Donald Lystra, Ann Arbor author, has written a 2014 Michigan Notable Book

Donald Lystra, an Ann Arbor resident and University of Michigan alum, is once again on the Library of Michigan's Michigan Notable Books list.

Lystra's electrical engineer career morphed into fiction writing in the 1990s. His debut novel Season of Water and Ice (2010), was not only a Michigan Notable Book in 2010, but it also won the Midwest Book Award that year.

This year's entry, a short story collection, Something that Feels Like Truth (2013), is on this year's Michigan Notable Books.

Mr. Lystra and his wife, parents to two grown children, split their time between Ann Arbor and northern Michigan farm.

Arborwiki Edit Night At Arbor Brewing

Wednesday April 23, 2014: 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm -- Arbor Brewing - 114 East Washington

What's ArborWiki? ArborWiki is the community generated source for details on everything from birthday deals to local history to the lowdown on local playgrounds.

Since it's a "civic wiki" it's created, edited and maintained by locals. Who are those locals? That could mean you! If you have an interest in any aspect of the Arbor/Ypsi area - parks, history, local happenings - you might be a perfect ArborWiki contributor or editor.

Come hang out and grab a frosty beverage at Arbor Brewing (114 East Washington in Ann Arbor), meet some of the current crew of editors, and hop in to edit or create entries about your community. Bring your laptop or use one one of ours!

Being Homeless In Washtenaw County

Wednesday March 19, 2014: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

This event will be recorded

In 2011 in Washtenaw County, more than 3,000 children and their parents were homeless. Rates of homelessness among families increased at a faster pace than any other homeless sector. Local minimum wage jobs are harder to find, family incomes are decreasing, and rental prices are increasing.

Join service and housing providers from across the community as they discuss the current state of homelessness in Washtenaw County, the innovative partnerships that have been created to address the need, and the next steps needed to end homelessness in our community.

Panelists include: Nicole Adelman, Interfaith Hospitality Network @ Alpha House; Carole McCabe, Avalon Housing; Greg Pratt, Michigan Itinerant Shelter System Interdependent Out of Necessity (M.I.S.S.I.O.N.); Tenetia Pulliam, Housing Access of Washtenaw County (HAWC); and Ellen Schulmeister, Shelter Association of Washtenaw County.

Arborwiki Edit Night

Wednesday March 26, 2014: 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm -- Downtown Library: aadlfreespace

This event is intended for adults and teens grade 9 and up

What’s ArborWiki? It’s the community generated source for details on everything from birthday deals to local history to the lowdown on volunteer opportunities for youth and teens. Since it’s a “civic wiki” it’s created, edited and maintained by locals. That could mean you!

If you have an interest in any aspect of the Arbor/Ypsi area—parks, history, local happenings—you might be a perfect ArborWiki contributor or editor. Meet some of the current crew of editors and hop in to edit/create entries about your community. Bring your laptop or use one of ours!

Drop Off Your Old Eyeglasses!

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Do you have eyeglasses that you no longer use or need? The Ann Arbor (Host) Lions Club has over 30 drop-off locations throughout Washtenaw County. Lions Club International collects an average of 4.5 millions pairs of glasses per year to send to developing countries. You can also donate prescription or regular sunglasses too. For information on how AADL serves those with low or no vision, check out the Washtenaw Library for the Blind and Physically Disabled @ AADL!

National Homemade Bread Day is November 17th!

I was surprised to learn that on November 17th, in two weeks, we get to celebrate National Homemade Bread Day! This special day is a great excuse to learn about baking bread, discover information about its history, and experience the many delicious breads that the local bakeries in Ann Arbor have to offer.

The AADL has tons of great books to help you create delicious homebaked breads in your own kitchen. Check out The Fundamental Techniques of Classic Bread Baking and Flour Water Salt Yeast: the Fundamentals of Artisan Bread and Pizza for tips on how to get started. We also have Gluten-free and Vegan Bread: Artisanal Recipes to Make at Home and many other vegan and gluten-free oriented bread and baking books for those who have dietary restrictions. Beard on Bread has been a favorite of bread bakers since the 1970s and has more than 100 recipes in it, along with illustrations that kids (and adults!) may enjoy.

Of course, “homemade” doesn’t have to mean made in your own home. National Homemade Bread Day can be celebrated with other people’s homemade bread too! Try out Jefferson Market and Cakery for some delectable baked goods and swing by Angelo’s for a slice of their thick homemade raisin bread along with your brunch.

Enjoy your homemade feasting!

'Tis the Season to Hang on to Reason!

Learn why we spend the way we do during these coming months, followed by a discussion of how to find alternative ways to enjoy the holidays. Taught by renowned speaker & local budget guru, Kathryn Greiner, Director of Education at the University of Michigan Credit Union, these sessions are free and open to the public: Saturday, November 2, 10:00-11:30 AM and Thursday, November 7, 6:00-7:30 PM. Pre-registration is required. Click here to pre-register. Both sessions will be held at the University of Michigan Credit Union, 4440 Jackson Rd., Ann Arbor, between Wagner and Zeeb Roads.

UM Professor, Dr. Susan Murphy, is one of this year's MacArthur Foundation 'Geniuses'

This morning, Dr. Susan Murphy, the H.E. Robbins Professor of Statistics and Professor of Psychiatry at The University of Michigan, was awarded one of two dozen new MacArthur Fellows,

Dr. Murphy's current focus is on adaptive intervention, which involves developing plans to work with patients who have chronic or relapsing illnesses (such as, substance abuse or depression) where effective courses of treatment are constantly adjusted for maximum benefit.

Novelist Karen Russell is another new Fellow. The first story in her debut collection, St. Lucy's Home for Girls Raised by Wolves (2006) served as the basis for her much acclaimed first novel, Swamplandia (2011), set in the Everglades and narrated by 13-year-old Ava. Swamplandia was one of three finalists for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize in Fiction. Alas, no award in that category was given last year, due to the lack of the minimum required number of votes.

These "Genius Awards", as they are affectionately known, come with no strings attached. The Fellows are free to spend the money as they wish. This year, the Geniuses received a raise. The formerly half-million dollar reward has been bumped to $625,000, paid out yearly for five years.

For a complete list of the MacArthur Foundation Fellows for the Class of 2013, check here.

Developmental Screening for Children

Are you interested in learning more about your young child's growth & development? If you do and live in Washtenaw County, you can take part in the Ages & Stages Questionnaire or ASQ-3 This screening tool can help you understand more about your child's development from 2 months to 5 years of age. On-going developmental screening in the early years can help to ensure that children are on track, and can help identify areas where additional support may be needed. The ASQ-3 includes questions about your child's communication, gross motor, fine motor, problem solving, and personal social skills. If you live outside of Washtenaw County and have concerns about your child's development, you my want to contact: Early On, call 1-800-Early On or go to 1800earlyon.org.

Dawn Farm Jamboree!

Head on down to Dawn Farm's Fantastic 40th Anniversary Jamboree on Sunday, September 8th, 2013 from 1:00 pm to 6:00 pm! Admission and all activities are FREE! This is a great family activity with hayrides, pony rides, and a children’s tent, too. Visit the working farm or bid on unique items in both silent and live auctions. Funds raised from the auctions will help support critical addiction services for individuals who need help and lack resources. For more information, or if you would like to volunteer at the event, call 734-485-8725.

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