Friday, May 22, 2009

Last of the budget

This has been one of the oddest academic years I have had; with seemingly unending emphasis on technology and web design little time has been available to read the juvenile books purchased. These last few weeks I have made a concentrated effort to rectify that situation, but find myself with the attention span of a cranky 3-year old. Books accompanied me to lunch and, more often than not, returned to the library unfinished. In some cases I did not even bother to read the end (I'm famous for that, it drives co-workers crazy), never a good sign. As luck would have it, one of my resource center budget lines had a bit of money remaining; the line I use to buy juvenile books.

A few of the titles I selected are detailed below. I hope one of them, or one of the two books I chose to take out of town with me, Absolutely Maybe and The Witches of Dredmoore Hollow, break my book ennui.

Time will tell, but in the meantime I am enjoying the freedom of better Internet connection with my new laptop and recently purchased wireless mouse (with usb connection). It's nice to be able to post without dropping the dial-up connection.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

oh, joy

It is that time again; yearly performance reviews are due soon. We have been using the same self-evaluation format for the last decade or so; new goals are set and accompanied by statements of goals fulfilled from the previous year. Though I find them increasingly mind-numbing and stressful, it is a yearly wake-up call. I use my yearly reviews as a time to update my resume/CV, a golden, if not forced, opportunity to take a critical look at my professional development.

This year a change in administrative faculty status was accompanied by a new evaluation process, a form. Thrilled not to have the multiple page document looming, a heartfelt sigh of relief was heard throughout the library. That is, until we looked at the new form this morning and realized it was comprised of setting goals and included statements of goals fulfilled.

Soon I will be digging through my computer files in search of last year's evaluation. Normally I would have a list highlighting monthly duties/accomplishments/tasks, I am incredibly anal in that regard, however be it good or bad, this year most of my time was consumed by the library web site and its accompanying committees, design, and creation. Instead of writing, this was the year of presentations with a state technology presentation, an ACRL poster session, and this Friday a workshop presentation.

Just goes to show, the more things change the more they stay the same, even evaluations.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Be careful what you wish for

Today was the first day of summer classes; there really is no rest for the wicked. Horrifically spoiled by graduate assistants and student workers providing uninterrupted service during the term, there is always a period of adjustment regarding summer hours and availability for the resource center. I have to get used to being the only person on duty and closing for lunch. Patrons have to get used to fewer hours during the work day, no evening or weekend hours, and no hours when I have vacation. It takes some time, but soon enough we will all adjust to the summer term groove.

Was it only last week that I was wishing for just a few minutes of peace and quiet? This morning, my wish was granted when there was not a soul on the second floor between 8 and 11 am ... it was spooky. The quiet was broken before lunch by a slightly cranky faculty member searching for videos and things picked up as students wandered into the library to try their course management software for the first time and print (and print and print).

This evening I am suffering from a bit of sensory overload; watching Dancing With the Stars, listening to game five Pens-Caps playoff hockey, talking on the phone to my sister, and blogging somewhat aimlessly here, all while trying to filter out the consistent drone of my dishwasher.

I'm outta here.

These are goal calls!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Enjoying YouTube

Now that I have my new toy and it's accompanying Internet connection, I am not as dependent upon YouTube for Penguins hockey highlights. I can listen LIVE to Mike Lange (thank you very much) on Pens radio and actually enjoy the game. However, I find I still can not help myself and do spend some time looking through available videos; this is especially true after the last three playoff games. Tomorrow evening I will be multi-tasking as I listen to the hockey game, watch Dancing with the Stars, and probably work on a presentation for Friday.

Yeah, technology.

Let's Go Pens!

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Stop and smell the roses

Due to a course deadline countdown on the resource center door, for the last month we have been almost preternaturally aware of time remaining in the semester. As the countdown progresses, we know on a daily basis there are "x" number of days until the last day of class. While an exciting rite of passage, once the sign goes up its very existence makes the last month stretch ... on ... for ... ever. A bit of a conundrum.

Focused on getting us all through the course with minimum of fuss, it is easy to lose sight that with the end of the term excitement is finals and graduation. With graduation comes the yearly loss of great student workers who move on with their academic lives and careers. Both of my graduate assistants and two student workers are anticipating graduation on Saturday. One of my student workers has been with me for three years. A sweet young woman who has already secured a teaching position out of state, she has been joyfully anticipating her walk across stage. She also stopped in my office on Monday with a bouquet of flowers; a thank you and wonderful lift to my spirits.

It works!

The ten-year-old dinosaur running windows 98 with dial-up Internet connection has finally been relegated to bill paying and other internetless functions. My shiny new HP laptop arrived approximately ten days ago and after dithering relentlessly over an ISP, this evening I successfully connected my Verizon DSL account and am surfing at five bars of connectivity.

Just in time to catch-up with the Penguins, I would be a lot happier listening to fabulous Mike Lange announce the games if they could manage to win one against the Caps.