On this day, July 8, 2011, Atlantis made its final liftoff from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. After 31 years of manned space flights into the Earth's orbit and back, the Space Shuttle program was officially retired from service. The shuttle program launched 135 missions, traveled 542,398,878 miles, and flew 21,152 orbits around the Earth, carried 355 people and 3.5 million pounds of payload. The purpose of the program was to transport crew and cargo from Earth to orbit, but its mission expanded to the International Space Station. There were 133 successful flights, but 2 very tragic failures. Both the Challenger and Columbia missions lost 7 crew members each. Want to learn more? Here's some resources to get your started!

On February 1, 2003, Columbia disintegrated on reentry before the nation's eyes, and all seven astronauts aboard were lost. Author Mike Leinbach, Launch Director of the space shuttle program at NASA's John F. Kennedy Space Center was a key leader in the search and recovery effort as NASA, FEMA, the FBI, the US Forest Service, and dozens more federal, state, and local agencies combed an area of rural east Texas the size of Rhode Island for every piece of the shuttle and her crew they could find. Assisted by hundreds of volunteers, it would become the largest ground search operation in US history. For the first time, here is the definitive inside story of the Columbia disaster and recovery and the inspiring message it ultimately holds. In the aftermath of tragedy, people and communities came together to help bring home the remains of the crew and nearly 40 percent of shuttle, an effort that was instrumental in piecing together what happened so the shuttle program could return to flight and complete the International Space Station. Bringing Columbia Home shares the deeply personal stories that emerged as NASA employees looked for lost colleagues and searchers overcame immense physical, logistical, and emotional challenges and worked together to accomplish the impossible. Featuring a foreword and epilogue by astronauts Robert Crippen and Eileen Collins, and dedicated to the astronauts and recovery search persons who lost their lives, this is an incredible, compelling narrative about the best of humanity in the darkest of times and about how a failure at the pinnacle of human achievement became a story of cooperation and hope.

The real-life techno-thriller from a bestselling author and aviation expert that recaptures the historic moments leading up to the launch of the space shuttle Columbia and the exciting story of her daring maiden flight. Using interviews, NASA oral histories, and recently declassified material, Into the Black pieces together the dramatic untold story of the Columbia mission and the brave people who dedicated themselves to help the United States succeed in the age of space exploration. On April 12, 1981, NASA's Space Shuttle Columbia blasted off from Cape Canaveral. It was the most advanced, state-of-the-art flying machine ever built, challenging the minds and imagination of America's top engineers and pilots. Columbia was the world's first real spaceship: a winged rocket plane, the size of an airliner, and capable of flying to space and back before preparing to fly again. On board were moonwalker John Young and test pilot Bob Crippen. Less than an hour after Young and Crippen's spectacular departure from the Cape, all was not well. Tiles designed to protect the ship from the blowtorch burn of re-entry were missing from the heat shield. If the damage to Columbia was too great, the astronauts wouldn't be able to return safely to earth. NASA turned to the National Reconnaissance Office, a spy agency hidden deep inside the Pentagon whose very existence was classified. To help the ship, the NRO would attempt something never done before. Success would require skill, perfect timing, and luck. Set against the backdrop of the Cold War, Into the Black is a thrilling race against time and the incredible true story of the first space shuttle mission that celebrates our passion for spaceflight.

Fifteen years ago on this day, July 1st, the Cassini-Huygens spacecraft reached the orbit of Saturn. It took 7 years to get there from Earth and it stayed in orbit for 13 years. The orbiter (Cassini) and lander (Huygens), which were named after astromers Giovanni Cassini and Christiaan Huygens, reported back valuable data about the planet, its icy moons and wondrous rings. Its last act of service was known as The Grand Finale. The spacecraft  made a flyby of Titan, then dived between Saturn's rings before its final plunge. Intrigued? We got a dvd for that!

Almost everything we know today about the beautiful giant ringed planet comes from Cassini, the NASA mission that launched in 1997 and arrived at Saturn in 2004. Since then, the spacecraft has been beaming home miraculous images and scientific data, revealing countless wonders about the planet, its rings, and 62 moons—including some that could harbor life. As the mission approaches its final days in 2017, it attempts one last set of daring maneuvers—diving between the innermost ring and the top of Saturn’s atmosphere. Aiming to skim less than 2,000 miles above the cloud tops, no spacecraft has ever gone so close to Saturn and hopes are high for incredible observations that could solve major mysteries about the planet’s core. But such a daring maneuver comes with many risks. Join NASA engineers for the tense and triumphant moments as they find out if their gambit has paid off, and discover the wonders that Cassini has revealed over the years.

On this day, June 28th, Elon Musk was born in Pretoria, South Africa in 1971. He is an entrepreneur, inventor, engineer and visionary. And that's not all! He's also the co-founder Tesla Motors which is an American automotive company specializing in electric car manufacturing and sustainable energy. As of May 2019, his net worth is over $19.3 Billion. Mr. Musk also founded SpaceX, an Aerospace manufacturer and space transportation company. SpaceX is the first private company to successfully launch, orbit and send a spacecraft to the International Space Station. Last year, it launched the first object to orbit around the sun. They are working on interplanetary spaceflight. Sounds like a mission! Want to learn more? Here's some books that may inspire your interest in space travel. 

The historic quest to rekindle the human exploration and colonization of space led by two rivals and their vast fortunes, egos, and visions of space as the next entrepreneurial frontier. The Space Barons is the story of a group of billionaire entrepreneurs who are pouring their fortunes into the epic resurrection of the American space program. Nearly a half-century after Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, these Space Barons-most notably Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos, along with Richard Branson and Paul Allen-are using Silicon Valley-style innovation to dramatically lower the cost of space travel, and send humans even further than NASA has gone. These entrepreneurs have founded some of the biggest brands in the world-Amazon, Microsoft, Virgin, Tesla, PayPal-and upended industry after industry. Now they are pursuing the biggest disruption of all: space. Based on years of reporting and exclusive interviews with all four billionaires, this authoritative account is a dramatic tale of risk and high adventure, the birth of a new Space Age, fueled by some of the world's richest men as they struggle to end governments' monopoly on the cosmos. The Space Barons is also a story of rivalry-hard-charging startups warring with established contractors, and the personal clashes of the leaders of this new space movement, particularly Musk and Bezos, as they aim for the moon and Mars and beyond.

Hamish McKenzie tells how a Silicon Valley start-up's wild dream came true. Tesla is a car company that stood up against not only the might of the government-backed Detroit car manufacturers but also the massive power of Big Oil and its benefactors, the infamous Koch brothers. 
The award-winning Tesla Model 3, a premium mass-market electric car that went on sale in 2018, has reconfigured the popular perception of Tesla and continues to transform the public's relationship with motor vehicles--much like Ford's Model T did nearly a century ago. At the same time, company CEO Elon Musk courts controversy and spars with critics through his Twitter account, just as Tesla's ever-increasing debt teeters on junk bond status. As McKenzie's rigorously reported account shows, Tesla has triggered frenzied competition from newcomers and traditional automakers alike, but it retains an edge because of its expansive infrastructure and the stupendous battery factory it built in the Nevada desert. The popularity of electric cars is growing around the world, especially in China, and McKenzie interviews little-known titans who have the money and the market access to power a global electric car revolution quickly and decisively. "Insane Mode" started off as a feature on the dual-motor Tesla Model S, which gave the car Ferrari-like acceleration, but it's also the perfect description of the operating cycle of a company that has sworn it won't rest until every car on the road is electric. Here is a story about the very best kind of American ingenuity and its history-making potential. Buckle up!

This week, the U.S. News and World Report ranked the Mediterranean Diet as the best overall diet of 2019. It shouldn't come as a surprise. The plant-based diet focuses on fruits, veggies, whole grains, seeds, and lots of heart-healthy olive oil. But it's more than just a diet, it's a way of life. The diet encourages mindful meal planning and taking your time to enjoy a wholesome meal with family and friends around the dinner table. These benefits promote a balanced lifestyle and reduces the risk of many diseases. Interested? Check out these resources from the health collection!

The DASH diet has been a staple of the dieting world, recommended by doctors, nutritionists, and crowned the US News and World Report's #1 best diet. But popular tastes and medical guidelines have shown, that a Mediterranean diet program can lead to a longer life. Marla Heller, MS RD has overhauled the DASH plan to reflect the latest, cutting-edge research on hypertension, diabetes, depression, and other health issues that impact millions of Americans. Meal planning gets a new focus on unprocessed foods (less sugar free jello, more fresh fruits!), seafood options, and even a whole section examining vegan and vegetarian choices. Filled with four weeks of menus and tons of strategies and research, The DASH Diet Mediterranean Solution offers readers a new approach to their best health the DASH diet way.

The key to great digestive health lies in rewilding the gut and keeping the diverse microbes that inhabit it happy and thriving. In Wild Mediterranean Stella Metsovas breaks down the complex science behind digestive health and shares a deceptively simple and down-to-earth plan for ending the digestive issues that can have far-reaching effects on our everyday lives. Using foods you already know, trust, and love-delicious Mediterranean cuisine-it's easy to reintroduce essential microbes to your system and cultivate a healthy microbiome to banish bloating, discomfort, and irregularity forever. At the heart of Wild Mediterranean are Stella's unique village-to-table recipes, all based on the historically probiotic-rich cuisines favored by the world's healthiest populations and her own family heritage. Packed with pre-tox and detox protocols for preparing the gut to heal, key lifestyle practices to support overall wellness, and the scientific evidence to back it all up, Wild Mediterranean is a practical resource for restoring the microbial balance in your gut and realizing your best digestive health. 

Many of us look forward to the end of the busy work week. Whether you are in school or work, Friday is by far the best day of the week. But on Friday, June 21st, there's another reason to celebrate. It's Take Your Dog to Work Day! Make sure you have permission from your boss or company before bringing your best friend to the workplace. More than half of all households in America own a dog. The presence of pets reduces our stress level and benefits our overall wellbeing. But if you don't own a dog or unable to bring your dog to work, consider a fundraiser for a local rescue shelter or share your pet pictures with your coworkers for a fun photo contest. Here's some books from the pet collection to spark your inspiration!

Dogs : 500 pooch portraits to brighten your day by photographer Michelle Perkins

Ask any dog lover: dogs and puppies are the best thing ever! Dogs lift our moods, lower our blood pressure, and improve our sense of well-being. In fact, people who have pets in their lives even live longer! In this book, we've collected 500 photos that capturing the beauty and personality of a wide range of breeds--and wide variety of dogs' favorite activities, from lazy naps to spirited romps on the beach. Inspirational quotes about dogs and their honored roles in our families add another level of optimism and love. This book is perfect for moms, grandparents, teachers, kids or anyone who might need a little lift. Just a few minutes with these adorable canine faces provides a boost that will last all day!

Based on the Twitter and Instagram sensation, #WeRateDogs features the most heroic, over-the-top adorable, wildly successful, all-around entertaining dogs the world has ever seen! It combines extraordinary photos with ridiculous captions to expand the knowledge and overall lives of its readers. It is not only an exceptionally reliable source for dog greatness, it is also a one stop shop for happiness. This book takes readers on a journey through the strict science of dog rating and the unwavering rules associated with it. Questioning the accuracy of these ratings is ill-advised. They are certainly not arbitrary and this book is absolutely not just about how cute dogs are. It truly is all about precision and ethics in dog rating. The #WeRateDogs book will produce an audible reaction with every flip of the page--whether a groan from a terrible pupper pun or an "aww" of seeing a super floofer. If #WeRateDogs takes you away from reality and pushes you into this conglomerate of absurdity for even a second, then it has fulfilled its purpose.

On Sunday, June 16th we celebrate our dads on Father's Day. But what does it mean to be a dad? Fatherhood and the role of dads have in the family unit has changed over the years. Today's generation of dads are more involved in childcare and sharing responsibility of household chores. Dads do matter. Here's some resources that sheds light on redefination of fatherhood. 

Things My Son Needs to Know About the World collects the personal dispatches from the front lines of one of the most daunting experiences any man can experience: fatherhood. As he conveys his profound awe at experiencing all the "firsts" that fill him with wonder and catch him completely unprepared, Fredrik Backman doesn't shy away from revealing his own false steps and fatherly flaws, tackling issues both great and small, from masculinity and mid-life crises to practical jokes and poop. In between the sleep-deprived lows and wonderful highs, Backman takes a step back to share the true story of falling in love with a woman who is his complete opposite, and learning to live a life that revolves around the people you care about unconditionally. Alternating between humorous side notes and longer essays offering his son advice as he grows up and ventures out into the world, Backman relays the big and small lessons in life.

Fatherhood caught David McGlynn by surprise. His sons arrived in quick succession--the first when the author was a dirt-poor student and the second not long after he'd moved his family across the country to start a new job in bucolic Wisconsin. As a result, McGlynn found himself colliding with fatherhood, at once scared to death and utterly thrilled. Just like many new fathers, he hopes he's doing the right thing--but he's never quite sure. One Day You'll Thank Me translates the small, often hilarious moments common among parents of young children, especially dads, into "life lessons" about fatherhood. Comprised of interconnected chapters--many of which have appeared in such prominent publications as The New York Times,Men's Health,Parents,Real Simple, and O, The Oprah Magazine--the stories invoke a sense of humor and honesty that expand our understanding of what it means to be an American dad.

Grumpy Cat, whose grumpy look brought some much joy to the Internet, has died. Her family announced on Friday morning that despite all efforts to save her, she succumbed to complications from a recent urinary tract infection. She was 7 years old. Grumpy Cat's popularity reached millions of fans from all over the world. Her disgruntled look of contempt and disdain launched a million memes. We'll miss Grumpy Cat but her legacy and spirit will always live on!

Grumpy Cat is about to have the most unhappy birthday ever--and that's just the way she likes it! The world-famous feline stars in this hilarious leveled reader, with all-new full-color illustrations. It is sure to delight boys and girls ages 4 to 6, as well as Grumpy Cat fans of all ages! Step 2 Readers use basic vocabulary and short sentences to tell simple stories, for children who recognize familiar words and can sound out new words with help. Rhyme and rhythmic text paired with picture clues help children decode the story.

Dynamite proudly presents the comic book misadventures of Grumpy Cat, featuring "The World's Grumpiest Cat" and her brother, Pokey! With her ever-present pout and sassy disposition, Grumpy Cat has won the hearts of people everywhere. Now, her unbearable cuteness and infectious sourpuss are featured in an all-new, all-sensational collection of comic stories, sure to make fans of all ages laugh! If you love the memes, the videos, and that irresistible scowl, then get ready for the wildly fun antics of Grumpy Cat and Pokey!

May is Mental Health Awareness Month! The definition of mental health encompasses a wide range of conditions that affect how we think, how we feel and how we behave. As the World Health Organization famously says, “There is no health without mental health.” Not everyone faces challenges with their mental well-being. There are days some of us feel a bit down or overwhelmed. With the right coping methods, we can learn what works best for us in order to get back on track towards better health. Here are some books to get you started! 

Are you anxious, frazzled, exhausted? Do you find yourself constantly worrying? Do you feel like you're "running on empty"? Do you have trouble sleeping? Like millions of people living today, your brain has become drained. These days, it seems like everything in our day-to-day lives-from our increasingly unpredictable world, to the smartphones we can't stop using, to the processed foods we eat all day long, to the many hours we spend at our jobs-is setting us up to feel drained. The short-term effects of becoming drained are uncomfortable, but the long-term effects can be life-threatening. Left untreated, it can quadruple your risk of high blood pressure-the #1 cause of preventable death. Finding natural solutions to anxiety and insomnia is becoming increasingly vital as sleeping pills, antianxiety medications, and hospitalizations have seen a dramatic spike recently. More and more people are desperate to heal their drained brains.

In his latest book, Dr. Mike Dow offers a 2-week plan designed to help you naturally balance your brain. He explains what drains modern brains and which groups are wired for it, and provides clinically proven tools to help you feel less drained. Dr. Mike offers nutritional tips, recipes, cognitive behavioral tools, supplements, breathing techniques, self-hypnosis, and mindfulness. Stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline go down as feel-good neurotransmitters like GABA and serotonin rise. "When you balance your brain, you experience countless rewards. You have more energy. You feel like yourself again. You sleep more soundly and wake up looking forward to the day ahead. . . .I can't wait for you to become the best version of yourself, and I look forward to the life you will create when you are no longer drained."

Whether we're aware or not, most of us are perpetrators and victims of self-sabotage, a powerful pattern of negative behavior in which we act against our own best interests and then blame ourselves or others for these self-inflicted failures. Self-sabotage can manifest as seemingly innocuous things like not following through on New Year's resolutions or as harmful actions like blaming or abusing someone we love. If left unchecked, it can damage or destroy marriages, careers, friendships, families, and even lives. In The Healthy Mind Toolkit, Dr. Alice Boyes, author of The Anxiety Toolkit, tackles four key areas of our lives where self-defeating behaviors are most prevalent- our brains/mindsets, self-esteem, relationships and work/money. Blending the latest scientific findings with cutting-edge CBT techniques, Dr. Boyes lays out a practical plan to counter whatever fear, anxiety, guilt, or insecurity is causing you to self-sabotage, including...
- How to identify specific ways you're hurting your success (for ex, setting impossibly high standards, people-pleasing and comparing current relationships to past ones)
- Quizzes at each chapter start to rate your level of self-sabotage in the four areas
- Simple, highly effective steps to quit harmful behaviors and live a healthier, happier life
Covering everything from rumination and envy to imposter syndrome, risk aversion, and over- or undervaluing things, The Healthy Mind Toolkit is the essential guide to get out of your own way and get on the path to success.

Sunday on May 12 is when we hit the pause button on our busy lives and take a moment to appreciate our mothers and motherhood. Mothers have a profound value in our lives and in many ways have the most challenging, greatest and toughest job in the world. They give us an abundance of unconditional love, support and acceptance. Mothers are our tireless cheerleader for every milestone we experience. Check out these new books celebrating the joys and challenges of motherhood. 

With This Is Motherhood, the cofounders and contributors of the Motherly online community present a collection of essays and practices to celebrate motherhood in all its complexity. Here you'll find reflections on each phase of "the wild ride of motherhood," including the soaring highs of meeting your new baby, the ground-shaking lows that make you doubt everything you've ever known, and all the beauty and pain in between. Each chapter closes with practices from Motherly's team of wellness experts to help you define, clarify, process, and celebrate your journey.

Slow down and take time for yourself--because a better you is a better mom! The second book in the Hot Mess to Mindful Mom series, Get the Most out of Motherhood will help moms create balance, peace, and well-being in their homes, leaving behind their old ways of being constantly stressed-out and frantic. In the first book, Ali focused on internal issues and taught women that by caring for themselves first, they can better care for their families and loved ones. This book is the natural next step for moms who now understand that a better you equals a better mom! She will guide women on how to embrace their best selves while parenting so they can strengthen relationships with their children, create systems in their homes that work, and actually enjoy doing it.

Starting April 26 through May 3, it's National Infant Immunization Week! Since 1994, National Infant Immunization Week has focused on the vital role vaccination plays in disease prevention. Vaccines safely protect our children and communities against contagious diseases. According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control), the number of reported cases of measles has reached its highest number in the United States since the disease was eradicated in 2000. Michigan is one of 22 states experiencing a measles outbreak. Stay informed by consulting with your doctor and for some perspective on the history of viral diseases, here's some resources from our health collection.    

Smallpox, yellow fever, malaria, and polio, fearful diseases that once beset Americans, are now largely, just unhappy history. Yet from our confrontations with these past plagues come lessons that inform today's struggles to understand and remedy problems like HIV/AIDS, coronary heart disease, and Ebola infection. American Plagues weaves stories of encounters with epidemics over our history with lessons that aid our present understanding of health and disease. Doctors and clergy, writers and newsmen, public health institutions, and even an entire town relate their personal experiences with various outbreaks and the ways they were identified, contained, and treated. The stories are filled with ambition and accomplishment, jealousy and disappointment, public spirit and self-interest, egotism and modesty. Some episodes lead to vital discoveries. Others were unproductive. Yet each proved instructive and expanded our abilities to gather and process information in ways that improve medicine and public health today. American Plagues gives readers insights into some of the people and events that make up our rich public health history as well as skills to better grasp the complex health information that cascades upon us from the media.

Ever since we started huddling together in communities, the story of human history has been inextricably entwined with the story of microbes. They have evolved and spread amongst us, shaping our culture through infection, disease, and pandemic. At the same time, our changing human culture has itself influenced the evolutionary path of microbes. Dorothy H. Crawford here shows that one cannot be truly understood without the other. Beginning with a dramatic account of the SARS pandemic at the start of the twenty-first century, she takes us back in time to follow the interlinked history of microbes and man, taking an up-to-date look at ancient plagues and epidemics, and identifying key changes in the way humans have lived-such as our move from hunter-gatherer to farmer to city-dweller-which made us vulnerable to microbe attack. Showing how we live our lives today-with increasing crowding and air travel-puts us once again at risk, Crawford asks whether we might ever conquer microbes completely, or whether we need to take a more microbe-centric view of the world. Among the possible answers, one thing becomes clear: that for generations to come, our deadly companions will continue to shape human history.

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