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Valentine's Day

When we think of Valentine's Day, we often think of red roses, candy in heart-shaped boxes, mushy valentines, and winged cherubs flying about shooting starry-eyed lovers with arrows.

But did you know that the origin of Valentine's Day, or Saint Valentine's Day, comes from the life and death of a Christian martyr? According to author Martha Zimmerman, the date traditionally celebrated as St. Valentine's Day finds it origin in the Roman festival of romance called Lupercalia, when the gods Juno and Pan were honored. It was a fertility festival or a lover's holiday looking forward to the return of Spring. In the fifth century, in an attempt to abolish the pagan festival, Pope Gelasius changed Lupercalia and its February 15 date to February 14 and called it Saint Valentine's Day. Even though the names and the date were changed, the emphasis continued to be on love.

May We Suggest (On Facebook)?

If you're on facebook and like books, DVDs, and all the other great things Canton Public Library provides, you'll probably be interested in our May We Suggest facebook page. We post recommendations from our expert staff: romance books, comedy DVDs, nonfiction and advice titles, and more. Along with that, we'd like to know what you're reading and whether you recommend other people to read it too. Join us on facebook for great recommendations.

Starting Your Veggie Garden From Seed

Now is the time when many gardeners in our area begin to start seeds indoors, so they'll have lovely seedlings to transplant into the garden when the weather warms up. You can even reuse many items from around the house, to save both money and time. We also have a number of books that will help you with starting from seed:

Gardening with heirloom seeds: tried-and-true flowers, fruits, and vegetables for a new generation by Lynn Coulter

Poems of the Night

The dark beauty and mysteries of nighttime are captured in Joyce Sidman's book Dark  Emperor & Other Poems of the Night.  The poems explore night creatures and other night life, letting readers "feel the breeze" of the evening. This quiet book, with prints by Rick Allen, is a 2011 Newbery Honor Book.

Do You Love Kirby's Epic Yarn?

Then you might really like Kirby's Epic Patchifyer! You can stitch, frame, and add patchwork to your own photos. Just upload your photo and follow the simple directions for an awesome Kirby like piece of fun!

The Kitchen Assistant, Darla Jaros

Darla Jaros, The Kitchen Assistant, tells you how to feed your family well on a strict budget. Learn how to stretch a dollar and make nutritious, delicious meal out of seemingly nothing. Darla shares dozens of hints from her book, The Kitchen Assistant.

Frugal Living Series — The Kitchen Assistant — February 24th (not the 29th as stated in Connections), 7:00PM. No registration needed.

Tai Chi

Join us for a Tai Chi session on February 5 at 2:00PM in the Purple Room. We're celebrating the township's 100 Days of Health by providing a class here at the library. Tai Chi can be enjoyed by everyone 16 and up. Please wear loose clothing and comfy shoes. Please register online as space is limited.

Motown Museum

Note: This event has been canceled due to unforeseen circumstances.

Kick off Black History Month by reminiscing about Motown greats, such as the Temptations, the Supremes, the Miracles and Smokey Robinson and many more. It was an era of unique Detroit sound shared around the country. Lina Stephens, chief curator of the Motown Museum, shares the history, the personal stories and music with us.
No registration is needed

Beat the Winter Blues With a Beach Read

Tired of all the snow, ice and grey weather? Wish you could escape to a tropical destination but don't have the budget? Well how about escaping with a great beach read? Try one of these titles for a break from the bitter cold:

It happened in South Beach by Jennie Klassel

Beachcomber by Karen Robards

Tropical getaway by Roxanne St. Claire

Help for College

Looking to score some money to help with college? Here's tons of scholarships targeted specifically for Canton and Plymouth residents! Read all about it. Or maybe you need help writing that perfect admissions essay? Then check out our books on college applications.
[Photo courtesy of flickr user smemon87]

Remember the [blank]

A call to remember notable events, especially surprise attacks and disasters, is a well-known trope in the cultural memory. As George Santayana quipped, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." So, in case you have forgotten, here are some resources for remembrance of things past:

Remember the Alamo

The Alamo: a cultural history by Frank Thompson

Sleuthing the Alamo: Davy Crockett's last stand and other mysteries of the Texas Revolution by James E. Crisp

The Alamo [videodisc] by The History Channel

Remember the Maine

How the battleship Maine was destoyed by H.g. Rickover

Free Tax Help for Michigan Residents

Free tax preparation is available for qualified Michigan residents at sites around the state. You can call 2-1-1 (1-800-552-1183 if 2-1-1 is unavailable in your area) for help locating the free tax site nearest you.

Green Beings

Green is definitely not just a color for beans anymore. We all need to be "green" and take responsibility to care for our wonderful planet. Kids can be just as responsible as parents in this area by doing simple things like turning off the lights when they leave a room, or using both sides of a sheet of paper. Of course using the library is a fantastic way to be green, by using the books and sources we have, instead of buying new ones. There are also some great books at the library to help remind kids of the important part they can play in being green. Check out Sandy's Incredible Shrinking Footprint, Uno's Garden, or The Lorax, which all are fun stories to read and help remind us to take care of our Earth.

Look What's In Large Print: February 2011

Tired of squinting while reading? Getting a headache from focusing too hard for too long? You're not alone — one in six Americans over the age of 45 have trouble reading small print.

Greening Your Business

Are you looking for some environmentally friendly ideas for your business? Join Eco-Coach Lori Sullivan and Bill Clemens of DTE Energy for some great solutions. Vendors will also be present for even more green tips and products. This Strategies of Success (SOS) seminar takes place on Thursday, February 3rd from 7:30-9:30AM in the Summit on the Park Banquet Center. Space is limited so please reserve your spot by calling the Canton Chamber of Commerce at (734) 453-4040.

CPL Quilt Group

Our group features Grace — a local quilter. She is going to demonstrate "the Paper Piecing Technique" for making quilt blocks. For those of you who are not familliar with this technique, it creates very intricate patterns. Grace has completed 50 pattern squares — one for each state. She will have them to show on Wednesday February 2 from 7:00-8:00PM and will also explain the process. It should be a very interesting demonstration.

Check out Rich Traditions: Scrap Quilts to Paper Piece and 40 Bright and Bold Paper Pieced Blocks for more information on the technique.

From 8:00-8:45 we will have discussion on quilting. If any one has something they have made or are making bring it to share with the group.

Free Tax Prep This Friday

The United Way of Southeastern Michigan is hosting free tax preparation services at two Detroit and one Taylor locations for those who earn less than $48,000 a year. Details are available on the United Way site.

Tax Forms

The IRS and the Michigan Department of the Treasury have announced that they will no longer mail paper income tax packages to individual and business taxpayers. These tax packages contained the forms, schedules and instructions for filing a paper income tax return. They are taking this step because of the continued growth in electronic filing and the availability of free options to taxpayers, as well as to help reduce costs.

Because forms are so readily-available online, the Canton Public Library will severely limit the number of tax forms we provide in paper format and encourage patrons to print forms from the IRS and Michigan sites at home or in the library for a cost of $.10 per page. Instruction booklets will be provided for use in the library only.

For further information about forms you may contact:
Federal [website] or by phone at 1-800-829-3676 after January 10
State [website] or (517) 636-4486