Category Archives: happenings at the library

Interested In A Free Community Parenting Course?

From neighbor Helaine Golann:

“Parenting is the most challenging job I’ve ever done – I wish I’d had a training course!”   I cannot begin to count the number of times I had thoughts like this as a parent or heard and continue to hear similar ones from other parents.

What about you?  Would you be interested in such a course/workshop if it was offered at the Auburndale Community Library?

As both parent and developmental psychologist I’ve checked out multiple books and programs of this sort, and the one that still stands out was developed in the 70’s by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish.  It’s a skill based workshop program that I believe has the potential to be a powerful resource in helping parents develop increasingly positive, respectful and compassionate relationships with their children and themselves.   The skills include: helping children deal with their feelings through responsive listening, engaging cooperation, alternatives to punishment, encouraging autonomy, mutual problem solving, helpful ways of praising, and freeing children from roles, and more.

The meetings are structured with experiential and practice exercises and homework (mostly trying out skills and sharing experiences on how they worked for you and your child/children).

If you would be interested, please contact me at and we can see if we can get a group to form.

Wednesday Evening Summer Programming

The ACL is once again planning expanded programming in the summer on many Wednesday evenings.  The pace is easier, theevenings are lovely for a summer stroll to visit us, and we enjoy hosting these special events to see our friends and neighbors.

More details forthcoming, but for now here’s what we’ve got in the works thus far:

Nature Garden Art Night – Wednesday, June 28 – 7 pm
Back by popular demand!  Decorate our garden with a community arts and crafts project!
PJ Storytime & Stuffed Animal Sleepover – Wednesday, July 12th – 7 pm
Wear your PJ’s and bring your favorite stuffed animal.  After the stories are over, your stuffed animal will get to spend the night with the giant Curious George!
ACL Craft-A-Palooza ’17Wednesday, July 19th7 pm
CRAFTS NIGHT OUT in the ‘Dale.  We’ll have an open crafting session at the ACL.  Bring your projects or use our materials to hang out, chat, and create with friends and neighbors.

Dancing in the Parks Outdoor Concert – Wednesday, July 26 – 6:30 – 8 pm
The Spicolis, named for the surfer dude from the iconic 80s film Fast Times at Ridgemont High, play upbeat tunes from the punk and new

 wave era.  They play songs from artists like the Pretenders, Duran Duran, the Cars, Tom Petty, Simple Minds and more.

Stay tuned for full details and more events to celebrate the summer season at the ACL.


ACL’s Cookbook Book Club/Potluck:  Sunday, June 4th, 5:00 PM

For our next cookbook book club, we’ll use Modern Potluck, by Kristen Donnelly.   Modern Potluck celebrates the tradition of potlucks, or creating beautiful food to share.

You can pick any recipe from her book or her web site, see  What could be better than a web site called “Eat Better Drink Better”!

Here’s how our ACL Cookbook Club works:

  1. You chose a recipe from the cookbook or web site.  We’ll have a non-circulating copy of the book at the front desk–you can take a photo or request a photocopy of the recipe you would like to prepare.  There are also several copies of this cookbook in the minuteman library system.
  2. Sign up at the circulation desk or online here: Sign-Up
  3. Make your dish at home and bring it to the ACL on Sunday, June 4th  5:00 PM, ready to eat (we don’t have ability to reheat or refrigerate at the ACL).

Questions?  Contact Susan Katcher at or 617-599-8291

Minecraft Meet-Up! Saturday, May 13th from 11 am – 12:30 pm

Are you a serious Minecraft fan? Come to the ACL to meet other players, discuss your favorite mods and tricks, and play together on a private server.

To play on the server you will need to bring your own laptop and have a Minecraft account. Those without computers are still welcome to hang out, check out the ACL’s new Minecraft books, and play pocket edition on their mobile device.

Is Your Teenager (or Tweenager) Interested in Volunteering at the Library This Summer?

Please let us know by mid June or so…

Our neighborhood teenagers are enthusiastic about helping at the library in the summer, which is FANTASTIC.  One challenge, however, is they often approach us in mid-July or so (when a bit of boredom sets in…or when parents feel they need a bit of structure and send them our way) and it’s a little late in the game to plug them in meaningfully.

So perhaps chat with them now to see if they’d be interested in joining us sometime this summer.  These are examples of the types of things teens enjoy doing at the ACL:
  • Assist with Tuesday morning story time crafts
  • Assist with our Wednesday evening special programming sessions (games, crafts, PJ story times)
  • Write book reviews and help with book displays
  • Shelve books and help with odd jobs in the library
It is a very low commitment/extremely flexible–we just send out emails (or texts) to the kids when an activity is coming up and they can jump in as they like/their schedules permit.  It’s just good to have them on our roster early so they can have a few chances to help out before we close up for the season in late August.  All they need to do to be involved is send an email to Dana at  We can email parents too in case the teens need a little gentle prodding…just check in sometime this spring so you’re in the loop.  Thanks!

Volunteers Sought! The “Artful Piano” Project at the ACL this Spring


Once again, the ACL is thrilled to host an “Artful Piano” this Spring as part of the Newton Festival of the Arts.

Last year’s piano…​green…this year…purple!

We will host one of several pianos in the city. Our piano is painted by Melinda Gordon, and it is rumored to have a purple Prince theme! The reveal will happen in a few weeks once it is delivered. There are several ways for our community to be involved in this really cool project!

1) Help us cover/uncover the piano for community use. Breadsong Bakery will be the primary morning caretaker of the piano, but neighbors are needed to assist on evenings and weekends. Would you be willing to join other neighbors in this effort? Please contact Dana Hanson at to learn more. Many hands will make for light work on this!

2) Mark your calendars for our Auburndale Piano concert on Sunday, June 4. Exact details forthcoming, but once again we’ll have local favorite piano man extraordinaire Paul Giragos playing and singing crowd-pleasers. We’ll have sidewalk chalk for the kiddos again too.

3) Just swing by and play on the piano anytime! It’s going to be out there from late April to early June. We invite you to swing by and enjoy the piano any time it’s uncovered!

What’s Going On At the ACL: Highlights From the Annual Meeting

On March 7 2017, the ACL board held its annual business meeting and we’d like to share a few highlights with you.  Many thanks to our secretary, Linda Winslow, for putting together this summary:
1. Several topics related to standard board governance were addressed and it was a pleasure to vote in two new members to the board- Robyn Phillips and Liz Noon. Both have given much to the ACL and will continue to do so in their new role.

2. The annual review of the ACL budget showed that we maintain a positive balance to cover book acquisitions, occupancy fee to the City of Newton, accounting and insurance fees, technology (badly needed new computer), cleaning services, and replacement of some furniture, bookcases, and cabinets. The board voted for a 2017 spring fundraising campaign to make sure we have sufficient funds to cover required operational expenses.

3. One key expense is the purchase of books. Detailed stats about book holdings, circulation, and the number of patrons using the library was reported. Adult fiction continues to be the top category for requests and circulation. The all volunteer staff make sure that  “hot” books are readily available with little waiting time for our patrons.

4. Children’s books are also very popular. The children’s room, Tuesday morning story time, and impressive collection of Juvenile and Young Adult books were noted as ACL favorites and the board discussed potential opportunities to use social media to attract more attention.

5. The ACL continues to serve as a center for many different interest groups. These are the items listed in the frequent “ACL Update” email newsletters. The board was provided with a list of activities that have or are about to take place over the coming year and it discussed ways to improve the space for ACL activities.

6. The board expressed delight in the many improvements made by the decor committee and approved expenditures for a few additional enhancements.