Saturday, April 13, 2024

Another Beetle

I found another rose chafer beetle in the garden the other day. This one still had some mud on its shell, so it must have just emerged from hibernation. It was crawling around on our euphorbia. This is exactly what Dave and I want to see in the garden -- wildlife, doing its thing. Maybe David Attenborough will do a show about us.

Right now I'm hearing a woodpecker out there, pounding away on something.

Yesterday was wildly busy in the library. It was our annual "Drop Everything and Read" day, when we schedule time for the students to read freely in their classes. Of course this means lots of checkouts and returns for us. Last year, you may remember, I was a little exasperated because the library was so busy that I didn't get to read myself. This year, I knew better -- and because I didn't expect to read I wasn't annoyed. It's all in expectations, right?

I have plenty of time for reading during the course of an average day. I read at lunch and I read at my desk between busy periods. I figure it's part of my job, and I'm modeling the behavior we want to see in our students, so I don't feel guilty about it at all!

I've also had pretty good success with the overdue books this week. Remember how I said there were about 30 kids with books due Jan. 8 or earlier? Well, I've got that number down to 14. Next week, I begin writing parents. It's a fine line, encouraging reading and being flexible with returns while not allowing people to walk away with the library's stuff.

Here's a nice honesty plant in bloom at the moment -- much leafier and healthier looking than the one I posted previously. Yesterday, around our back patio, I scattered some snapdragon seeds that I saved from our plant on the front porch. We'll see if they come up. I just didn't have the energy to put them in seed trays and perform a lot of careful cultivation.


River said...

I remember having lots of time to read. When I had babies, then toddlers, schoolage kids, teenagers and after all thta I went back to work and STILL had hours every day to read. Now I'm retired and barely get through one book per week, sometimes in a fortnight. Because I'm on the laptop a lot instead...

Yael said...

If you pay attention, there is indeed a whole world alive and going on even in the smallest gardens. I follow it every day.

Moving with Mitchell said...

Knowing your green thumb, your garden will be overrun with snapdragons.

Don said...

Steve, your comment about how you like your garden resonated with me as I feel the same way. I highly recommend both of you watch this short video called Let Your Garden Grow Wild. She’s an expert and this is eye opening.

Andrew said...

I would be rather disappointed if a librarian didn't read, frequently and often. Some students are still under threat of a spanking from Mr Reed for not returning books. Mental image of David Attenborough roaming your garden, yeah, nah.

Ed said...

Perhaps it is just me, but I think it would be awesome if David Attenborough did a full hour long show on us humans in the same way he does it for any other animal.

"The dog leads his human playmate via a thin rope to a cemetery and persuades them to toss an old forgotten tennis ball for it to chase. Scientists are sure why they chose the cemetery."

Bob said...

Around here, Carlos has the green thumb and can still tend to the garden, while I am an expert[?] at trimming and pruning.
So far it's been working.

Boud said...

I'm always happy to see insects at work, and worms. It means I'm cooperating with nature in my tiny area. Even if they nosh on my plants.

Ms. Moon said...

You got almost half your overdue books back! Excellent! I know you just love writing the parents.
Your rose chafer beetle could be jewelry. Truly exquisite.

Jennifer said...

I'm jealous that you can read openly at work! Even when I have downtime I feel weird about it and mostly refrain. Not that there's much downtime at the moment, with the end of the year looming.

That beetle is so pretty!

Sharon said...

To me, reading on the job seems essential for a librarian. Good job collecting those overdue books.

Ellen D. said...

Reading on the job was always important when I worked in the school library so I could make book recommendations and have book discussions with the students.
Your garden is just great and you and Dave should be so proud of your work out there. I have been seeing lots of butterflies on my grape hyacinths. They look like monarchs but are smaller.

Wilma said...

The eve of Drop Everything and Read Day should be a day of preparation so the Librarian also can stop and read on the actual day!

ellen abbott said...

I try not to have expectations, instead to just be open to however the day plays out. doesn't mean I don't make plans but being open to how the days pans out means being flexible and allowing for and accepting change.

you might be surprised how well the seeds do. that's how nature does it, just lets them fall to the ground.

Red said...

Librarians have a great challenge with looking after books so everybody gets a chance the read the good ones.

The Bug said...

Managing my expectations usually DOES help, but I'm terrible at it. Sigh.

Margaret said...

Although I'm not a fan of beetles, they are an important part of the outside world. However, if they get into my house, I will get rid of them in any way I can. I love dropping everything and reading. I would have trouble letting go of the book if it's a good one. I would want to keep reading for hours.

Susan said...

The garden becomes filled with all kinds of interesting life. The beetle is very shiny with rainbow colors. The other day, I lifted a garden stone and saw salamanders (black with an orange stripe) scatter. Collecting the many books from students seems very successful.

Kelly said...

Our expectations can make all the difference in the world! So what are your expectations for getting back the remaining overdue books in a timely manner?

Yorkshire Pudding said...

I can imagine David Attenborough's whispered commentary upon the animal behaviour displayed in and around your home... "After displaying in the library, it's time for the Reed monkey to make his way home. He looks this way and that furtively seeking new opportunities to enhance the appearance of his den."

Catalyst said...

Here's an idea: anyone checking out a book has to leave their smartphone in the custody of the librarian (you) and will only get it back when the book(s) return to the library.

Steve Reed said...

River: Computers and phones are definitely the enemies of book reading! I have the same problem.

Yael: It always amazes me how nature manages even in a highly urbanized area.

Mitchell: That would be a nice problem to have! Here's hoping!

Don: Thanks for the video! I haven't watched it yet but I will, I promise. "Re-wilding" is quite a fashionable trend these days.

Andrew: I give a better garden tour than David Attenborough any day! LOL!

Ed: They chose the cemetery because it's the closest large green space to where they live! Quite practical, really. :)

Bob: Trimming and pruning, despite how much I talk about it, is something I do not do well. I always hate to cut plants even though they often are better off for it.

Boud: I agree. It's taken me a while but I realize that bugs eating my plants very seldom harms the plants in any significant way.

Ms Moon: I kind of DO like it, weirdly.

Jennifer: Well, that's one benefit of being a librarian. I can always link reading to my job!

Sharon: I agree. You gotta know what's out there to make recommendations. I wish I were better about reading things that aren't within my zone of interest. (Romance, for example.)

Ellen D: I wonder what your butterflies are? Could they be viceroys? They're similar to monarchs.

Wilma: Drop Everything and Prepare to Read! LOL

Ellen: I try that too, but it doesn't always work out that way!

Red: Yeah, a lot of librarian work is really just managing stuff -- organizing it, keeping track of it.

Bug: It's easier said than done, for sure!

Margaret: Apparently some species of beetles are really struggling these days, so if there's any way to get them outside alive, that would be ideal! I understand that when nature invades one's home, though, all bets are off.

Susan: VERY cool about the salamanders! I'm not sure I've ever seen a salamander in the wild.

Kelly: I think it will happen -- or at least the kids will pay for them -- but it always surprises me how much of a struggle it can be. I also think it's harder now, post-pandemic. Kids are still re-learning organizational and time-management skills.

YP: That pretty much sums up my life! We are all primates, after all.

Catalyst: Oh, Lord, we'd NEVER check out books then! Plus we have to give the kids enough time to read them, and keeping their phone for three weeks would be a tall order. LOL

Jeanie said...

David Attenborough or Monty Don! Urban Gardens! I can see it now!