2017 Children’s Library Themes

2017 Library Decor Themes at the Gretna Children's Library. From 'Appy New Year to Pigeon wanting to drive a zamboni! | Hafuboti.com

I am so woefully behind on sharing with y’all what we’ve been doing at our Children’s Library that drastic measures are called for in order to catch you up. So this post is designed to be a fast ‘n furious update with minimal text. If you have any questions whatsoever about anything you see here, there, or anywhere on my blog, then don’t hesitate to ask me! Either in the comments, on social media, or at hafuboti@gmail.com.

Now onto the themes!

January 2017: ‘Appy New Year!

I’ve already written about this, but here’s a quick visual for ya.

'Appy New Year: January 2017's theme at the Gretna Children's Library featuring ebooks and emojis | Hafuboti.com

'Appy New Year: January 2017's theme at the Gretna Children's Library featuring our reading bench display | Hafuboti.com

This theme is one of the most loudly commented-upon by kids. I lost count of how many kids would come into our library and excitedly tell us how much they love emojis. We also had ample opportunities to discuss our ebook resource with patrons.

February 2017: Toss Kindness Like Confetti

This is the only 2017 theme that neither Natasia, our resident artist and creator of our decor, nor I remembered to get a picture of anything. ::trombone wah wah:: You can get a bit of information in this previous post.

March 2017: Nebraska Sesquicentennial

All Nebraska librarians learned to say the word “sesquicentennial” when our state celebrated it’s 150th birthday.

March 2017's theme at Gretna Children's Library was all about the Nebraska state sesquicentennial | Hafuboti.com

March 2017's theme at Gretna Children's Library was all about the Nebraska state sesquicentennial: Happy 150th display at the reading bench | Hafuboti.com

The bunting is made out of an atlas that was in our Friends’ book sale with yellow circles in-between.

April 2017: Artsy April

This time around for Artsy April, I asked Natasia to show off her personal artistic style. And let me tell you what: this has been the most popular window display EVER.

Artsy April: April 2017's theme at the Gretna Children's Library featuring artwork by our talented team member Natasia. Blue, purple, and gold circles | Hafuboti.com

Both children and adults alike where enamored with Natasia’s beautiful work. What you can’t tell from the photos is that the smaller circles are gold leaf. For reals. It shimmered and created gorgeous effects. Pure. Magic.

The other dots were tissue paper.

Artsy April: April 2017's theme at the Gretna Children's Library featuring artwork by our talented team member Natasia. Blue, purple, and gold circles | Hafuboti.com

May 2017: The final LEGO MAY-nia

We decided that 2017 would be the last time that we celebrated all things LEGO in May. We felt like we were giving a lot of free advertising to the LEGO company. Plus, we had plenty of other things we wanted to do instead. All that said, we went out with quite a LEGO bang!

The fifth and final LEGO MAY-nia decor theme at Gretna Children's Library | Hafuboti.com

Plastic table cloths and cardstock et voilà! Window display with impact!

The fifth and final LEGO MAY-nia decor theme at Gretna Children's Library | Hafuboti.com

The fifth and final LEGO MAY-nia decor theme at Gretna Children's Library | Hafuboti.com

We put up real LEGOs on our wall to hide all of the paint damage from sticky tack. ::side eyes sticky tack::

The fifth and final LEGO MAY-nia decor theme at Gretna Children's Library | Hafuboti.com

We affixed ultra-brief bios of each real-life “Master Builder” underneath their LEGO Mini Figs so that people could sit on the bench and look up to learn something.

The fifth and final LEGO MAY-nia decor theme at Gretna Children's Library | Hafuboti.com

We loved these giant LEGO bricks that Natasia made so much that we decided to group them in a smaller space so that they’d have a bigger impact. We generally don’t decorate around our activity area, but this was perfect.

The fifth and final LEGO MAY-nia decor theme at Gretna Children's Library | Hafuboti.comAnd although LEGO MAY-nia is over, we will forever do our most popular passive program: The Little Library LEGO Club. A HUGE shout-out to S Bryce Kozla for this program. This year we finally decided to not put batteries into the base (the tower would get too heavy to spin), and let the kids turn the platform to find the perfect spot. This has been a wonderful change that I wish we’d done from the beginning.

June & July 2017: CSLP’s Build a Better World

Natasia did an incredible job with our decor for the summer. Her use of tissue paper is mind-blowing. And with this front exterior, she did a beautiful blend of both tissue paper and cardstock.

The only issue with this decor was that the summer sun beats down on our building for the first half of the day. Instead of sweltering in silence, Natasia opted to go with the flow, and actually ended up getting more compliments on her gears since her solution made them really pop:

Lightly-colored shadows were cast onto the white paper by the tissue paper gears in direct sunlight. It looked super-cool.

Those 3D gears actually did turn if you were gentle.

August 2017: The Ocean

The main paper cutout of the shark was popular with kids. So popular, in fact, that many would come up and smack the window where it was at, scaring the bejebus out of us. It also looked creepy when kids had their hands on the outside windows (little shadowy hannnnds…).

This display was a team effort between Natasia and Adina. All of those ocean creature silhouettes strategically hid sticky tack scars. ::stink eyes the sticky tack::

It was a lot of fun to see people notice the jellyfish – usually when the air vent was blowing and their tentacles gently moved. Natasia made these using paper lanterns cut in half, paint, and plastic bags.

September 2017: Monarch Butterflies

It’s rare for me to declare a theme, but I couldn’t help myself with this one. I have adored monarch butterflies since I was a child, and had begun rearing them from egg to adult. What Natasia did with my request was absolutely stunning. Everything (except the green leaves) were made from black poster board and tissue paper.

I kept the above caterpillar and have him in my home. The rest went to a local high school teacher for her classroom.

I haven’t talked about our fabulous team member Adina enough on this blog. She’s revolutionized our decor over at our Main Library, and lends a helping hand at Children’s now-and-then. She created this cheery scene with paper, scissors, and paper punches. Wow!!!!!

Ashlynn created this neat display on our whiteboard that showed the life cycle of monarchs. LOVE.

October 2017: Creatures of the Night

We continue to enjoy not being constrained by holidays in terms of decor, though that doesn’t mean that we don’t have fun with it. Our focus was on nocturnal critters, and Natasia knocked it out of the park using scissors, an x-acto knife, and black poster board.

::sings:: Gooooogly Eyyyyyes!!!

November 2017: The Return of Dinovember

Typically we don’t like to repeat themes, but since Natasia wasn’t part of our team during our first Dinovember, we thought it’d be fun to have her take a whack at it. She decided to do a “doodle” version of dinos à la Diary of a Wimpy Kid and the like.

December 2017: Decemberley featuring Mo Willems

Ok y’all. I know that we’re in the wrong in the world of copyright. But there are times where I can be a bit of a petulant child (sorry, Hyperion Books for Children and Mr. Willems). When I had the thought of “Don’t Let Pigeon Drive the Zamboni,” I knew that we had to celebrate Mo Willems’ work for our annual Decemberley celebration. And I think that it was a good choice because we could hear kids shouting their favorite characters’ names as they approached our front door. Duckling got a ton of love.

I was unable to photograph the cool ice effect that Natasia achieved after some trial and error. The ice is made up of long strips of packing tape that have been covered in different sizes of glitter. It looked amazing in the sunlight. Sooooo sparkly.

My favorite part of our decor was when I realized that we could hang images of all the things that the Pigeon wants (as chronicled in both Pigeon Wants a Puppy and Duckling Gets a Cookie!?). It was irreverent, fun, and a ton of fun when either people figured it out or asked us what was the deal with the cookies, hotdogs, french fry robots, etc. Plus they would spin, and at least once a year I want things hanging/spinning from our ceiling. What can I say? It makes me happy.

Another big shout-out to Angie Manfredi for her Winter Reading Program idea. It continues to be very popular and is a good idea.

Finally, I blew up the How to Draw Pigeon instructions from PigeonPresents.com for our white board.

AND THAT’S WHAT WE DID IN 2017!!!!

Hooray! You made it through my most epic post ever. And as a reward for making it to the end, I’ve included the images that I created (or just colored in) for our Mo Willems celebration. Click on the image below to get a pdf of both sides of the following images: a cookie, hot dog, walrus, iceberg, puppy, bus, and french fry robot. You can use these images however you’d like – enjoy!

Disclaimer: no pigeons were harmed in the making of this post. 

 

 

Sexuality & Gender Identity Pride Library Logos

Sexuality and Gender Identity Pride Library Logos with link to Wikimedia Commons | Hafuboti.com

A month ago or so, a dear friend (Hi, Nick!) reached out to me to suggest making pride versions of the public library logo. And two days ago, when I was included in a Twitter thread about a design that I had not created, I decided to drop everything and get to work.

I was ultra-inspired and created over 150 designs based on pride flag designs. Fear not! I will not upload them all to my blog (and thus having my followers receive a ginormous email from me as a result). Instead, I have uploaded them to the Wikimedia Commons.

A huge shout-out must go to PrideNation.LGBT for their collection of flag designs. I would not have created these images as efficiently as I did without their shop. Follow the above link and check out their great items for sale (they have way more than just flags).

I would like to dedicate this work to the gay young man who had genuine questions for me back during my college years. It was that single open and thoughtful discussion that has had a beautiful rippling effect throughout my life. I may not remember your name, but you will never be forgotten.

Here are a few sample images for you to use or modify in any way that you’d like. And like everything on my blog, it’s under a Creative Commons license, with the bonus that I do not want to be credited on the artwork. Truly. Look through all of the designs here, and please don’t hesitate to let me know if I unintentionally did anything insensitive, or left anyone out. I’ll get it fixed ASAP!

Bisexual Pride Library Logo | Hafuboti.com Lesbian Pride Library Logo | Hafuboti.com Pride Support Fist Rainbow Library Logo | Hafuboti.com Librafluid Pride Library Logo | Hafuboti.com Polyamory Pride Library Logo | Hafuboti.com

I have also uploaded some of the hearts and other symbols that I used such as the following Abrosexual Pride Heart:

Abrosexual Pride Heart | Hafuboti.com

LAFE: Mennonite Representation

Around six months ago, a librarian in Ontario named Laurel wrote me a lovely email. In it, she requested that I design two new figures in my LAFE designs: two Mennonite women. One woman would be a more traditional Amish/Mennonite woman, and the other would be what is called Low German. After doing some research, I came up with two versions – and now I share them with you all.

Thank you, Laurel, for both reaching out and being incredibly patient with me.

Below you will find individual pngs of the new figures, English LAFE signs with these new characters added, and German LAFE signs with these new characters added.

An Amish or Mennonite woman holds a jar of preserved peaches | Hafuboti.com #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1

 

A Low German Mennonite woman holds a music note | Hafuboti.com #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1

A variation on the Libraries Are For Everyone sign featuring ten diverse library patrons on a yellow background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.com

A variation on the Libraries Are For Everyone sign featuring three diverse library patrons on an oragne background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.com

A variation on the Libraries Are For Everyone sign featuring three diverse library patrons on a purple background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.com

A variation on the Libraries Are For Everyone sign featuring three diverse library patrons on a rose background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.com

A variation on the Libraries Are For Everyone sign featuring three diverse library patrons on a yellow background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.com

A variation on the Libraries Are For Everyone sign featuring three diverse library patrons on a blue background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.comA variation on the Libraries Are For Everyone sign featuring three diverse library patrons on a green background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.com

Libraries Are For Everyone sign in German featuring three diverse library patrons on a blue background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.com

Libraries Are For Everyone in German featuring three diverse library patrons on an orange background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.com

Libraries Are For Everyone in German featuring three diverse library patrons on a purple background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.com

Libraries Are For Everyone in German featuring three diverse library patrons on a rose background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.com

Libraries Are For Everyone in German featuring three diverse library patrons on a yellow background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.com

Libraries Are For Everyone in German featuring ten diverse library patrons on a yellow background #LAFE #LibrariesR4Every1 | Hafuboti.com

A NOTE: I am slowly working on getting my artwork uploaded onto the Wikimedia Commons for people to find it easier all the while making all of it “officially” licensed. That said – my entire blog here is under a Creative Commons Attribute/Share Alike license – so know that I both want and encourage everyone to download, share, modify, and have fun with my work!

I also want to reiterate what I’ve stated in the past since I can’t make it an exception within the license: I do not want my name (given or business) on my minimalist art. It sort of ruins the clean lines and elegance. Just don’t tell people that you’re the creator – I’m fine with you crediting it to “an awesome Punk Rock Book Jockey blogger” if you can’t recall either of my names. Or write by Hafuboti on the back in pencil if you’re worried about it. Seriously. Have fun.

I plan on putting this note on the bottom of all of my Libraries Are For Everyone posts so if you’ve read the above paragraph once, then you won’t need to again (unless you really want to).

The Golden Library Card Revisited

The Golden Library Card Revisited: a short story written by me and illustrated by my husband. Perfect to give out to trick-or-treaters while promoting public libraries | Hafuboti.com

Several years back when our library first participated in All Hallows Read, I had collaborated with my husband to make a very short comic story to give out to trick-or-treaters. I wrote about it extensively in this post. This year is the fifth year that our library is participating in All Hallows Read, and it has become a community favorite, but we now budget for a wide variety of published books to hand out.

If you don’t already know, then you should know that I have a strong belief that public libraries shouldn’t promote holidays – Halloween included. My Director views this issue a different way, and that’s cool. I hope that we’ve found a decent balance at our library. After all, I never want to be a complacent punk rock book jockey, and I recognize that this topic can be emotionally draining for all points-of-view.

The Golden Library Card Revisited: a short story written by me and illustrated by my husband. Perfect to give out to trick-or-treaters while promoting public libraries | Hafuboti.com

And that’s one of the main reasons that I wanted to revisit this little comic. While I’m not comfortable with bringing holidays into the library, I am thrilled to bring libraries into my personal holiday celebrations. And Halloween is one of my favorites. Unfortunately I can’t afford to buy nice published books to hand out to trick-or-treaters at my house, but hey – I have this comic!

The Golden Library Card Revisited: a short story written by me and illustrated by my husband. Perfect to give out to trick-or-treaters while promoting public libraries | Hafuboti.com

The main change that I made from the earlier version is that I simplified the process of putting the book together. Now you can print out the cover sheet on white cardstock and cut it out like the rest of the booklet. Print out the story pages on both sides of a sheet, cut out the pages and cover, fold everything, and then staple. Voila! Now you too can participate in All Hallow’s Read!
Whatta treat – amiright?!

Click on the images below to get your very own copy of The Golden Library Card:

The jpeg of four covers to The Golden Library Card mini comic for anyone to use and distribute | Hafuboti.com

The pdf of the entire The Golden Library Card mini comic pages for anyone to use and distribute | Hafuboti.com

I do need to acknowledge that I used the clichéd “shushing librarian” for a part of the story; it wasn’t an easy decision to make. The thing that swayed me to use it was that it’s a great creepy sound to read aloud that could either be a ghostly librarian or the wind. Spoooopy…

And yes, it’s a silly story, but it can have an impact. A lot of times I put things like this into the world and don’t get any feedback. This time around, I had an unforgettable experience that melted my heart: a few weeks after Halloween last year a mom and her two boys got my attention at the library. They had trick-or-treated at my house, and they were excited to tell me how much they love reading the story to each other. HOORAY!!!

It’s my hope to create a new mini-comic for next year. So if you have a fun all-ages idea or two, then please share it with me! No guarantees that I’ll use your idea(s), but you never know! Spoooopyyyyy…

January 2017: ‘appy New Year!

'APPY NEW YEAR!!! Having some emoji fun while highlighting our ebook collection. It's a fun way to kick off a new year! | Hafuboti.com

I thought of possibly trying to just sort of publish this post and say nothing about how it’s a year old!!!!! But yeah. You can tell that I decided against that. Instead, I’m highlighting this fact, shrugging my shoulders, and reframing it so that I can embrace it and be all “YEAAAAH!!! FINALLY GETTIN’ IT DONE!!!”

My life and career have become very intense as of late, and blogging has obviously gone on the back burner. So what I’m hoping to do is share what we did last year in one post followed by another post sharing what we’ve done this year. Trying to keep up with the months should give me a goal to reach for while getting this here blog caught up on all of our shenanigans. Theoretically.

Here goes nothing!

I had the idea for the ‘appy New Year theme during Holly Storck-Post’s (of Let the Wild Rumpus Start Storytime Underground fame) presentation about early literacy apps at the 2016 Nevada Library Association conference. She talked about her library’s Appy Hour program and I was like “I KNOW JANUARY’S THEME!” I even drew stars and hearts around this idea in the small notebook that I had for notetaking.

And a few months later – voila! It was our theme!

Our fabulously talented Natasia had a fun time putting together the front window display featuring emojis. This was long before the Emoji Movie existed and we were taken aback at how popular this theme was. I lost count of how many kids would come in and say something like “I LOVE EMOJIS!!!”

Get 'Appy! Celebrating great apps for kids and families during January's 'Appy New Year theme at the Children's Library | Hafuboti.com

The biggest app that we highlighted was our library’s account with Overdrive to help both parents and kids know that we had a wonderful resource for them. In fact, we made finding 2D ereaders our scavenger hunt.

An 'Appy New Year passive scavenger hunt program encouraging kids to practice their writing skills | Hafuboti.comThis particular scavenger hunt was a bit more challenging in that we wanted to have kids work on their writing skills. We don’t always make our passive programs this challenging for our youngest patrons, but we try and push them now and then. Needless to say, we chose books with shorter titles.

I wish that we had kept copies of the ebook scavenger hunt files to share with you, but unfortunately they are nowhere to be found. But, while searching for them, I discovered that we did keep our simple but very popular coloring sheet. Click on the image below to get a letter-sized version without my logo on it:

An incredibly simple and popular emoji coloring sheet | Hafuboti.comFinally, Natasia made a bright sign for our reading bench display. We showcased our books about computer science, technology, and video games. This proved to be a tough display to keep stocked! <<<a great problem to have!

An 'appy New Year book display featuring books on computer science, technology, and video games! | Hafuboti.com

I you look closely, you can see one of our eBook scavenger hunt pieces in the middle of our clock. It’s a Curious George eBook with a circled number on its lower right hand side.

And that’s how we kicked off 2017. I can hardly wait to show you what we did for 2018 – and hopefully I’ll be showing off much sooner than later!