Volunteering makes a healthy New Year’s resolution
If you are looking for a New Year’s resolution that benefits your community as well as yourself, consider volunteering.  According to The New York Times, study after study shows that volunteering not only makes you feel good but also improves your mental health and helps you live longer.

In a review of 40 academic papers by the University of Exeter in the U.K., researchers found that volunteers had lower levels of depression and higher levels of wellbeing and life satisfaction.  Also, volunteers were a fifth less likely to die within the next four to seven years than average.

Volunteering is thought to be especially good for the physical health of older people, by encouraging them to stay active and spend more time outside the home.  A separate study from Carnegie Mellon University found that volunteering can improve heart health by reducing blood pressure.  And young people benefit as well.  A separate U.S. study published in the Journal JAMA Pediatrics linked volunteering with improved cardiovascular health in high school students.

In a separate article, Good Housekeeping magazine reported that getting out of your home to be with other people is good for your mental health – and that isolation can be as big a risk factor for death as smoking, high blood pressure and not exercising..

An estimated 27 percent of people of America devote some of their free time to volunteering, compared to 22.5 percent in Europe and 36 percent in Australia, according to The Times.

At your library, we are thankful for our 35 active volunteers this year. This number includes seven library board members and five members of the Friends’ board.  They work every day to help us maintain the collection; shelve returned books, CDs and DVDs; and make sure all the books and materials are in their proper place.  Because of our small staff, these volunteers are vital to our service to you.  If you want to join them, please contact Jackie Welch, library director, at 264-2208.

Holiday closures
Your library will be closed for the Christmas holiday on December 24 and 25, and for New Year’s at noon December 31 and all day January 1. We send heartfelt greetings and gratitude to you and your loved ones during this holiday period.

Activities calendars available
To be sure you don’t miss any of the free activities available to you and your families at your library, we encourage you to pick up a copy of the events calendar each month.  There are three versions – kids (includes tweens), teens and adults.

Change in downloadable audio books service
We no longer carry downloadable audio books through OneClick Digital. Starting in January, we are migrating to 3M for downloadable audio books so that you will be able to get your downloadable audio books and e-books in the same location.  Another advantage to this change is that we will be able to select our own content, based on our knowledge of your reading preferences.

Free technology sessions
Meg Wempe is available for the highly popular Tech Tuesdays and Thursdays sessions 10-noon Tuesdays and 3-5 p.m. Thursdays.  Drop in with your technology questions.  A more formal session requiring registration is Android 101 on Monday, December 28 from 10:30 – 12:30 p.m.  This class is designed for someone with a new Android phone or tablet.  It is a hands-on class so please bring your device.

Free healthy eating session
Join us at 1:30 p.m. on Monday, December 28 for the last session of the free healthy eating series that ran from October through December, taught by part-time library staffer Zoe Groulx.  The class covers many of the principles of Weston A. Price and is part of the ALPS program through San Juan Fellowship.

Free Spanish class
Join us at 3 p.m. on Monday, December 28 for the last of the free beginning Spanish classes that ran from October through December, taught by part-time library staffer Zoe Groulx.  This class is part of the ALPS program through San Juan Fellowship.

Free teen gaming
Teen gaming happens Tuesdays from 4 – 5:30 p.m. for teen gaming fans in the 7th-12th grades.

Free baby/toddler time
Saturday, December 26 will be playtime rather than storytime from 9:30 – 10 a.m.  Recommended for children from six months to three years of age.

Free programmed Nooks
Reminder:  We have nine Nooks and three tablets programmed for your e-reading pleasure.  The eight adult content e-readers contain either fiction or nonfiction bestsellers.  The four youth e-readers contain books for children, juniors and young adults.

Large print
“Christmas in the Morning” by Linda Lael Miller is a Brides of Bliss County romance.  “The Clasp” by Sloane Crosley is a suspense story about the search for a necklace.  “The Blue Guitar” by John Banville follows a painter who is also a petty thief.  “Playing with Fire” by Tess Gerritsen is a mystery set in Venice.  “All Dressed in White” by Mary Higgins Clark and Alafair Burke is a mystery.  “House of the Rising Sun” by James Lee Burke is a western.  “Secret Sisters” by Jayne Ann Krentz is a mystery.

“Wildflower” is a memoir by actress Drew Barrymore.  “Crippled America: How to Make America Great Again” is a political statement and plan by Donald Trump.  “Outsider in the White House” is a political autobiography by Bernie Sanders.  “Lights Out” by Ted Koppel explores the possibility of a major cyberattack on America’s power grid.  “The War on Alcohol” by Lisa McGirr is the history of prohibition and subsequent federal wars on crime.  “438 Days” by Jonathan Franklin is the true story of a fisherman who survived 14 months in a small boat drifting in the Pacific Ocean.

Thrillers and mysteries
“Tightrope” by Simon Mawer is an historical thriller set in the Cold War.  “Secret Sisters” by Jayne Ann Krentz is a romantic suspense story.  “Ashley Bell” by Dean Koontz is a suspense story about a girl who said no to death.  “Killing Trail” by Margaret Mizushima is a Timber Creek K-9 mystery.

Other novels
“November 9” by Colleen Hoover is a love story between a writer and his unexpected muse.  “The Relic Master” by Christopher Buckley is an historical tale set in 1517 in the Holy Roman Empire.  “Thunderbird” by Jack McDevitt is a science fiction story set in the world of Ancient Shores.  “A Dream of Ice” by Gillian Anderson and Jeff Rovin is book two of the paranormal EarthEnd Saga.

“Soul Eater” is the complete season of 51 episodes.  “The Thorn Birds” is a TV epic based on Collen McCullough’s novel.  “The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh” is the Disney classic.  “The Verdict” stars Paul Newman.  “They Died with their Boots On” is a western starring Error Flynn and Olivia de Havilland.  “The Muppet Christmas Carol” is a Disney family film.  “MIB” is the Men in Black film starring Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones.  “Surf’s Up” is a family film starring a penguin.  “A Christmas Story” is about a child wanting a Red Ryder air rifle for Christmas.  “Minions” is a is a humorous family film.

Music CDs
Come in and take a look at the wide variety of music CDs we have available to borrow, thanks to donations from patrons like you.  You’ll find blue grass, classical, jazz, rock and more for your enjoyment.

Free downloadable movies
For your viewing pleasure, we have purchased IndieFlix, a streaming movie service that gives library patrons unlimited access to more than 7,500 award-winning and popular independent shorts, feature films and documentaries from more than 50 countries – on your device, PC or Mac, with no apps needed.  Also, PBS content is now live on the IndieFlix website.  Access IndieFlix through the Downloadable Content icon on the library website.

Thanks to our donors
For books and materials this week, we thank Kitzel Farrah, Josie Hummel, Sheila Lane and Madeline Lyon.

Quotable Quote
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill.

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