The Escape of Oney Judge by Emily Arnold McCully

Oney Judge is Martha Washington’s ten-year-old slave. When she is asked to learn to sew in the Washington’s house she is thrilled that she will work side by side with her mother. After George Washington is elected president, Oney moves to New York City with the Washington’s away from her mother. Martha Washington tells Oney that when she dies she will become the slave of her granddaughter, Eliza. Oney fears that Eliza’s husband will sell her to a stranger. She realizes that her only chance for freedom is to escape. Through the story of Oney Judge, Caldecott Medalist Emily Arnold McCully reveals another side of America’s first family as slave owners.

2007 Michigan Reads Title Announced!

The 2007 Michigan Reads winner was announced last week. Michigan Reads is a program designed to showcase the importance of early childhood literacy. Each year a picture book by a Michigan author is honored and read throughout the state. This year's winner is Big Chickens by Leslie Helakoski, illustrated by Henry Cole.

This funny book tells the story of a group of chickens who are . . well, chicken. They're afraid of everything. Large, brightly colored illustrations help the narration. This one is sure to tickle everyone's funny bone!

Grandparents, Kids & Pets!

Wed. April 18 6:30-7:30 pm, Malletts Creek Branch Library

If this sounds like a purrfectly heehaw event, then bring your grandchildren and a photo of a favorite pet, and let's have a horse laugh together! Everyone will get the chance to tell a story about a pet you have now or one from long ago, we'll sing pet songs, and kids can color pictures of many different animals. Before you go, there will be a snack and a chance to borrow a nice picture book to read together, or something about the joys and challanges of being a grandparent.

He's always prepared and has 122 merit badges to prove it!

Eagle Scout James CalderwoodEagle Scout James Calderwood

As a Boy Scout you may have earned a lot of badges, but James Calderwood of Chevy Chase, Maryland probably has a couple more than you. He's earned all 122 Merit Badges! Read & hear more about this enthusiastic Eagle Scout on NPR. To learn more about the Boy Scouts check out these books on the Boy Scouts of America or visit the National Council's website.

22 Hours and Counting

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NASA Astronaut Sunita L. Williams set a record Sunday for most total time spacewalking by a woman. Her record is 22 hours and 27 minutes but she has another spacewalk scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 8th. Future woman astronauts can launch their career by attending a Sally Ride Science Festival. Details of the University of Michigan festival are still in the works but plan on one for Fall, 2007.

Mush!

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Kids can have a day of winter fun at “Chillin’ at the Mills” on Saturday, January 27 from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. at Hudson Mills Metropark. Pull a dog sled, cross-country ski, learn about winter camping and then head over to the shelter building for hot cocoa and Girl Scout cookies courtesy of the Girl Scouts of Huron Valley Council.

Poke-Mom Report: Pokemania super-effective against holiday boredom!

My improbable conversion to a Poke-Mom was foretold a decade ago, when both Pokemon and our son Michael were born. My conversion was completed the week after Christmas 2006, following full immersion in the music, color and magic of the four-day holiday Pokemon tournament led by Eli, a near god in the eyes of Poke-moms, dads and kids.

Eli was managing library technology, while acting as tournament commentator for crowds of kids and parents at the downtown library: “Rayquaza’s Hyper Beam attack was a powerful hit against Swampert . . . Ohhhhhh! Swampert fainted!” Eli’s dramatic, deep-voice Poke-narration sealed my status as a Poke-mom of Great Conviction. I wasn’t there for the whole tournament, but I definitely saw and heard enough to absorb the spirit. For my full report, click on read more below.

Of Mice and Rats

Are you looking for a good book to listen to with your family on your next car trip? I suggest Redwall by Brian Jacques. The story is about a young mouse Matthias, who becomes the hero of Redwall Abbey when it is attacked by Cluny the Scourge.

Hello Mudda, Hello Fadda

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Here we are at … the City of Ann Arbor’s Holiday Break Camp for kids ages 6 – 10 years old. The Bryant Community Center is the place to be 10:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Jan. 2 – 5, 2007. Lots of activities, lunches, snacks and field trips are included in the $50 resident fee. For more information contact Community Outreach at 994.2722.

A Picture Book Perfect for the Season

There's a new picture book in our collection that is just the thing for cozy family reading or a nice gift for a family with young children. That book is Winter Is the Warmest Season, written and illustrated by Lauren Stringer.
Maybe you're thinking this title doesn't work here in Michigan, but the book's large brilliant illustrations and clever text will convince you otherwise. "Cold jelly sandwiches turn into grilled cheeses" and pajamas "grow big warm feet."

For more books about the joys of winter, click here.

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