Thursday, December 26, 2013

Green Libraries are more than just buildings

I happened to take a look at the latest issue of Electronic Green Journal and found this article with the title above.  George J. Aulisio argues, among other things, that a library can itself be a teaching tool.  That's part of what we are trying to accomplish at Western.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Climate Change Haiku

Checkout this Sightline Daily post about  Northwest oceanographer Dr. Gregory Johnson who translated the most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report into a series of haiku with lovely illustrations, making some aspects of this complex information attractive and accessible. This is a great example of how science and literary art are not mutually exclusive! As the Sightline article states, Johnson "proves that scientists can also be poets."

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Movies on Sustainability, free for the streaming

The Environmental Film Festival will be in Washington D.C. in March.  But right now you can watch 20 films from previous years' festivals, streaming on your computer!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Pet Partners Program: Wellness & Sustainability

Students Rachel & Kari visit with Jigi

I have written before about "wellness" and sustainability, and it should come as no surprise that the human health & well-being aspect of sustainability is of huge importance to me. As I have said before, wellness and sustainability are intrinsically connected, and the better we feel, the better everything is in our lives, including our work and our relationships. With that in mind, I wanted to remind you that Western Libraries is lucky to have four more days of visits from the Pet Partners program, here to help the Western community "de-stress" during Finals Week.

Student Sarah with Henry

Whatcom Therapy Dogs and Pet Partners have generously teamed up with Western Libraries to participate in campus visits during both the week of and preceding Finals Week, and they are located in the library in the gallery space at the north end of the Skybridge between the hours of 10:00 am and 8:00 pm, from now through Dec. 12 (with the last visit that day ending at 4:00 pm). According to a recent article in The Bellingham Herald that discussed the benefits of Pet Partner programs for seniors, research shows that contact with animals can reduce stress levels, lower blood pressure, and ward off depression.

Willey & Friends

When I worked at the Circulation Desk here in the library, I was definitely a fan of this program, and I  appreciated the excitement of our students when the Pet Partners came to visit, but in my new role of Library Communications Program Coordinator, I have really had the pleasure of getting to spend more time witnessing first-hand the positive effects this program has on our students and the Western community. I hope you will get a chance to come over for a quick visit to relax for a moment and say hello! Believe me, if you are having a stressful day, nothing will put a smile on your face and make you feel better faster than contact with these amazing animals (and their very kind and generous human partners!)

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

The History of Food in America, sort of

I went to the Lunch and Learn today on the subject of food sustainability - and what a great pot luck!  Soup!  Pie!  Crusty bread! 

All of this got me thinking about, of course, government information.

Okay, I'm the government information librarian, so it's a vocational hazard.  But take a look at the titles of some of these early twentieth century Department of Agriculture publications, all in our collection.  Back then the farmer didn't have the Internet.  He or she might not have had access to a library.  These free or inexpensive pamphlets available from the County Agricultural Agent might make a big difference in crops, and therefore income.  I wonder how good the advice would be today?  By the way, most of the pre-1976 government publications we own are not in the online catalog, but the call numbers below will get you there, in Haggard 2.

Adequate diets for families with limited incomes (1931) A 1.38: 113
American medicinal plants of commercial importance
(1930) A 1. 38:77
Are we well fed?
(1941) A 1.38: 430
Blue fox farming in Alaska
(1925) A 1.3: 1350
Consumption of food in the United States, 1909-49
(1949) A 1.38: 691
Cooperative marketing
(1920) A 1.9: 1144
DDT and other insecticides and repellents developed for the armed forces
(1946) A 1.38: 608
The farm woman’s problems (1920) A 1.4: 148
Harmfulness of headache mixtures
(1909) A 1.9: 377
Is the public market a good civic investment? (1931) A 1.35:73
Kudzu as a farm crop
(1943) A 1.9: 1923
Northwestern apple packing houses
(1921) A 1.9: 1204
The sanitary privy
(1915) A 1.9: 463 (That's an outdoor toilet)
The school garden
(1917) A 1.9: 218
Some forms of food adulteration and simple methods for their detection
(1911) A 7.3:100
Toward farm security
(1938) A 1.38: 308

Monday, December 2, 2013

Lunch and Learn tomorrow - with free lunch!

Have you heard the term TANSTAAFL?  There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch.  You can put that to the test tomorrow because there will be free locally-made soup at the Lunch and Learn session.  Special location: Fairhaven 318.  Special Time: well, actually the usual time: 12:30-1:30 PM.  Special guests: John Tuxill of Fairhaven College, Karl Meyer of the Community Food Coop, and staff members from Outback Farm.

So, if it isn't free, what's the catch?  There are three.  One, you have to bring your own bowl and spoon.  Two, it's a potluck, so feel free to bring something to share.  Three, you get to participate in a discussion on sustainable food. 

Still sounds pretty free to me.