The weather is warming up, and my thoughts turn to gardening and outdoor activities in the dirt! I love watching trees and plants as they begin their new growth season. One sure sign of spring’s arrival is the return of weeds in my garden! Getting out in the garden and flower beds to pull weeds is a necessary first step before any kind of planting, so that can be a starting point for outdoor activities. The good news is that it is possible to start gardening as we “shelter in place” without making a trip to garden centers. Visit these websites for inspiration:

Easy to read infographic from Food Revolution Network

You can always try experimenting with the science projects seen here:

Don’t let the fun and creativity stop with gardening! Set up an easy outdoor play space with relatively few supplies to “grow” your imagination. Click on the photos below for suggestions and information at The Imagination Tree:

There are many different ideas and how-to’s at The Empowered Educator to design some backyard exploration areas:

A garden game can also be garden art!

Visit our online e-book collection for books available online. Don’t forget there are links to access these resources and a help button if needed!

This is a small section of the search I did for gardening. There are many choices, both fiction and non-fiction, when you enter “gardening” in the search bar.

Be sure to take pictures of any projects you might try to share with us when we welcome you back! Good luck, stay healthy, and hopefully we will see you soon!

Missin’ my peeps….

As you read this, I’m sure you are well aware that we are “sheltering in place” and looking for ways to stay connected. The Youth Services department -and the whole library- is keeping in touch with virtual meetings, emails, texts, etc., to think of ways to reach out and support you. We miss you…our peeps! There are so many things available online to help everyone stay engaged and active. I will post a few things today with a short description of what you can find if you click on the link. Our own New Lenox Library has so much to offer online, so I hope you are exploring our website as well! Be sure to visit the online resources and e-books we have available to you. A previous blog tells you about Libby and our website has easy step-by-step instructions about how to access the digital library.

Below is a blog from one of my librarian friends in the school district where I previously worked. She and her colleague have put together a tremendous page- called Library Bookends– of daily live author/illustrator read-alouds. Be sure to visit them each day, along with their resource tab for many other ideas and activities….a big, happy thanks to Steph & Mary!

Here is an example of a video from beloved author/illustrator Mo Willems that I found in their blog:

If you’ve read some of my past postings, you know I have a special place for the Forest Preserve of Will County. Their website has some kid-friendly activities for you too.

The Joliet YMCA also has kid activities on their website with fun things to do with materials you probably have around the house:

A scavenger hunt, whether outdoors or indoors, is always a creative exercise. Have mom or dad, grams or gramps, or whomever you are sheltering with look around for one to try. Below are just a few images of some scavenger hunts searching Bing, Google, and Pinterest….or better yet, make up your own for someone in your family!

Here’s one to get your ideas flowing:

Check back soon for more resources for you to investigate. The Library has a Facebook and Instagram account for your caregivers with frequent updates, so visit those when you can! Stay safe, stay healthy, stay happy, and stay connected! Most of all, remember…