librarianship/library and information studies at all levels and in all regions in Nova Scotia. Its purpose is to facilitate the exchange of ideas, and to promote a forum for the discussion of issues amongst people concerned with library and information services. Since its formation in 1973, NSLA has been involved in numerous national initiatives including the National Summit of Information Policy. NSLA is also committed to working on the Strategic Plan for Nova Scotia Regional Libraries. For more information go to

LBANS mandate is to protect, preserve, promote, and support quality public library service in Nova Scotia. Public Libraries in Nova Scotia are governed by nine regional library boards made up of municipal, provincial and board appointments. While boards vary slightly in their composition, 2 seats are open to interested citizens from each region. Click here for details.

The purpose of the conference is staff development and training. This is also a good opportunity for professional networking, and for board members to meet many colleagues from around the province. The 2014 NSLA/LBANS conference is being hosted by the Cumberland Public Libraries and will be held in Amherst, Nova Scotia on September 26th-28th, 2014. For conference information please check out the conference website. 

The following awards are annually sponsored by NSLA and will be presented at the conference:

The Norman Horrocks Award for Library Leadership was established to honor leadership in the Nova Scotia Library community and is given by NSLA for distinguished contributions to the promotion and development of library service in Nova Scotia. Those contributions should be of lasting significance and may be for leadership of various kinds – ranging from local projects to those of provincial scope, and may cover any type of library activity.

The Emile Theriault Library and Information Technology Award recognizes the efforts of a library support staff member who has made a major contribution to their library community.

Consider becoming an NSLA member. The benefits include staying ahead of the issues concerning libraries in Nova Scotia, participating in the Education Institute webinars, attending workshops at a reduced rate and network, learn and have fun at the annual conference with the membership rate. To become a member go to this link!

Wendy Kearnes
Outreach Services Manager

Monday, 15 September 2014

One Book: Roost

Have you read Roost yet?  Ali Bryan’s novel Roost is this year’s pick for One Book Nova Scotia which is the book all Nova Scotians are being encouraged to read this year.

Ali will be here in the Valley at the NSCC Kingstec Library in Kentville on Monday, September 22 at 7:00 p.m.  She’ll be reading from Roost and sharing stories about the writing process as well as answering questions.  We have several copies of her book available at Annapolis Valley Regional Libraries as well as a downloadable eBook version and a Book Club in a Bag kit.  Copies of her book will also be for sale at the reading thanks to our friends from Box of Delights in Wolfville.  

Set in Nova Scotia, Roost is the story of a single mom dealing with the sudden loss of her mother, the quirky and troubling behavior of her aging father, and her long-term sibling rivalry with her “perfect” brother.  Told with great humour and compassion, Ali Bryan creates compelling and relatable characters that may remind us of ourselves or someone we know.

Ali was originally from Halifax, then Sackville, NB, and like many other Maritimers, currently lives in Alberta.  Thanks to a grant from the Canada Council for the Arts, she kicks off an author reading tour of Nova Scotia starting at Halifax’s Word on the Street on Sunday, September 21.  Her tour includes readings not only here in the Valley, but in Yarmouth, Antigonish, Baddeck and Amherst.

For more information on One Book Nova Scotia or Roost, check out   

--Frances Newman, CEO