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Green Up Your Spring with the Narragansett Library

Make a difference and "Go Green" this Spring.

We have finally forged our way into the month of April in Rhode Island and I have seen many signs of Spring on the way.

Bulbs are starting to peek through the soil, nice and strong from their Winter’s rest, the robins are out in full force beginning their nest building rituals and buds are starting to appear on those bare tree branches. It is amazing how the seasons change and the environment “springs” to life at the same time each year.

Spring seems like the perfect time to start thinking a bit more about our environment and what we can do to help our little niche of the world, especially with Earth Day right around the corner. The library is a fabulous resource for ideas on how to “go green.”

Many people have heard the term “going green” but what exactly does this mean for us? We know what it means globally, but what people may not realize is each one of us can contribute in our own way to making the world a better place.

Recycling is the easiest place to start. Recycling is simply the process of collecting used materials that would normally be considered waste and reprocessing them into something new. Some of the most common items that can be recycled are paper, plastic, glass, aluminum and batteries.

Instead of all of these materials taking up space in a landfill, when we recycle we are giving them new life in another form, while helping to cut down pollution and save energy. These are all positives for our future and for our children’s futures as well.

Two small things I have been doing for awhile now are taking my own reusable bags to the grocery store and bringing all of my #5 plastic containers to a Whole Foods Market for recycling. Rhode Island does not currently collect #5 plastic containers (yogurt and margarine containers for example) but Whole Foods will take them and recycle them into all kinds of useful household items!

If you are not familiar with how to recycle there is a wonderful resource available from the Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation on how to do so and what materials are acceptable. You can view it here.

I am proud to be a part of the library’s recycling efforts. All of the employees are dedicated and have taken part in this program. It is wonderful to get your children involved in your recycling endeavors as well. There are many books at the library that explain why it is important and how they can help including:

  • Recycling Earth’s Resources by Barbara L. Webb
  • Trash and Recycling by Stephanie Turnbull
  • Here Comes the Recycling Truck by Meyer Seltzer
  • Going Green: A kid’s handbook to saving the planet by John Elkington

There are also many books for adults with tips for greener living, so make a difference in your world this Spring!

In other library news, I have a few book recommendations for this month!

First is one I just read by one of my favorite authors, Jodi Picoult. Her knew book "Sing You Home" takes place in our very own state of Rhode Island and tackles such topics as gay marriage, reproductive science and religious issues. I found it to be very thought provoking and I enjoyed reading about RI landmarks. There is also a music CD that goes along chapter by chapter with the book.

One of my coworkers has also recommended two books: "Cutting for Stone" by Abraham Verghese about twin brothers coming of age in Ethiopia and "Fall of Giants" by Ken Follett which is the historical first novel in the Century Trilogy.

Has anyone out there read any great books lately? We would be happy to hear about them!

There are all kinds of fun events going on at the library this month including the ever popular Tuesday movies, an Easter egg hunt, and a Pysanky egg decorating class so be sure and check out narlib.org for the full schedule of events.

Happy Spring from the Narragansett Library!

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Chris April 10, 2011 at 11:47 PM
Fantastic article Merrilyn! Perfect time of year to start thinking of ways to go green in our everyday lives and help take care of mother Earth. Especially with Earth day right around the corner on April 22nd I believe. I for one would like to applaud you and the library staff for your recycling efforts and not only leading by example but getting the word out. As like you said, its an easy way to make a difference in your daily life when sometimes the whole entire world seems out of control. Having some book recommendations is a wonderful idea too. I always enjoy reading books that take place in RI, so I'll look for the one you pointed out. Recently I finished reading Sabatini's classic 'Scaramouche' which had been recommended to me. And I'd like to pass along that to everyone looking for a brilliant book full of swordplay, political intrigue, and revolution! Really enjoyed reading this article, well done!
Merrilyn Parry April 12, 2011 at 12:44 PM
Thank you very much for commenting and for your book recommendation! Sounds like a really interesting book and it's nice to have a male point of view too!
myer kutz April 13, 2011 at 10:43 PM
Thanks, Merrilyn, for a spirited presentation of the library resources that patrons can access as they go about making the world a greener, and better, place. Well done! My current book recommendation is British writer Rachel Cusk's The Country Life. When you're not howling with laughter, you'll be wincing at the disasters, both physical and psychological, and many of her own making, that befall the heroine. The Brits do this kind of book very well. This one brings to mind Stella Gibbons' novel, Cold Comfort Farm, which was also a TV movie. Also recommended. Again, an excellent article.
Merrilyn Parry April 14, 2011 at 02:32 AM
Myer, Thank you so much for the comment, I will have to check out that book as well- and coming from you I know it is a good one :) Thanks again!
myer kutz April 14, 2011 at 02:35 PM
The library article in the April 16th issue of Narragansett Patch was eloquently written by Merrilyn Parry. Her column focused on the crucial subject of preserving and protecting our natural world. In this era of technology, there is a need to take the time each day to appreciate the song of the robins, the budding flowers and trees, the signs, scents, and sounds of nature. We all need to do whatever is in our power to protect and nurture our little corner of the world. All of this was succinctly was brought home in "Checking in with the Library," complete with resources to help us achieve what was poignantly expressed by Merrilyn Parry.

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