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June 2012

Gym, Tan...Library? Conquer boredom this summer!

June 25, 2012 | Soheli | Comments (0)

Summer is just around the corner and the school year is quickly winding down. Most teens are excited about leaving school behind, but if you're already wondering what to do with your time, here are some ideas - you may even want to have your family and friends along for some of these activities!

1. CKelleyarmstrongome into a library! If you're not already a library customer, be sure to drop by any of our locations, register for a free library card, and ask about summer programs for teens. Every branch has something different, and you can also check out program listings online if you're looking for something specific. For example, at the Cedarbrae branch, we're having a free workshop to make your own racerback tank top.

Be sure to keep reading this summer by getting into Word Out. The official launch is June 27, and will feature best-selling author Kelley Armstrong and the chance to win tons of awesome prizes!


2. Check out online resources designed just for you! You may be stuck on Facebook and Twitter, but there are tons of other interesting and helpful sites online too. For example, if you're a newcomer youth, you may want to check out some of these sites: Positive Spaces is an initiative to help newcomer youth who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, or questioning. New Youth is an online community for newcomer youth who are interested in finding out more about all types of things, from finding a job, to buying a first car like Erin, and more. The Toronto District School Board also has some Newcomer Services for Youth in two locations; one in Scarborough and one in North York.

YES is a youth employment agency that helps connect employers and potential employees. If you're more interested in racking up some volunteer hours while you're off this summer, be sure to get started with Volunteer Toronto or Charity Village.


3. Get active! There are indoor pools available throughout Toronto, usually at schools or community centres. Check out listings online to find one close to you. If you'd prefer to be outside, there are outdoor pools as well. If you'd rather hop on a bike, there are some great bike trails out there, and if you're a real enthusiast, check out this young Torontonian's biking trek from Toronto to Montreal!

4. Soak in some culture! Toronto is an amazing city to be in this summer! There's the TD Toronto Jazz Festival, a free film festival from the National Film Board of Canada, and a whole bunch of Canada Day celebrations, including the one at Mel Lastman Square. Look for more events and celebrations throughout the city by checking out the full list.

There is a whole lot to do and experience this summer, so while you can complain about it being too hot, you definitely can't complain about being bored!

Have other ideas of fun stuff to do this summer? Add them to the comments and let us know!

Beating the Heat

June 20, 2012 | Soheli | Comments (4)

Now, that's a hot dog...If you're feeling a little extra sweaty today, you're not alone. The Medical Officer of Health has declared an Extreme Heat Alert today, which means you may have to take a few precautions to avoid heat-related illnesses.

1. Be sure to keep hydrated. Drink lots of water (not pop or coffee!) or natural fruit juices, even before you start to feel actually thirsty.

2. Try to stay in a cool area. If you don't have air conditioning at home, you can come into a nearby shopping mall, community centre, or (of course!) a library.

3. Look out for your neighbours. Older adults, very young children, and those with chronic health conditions are more likely to suffer a heat-related illness during a heat alert. Do you know someone who is living alone and may need your help? It doesn't hurt to check in and make sure he or she is OK. If you come across someone who you think may need help due to the heat, be sure to call 911. Heat stroke is a serious medical emergency and needs immediate attention.

For more information about heat alerts and what you can do, check out the Toronto Public Health website.

Stay safe and stay cool this summer!

How to use the printers at Cedarbrae

June 15, 2012 | Scott | Comments (1)

One of the most frequently asked questions we get here at Cedarbrae Branch is how to print a document from one of our free public access computers.  It may seem a bit complicated at first, but once you know the steps, you’ll be printing in no time.

Print stations at Cedarbrae Branch are located:
1st floor – Children’s Area beside the children’s information desk
2nd floor – Near the adult information desk – Adult Area Printer
2nd floor – Beside the entrance to the Teen Zone – Learning Centre Printer

These printers:
- function also as photocopiers
- print in black and white ONLY
- do NOT have scanning functions

Step 1
- Add money value to your library card or purchase a print card at the 1st floor service desk
- The library does not take cash for printing and our printers do not take coins
- Print outs cost 15 cents per page

Step 2
- The print function on most programs, including Microsoft Word, can be found by clicking the Office icon in the top left hand corner of your window.
- Once you click PRINT a window will pop-up – here you will need to select a printer – be sure to choose one that doesn’t state “xxx documents waiting.” If you see this message – your print job will NOT be sent to the printer. This window is also where you indicate how many copies you want to print

Step 3
- A box will pop-up asking you for a username and password – this is a way for the printer to identify who you are
- Create a username using 4-8 letters or numbers – DO NOT USE YOUR FULL LIBRARY CARD NUMBER
- Create a password using 4-8 NUMBERS ONLY. For example: 1234

Tip: If you are printing multiple documents, use the same username and password for each one and print them all together.

Step 4
- Make sure the print station is set to “PRINTER”.
- Touch “PRINT JOBS” on the menu screen. 
- Find your User ID and touch your print job. 
- Insert your card into the card reader.
- Use the key pad to type in your password, then touch “PRINT” on the screen, and “OK” and then “YES” to confirm. 
- Your print job will be found underneath. 
- Press the button on the card reader to remove your library or print card.

Tip: Always highlight your print job first, then insert your card into the reader to avoid printing unwanted documents.

Tip: Sometimes you will be asked for paper size, select the correct size and resume printing.

If you run into problems, feel free to ask library staff for assistance!


This is my Toronto: more from Cedarbrae's youth!

June 15, 2012 | Soheli | Comments (0)

We had such an overwhelming response to our program back in April, as part of Keep Toronto Reading Month, that I had to come back with another post to display some of the great photos we received.

Another blogger suggested I put all the photos into an album, so now you can check out the entire collection here. It includes the photos you see here as well as a bunch of others, so be sure to take a look.

We got such a variety of angles and subjects, and it was difficult to choose just a couple to highlight. Here are a few more photos we received that depicted individual interpretations of Toronto and its mix of neighbourhoods!

Keerthijan01 Shriya03 Viethu01
 Above, left, Keerthijan snapped just the tops of some trees in his Scarborough neighbourhood. Trees in bloom make a recurring appearance in many of these photos; it's definitely a nice way to capture Spring! Viethu also took a bright shot of nature against the backdrop of high-rise buildings in the east end in the photo above, on the right. In the middle photo, Shriya captured a Toronto streetcar at night: I love the lights behind it as the streetcar just turns 'round the bend. It catches that sense of 'bright lights' and downtown life, and also reminds us how important transit is to a city like Toronto.

Down below, Muaz gets up close to a dandelion, maybe in an effort to offer a little focus on what's generally considered a lowly weed...?


Laiba and Dhurvi offer us the next two photos, from left to right, respectively. Both focus on the texture and shape of the leaves on the plants, but in very different settings. Laiba shot this on the Scarborough waterfront, while Dhurvi caught the sunlight on this plant right in her own home.

 Laiba04 Dhurvi01

Thanks again to all of our talented young photographers, and to Andrew Williamson, who helped lead the Snapped! workship in April. I hope you all keep taking pictures of all the spaces and places that you find beautiful, inspirational and memorable!

Buying or selling a car?

June 10, 2012 | Erin | Comments (10)

I recently bought my first car. I lived in the downtown core for years, so I never really needed one until now.

Ferrari_california_1Ok, so this is not the car I bought. But a girl can dream.

I bought my little commuter car used, and let me tell you (though I am sure many of you already know) that you need to do a lot of research. Especially if you are buying from a private seller instead of a dealership. It may be a cheaper approach, but it comes at the cost of having to really do your research. Otherwise you may end up with a lemon wishing that you had.

You need to know things like: the vehicle history, whether it has been certified, if there have been any recalls on the model, what the gas mileage like, consumer ratings, etc.

Here are some resources I found invaluable during my research:

Fuel Consumption Ratings by Natural Resources Canada. This handy tool had a major impact on which vehicle I ended up deciding on. I like saving money on gas, what can I say. Bonus: my car is a little easier on the environment.

Consumer Reports. Most people are familiar with the go-to resource forConsumer-reports-cover product reviews of all kinds. But did you know it has information on cars? Most branches have subscriptions to the in-print periodical, and it is also available online through our Articles & Online Research portal (library card required to log in). When it comes to vehicles, Consumer Reports is the place to find information on: new cars, used cards, prices and deals, car buying advice, tires & car care, car safety, and car repairs.

Canadian Red Book. Published by the Federation of Automobile Dealer Associations of Canada, this periodical published multiple times a year includes information on official used car valuations. There is also a Canadian Older Car/Truck version as well. Nearly every branch caries this publication.

The Ministry of Transportation's website. This should be a source that anyone owning, buying, or selling a car in Ontario checks out. I specifically relied on their information regarding Buying and Selling a Used Vehicle in Ontario. It covers what you need to do, the paperwork you will need, and where you need to go to get it all done.

1214725-gfLemon-Aid. This is a buyer's guide published every year or two by the Automobile Protection Association (APA). There is a Used Cars and Trucks edition, a New Cars and Trucks edition, and a SUVs, Vans, and Trucks edition. Many larger branches have copies, and some information is also available on APA's website.

Lastly, the Recommended Websites section of the TPL site lists these other car-related free resources recommended by our librarians.

Unfortunately, no matter how shiny and new your car is, it will inevitably come time to do some repairs. I became quite familiar with this fact after I hit an enormous pothole in that day of torrential rain we had last week. While some things require an expert, for others the Chilton's guide can help walk you through it. Chilton’s Auto Repair guides are available online, also through the library's Articles & Online Research portal.

Welcome! This blog is written by the Cedarbrae Library staff and we want it to become a place where you can find out what's going on in the branch and in the community. But not just that - we plan to write about all things we might find interesting.