2016 – the year that was ..part 3

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The struggle continued. Outwardly i was my usually efficient, effective productive and professional self. Inwardly I was ‘stressed out of my tree’. After several weeks of asking i got some feedback on my interview performance and why I was unsuccessful. It didn’t help. Most of my colleagues were supportive – their were 2 main opinions – some were disgusted i didn’t get it, others assumed i didn’t get it because I didn’t apply for it.


Finally on the up. Partly because the library was to relocate in october and i was heavily involved in the relocation planning which gave me a chance to use some of my skills. A lot of colleagues were encouraging me to look for employment elsewhere but how could I? if MPOW (people who know my strengths and abilities better than anyone else) thinks I can’t do a job that i did successfully for 6 months why should anyone else?


Planning for the relocation is going ahead full force. I am planning, visualising, measuring, project planning and managing like a mad crazy thing. Lovin’ it.


2016 – the year that was…part 2

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So to summarise Part 1 (Jan – March) = great. But what about the second quarter of 2016?


The month started well. Still enjoying, and being inspired by, work.

Then ‘the’ job was advertised.

I applied.

I thought I interviewed well.

I didn’t get the job. I was devastated.

It is not an exaggeration to say that it felt like the walls had come crashing down around me.


On the day I found out i didn’t get the job I was leaving work at 6.15. It was dark. I was wearing mainly black. I decided to cross a main road while the traffic was stopped at lights.

As the lights changed I quickened my pace. Stumbled. Felt something ‘tear’ in my leg. Hopped off the road to the tram stop. Couldn’t put any weight on my right leg – pain too bad.

Turns out I’d torn my calf muscle. Result a week off work.

The good:

  • was not at work when name of successful applicant released.
  • didn’t have to be brave and positive when all i felt like doing was crying and quitting.
  • could deal with the unexpected support of colleagues who emailed and texted me in private (see point above re crying and quitting)
  • could eat chocolate whenever i damn well pleased
  • could stay in my pyjamas all day
  • i wrote many short stories where the ‘authors of my demise’ met their fates in personally satisfying & murderous ways (Yes, ok I read too many crime novels)

The bad:

  • i was in pain
  • i couldn’t walk
  • i live on the second floor and couldn’t do the stairs
  • i didn’t want to go back to work (ever)
  • I dreaded going back to work and facing people (even my friends & supportive colleagues – let alone anyone else)
  • Quitting work wasn’t an option

May – Back at work 

Extremely stressful times. Was still expected to act in a role that I was not considered good enough to do permanently. It felt like i would go to work and each day someone would come and punch me in the face and knock me down and the next day it would happen all over again.


Back in my substantive role. Still unhappy and liable to burst into tears at the drop of a hat. But starting to get it together. ‘My’ branch will be moving to a temporary location in a few months so i can throw my energy and skills into getting ready for that.





2016 – the year that was…

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pretty bloody ordinary as it turned out.

January (you start the year off fine)

Was temporarily in a job I loved – it challenged me, it excited me, it made me think. I enjoyed going to work each day.

Buoyed by my enthusiasm I even thought about submitting abstracts to a couple of library conferences.


Still rocking the whole job enjoyment thing – although with the benefit of hindsight I should have seen the writing on the wall.

Self funded my attendance at VALA (a break with tradition  – usually the person in this role is funded by work; past VALA’s i’ve done what I did in 2016 – annual leave and self-fund).

As always I enjoyed it, I learned heaps, and I came back to work with a head and notebook full of ideas.


Felt I was on top of things. Problems were getting solved, I knew what I was doing and I entered my 35th year loving (almost) every minute of ‘my’ job. Even though I was still acting in the position I did feel like it was mine.(or rather that I had ownership of the various aspects of the job and the tasks associated with it)

To be Continued

Brilliant outreach idea (not mine!)

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As someone who has always thought that the library job I am least suited to is Youth Services (mind you the job i am second least suited to is Adult Services – go figure!) I have been reading , hearing, and being inspired, about a lot of YS programs lately.

My first love is still techie, gadget stuff but I am really getting interested in a whole lot of teen/tween programming ideas.

I found this article on collaboration between public libraries and schools which led me to this blog which had me (in my head) working out how we could incorporate some of these ideas into our YS programs. (By ‘we’ I mean the YS team)

I was so intrigued by the ‘battle of the books’ idea that I have contacted the author for more info (I think it along with book bingo could make a really interesting Adult Services series)

I think I want to run an ‘after school’ type program for adults say one morning a week (lego club, code club, themed booktalk, book bingo, intro to ebooks, intro to emags etc.)

Hmmmmmmmm this is turning from a blogpost to an idea.

To the batcave


Professional development – the audit

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So i got the email…

Every year as part of the ALIA Professional Development Scheme validation a random 10% sample of PD Scheme members are assessed for compliance with the ALIA PD Scheme requirements.

The audit list of participants for the ALIA PD Scheme Year 2015-2016 has been generated and you are among those to have been selected.

To satisfy the audit please notify us of your continuing professional development activities undertaken between 1 July 2015 and 30 June 2016, including your Reflections (reflective learning outcome).

You must report on a minimum 30 ALIA PD points worth of activities complying with the range of categories as determined by the Summary of Activity Types table. (The audit process does not require you to report on more than the minimum 30 points.) To validate a PD activity you will need to include approximately 50 words for each Reflection. If you are completing an ALIA PD Scheme Specialisation you will need to specify within your reflections the core competencies the activity aligns to.

Now I know this shouldn’t worry me (but why does the word audit cause such terror?) –  after all I have more that completed the required number of activities/points. Some I have even blogged about. Some are in random draft blogpost form that just needs to be polished and published. Some are in (really bad) handwriting that just needs to be interpreted/translated and then published.

I think I can also state with a fair amount of certainty that I will be blogging like a mad, bloggy thing the day before the deadline to ensure that my portfolio (which is not this blog btw) is up to date and ready for validation.

As I said last time I was audited for the ALIA PD scheme – “From now on my e-portfolio is going to be a thing of organised and up-to-date beauty and reflection”

Yeah right!

Vaughan’s newest library is nothing like the ones you grew up in

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Another library design from the ‘how cool is this’ realm.

The Vaughan Civic Centre Resource Library has been designed to turn the image of libraries on it’s head.

According to Margie Singleton, CEO of Vaughan Public Libraries, “That was our guiding principle — to rethink what libraries were and to try to anticipate what they can become in the future.”

“We wanted it to be exceptionally welcoming — no shushing in this library,” said Singleton.


People can read quietly in these “telephone chairs,” which block out outside noise. (CBC)

I love these chairs (there are ‘similar’ chairs at the new Geelong Library) thy would so stop mr grumpy complaining about the noise.

So many good ideas here.

Adds City of Vaughan to the list of libraries to visit while in Canada.

Third rule of Code Club

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screen-shot-2016-10-26-at-6-59-28-pm So my 3rd code club type experience came yesterday at the River of Opportunities conference.

Deanne Verity from Geelong Library talked about their experiences with Code Clubs.

Started out as a partnership between the libraries and an external organisation. Didn’t work out exactly how they had hoped so Geelong is now ‘going it alone’.

They are registered with Code Club Australia & follow their ‘lesson plans’ using the library owned laptops.

Terms 1 & 2 is programming  using Scratch.

Term 3 is programming using CSS & HTML.

Term 4 is programming using Python.

They also have a code club volunteer (ICT teacher from a local school). It seems there is a good take up rate among library staff @ Geelong with internal ‘train the trainer’ style intro to scratch classes being held for staff with a view (my interpretation) to adding to the number of staff facilitating the groups.

(I could be projecting here – a number of staff at MPOW have asked me if I’ll teach them some basic coding in their own time – which I am going to organise as, hopefully, a PD opportunity, ie: with freddo frogs as rewards)

Anyhoo it seems Geelong have had some positive experiences  and learnt from the not so positive.

Interesting that the term 3 topics were not as successful as the term 1 & 2. I guess CSS and HTML are more for building websites and don’t have the ‘immediacy’ that writing a game in, say, Scratch provides.

It is too early in Term 4 to get a feel for how Python is going.

More food for thought…



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