Holiday Crafts

No matter how old you are, doing some crafts is a great way to spend your holiday.  You can make something simple like the classic hand turkeys:

Hand Turkey 1 Hand Turkey 2

Or, you can be a little more creative and make a paper turkey dinner like this.

We have a lot of holiday craft books at the library.

Some favorites include:

My very own Thanksgiving : a book of cooking and crafts by Robin West

The dragon Thanksgiving feast : things to make and do by Loreen Leedy

posted by Todd

Thanksgiving Treat

From Nestle’s Very Best Baking
Remember if you’re looking for that perfect recipe (or looking for a place to hide from the relatives, this week), the library is the perfect place to go.  We have cookbooks for every taste bud as well as computers where you can access recipes online.  My favorite recipe site is, but usually if you type in the recipe name in Google, you’ll also receive some hits.  If you’re in a huge rush, you can even call us at the reference desk (781-314-3425 X3) and we’ll look up the recipe for you.  Unfortunately, we won’t be here tomorrow, but you still have time to do that, today.

In fact a patron calling for a recipe a few years ago led me to my favorite Thanksgiving recipe — pumpkin cheesecake from EmerilLagasse.  While perusing on the Good Morning America website trying to find the patron’s recipe, I stumbled across this.  Loving pumpkin and pretty much anything that’s unhealthy, I made it and it’s become a Thanksgiving tradition with my family.  Here is the recipe, taken from the Good Morning America website:

Pumpkin Cheesecake

• 1 ¾ cups graham cracker crumbs • 1/4 cup finely ground pecans • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted • Three 8-ounce packages cream cheese, at room temperature • 1 ½ cups sugar • 2 tablespoons cornstarch • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg • 2 large eggs • 2 large egg yolks • One 15-ounce can solid-pack pumpkin purée • ¼ cup heavy cream

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2. Combine the cracker crumbs, pecans, brown sugar, and ½ teaspoon of the cinnamon in a medium bowl. Mix in the melted butter. Press the mixture firmly and evenly into the bottom and about 1 inch up the sides of an ungreased 9-inch springform pan.

3. Beat the cream cheese, sugar, cornstarch, vanilla, the remaining ½ teaspoon cinnamon, and the nutmeg in the bowl of an electric mixer on low speed until smooth and fluffy, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the eggs and yolks and beat just until blended. Mix in the pumpkin and cream. Spread the batter in the pan, and place it on a baking sheet.

4. Bake until the center is nearly set, 60 to 70 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes.

5. Carefully run a sharp knife between the cake and the sides of the pan. Remove the sides of the pan. Cool completely on the rack before covering tightly with aluminum foil or plastic wrap. Refrigerate until well chilled before serving, at least 4 hours or up to 2 days.

Yield: 10 to 12 servings
Note: I usually ground the pecans in a food processor and buy those graham cracker crumbs in a box. In the past when I haven’t had either of those things, I’ve put both the pecans and the graham crackers in several plastic bags and hammered them. Make sure you do that where no-one can hear you! I also don’t recommend taking a cholesterol test after eating this!
(Recipe from Good Morning America website.  Recipe excerpted from Prime Time Emeril by Emeril Lagasse, c. 2001, William Morrow).

Have a great Thanksgiving!  Todd will be posting some more Thanksgiving fun.
posted by Laura

Literary Reference Center

Literary Reference Center

From time to time I will be featuring an online database which can be accessed at the library or at home by all Waltham residents with a valid MLN library card. I hope you saw a recent post featuring the History Reference Center and have had a chance to try it.

Another great database is the Literary Reference Center. This database will be of use to anyone doing literary research. It includes biographies, criticisms and reviews . A particularly useful feature is the research guide with a “step by step” guide on how to write a research paper. If you encounter any difficulties or have any questions while using this database, please call the reference desk at 781-314-3425. Any reference librarian will be happy to help you.

posted by Paula

Veterans Day

Veterans Day, November 11th, honors the country’s servicemen. The Waltham Room now has a display remembering one such veteran, Dr. Douglas E. Butman. He spent his entire career as a physician here in Waltham before his retirement in 1987. He served in World War II as a Navy medical officer and was involved in the D-Day effort.

Earlier this year, a kind donor gave the Archives papers based on a diary kept by his grandfather, Dr. Richard D. Anderson, who had served alongside Dr. Butman. The display has a map of the United Kingdom showing some of the locales in Scotland, Wales, and England where “Doug” was stationed, with excerpts from the papers explaining his work.

posted by Jan

November is National Novel Writing Month

November is National Novel Writing Month

Do you have a novel inside of you that is just waiting to be written? Are you tired of spending exorbitant sums of money for classes that you can ill afford? Do you enjoy writing with other people? If you answered yes to any one of these questions, check out

By exploring this website and enrolling, you will be taking up the challenge of basically writing every day for the month of November until you have a grand total of 50,000 words. You can meet up with fellow NanoWrimos at cafes and libraries in the area.

If you need help getting started, one of our Reference Librarians will be happy to get you materials on writing.  We have alot of great resources for you.

Give it a try! Get out your pen or your computer and get going!  

Submitted by Louise