Libraries, gardens, and chicken coops

I grew up surrounded by books.  There is a faint memory of watching a television, sitting on the white painted plywood kid chairs my dad built for us when we were kids, wearing pajamas and a bathrobe.  That memory is very faint because when I was four we moved to a tiny rental house in Cache Valley and we didn’t have a TV there, nor one until I was about 16 years old.  What we did have was lots and lots and lots of books!

My parents loved books.  They bought their rural home when I was eight years old, and within a few years practically every room in our house had floor to ceiling and wall to wall bookshelves in them.  My parents taught us as children to love reading, and they kept us supplied with an endless variety of second hand books throughout my childhood.  We went to the library often.  I worked in three different area libraries as a teenager.  And I read everything I could lay my hands on.  We had an hour long bus ride both to and from school, and so when my homework was done I would read on the bus, often finishing a book a day.

In Salt Lake City the county library there is astounding!  With access to over 2,000,000 items and the ability to peruse the entire system’s book collection housed in 18 different locations, I would bring home dozens of books, all from sifting through the online catalog and having them delivered to the library location close to my home.  It was a book lover’s paradise.

On today’s agenda was to explore the local library in the small town I now live in.  The elderly librarian behind the desk had an extremely fluffy hairdo, which added several inches to her height and made her at least 4′ 6″ tall.  She informed me that “We don’t give out library cards, just patron numbers.”  I had anticipated needing to show proof of residence but she wanted two forms of ID with my address.  After some shuffling through my purse I came up with a letter from the State of Utah showing my address, to go along with the bill I had brought and my driver’s license, which still has a Salt Lake address.  Apparently, my 11 letter former last name looks remarkably similar to my married name of only 4 letters, and she signed me up with my married name written on the new patron application.

My jaw about dropped when at first I thought the extent of the library was a small children’s section and four rows of adult fiction hardback books by the circulation desk.  I found a map of the building and discovered a second floor with two other small sections of shelves.  One was a junior section and the other was the nonfiction area.  I would venture to guess that about 90% of what was housed in the non fiction area is at least 30 years old.  Many of the offerings were old LDS books by different authors, and much of the nonfiction books look like donations.  Mostly the library is empty space.  Not complaining, mind you.  Just saying.  (JB said tonight that this is the new and improved library.  I guess the old one was much smaller!)

I picked three books on gardening from the dozen or so on the shelf.  I also selected one on raising chickens to humor JB, who did in the past raise chickens in the back yard.  The bouffantly coiffed lady at the circulation desk gave me a business card with my patron number written on it and the printed web address for the library corrected from www.libraray.org to www.librar/y.org.

At home I set up an online account and discovered that the library does offer Inter Library Loan services without cost.  And that, my friends, is very good news!

Today’s accomplishments:

  • I fixed the nozzle on the fireplace bellows, which had broken off.
  • I made a fire this morning to take the chill off the house and so the furnace didn’t run, and filled the wood bin.
  • We went to the local library.  But I drove there, instead of walking, because I wasn’t sure which building it was.  Next time I will walk.
  • Folded a load of laundry.  Washed some dishes.  Tended the neighbor’s child for the day.  Read about gardens, composting, and chickens.  Cooked dinner.  Stretched my shoulders for about half an hour in the morning.  Took some of my meds.

Meals:

Breakfast: the last of the Greek yogurt with protein powder

Lunch: Slice of bread with lots of peanut butter.  Lola wanted pancakes and we made those together.

Snack: Cheddar cheese and a cup of coffee.

Dinner: Chicken with carmelized onions and mashed potatoes.

I walked around our property tonight with JB.  We talked about creating a garden plot area on the east side of the house, as well as utilizing some open areas on the west.  We discussed continuing to compost where I started a passive mulch pile last summer.  And we tentatively decided a place that would comfortably house a chicken coop and pen if we decide to go that route.

Today was a no-spend day!

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