Preserving Yesterday, Enriching Today, Inspiring Tomorrow

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Library Elf on the Shelf

Children have fallen in love with the Elf on the Shelf over the last several years. The magical Elf flies in from the North Pole to keep an eye on the boys and girls. He reports back to Santa nightly and then flies back before the boys and girls wake up for the day. It all sounds innocent enough but this Elf is often mischievous. He finds himself in all kinds of pickles, sometimes even a pickle jar.



Sometimes he behaves and reads a few books.

And sometimes he has dance parties.

Or finds himself in trouble.


This year the Elf on the Shelf has decided to visit the Kenton County Public Library to check on all the boys and girls. He will visit each branch every day. The first person to find him each day (don’t touch or he’ll lose his magic) will win a prize! It could be a cool book or a gift card to a local coffee house for treats and hot chocolate.


Speaking of hot chocolate…

But he isn’t the only Elf running around the Library!


You can find new pictures of our life-sized elf on our Twitter, Facebook and Instagram pages every day. Pay attention because there will be surprise giveaways on social media throughout the month. And in case you need some ideas for your Elf on the Shelf at home, we’ve got you covered! Just check out our Pinterest page.

Please share your pictures of your Elf on the Shelf or of you finding our Elf on the Shelf on social media with the hashtag #libraryelf. We’d love to see them!


Tips for Using Faces and Places Over the Holidays!

The holidays are a great time to browse through Faces and Places! We have thousands of images of people from the Northern Kentucky area that are just waiting to be recognized and shared. Here are a few tips for using Faces and Places.

1. Share Images Instantly on Social Media

Share images instantly to Facebook, Google +, Pinterest, Tumblr and Twitter! At the bottom of the page for each image, you will see the boxes pictured below. To share click the social media platform of your choice! This saves time, as you don’t have to copy the link or save the image.  

2. Add Comments and Tell Your Story

If you recognize someone, or yourself, add a comment to tell us more of the story behind the image. We love reading your comments and the stories found in images. Just click on the “Add Comment” button!

3. Resize and Save Images Instantly
Take advantage of the picture tabs to view different sizes of an image. Photographs can be viewed as thumbnails, medium, and full size images. You can also view the image as a PDF and save for later!

Donate Your Own Family Photograph Collections
We collect images relating to Northern Kentucky’s people, places, businesses and events. We would be excited to work with you and make your collection available to future generations. Visit our Faces and Places collection to learn more about donating photographs.

Written by: Cierra Earl, Local History and Genealogy Department – Covington

Holiday Fiction for Adults

Get into the holiday spirit with a great book.
Print this list
Christmas Town by Donna VanLiere
The New York Times bestselling author of the timeless The Christmas Shoes and The Christmas Hope is back with this moving and uplifting story about finding love, hope, and family in unexpected places.






Winter Storms by Elin Hilderbrand  
Some of the stormy weather of the past few seasons seems to have finally lifted for the Quinns. Kevin is about to tie the knot with Isabelle, and there’s hopeful news about Bart, who has been captured by enemy forces in Afghanistan. That doesn’t mean there aren’t a few dark clouds on the horizon as the family juggle health scares and love triangles. But if there’s one holiday that brings the Quinn family together, it’s Christmas. And this year promises to be a celebration unlike any other as they prepare to host Kevin and Isabelle’s wedding at the inn.




Mistletoe Secret by Richard Paul Evans
Mourning her husband’s abandonment and the loss of her stillborn child, Kelly begins an anonymous blog about her losses and catches the attention of fellow lonely-heart Tyler. By the best-selling author of The Christmas Box





Choose Your Own Misery: The Holidays by Mike MacDonald & Jilly Gagnon
Christmas is full of fun surprises for kids, but for adults, it’s just an endless series of aggressive crowds, overwhelming credit card debt, and pretending to like the people you’re forced to spend it with. Once you unwrap all the holiday misery hiding in these pages, the blackness of your heart will rival any lump of coal.







A Christmas Carol: The Original Manuscript Edition by Charles Dickens, with a foreword by Colm Toibin
Depicts the original manuscript of the Christmas classic on display annually at the Morgan […]

By |December 1st, 2016|Categories: Featured Post, KCPL||0 Comments

13 Reasons to Watch Fuller House

By Gina Stegner

I can’t begin to tell you how excited I was to find out Fuller House, basically an extension of Full House, was being made last year. I binge watched the new show on Netflix in two days. When I heard we would find out who D.J. Tanner married, how she became single, what had happened in Kimmy Gibbler’s life, see Stephanie all grown up, hear the jokes about Michelle and see Danny, Uncle Jessy and Joey again I thought… “Have Mercy!” I grew up with Full House, my kids watched reruns. I could relate to the Tanner girls. And now, D.J. is all grown up and a mom just like me. Pretty cool.

To make it even better, Fuller House is releasing a second season on Dec. 9 on Netflix. According to TV Guide, D.J. will continue to find herself in a love triangle, Stephanie will find a weird new boyfriend and Kimmy will try to move on from her ex-husband. So why should you watch?

The 13 top reasons, in no certain order, to watch the second season of Fuller House on Netflix:

Rumor has it that the New Kids on the Block will appear in at least one episode.
Candace Cameron Bure (D.J. Tanner) hints that we will learn more about her and Kimmy’s kids this season.
D.J. will choose between her high school sweetheart Steve and work romance Matt.
D.J.’s ex-boyfriend Nelson, played by someone other than the original Nelson, will make an appearance on the show.
We will finally meet Kimmy Gibbler’s brother.
D.J.’s ex-best friend Kathy Santoni (also portrayed by a different actor) will make an appearance.
We will meet Joey’s wife and kids.
Kimmy’s brother is rumored to be Stephanie’s boyfriend (Oh Mylanta!).
We […]

Nonfiction Holiday Gift Books

Not Dead Yet: the memoir by Phil Collins

The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher

In Such Good Company by Carol Burnett

Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen



The Nine of Us: Growing up Kennedy by Jean Kennedy Smith

Les Parisiennes: How the Women of Paris Lived, Love and Died under Nazi Occupation by Anne Sebba

Killing the  Rising Sun: How America Vanquished World War II Japan by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard




Appetites: a Cookbook by Anthony Bourdain

Cooking for Jeffrey by Ina Garten

How to Bake Everything by Mark Bittman



Thank and Grow Rich by Pam Grout

Whole30 Food Freedom Forever: Letting fo of bad habits, guilt and anxiety around food by Melissa Hartwig

Love your life not theirs: 7 money habits for living the life you want by Rachel Cruze




Science and Nature
The Way Things Work Now by David Macaulay

Star Talk: everything you ever need to know about space travel, sci-fi, the human race, the universe and beyond by Neil deGrasse Tyson

Being a Dog: following the dog into a world of smell by Alexandra Horowitz

By |November 15th, 2016|Categories: Featured Post, KCPL||0 Comments

Pudding Dessert Bar

I can cook. I love to cook. I am an awesome cook. My friends and family will tell you that I’m an awesome cook. But they will also tell you that I can NOT bake. Not at all. I can ruin slice and bake cookies. Seriously.

So what does an awesome cook serve for dessert when she has people over for dinner? Pudding! Instant Pudding! Or even Pudding Cups!

But I can’t just serve a Snack Pack pudding cup! So I was thinking… how can I make pudding cups or instant pudding seem more appealing and fitting for a family dinner or holiday dessert? A Pudding Bar! I have never seen this done anywhere before so I thought it must be pretty unique and people will love it. I was right! Kids, adults, teens… everyone loves it.

You can have fun with this. You can offer as many toppings as you want. Chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, fruit, mint, marshmallows, crushed up candy bar, graham crackers, cinnamon sticks and cool whip are just a few of the topping you can use. Put your toppings in small plastic cups or bowls and line them up so people can add their own to their pudding. It’s delicious, easy and fun!

My favorite combinations:

The Smore: Chocolate pudding, marshmallows and crushed up graham crackers
Vanilla Delight: Vanilla pudding, crushed mint leaves, raspberries and chocolate chips
Cinnamon Swirl: Vanilla pudding, a dash of cinnamon, cinnamon stick, topped with whip cream
Chocolate Overload: Chocolate pudding, crushed Heath bar, chocolate chips, crushed nuts, crushed oreos
Peanut Butter Cup: Chocolate pudding, peanut butter chips, topped with whip cream
Fruity Madness: Vanilla pudding, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, banana, granola and whip cream

Have you tried a pudding bar? […]

10 Tips to a Great Thanksgiving Meal

Does holiday meal planning have you stressing out?  Do not worry I am here to help! Below I have compiled a list of 10 ways to help make your Thanksgiving meal a little less stressful.  I have also linked some fantastic resources that are available through the library.

Create your guest list and send out invites via email, text messaging, or social media. Ask guest to let you know if there are dietary restrictions and plan on how you will accommodate those restrictions. I usually create a Facebook event.
Do not put off your grocery shopping to the last minute. Not because the store will run out of food, but it is crazy busy at the grocery the week of Thanksgiving. Purchase what you can ahead of time.  I purchased cranberry sauce a month ago!
Create a checklist   – include all menu items you will be preparing; include the cooking times and temps for each item. Plan when each item needs to be cooked.  Please take into consideration that the turkey will be in the oven for 6-8 hours, depending on the weight.
Make sure the turkey is completely thawed. Have everything you need to season the turkey ready to go before you start preparing the turkey. If it is your first time, preparing a turkey, prepare yourself on the fact that you will have to grab out the neck and giblets. It is somewhat gross! I am glad I am not in charge of the turkey this year.
If you are hosting Thanksgiving for your family and friends, you can ask them to bring a dish. I usually ask people to bring specific dishes, so I do not have five people bringing mashed potatoes.

Gift Books for Children

Armstrong: The Adventurous Journey of a Mouse to the Moon by Kuhlmann, Torben.

A stargazing mouse shoots for the moon in this stunning book by the author of Lindberg: The Tale of a Flying Mouse. The book ends with a history of human space travel.







Awesome Lego Creations with Bricks You Already Have by Dees, Sarah.

This unique activity book has instructions and photos that teach you how to build robots, race cars and jet planes. Like other LEGO books, this one is packed with characters and life-like scenes.






The Best Bear in All the World by Willis, Jeanne.

In celebration of the 90th anniversary of Winnie-the-Pooh, four authors have written all new adventures about the Hundred Acre Wood.








Best in Snow by Pulley, April Sayre.

A companion volume to Raindrops Roll, this beautiful book of photos provides a close-up look at wildlife and winter landscape. The science facts blend with the poetic text.







Billions of Bricks by Cyrus, Kurt.

This “counting book about building” features workers making bricks and complex structures. Children will be fascinated by the feats of architecture and artistry.








Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Martin, Bill and Carle, Eric (Illustrator).

This 50th anniversary edition includes a CD of the book read by Gwyneth Paltrow. The cover has been updated, it’s larger in size and the author and illustrator discuss the book on the CD.







Children Just Like Me: A New Celebration of Children Around the World.

In celebration of global diversity, DK has released a new edition of the 1995 volume. This book includes photos of 44 international children. Each section has a map and famous place, activities and a “fact file”.







The Christmas Story by Sabuda, Robert.

This is a striking pop-up retelling of the Nativity story. Each scene is […]

By |November 7th, 2016|Categories: Featured Post, KCPL||0 Comments

2016 Haunt Your Library Writing Contest Winners

The Library is pleased to announce the winners of this year’s Halloween writing contest. This was our 14th year in conducting this contest, and we had nearly 100 entries. Over twenty area schools were represented, including the homeschool community.  Several teachers even incorporated this into their curriculum, having the entire class submit entries. We are pleased to have this sort of support among the educational community.

As librarians, we know the importance of reading and developing a child’s reading skills, especially through hands-on, active learning opportunities. Having a child create an original story or poem promotes the advancement of those skills.
Grades 1-3
First Place Poetry Winner – “A Halloween Limerick” by Kay Mayer, Age 6 Homeschool, Villa Hills, KY, Grade 1
Second Place Poetry Winner:   “A Witch has a Black Hat” by Alexandra Mechlin, Age 8 Ryland Heights Elementary, Grade 3                                                                
Third Place Poetry Winner: “Haunted School” by Lilly Hunt, Age 7 St. Anthony School, Grade 2                                                                                                            

First Place Prose Winner – “Being Watched” by Joseph Mayer, Age 8 Homeschool, Villa Hills, KY, Grade 3
Second Place Prose Winner: “A Scary Romance” by Ruth Maier, Age 7 Blessed Sacrament School, Grade 2                                             
Third Place Prose Winner: “Hook!” by Iris Laile, Age 7 Prince of Peace, […]

By |November 1st, 2016|Categories: Featured Post, KCPL, teens, Teens||0 Comments

Top 5 Hiking Trails in Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati

The weather has finally changed and the cool temperatures are here at last.  That also means the beautiful changing of leaves and my favorite time to hike.  I greatly enjoy long backpacking hikes but as many people know, it is hard to find the time.  One of my favorite places to hike is the Red River Gorge, but that is about a two hour drive. So I compiled a short list of my top favorite five local hikes that are closer to the Cincinnati area.  If you only have a few hours or a whole day, try to escape to the woods and enjoy the splendor of the fall season.

I hope you find the time to enjoy the splendor of nature in the fall.  It can be quite fleeting.  Dress with layers because it may be cool under those trees.


5)  Big Bone Lick Trails:  3380 Beaver Rd. Union, KY.

There are a choice of 5 trails ranging in length and difficulty.  You can also do them all in the 4.5 mile Discovery Trail.  The trails run through woodlands, grasslands, woody savanna, the salt-sulfur springs, and the bison viewing area.




4) Fort Thomas Landmark Tree Trail:  89 Carmel Manor Rd. Fort Thomas, KY 41075

This short loop offers great scenery and views across to Ohio.  It consists of 14 landmark trees and the colorful foliage should be a treat at this time of year.  It is a short 1.1 miles but moderate to difficult due to the few steep hills.  Dogs allowed.



3)  Devou Park Trail:  460 Deverill St, Ludlow, KY 41016

Devou Park Trail consists of several fun trails.  You can view train tracks right over the trail and know that it should be an interesting hike.  This is […]