Remembering all the things we are thankful for at the library
Each month I have the opportunity to share about all things library with you. I enjoy following the seasons and all the community events; one of my favorite months is November. Fall is in full swing. This month (the only month that begins with the letter "N") is full of holidays, food, family and fun; I get excited just seeing it come up next on the calendar. It is the month that we stamp an enormous GRATITUDE across and remember all of the things we are thankful for.
This year, the library staff has had to dig deep, take on new challenges as we pulled together to fill some empty spaces and keep our doors open. As many of you may know, one team member has been on an unanticipated long-term leave. Although she accomplished plenty working remotely, we all felt her absence. We did put a few things on a short-term pause; I am sincerely grateful for the rest of the team who stepped up to fill in gaps and keep our programs exciting and vibrant.
Volunteers! Where would a library be without them? Thank you for helping us get books on the shelves and pulling books for delivery to other libraries in our tri-county consortium. Our volunteers are a significant and essential resource.
Babies! The population of Madras has increased by two. We love being aunts and uncles to these new additions and can't wait to grow more early readers. We are sincerely grateful for the health of these young ones and their mothers.
The library board! Hats off to our board, who has put in extra effort to make significant decisions that will move our library forward and allow us to offer services â€“ and much-needed community meeting space â€“ once the library addition is complete. I am incredibly thankful for a board that works respectfully and effectively with each other and provides me with support and direction. Each board member has a unique perspective; I've always believed that diverse perspectives mean that together we make better decisions than we would as individuals, and this board is an excellent example of this. I am thankful for the expertise of Royce Embanks for the last few years; I'm excited to welcome Tiffany Turo to the library board and look forward to the perspective she brings to the group. The board's next project is updating its strategic plan, and your input will be essential in helping us navigate our way into the future.
The library team! Since I've been here, the library has navigated projects large and small. I think the first significant one was tagging books so we could offer self-checkout. COVID-related closures might have caught us a little off guard for a minute, and I'm thankful for all of the creative projects that emerged as we pivoted services to meet new challenges.
Our online programs exploded - Librarians on the Loose online storytime, children and teen book reviews, Grab-n-Go bags, figuring out how to change the Community Read to an online program, curbside checkout, and more. We are doing more programming for adults than ever.
Since last spring and due to the team's hard work, we have received grants totaling almost $250,000. We will add an SUV for our traveling storyteller. Soon you'll see Gretchen out and about in a new bookmobile, which allows us to provide richer services to our entire county, from Ashwood to Camp Sherman. Our Community Outreach team is also hard at work planning next summer's I am a Story storytelling event.
H&H Construction! H&H has done an outstanding and thorough job of dismantling the annex and ensuring that materials were recycled and repurposed as much as possible. As I watched the progress, I appreciated Andy and his crew more every day; I'm thankful they were in charge of the project.
I am personally thankful to work at a job that I love with a team for which I have tremendous respect. I am constantly impressed by the friendliness and authenticity of the people in the community. I know I speak for the entire team when I say that we love meeting with you and serving you; thank you for all your kind words and steady patronage over the last year. I'll also take a minute to remind you that you have a wide range of resources available to you from the comfort of your home. I encourage you to take a tour of our library's website at jcld.org.
This is YOUR Jefferson County Library. We are YOUR library team. Thanks to all of you who support your library by â€“ stopping at our Saturday Market booth in the summer; attending our online and in-person programs; smiling and engaging with us when you visit the library. Thanks for demonstrating your enthusiasm when we come to your restaurant for Librarians with Taste. By telling people who haven't visited the library recently that we're not the same library we used to be, and encouraging them to stop by and say hello. Thank you for your word-of-mouth advertising, for letting us know when we are doing something well, and also letting us know where we can improve.
I raise a turkey leg to you all and ask that you count your blessings and remember to be kind and gracious with each other. "What do we live for if not to make the world less difficult for each other?"—George Eliot
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