Virginia Johnson

11/08/2017 - 11:06am

Gumdrops, lollipops, chocolate squares, jelly bears, and peppermint candies. The sky is the limit as far as decorating your own gingerbread house. They are a ton of fun to decorate, but first, you need to make the house itself.

11/13/2017 - 9:16am

When creativity is harnessed for useful ends, that is when we get amazing inventions. Can you think of a better computer? Somebody did. Otherwise there would only be a few of them; they would be really slow—and they would take up entire rooms! Or, how about a cell phone? Those were inspired by the communicators on the original Star Trek series.

Virginia educators (and librarians!) are very interested in helping kids realize their potential in the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields. Indeed, Virginia has a history of producing some very inventive people.

11/08/2017 - 8:46am
Cover to The Four & Twenty Blackbirds Pie Book: Uncommon Recipes from the Celebrated Brooklyn Pie Shop

With Thanksgiving fast approaching, it seems like a good time to revisit the dessert possibilities. Of course, there would be mutiny if pumpkin pie weren’t involved, but have you considered the addition of Butter Rum Cream Pie or Bourbon Pear Crumble Pie? Or, how about taking traditions to the next level with Brown Butter Pumpkin Pie?

Two sisters from the Midwest gathered in Brooklyn and opened a first-rate pie shop. It seemed like the logical thing to do. Although they all had degrees in finance and the arts, a bust economy had them marshalling their resources as they found that sticking to a family tradition—they were at least the third generation to make a living from the kitchen—reaped delicious and tangible rewards.

11/08/2017 - 10:23am

It ain't over 'til it's over! Every year kids and adults build up a head of steam for the Christmas holidays. Then the magical day comes and goes too quickly, leaving scraps of wrapping paper and half-munched cookies all around the house, as well as the nagging feeling that someone special has been left off the greeting and gifting list.

11/07/2017 - 10:29am

Kwanzaa, celebrated between December 26 and January 1, is a time for families in the African-American community to come together and enjoy their heritage. Unlike many holidays, Kwanzaa was created by one person, Maulana Karenga, in 1966. He named the celebration Kwanzaa, which means "first fruits" in Swahili.

11/08/2017 - 10:16am

When winter skies turn gray, and the air thickens with a chill, life becomes harder for the feathered ones. Food is scarcer, and handouts from us humans can make a difference to them. Take just a few minutes to create a place for the birds to hang out on a frosty day. Once you've got your feeder hung, check out a bird identification book from the library to learn the names of your grateful guests. 

11/08/2017 - 10:21am

On Christmas Eve, a young girl dreams her beloved toy comes to life. He becomes her Nutcracker Prince and dances his Clara through the land of sweets and defeats the wicked Mouse King. Perhaps you've seen the ballet-- it's so popular that many ballet schools make it their featured holiday production year after year. The music is amazing—from the wild Russian dance to the slow and mysterious Arabian dance. It all flows together to create a magical night of exhilarating performances.

11/01/2017 - 1:54am
Gail E. Haley, Spinner of Stories

Gail was a girl who loved stories. She wrote them and illustrated them from a very young age and created stories told with puppet shows to entertain her little sisters. She spent part of her childhood in the North Carolina countryside in a place called Shuffletown. Both of her parents were artists, and her father worked for the newspaper The Charlotte Observer. Visiting him at his workplace inspired her to pursue a career in art, too. She wanted to study in New York but compromised with her parents and attended schools in Virginia.

11/01/2017 - 1:54am
Cover to The Moosewood Restaurant Table

"Our intent is to show by example that you can really make delicious vegetarian food and that it needn't be considered a burden to take that up."--David Hirsch, Moosewood Co-Owner/Collective Member

It was a groovy time.

In 1973, a small restaurant opened in Ithaca, NY, that would hugely influence American dining, being named one of the thirteen most influential restaurants of the 20th century by Bon Appétit magazine. Locally, our own Sammy T’s restaurant features several dishes in the Moosewood tradition.

11/27/2017 - 8:33am
Holiday Prep Starts Here!

Holiday Gatherings | Savories and Sweets | A Sparkling Home | Holiday Movies | Gifts for All | Holiday Booklists and Book Matches

December can be a joyful time of peace and celebration, but too often “getting through the holidays” seems like more of a burden than a blessing. The push to have it all go perfectly is an impossible dream that undermines the true spirit of the season. Yet entertaining friends and family and decorating our homes, however simply or elaborately we choose to do these things, is something most of us truly want to do.

Let your library be your guide to wonderful resources on decoration, party planning, and gifting, along with a selection of holiday movies to keep you and your guests entertained, whether you’re trimming the tree or sipping cider.

Ultimately, you decide how much time (or how little) you want to put into your celebrations. Let’s get started.

Pages

Subscribe to Virginia Johnson