Self Care

With the American Psychology Association declaring that stress is now a mental health crisis in America, there seems to be a lot online about managing stress through self-care, especially when promoting products or picturesque lifestyle routines. But what does self-care actually mean? 

There are a lot of different definitions, but the gist of it is self-care is taking time to care for your physical and mental health. It doesn't cost anything and requires no subscription fee. Just like you need to put the oxygen mask on first before helping others when flying in a plane, taking time to maintain your personal health will lead to a better balance in your other responsibilities and relationships. 

2.3 Wisdom from a Humble JellyfishWISDOM FROM A HUMBLE JELLYFISH
By Rani Shah

By focusing on wisdom from the animal world in its minimal 126 pages, Rani Shah investigates the simplicity offered by observing the ways animals live and how to turn those observations into daily habits. From learning to slow down from the sloth or the perks of positivity from a sunflower, there are several self-care ideas packed in this easy read. 


2.3 The Unapologetic Guide to Black Mental HealthTHE UNAPOLOGETIC GUIDE TO BLACK MENTAL HEALTH
By Rheeda Walker

Psychologist and professor Rheeda Walker provides a thorough and comprehensive guide for Black mental health wellness, which includes self-care strategies specifically for the impacts of racism and related stress. Filled to the brim with exercises and frank discussion, THE UNAPOLOGETIC GUIDE TO BLACK MENTAL HEALTH is invaluable for incorporating emotional wellness and self-care against the constant stressors of systemic racism.


By Katie O'Donnell

For those looking to incorporate more natural and herbal care into their lives,THE EVERYDAY AYURVEDA GUIDE TO SELF-CARE is both recipe book and self-care guide anchored in Indian Vedic traditions. From sleep routines to self-massage tips and lavender honey, there are several options for incorporating these timeless methods towards self-care. 


2.3 Self Care for College StudentsSELF-CARE FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS
By Julia Dellitt

With over 150 ideas for focusing on different aspects of maintaining your personal and mental wellness, this book provides a series of activities and habits you can incorporate depending on what time you have available. This book is worth looking into when your main reason for avoiding self-care is not having enough time or space brought about by a hectic student lifestyle.


Covid Date

Covid-19 has made it so couples can’t go out dancing, to the movies, parties, or go on romantic getaways together. But let’s not have a pandemic get in the way of love! The library is here to help in the romance department by offering many fun and free resources. Whether it is a first date or a 50-year anniversary, we have you covered!


Pop some popcorn and cuddle up with a movie. We have a wide range of movies that can be checked out whether you are in the mood for action, a classic, or a good Rom-Com. We also have a streaming video service called Kanopy that you are able to access with your library card. They specialize in classic and Indie films.



Being quarantined has given people a lot of time to try new things and learn new hobbies. Whatever you are looking for, we have you covered. We have books that give you instruction on how to draw, paint, garden, or even cosplay. Along with our books we have what we call “Let’s Learn Guides” that have been written by our librarians. They have links to different sources and include activities that can be done in groups. We also have CreativeBug that has wonderful tutorials on journaling, painting, drawing, and more.



If you are not that crafty and you want to do something more active together then just watch a movie then be sure to check out our board games. Our games are fun and varied and can be checked out like our books and DVDS. Check out our website for a list of games.

Sweet or Salty

Whether you are watching a movie, playing a game, or doing arts and crafts it’s always a good time to eating something yummy. Make a delicious candlelight dinner for two or make each other’s favorite dessert. We have countless cookbooks to fit your needs, whatever they are.



It’s been a rough year where traveling has been grounded. But do you dream about seeing the Great Wall of China? Maybe a romantic gondola ride in Italy? Or maybe you want to go on an African Safari. Although you may not be able to travel there physically you can at least travel virtually. Not only are our books on travel and countries available but we also have a wonderful resource called Global Road Warrior that you can access with your library card. On this site you can pick a place anywhere in the world and dive into the history, religion, culture, Holidays, and food. The site gives recipes to the most popular food from the country. You can also learn about the language spoken and learn some phrases. If you want to study the language even more so you can be ready when you actually go there then we have another resource, Pronunciator, that can give you daily lessons.


It doesn’t matter what you do, whether it’s a movie, game, or craft, it is always important to make time for those you care about and spend time with them by learning new things, having fun, and creating memories.



Found in: Cannon, Kenneth L., II. (1987) PROVO & OREM: A VERY ELLIGIBLE PLACE: AN ILLUSTRATED HISTORY. Windsor Publications. 

If you search "train wrecks 1918” online, you'll discover that 1918 was a terrible time to be on a train in the US. But did you know that Provo also had a train wreck that year? It's not easily discoverable on the web, but with a little investigation you can find the whole story (and some more besides) by taking a dive into our special collections. 

In 1918, the OREM INTERURBAN was the train line that ran between Salt Lake City and Payson, running through Center Street Provo. There was also another train line that passed through Provo, known as the HEBER CREEPER (and a part of that train line still runs today).

ETHEL TREGEAGLE recounts her memory of a crash in our oral histories, which happened right outside her house--"The Heber train always went by. I don't know what year it was but the Orem train that went across Center Street to go to Salt Lake wrecked... I was five years old. That was about 1917 or 1918. The war was on then."

Our oral histories also include another eye-witness to the crash. KARL MILLER recounts the events of the wreck and how it came about, where he narrates his take on why the crash happened and lets us know a few other details. He includes the name of one of the engineers and narrows down the date--a "conference weekend" in 1918. What was especially interesting was that both Ethel and Karl mention a photo of the crash, so I decided to try and hunt that down, too.

Luckily, we have a fantastic INDEX OF HISTORICAL PHOTOGRAPHS that list the photographs we have in our special collections, so I was able to search that and find the famous photo of the Orem and Heber Creeper crash, which occurred on October 4th, 1918. 

There are more articles about the OREM INTERURBAN, the famous crash, and how the people of Provo lived back in the day with railroads on Center Street in TALES OF UTAH VALLEY VOLUME I. According to the book, Ethel Tregeagle herself can be found in this photograph behind the man in the upper right-hand side of the photo as one of the young girls looking at the wreckage. Can you spot her?

What will you find out by exploring our special collections?

Pile of Books

I always start out each year with the same, good intentions. I dream about reading the books I hear people raving about, that I meant to read, but didn’t get around to. Though, I find my list of books to read growing exponentially larger than my list of books I have read. If you’re anything like me, you may be looking for an answer to this discouraging cycle. There is the hope of a new year’s resolution to set yourself straight, but it takes a little planning and thought. Here are a few suggestions of how you can read as much as you can. 

Pick the books you’d like to read.

For some of you (*ahem* me), it may be hard to make a definitive list of books to read in a single year. In 2019, there were over 4 million books published in the U.S. It is physically impossible for one person to read all the books. Devastating, I know. That’s why it is so important to make a list of what books you want to get to this year. This list can be whatever you want it to be. If you’re a person who needs structure, give yourself a definitive collection of must-reads. If you need more flexibility, work around the genres you enjoy. 

The most important thing when making your list is to understand your “why’s” for reading. Are you reading for pure entertainment? Are you reading to learn about a specific subject? Are you looking for an escape from a plague-ridden world? (Sorry, was that too close to home?) Paying attention to your motivation will guide you to create a comprehensive, attainable list of books you are genuinely interested in. 

Make a plan.

This is a common principle for any type of goal you set: give yourself a timeframe. The best way to kill a goal is to not hold yourself to it. So start by writing down an obtainable goal that best suits you and your lifestyle. You could have an allotted amount of books to read for the year, month, or week. Or you could make a goal of how many minutes you will read every day or week. 

Another method to make sure you are reading everything you hope to read is to make a goal for each genre your wish to read. I like this flexibility because when it’s time for me to move to a new book, I can look at my list and decide if I’m more in the mood for a biography or young adult fantasy. 

Be flexible.

Don’t be afraid to skim some books. You don’t have to put your heart and soul into everything you read. Remind yourself that it is alright if you find a book that’s not worth the investment of your time. Francis Bacon said, “Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested.” Make the hard decision of which books you would like to feast on. 

Fit in reading where you can

My last and certainly not least tip is to fit in reading where you can. If you have a busy schedule, be reading different books in different formats. That way you can read when you have a spare minute, whether that’s while you’re commuting or waiting in line. Have a physical book you can read while at home, an eBook you can read while out running errands, and an audiobook for when you’re on the move. With all these tips implemented in your life this year, you can seep reading into the cracks of time during your day and read as much as you possible can.

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