Crafts & Hobbies

03/23/2017 - 12:48pm
A kite in rainbow shades flies high on a sunny day

To celebrate National Kite Month, Porter Branch will once again display a variety of fabulous kites suspended from the ceiling. Enjoy these colorful beauties the entire month of April, and learn more about kites, how to fly them, and how to make them.  

The exhibition will be provided by Stafford resident, Mike Clark, a lifelong kite enthusiast. Mr. Clark has more than 1,400 kites in his collection, including single, double, and quad line kites, as well as stunt kites. He started collecting and making his own kites when he was a child.

School-aged children, teens, and adults are welcome to join us at Porter Branch on Saturday, April 29, 9:30-12:00, to build, decorate, and (weather permitting) learn to fly your very own kite! Please sign up at the Research Desk, or call 540-659-4909.

03/16/2017 - 9:53am
The Next Big Library Read is Here!

From March 16-30, OverDrive's Big Library Read is back with the eBook format of Art of the Pie. Author Kate McDermott, who learned to make pie from her Iowa grandmother, has taught the time-honored craft of pie-making to thousands of people. In Art of the Pie, she shares her secrets to great crusts (including gluten-free options), fabulous fillings, and to living a good life. 

During the Big Library Read, the digital version of this book will be available to all library customers to download for free. Art of the Pie can be read on all major computers and devices. Like all of our eBooks, it will automatically expire at the end of the lending period, so there are never any late fees. 

Read a sample of Art of the Pie below, listen to an interview with the author, or download the reading group guide for more. 

02/25/2017 - 1:08pm
Starting Seeds Indoors

Get Your Garden Off to a Great Start!

If you're like me, you're looking forward to warm weather, flowers, and delicious homegrown produce. You can give your garden a head start by sprouting and growing seedlings indoors. Horticulturist Holly Schemmer will take the mystery out of starting vegetables, herbs, and flowers from seed. Seed selection, sowing techniques, materials, and timing will be discussed and demonstrated to give you the skills to grow your own spring garden plants. We guarantee you'll go home with a green thumb.

01/18/2017 - 1:21pm
CRRL My Librarian: The 2017 Read Harder Book Challenge

Last year, some library staff members, including myself, challenged others—and our customers—to complete the 2016 Read Harder book challenge from Book Riot. I’ve been trying to expand beyond the books I typically read within the children’s department (and outside of it), so that I will have a better base for recommending books. However, in May, we had our first child. So I did what I could, but a newborn really does eat up a lot of time and energy. Unsurprisingly, I did not read a book in every Book Riot category, although I read multiple books in some categories. Here are the books I read for Book Riot's 2016 Read Harder Challenge. If you are interested in seeing what books other staff members have read, check out our 2016 Reading Challenge Pinterest board here.

If you would like to participate in a reading challenge in 2017, look at our 2017 Reading Challenge Pinterest board, where we are featuring more than one reading challenge to try. Will I read for all of them? Will you? Let's make this a challenge accepted. 

01/04/2017 - 9:06am
Mother Earth Living: Natural Home, Healthy Life Magazine

From the makers of Mother Earth News comes Mother Earth Living magazine—the ultimate guide to a healthy and natural lifestyle. Throughout the issues, you'll discover different methods of keeping a non-toxic household, the best and latest remedies for simple colds and longterm illnesses, recipes with whole foods, and quick garden tips.

The library has print issues of Mother Earth Living from 2012 to the present. The January/February issue features efficiency tips for the new year, such as getting rid of unwanted clutter around the house, meal planning, health benefits of fermented foods, and the outstanding effects of the culinary and medical herb oregano. Put your copy on hold now!

12/07/2016 - 2:41am
2016 Christmas with Southern Living

With over 80 pages dedicated to resources, Southern Living once again offers a number of original methods to celebrate the season. This year is their special 50th Anniversary edition.

11/10/2016 - 2:23am
Cover to Day & Overnight Hikes: Shenandoah National Park

What are you doing reading this article? Go take a hike! No, seriously. Take a Hike Day is on November 17, so you should go take a hike. Not only is Virginia filled with a variety of trails for all levels of hikers and all interests, but local trails are plentiful, too.

11/02/2016 - 2:09am
Forgotten Ways for Modern Days: Kitchen Cures and Household Lore for A Natural Home and Garden

In Forgotten Ways for Modern Days, Rachelle Blondel (coauthor of Granny Chic) offers an array of natural household recipes to maintain a nontoxic household environment.

Blondel emphasizes that having a lifestyle that is free from harsh cleaning products improves your life as it flows day to day. When you use these recipes, there is no risk for anyone in your family (children and pets included) will inhale toxic chemicals.

11/01/2016 - 12:51am
NaNoWriMo—National Novel Writing Month at the Library

National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo, is an annual Internet-based creative writing project that takes place during the month of November, challenging participants to write 50,000 words of a new novel. If you're thinking of participating, you’ll find plenty of helpful writing tips at the library and on nanowrimo.org.

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