Gardiner Public Library will be CLOSED on Thursday, November 22nd thru Sunday, November 25th, 2018 for the Thanksgiving weekend. Enjoy time with your family and friends!

Thanksgiving and Marjorie Standish

Thanksgiving and Marjorie Standish.  While the two are not necessarily tied to each other, I do associate both of them with good comfort food.  So as Thanksgiving approaches, I will share with you Marjorie’s recipe for Baked Acorn Squash.  It’s about as simple and delicious as you can get.  It is also featured in the new book, Cooking Maine Style which is edited by Sandra Oliver and features classic recipes of Marjorie Standish.  You can check it out at the Gardiner Public Library.

BAKED ACORN SQUASH

Wash the squash, cut in half lengthwise, remove seeds using a spoon.  Wash once more, turn squash upside-down in a baking pan, pour ¼ inch cold water in pan.

Bake at 400 degrees for ½ hour.  Remove from oven, turn squash right side up.  Salt and pepper it, sprinkle with brown sugar (maple syrup is good, too).  Place piece of butter in each half.  Return to oven, bake 30 minutes longer.  Serve.

 

I JUST CAN’T STOP !

I JUST CAN’T STOP !

Do you remember the first book that you just couldn’t put down?  Like it’s 2 AM and you KNOW that you have to get up at 7 AM but you just can’t stop reading.  You HAVE to find out how things end up before you can even think about sleeping regardless of how tired you may be.  For me, that book was And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie, and I was in eighth grade.

The book’s synopsis from Amazon.com says, “Ten strangers are lured to an isolated island mansion off the Devon coast by a mysterious U. N. Owen. At dinner a recorded message accuses each of them in turn of having a guilty secret, and by the end of the night one of the guests is dead. Stranded by a violent storm, and haunted by a nursery rhyme counting down one by one . . . as one by one . . . they begin to die. Which among them is the killer and will any of them survive?”  As the guests continued to be killed, I had to keep reading to find out who would be next and – most importantly – who was the murderer.  As I grew older and read more and more books, I discovered that this plot was classic Christie and has since been reworked by many mystery authors.  At the time I was enthralled.  I continue to be so many years later.  If you have read this book, you know Christie continues to surprise you right through the last chapter of the book.

The only other book that I remember not being able to put down and having to read until I lost consciousness or finished was Stephen King’s first book Carrie.  Once upon a time, King was an unknown and picking up his first book was stepping into uncharted waters.  I really had no idea what I was getting into.  Amazon.com says of this book, “Stephen King’s legendary debut is  about a teenage outcast and the revenge she enacts on her classmates.  Carrie White may be picked on by her classmates, but she has a gift. She can move things with her mind. Doors lock. Candles fall. This is her power and her problem. Then, an act of kindness, as spontaneous as the vicious taunts of her classmates, offers Carrie a chance to be a normal…until an unexpected cruelty turns her gift into a weapon of horror and destruction that no one will ever forget.”  And how !  As the plotline played out, as Carrie went to the prom of her dreams, as her mother began acting crazier and crazier….this is not something you want to put aside and continue with the next day when you might have some spare time.  Holy mackerel !   What is going to happen next ????

And so….what was YOUR first book where you said, “ I JUST CAN’T STOP ! “ ?

 

Unsung Heroes

Recently I saw the film, The Way We Get By, directed by Aron Gaudet who grew up in Old Town, Maine.  Many of us here in Maine have heard of the troop greeters at the Bangor Airport.  Actually, I have been there at the same time waiting to fly out.  At the time I didn’t really know what was going on.  This is a wonderful film about some wonderful Mainers who are making a huge impact in such a small, personal way.

The product description from Amazon.com says:   “The SXSW Special Jury Award winning The Way We Get By is a deeply moving film about life and how to live it. Beginning as a seemingly idiosyncratic story about troop greeters – a group of senior citizens who gather daily at a small airport to thank American soldiers departing and returning from Iraq, the film quickly turns into a moving, unsettling and compassionate story about aging, loneliness, war and mortality.

When its three subjects aren’t at the airport, they wrestle with their own problems: failing health, depression, mounting debt. Joan, a grandmother of eight, has a deep connection to the soldiers she meets. The sanguine Jerry keeps his spirits up even as his personal problems mount. And the veteran Bill, who clearly has trouble taking care of himself, finds himself contemplating his own death. Seeking out the telling detail rather than offering sweeping generalizations, the film carefully builds stories of heartbreak and redemption, reminding us how our culture casts our elders, and too often our soldiers, aside. More important, regardless of your politics, The Way We Get By celebrates three unsung heroes who share their love with strangers who need and deserve it.“

You can reserve this film online via the Minerva system or just give us a call and we will do it for you.

Cook Out Time!

One of the many joys of summer is planning and enjoying a meal outside, with or without a BBQ.  One of my favorite dishes is Potato Salad because of the many variations that can be made.  Here is the recipe for Creamy Potato Salad featured in the book “The Great Potluck Cookbook”  from Good Housekeeping.  Come borrow this book or enjoy another one of the many waiting for you at the Gardiner Public Library.

 

CREAMY POTATO SALAD

Makes 10 side-dish servings

 

4 pounds red potatoes, unpeeled

2 ½ tsp salt

1/3 cup cider vinegar

1 Tbl sugar

1 Tbl spicy brown mustard

¼ tsp ground black pepper

½ cup mayo

2 stalks celery, thinly sliced crosswise

 

  1. In 4-quart saucepan, place potatoes, 2 tsp salt, and enough water to cover; heat to boiling over high heat.  Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer until potatoes are fork-tender, 10 to 15 minutes.  Drain; cool slightly.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large serving bowl, combine vinegar, sugar, mustard, pepper, mayo, and remaining ½ tsp salt.
  3. When potatoes are cooked enough to handle, cut each into quarters or eights if large.  Add celery and warm potatoes to dressing in bowl; gently stir with rubber spatula until well coated.  Let potato mixture stand 30 minutes to absorb dressing, stirring occasionally.
  4. Cover and refrigerate until completely cold, at least 2 hours and up to 1 day.

 

Magazines! In The Library?!?!?!

Do you feel magazines are too expensive to subscribe to or to buy individually?  Here’s a reminder that you can borrow them for free at the Gardiner Public Library.  We have a selection of over 25 titles some of which are:  Antiques & Fine Arts, Consumers Reports, DownEast, Entertainment, Kiplinger’s, Money, Nation, People, Rolling Stone, Time, and Yankee.  Check them out !

Maine State Park Pass

Here is a reminder to our patrons that the Gardiner Public Library will once again be providing a Maine State Park pass for you to use free by checking it out with your Gardiner library card.  The pass goes out for three days on a first come/first served basis and allows a vehicle and all its occupants’ free access to a State Park in Maine.

 

Enjoy the warm weather now that it has arrived!

 

Museums

Maine has some other great art museums besides the Portland Museum of Art that are perhaps not necessarily on your radar.  For future planning, I would like to suggest an upcoming exhibit at the Bates College Museum of Art at the Olin Arts Center in Lewiston.  Beginning in June and running until October, Bates College Museum of Art will be featuring Maine’s own Dahlov Ipcar in a show that is drawn mainly from private collections.  Find out more about this exciting exhibit at the Bates College Museum of Art web site – http://www.bates.edu/museum/exhibitions/upcoming/dahlov-ipcar-a-life-in-the-arts/

 

 

Latest Snowfall In Maine

Yes, we are tired of it. Yes, it seems it will never go away.  But, have you ever wondered when was the latest recorded snowfall in Maine?

 This was featured on B98.5 FM Central Maine’s Country Radio Station’s website:

The latest recorded snowfall in Maine goes to Caribou, Maine, on May 25, 1974 they recorded 0.2 inches of snow.

So, if you do see some flakes tomorrow and your furnace kicks on, it’s nothing we can’t handle. We’re Mainers!

And this confirms it from the

National Weather Service

Late Season Snowfall across northern Maine

…2nd latest measurable snowfall on record at Caribou, Maine…

A cold upper low tracked across northern Maine during the early morning hours of May 23, 2015.  The air mass was cold enough that the precipitation that fell across far northern Maine fell mainly as snow. A total of three tenths (0.3″) of an inch of snow was observed at Caribou, Maine on May 23, 2015. This broke the previous record for May 23rd of a trace of snow observed in 1990.  It was the greatest snowfall ever observed so late in the season. It was also the 2nd latest measurable snowfall on record at Caribou. The all-time latest measurable snowfall was May 25, 1974 when two tenths (0.2″) of an inch of snow was observed.

Kill A Watt Energy Detectors

Do you remember…..

Did you even know…..

that the Gardiner Public Library has Kill A Watt Energy Detectors which were distributed to the public libraries of Maine several years ago?  These were a gift from Efficiency Maine which was a program of the Maine Public Utilities Commission.  Plug in the Kill A Watt Energy Detector at your home or office and find out exactly how much electricity each device is using.  Some of the biggest “energy hogs” in a typical home are the refrigerator, toaster, computer, coffee maker, space heater, lamps, TV, microwave oven, and air conditioner.  Now you can catch the culprits behind your high electric bills and discover how much they are costing you.

 

Check one of these devices out from the library …. and discover where your electrical charges are coming from!

 

 

What’s Your Favorite Holiday Movie?

One of my favorite holiday movies is Christmas in Connecticut starring Barbara Stanwyck.  The story is about a famous food writer who lies in her column about living on a farm, raising her children and being a good cook.  In reality she is an unmarried New Yorker who can’t boil an egg.  When her editor insists she will spend Christmas entertaining him and a heroic sailor as a good publicity stunt, her job is on the line.

 

She quickly rounds up a cottage, husband, baby and cook before the guests arrive, but real trouble begins when ‘married’ Stanwyck begins to fall in love with the engaged navy man.

 

Check this fun film out from the Gardiner Library sometime.

 

What’s one of your favorite holiday movies?