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May Making it in Maine Programming

Posted by Jessica Flaherty on May 2nd, 2016

I am simply beside myself that this is the last full month of our FINRA Making it in Maine programming. Since September, we have engaged with many of you as well as the constitutes we jointly serve. We have learned a lot about ourselves as well as the unique place the library holds within our community. We are excited to continue the conversation beyond the grant. These relationships we have built and the knowledge we have gained will only serve to make us stronger.

We are certainly going out with a bang! In order to really go full circle, we wanted to end programming by focusing on the youngest members of our community, the kids and those who care for them. Don’t worry, there will still be something for everyone this month as well as a closing festival of fun to end the grant in style!

The Curtis Money Scavenger Hunt is in its last month! Nearly 300 people have played since November. This month we explore the great non-biased resources available around kids and money. Our final monthly winner can choose a prize valued at $100 including a crockpot full of kitchen items; a feast with all the fixings; a sewing machine; a AAA Plus annual membership, a FitBit, a $100 farm credit to Whatley Farms (which you can visit at the winter market as well as the summer markets) or a year of curbside composting from WeCompost it. Play now until Monday, May 23! The Grand Prize drawing will take place on National Scavenger Hunt Day, May 24, 2016 and two winners will be chosen and they can select $500 in heating oil, propane or electricity credit . Play at www.curtismoney.com .

A grant favorite is returning! Come together for a family meal and activities for the whole family. This month our topic is Money Smart Family Meals: How Does Your Garden Grow? Join us Thursday, May 19 at 6pm at Curtis in the Morrell Meeting Room for dinner and conversation with Brunswick Topsham Land Trust and Midcoast Hunger Prevention. Both will join us to talk about strategies for eating fresh and healthy on a budget, including container gardens and square foot gardens.   A meal will be provided. Plus—assemble and take home a container garden with a tomato plant!  And the best part, it is free and open to the public. Registration is not required but would probably make my life easier.

This month’s Money Smart Meetup Book Club is Smart Money Smart Kids by David Ramsey and Rachel Cruze. Financial expert and best-selling author Dave Ramsey and his daughter Rachel Cruze equip parents to teach their children how to win with money. Starting with the basics like working, spending, saving, and giving, and moving into more challenging issues like avoiding debt for life, paying cash for college, and battling discontentment, Dave and Rachel present a no-nonsense, common-sense approach for changing your family money tree. Join us for coffee, light refreshments, and money  saving tips.  We provide books, free for all participants available at the Curtis Library Reference Desk. May 25 at 6:30pm OR May 27 at 12pm in the Curtis Library Seminar Room.

Beginning Monday, May 23 and continuing through June, the Curtis Collaboratory Exhibit will focus on Money as You Grow Raising financially savvy children involves teaching them a variety of money management skills from budgeting to planning, earning and saving. Money as You Grow gives families a way to teach kids, from ages three to 23 and beyond, the simple, essential money lessons they need to know as they grow.  The exhibit features age-appropriate lessons and corresponding activities designed to influence kids’ financial behavior.

We are very excited about welcoming comedian, Colin Ryan: A Comedian’s Guide to Money. For most people, personal finance is no laughing matter. Often, it is something they would rather not think about, but comedian Colin Ryan tackles this subject with humor and practical wisdom. Ryan’s show, blends stand-up comedy, storytelling, and pop culture to bring fun and learning to the topic of personal finance, a subject that is often considered boring or intimidating. Appropriate for  school age children and adults. Tuesday, May 31 at 6:30pm Morrell Meeting Room, Curtis Library. Colin Ryan has also graciously offered to not only bring his unique brand of comedy to Curtis but we will also be at the Vocational High School earlier in the day, Tuesday, May 31 and Brunswick High School on June 1.

We will be taking the Money Smart Family Meal: How Does your Garden Grown on the road this month. With the help of Brunswick Topsham Land Trust and Mid Coast Hunger Prevention, we will bring this great conversation to our neighbors at Brunswick Housing Authority Woodlawn Towers on Monday, May 16, Brunswick Housing Authority Perryman Village on Wednesday, May 18 and Pejepscot Village on Thursday, May 19. We will also be spending a beautiful Saturday in Harspwell on Saturday, May 21, 1pm, at Mitchell Field.

Mark your calendars for the week of June 6th. This is our Grant Finale Week. We will be revisiting the most popular book of the grant, The Power of Habit on Wednesday, June 8 at 6:30pm OR Friday, June 10 at 12pm in the Seminar Room. These books will be available for free at the reference desk. We will also have special programming all week long. On Saturday, June 11 from 10am – 1pm, we will have a public shredder out front the library available for anyone to bring sensitive documents for destruction. We will also provide you an opportunity to complete your FINRA book collection as well as participate in some of our most popular programs – such as assembling a freezer meal, planting tomatoes or an herb garden for a summer of delicious enjoyment and paint your own piggy banks! Look for special press releases about these activities later in May!

GOOD AND CHEAP: EAT WELL ON $4/DAY!

Posted by Jessica Flaherty on April 21st, 2016

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Our neighbors to the south of us in Harpswell are wonderful members of our Curtis Community. They continually support the library and we are a better place because of the diversity they bring in. It has been really important to Sarah and I, as well as our Curtis Board of Directors, that we bring our Making it in Maine programming to Harpswell. We have hosted business basic classes thanks to New Ventures, we were welcomed to a fireside book discussion on my favorite grant book so far “The Power of Habit” at the Orr’s Island Public Library. And we are just getting started.

On Monday, April 25 at 6pm we will be at the Harpswell Town Office for a community meal. Professional chef Ali Waks-Adams will share lessons she has honed over year in her home kitchen as well as professional kitchens ways to stretch the grocery bill. From stocking your pantry, menu planning and batch cooking, Ali can help. Everyone who comes will enjoy a local meal Ali prepares, you will also get a free copy of the cookbook “Good and Cheap” and you will assemble a freezer meal that all you will need to do is thaw and grill later this summer! But how do I get people there??AND we are raffling a crockpot! There is simply no reason NOT to come.

To ensure we have enough food for everyone, please call to register for this FREE event: 725-5242, ext.510 or visit the Reference Desk.

Harpswell Town Office 263 Mountain Road

Curtis Cooks!

Posted by Jessica Flaherty on April 14th, 2016

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One of the fabulous benefits of having a grant is having a little extra money to get creative. Not that we aren’t creative around here! Just remember back to April Fools Day. We are just extremely good at repurposing, borrowing and making due with less. Librarians are thrifty by nature! And we love them for it.

Our neighbors to the south of us in Harpswell are wonderful members of our Curtis Community. They continually support the library and we are a better place because of the diversity they bring in. It has been really important to Sarah and I, as well as our Curtis Board of Directors, that we bring our Making it in Maine programming to Harpswell. We have hosted business basic classes thanks to New Ventures, we were welcomed to a fireside book discussion on my favorite grant book so far “The Power of Habit” at the Orr’s Island Public Library. And we are just getting started.

On Monday, April 25 at 6pm. we will be at the Harpswell Town Office for a community meal. Professional chef Ali Waks-Adams will share lessons she has honed over year in her home kitchen as well as professional kitchens ways to stretch the grocery bill. From stocking your pantry, menu planning and batch cooking, Ali can help. Everyone who comes will enjoy a local meal Ali prepares, you will also get a free copy of the cookbook “Good and Cheap” and you will assemble a freezer meal that all you will need to do is thaw and grill later this summer! But how do I get people there??

Sure, I could make a poster, post on facebook, maybe send an email. But how could I be creative with my grant funding? How can I exemplify how great Curtis is? Thanks to the Harpswell Town Office and Harpswell Community TV, I got my answer. With alarmingly quick turn around, we brainstomed, wrote and shot a cooking program right at Harpswell Community TV! Seriously! This all came together in a week!

Hats off to Food Network stars. I do not have a future in TV! But we had fun and it is such a unique way to advertise a program. You don’t have to live in Harpswell to experience my sub-par acting abilities! It is online: https://vimeo.com/162716514

Stayed tuned later this month because Building Supervisor Melissa Hall and I may make a commercial for our May program – How Does your Garden Grown. She will attempt to teach me how to put a tomato plant to help me eat local and fresh all summer long!