Read Across America Day

by Judy Ozment on March 1, 2013

Today is the 16th annual Read Across America day. This is a program that I think is fabulous because I loved to read as a child & I still try to get in as much reading as I can.

Read Across America is dedicated to motivating children in all communities to celebrate reading in conjunction with the beloved children’s author Dr. Seuss, whose birthday is tomorrow, March 2nd.  Who doesn’t love Dr. Seuss’ books?!Reading a Book

As a professional organizer, I am urging all of you to round up those books that you no longer read, need, have grown out of and are gathering dust and donate them.

Here in Mankato our library has a designated monthly donation day.  Donations of new or gently used books can be made on the first Saturday of every month from 10:00 am – 12:30 pm at the Blue Earth County Library Garage, located at 100 East Main Street in Mankato.

To make donations outside of the designated time, please call the library at (507) 304-4005.

To learn more and to find out what is accepted, please visit their website here.

For those of you who are not in the Mankato, MN area, I urge you to do a search “where to donate books” in your area so you too can pass on your books to give a little bit of enjoyment to someone else.  There are many places that would be happy to receive your donations.

Be Awesome!  Be a Book Nut! ~ Dr. Seuss

Judy.2[1]

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Baby, It’s Cold Outside!

by Judy Ozment on January 24, 2013

If you live in Minnesota this week and you stepped outside, you probably wanted to go right back in.  We are experiencing some of the coldest weather we have had in quite some time.

I asked this question a year ago – “Do you have a winter emergency kit for your vehicle?”  I thought it would be a good idea to revisit this again since Old Man Winter is showing no mercy.

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This reminds me of the winters where I grew in west central Minnesota

I listed some of the basics which will help you organize your items to make your kit.  You should carry this kit in your vehicle during this time of the year.  Remember to have enough on hand for each person traveling with you.

 Obviously your kit will vary depending on your location – you probably don’t need as much in your kit if you drive and stay in a metropolitan area, where help can get to you rather quickly.  But if you motor around in a rural area having a complete kit could make a difference between life and death.

  • non-perishable snacks
  • paper towels
  • toilet paper
  • water – smaller containers are easier to thaw.  Do not consume snow, it will lower your body temperature.
  • tire chains
  •  ice scraper/snow brush
  • jumper cables
  • road flares
  • phone charger
  • first-aid kit
  • blankets or sleeping bags
  • flashlight with spare batteries
  • manual can opener
  • extra socks
  • extra gloves
  • winter boots
  • matches
  • candles
  • first aid kit
  • pocket knife
  • medications
  • If you travel with pets, have their supplies on hand
  • shovel – go for a sturdy one with a decent size –  not the little, dinky, portable, fold-up style
  • sand or litter (not the clumping kind) for traction
  • tow rope or chain

If you are planning on taking any road trips during the winter months please make sure to check over your vehicle before you hit the road.  Check your tires, battery, fluid levels, wipers, heater, lights and brakes.  This is not not a complete list but it’s a start.

If you live in the mountains, remember your chains if needed.  I never thought about this until I lived in northern Nevada for over five years.

I have sand bags weighing 130 pounds in my trunk.  I have rear wheel drive so the extra weight in the back helps out a lot!  Keep your fuel tank full or don’t let it get below half full.  My oldest brother drilled this into my head!  Yes, Darrel,  I was listening to you all those years ago!

Let people know your departure time, expected arrival time and your route.  Stay on that route – if you have to make any changes let people know that as well.  This is all very helpful if you don’t show up when expected.

If you should become stranded don’t leave your vehicle!  Stay put and be patient.  Make sure the snow is cleared and not accumulating near the exhaust pipe.  Do not leave your vehicle idling.  Start it once an hour for about 10 minutes for heat and have a window cracked for fresh air.

I certainly hope you don’t have to use any of this but it is better to be prepared and organized in this type of situation.

Stay warm and snug as a bug in a rug,

 

 

 

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