Fun at Foster's blog

Simply Organic

I went far afield this week in my quest become a legend of the cookery world. A brightly colored book caught my eye, please spare me the, “Don’t judge a book by the cover”, because I do! I believe I’ve just got myself in a pickle by stating the former, but that’s fine because this adventure delves into pickling.

Simply Organic: a cookbook for sustainable, seasonal, and local ingredients, by Jesse Ziff Cool, is the book I fancy this week, and it’s not a book primarily about pickling, in fact, there is only one pickling recipe in the book.  The cookbook possesses a wonderful connection to seasonal relationships with food it begins with spring recipes and ends with winter recipes. Mindful eating is discussed in the book and not imposing our eating believes on others, being respectful of food choices of others. I would love to spend a year strictly following the recipes in the cookbook. It just has so many great recipes and so much insight to the world of healthy food.
 
I’ll stop gushing and get down to the nitty-gritty of pickling cauliflower. Yes, I chose the Pickled Cauliflower recipe, orange cauliflower, because we all know “the Dish” must cook with panache! The preparation and ingredients are simple, just steam some cauliflower then add vinegar, garlic, jalapenos and a few other ingredients then your set. The whole deal took about 20 minutes, no problem. The results, the pickled cauliflower will be ready in two weeks or so, I’ll post them next time. I highly recommend this cookbook!

 *****David’s Dish

Check out the book at Foster Library, or put a hold on it - we will send it to you!
If there are any cookbooks in Foster Library’s collection that you would like me to try out, please leave the title on our Facebook page and I’ll get cooking.

San Buenaventura Mission

Mission San Buenaventura is a Spanish mission founded in 1782 by the Franciscan order in present-day Ventura, California. It was the ninth and final Spanish mission established in California by Father Junípero Serra. Named for Saint Bonaventure, the mission is the namesake of the city of Ventura (officially "San Buenaventura") and Ventura County.

In 1793, the first church burned down. In 1893, Father Cyprian Rubio "modernized" the interior of the church, painting over the original artwork; when he finished, almost nothing remained of the old church. New priests restored the church to its original style in 1957. Today all that remains of the original Mission is the church and its garden. Services are still held in the parish church. A small museum sits at the Mission with displays of Chumash Indian artifacts and mission-era items.

To find out more, Foster Library has books on the Missions of California as well as information about Father Junipero Serra.

Resident Photographer - Aleta Rodriguez

Paws for Reading at E.P. Foster Library

 

For the past seven years we have had help from furry, four legged friends with reading.  Yes, you read right, furry, four legged friends. 

On just about every Saturday, you can find certified therapy dogs sitting in the library listening to the most interesting stories.  School age children come in and can read in a calm, non-pressure environment.  Dogs don’t criticize or correct their pronunciation. Doggie “Moms” sit with the dogs and children to give a hand with complex words and encourage timid kids.  Paws for Reading is not a tutoring program but a program that encourages children to improve their reading skills and helps to build their self esteem.

As part of their mission statement, Paws for Reading aims to improve the literacy skills of children through the assistance of registered Service teams as literacy advocates. Literacy specialists acknowledge that children reading below their peers in reading skills are often intimidated by reading aloud in a group, frequently have lower self esteem and typically view reading as a chore.

A study at UC Davis (Feb 2010) showed that kids in reading dog programs increase their reading skills by 12% to 20% over kids not in a reading dog program. Because our volunteers are certified as therapy dog teams, they can also visit hospitals, nursing homes and other locations.

Learning to read is often less about intellectual limitation than about overcoming fears. Animals are ideal reading companions because they:
• Help increase relaxation and lower blood pressure
• Listen attentively
• Do not judge, laugh, or criticize
• Allow children to proceed at their own pace
• Are less intimidating than peers

When a dog is listening, the environment is transformed, a child’s dread is replaced by eager anticipation, and learning occurs.  The handler is a skilled facilitator, too – shifting performance pressure off the child and providing support, while the child gets the reading practice necessary to build vocabulary, increase understanding of the material, and gain fluency as a reader.  Can dogs help kids learn to read better?  It seems they can and help turn reading from a chore to fun.

The E.P. Foster Paws for Reading program has also been the beneficiary of a generous grant from Sage Publications that has provided not only dog treats for the hard work the dogs do but also enables us to give a free book to each child participating in our program.

If you are interested in signing up to read to one of our Paws for Reading dogs, call Star Soto at 648-2716.

CSUCI Lecture Series at Foster Library


It's back! Foster library is proud to present the new lineup for our CSUCI lecture series. All lectures are free and open to the public. Call 648-2716 for more information.

 

 

The Human Prehistory of the Channel Islands and Coastal California: A 10,000 Year Retrospective

Saturday, Sept. 14, from 5 to 6:30 p.m.

Drawing from 20 years of research experience, Anthropology Professors Jennifer Perry and Colleen Delaney will present an overview of the prehistory of coastal Ventura County and the Channel Islands from an archaeological perspective.  Learn why this region is so unique and the importance of the islands to people today. 

The Era of the Celebrity CEO is Over

Saturday, Oct. 12, from 5 to 6:30 p.m.

Recent data indicates that consistently “great” companies were not led by charismatic or transformational leaders but rather by leaders who possessed a blend of humility and strong personal will.  Join Dr. Andrew Morris, Professor in CI’s Martin V. Smith School of Business and Economics, as he examines our fascination with leaders, possible predictors of humility, and ways in which we can develop greater humility and enhance our leadership abilities.   

Stories Behind the Stories: CSUCI English Faculty Reading and Discussion

Saturday, Nov. 9, at 5 p.m.

Published authors and CI English Professors Brad Monsma, Bob Mayberry, Mary Adler, Sean Carswell and Sofia Samatar will read excerpts of their fiction, nonfiction or poetry and discuss the stories behind them, including experiences with multiple drafts, writing groups, writing stamina, and revisions.  Community members are invited to add their perspectives during a brief Q&A session that follows. 

Serenity

 

As human beings living in an urban world we often look for bits of nature to calm ourselves and restore our souls.  As citizens of Ventura, we are blessed to have the natural world basically in our back yard.  You don’t have to travel very far to feel like you’ve left the hustle and bustle of modern life behind.  A short drive up Highway 33 to Santa Ana Road will make you feel like you’ve left the modern world well behind.  In the spring, there are fields of yellow mustard and in late summer, there are golden grasses that can hide deer and wild turkeys.  You don’t even have to leave your car to enjoy these peaceful scenes.  If you do venture off the roadside, you may find giant spider webs or native grasses adorned with water droplets that glisten like jewels.  If you are not sure where to go, Foster Library has guides to help you find your way.

Resident Photographer – Aleta Rodriguez

Superman!

One of my favorite movies growing up was Superman. This was before the Avengers, Iron Man, and even the X-men made their way to the big screen. When you saw Christopher Reeve flying around in that red cape, you really believed he was Superman. This happy memory is what brought me to one of my most recent reads, Superman: Last Son of Krypton.

It’s made up of two stories, one of which is co-written by Richard Donner. Now, if you don’t know who he is, you need to watch that original Superman movie because he was the director. The first story of this graphic novel is the Last Son in the title. Written in part by said director, it involves a young boy crash landing to Earth (and no, it’s not who you think it is). This boy has powers similar to Superman’s, who suddenly finds himself in a new role as a would-be father. However, this boy (who is named Christopher, in a nod to Christopher Reeve) is not the only one with superpowers to crash land on Earth. What follows is a story that could very well have played as a sequel to the original film, if that gives you any hint as to who appears. It certainly doesn’t hurt that Richard Donner is involved. If you know any of the back story on Superman and its first sequel, you’ll know it was a contentious shoot. Disagreements were aplenty between the director and the producers. This graphic novel, I think, is the Richard Donner version, and it plays nicely and convincingly.

The second story is called “Brainiac.” This one, too, pays a nod to that original Superman film, for if you look closely, you’ll see this Superman looks very familiar. In it, Superman must fight Brainiac to save Earth. He will discover he’s not the only survivor of Krypton, but it’s not in the way he expected. His attempt to save those from his old home will come at a terrible cost to someone in his new one.

 What I liked about both stories is the idea that we are not alone in the world. Superman has always felt like an odd man out in many ways because he believed he was the last survivor of his home world and because his powers make him stand out from others. But in this graphic novel, he learns he isn’t alone, not just because he discovers other survivors of Krypton, but because of the family and friends he has gained on Earth. While he may be a man of two worlds, he has chosen to make Earth his home.

Heather, the Graphic Novel Goddess

If you can't stand the heat...

Beth's Basic Bread Book, by Beth Hensperger is exactly what the title states, a basic bread baking book, which is fine with me. Bread baking can be an intimidating kitchen activity, but this book clearly breaks down the process into a relatively easy and rewarding task. I plead guilty to being absent from the kitchen for awhile, the lure of summer and wine tasting had led me astray. But, I made it back to the kitchen to work some wonders once again. Even though it is still summer, hot in other words, I was itching to bake some bread, we all know the old adage if you can't stand the heat get out of the kitchen. Well, the "Dish" can deal with the heat if delicious bread is the outcome!

The Cinnamon Swirl bread recipe is bread I chose to bake in this episode of “David’s Dish”. It’s a straightforward bread recipe with the bubbling yeast and the kneading of dough, lots of fun! After carefully following the recipe the result was one of the best bread baking experiences I have ever had, delicious bread and that Zen-like feeling  that comes with bread baking.  Bread baking is a beautiful thing, everyone, I mean everyone needs to do it.

 *****  “David’s Dish”

Check out the book at Foster Library, or put a hold on it - we will send it to you!

 

Where did the summer go?

Can you believe the summer is almost over and school starts in about two weeks?  Whether you are celebrating this day or dreading it, Ventura County Library has many resources for school help.

Go to our webpage at vencolibrary.org and under Special Interests, you will find the Teens or Kids’ pages that list Quick Start Homework help. On this page you can link onto such subjects as Mythology, Countries, Science Projects and more.

For more help check out our elibrary databases where there is a link to our k-12 databases. Information and links to biographies, encyclopedias, magazine and journal articles, and reading suggestions can be found.  Under Test Preparation you will find LearningExpress Library which is an interactive instructional and test preparation database.  The learning center in this database covers elementary school through college.

In addition to all these electronic links, we also offer books and staff to help you and your child locate the resources you need to make this school year the best ever.

Channel Islands

The Channel Islands are home to the most well-preserved archeological sites on the Pacific coast, with more than 10,000 years of continuous human occupation recorded.   They contain the oldest dated  human remains in North America—Arlington Springs Man (13,000 BP). 

While the islands themselves are accessible only by boat or aircraft, the Channel Islands National Park Robert J. Lagomarsino Visitors Center is right in the Ventura Harbor.  Located at 1901 Spinnaker Drive in Ventura, it features a display of marine aquatic life as well as exhibits reflecting the unique character of each island.  There is a 3-dimensional map of the islands outside the bookstore that gives an idea of the shapes of the islands.  If you go up to the 3rd floor, you get a beautiful panoramic view of Ventura and the harbor.

San Nicolas Island, part of the Channel Islands, is the setting for Scott O’Dell’s novel, Island of the Blue Dolphins”.  Foster Library has many copies of the novel along with other items to help you plan your journey to the Channel Islands.

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