After household chores, head to the library for toys, bedtime stories



This is a county that celebrates diversity. And I'm usually glad to participate in that celebration. But I may have hit my tolerance limit last weekend: The washing machine broke.

Our options were to call ourselves the "differently scented," to call a service technician or to fix it. The other adults in the house were all booked up for the weekend, so guess who drew the short straw?

Everyone said it was OK to call in the technician, but having just spent serious bucks to replace the windshield wiper fluid bottle, my cheapskate nature asserted itself.

I spent a grim weekend wrestling my washer to get to the back. But I am proud to say that Woman Was Victorious Over Washer, as I successfully transplanted a new pump into the old machine.

And I am now richer by eight socks, $1.04, and a lint-covered Teddy bear rescued from the hole in the wall the washer lives in.

I think I'll spend it all in one place!


This July, the La Leche League of Savage/North Laurel will gather in the meeting room of the Savage Public Library on Gorman Road on July 6 at 10:15 a.m.

This month's topic is "The Art of Breast-feeding and Avoiding Difficulties."

All expectant and nursing mothers are invited. You don't have to be a member of La Leche to participate. Young children are very welcome.

For more information about La Leche or nursing, call Cindy Clemmens at (301) 604-4964 or Kim Wissman at (301) 854-5568.


While at the library, check into the circulating toy collection available at all branches in Howard County. There are toys to suit many tastes for the under-3 crowd.

All toys have been chosen for their play value, enhancing either social, motor or cognitive skills.

In real English, that means that the toys either look like real things or have a puzzling trick to figure out.

The binoculars, trucks, puzzles and blocks circulate for three weeks, as do books, and may be renewed. It's a great way to keep the toddlers entertained in this heat. They get new toys, but your budget never notices.


Last Wednesday, the staff at the Savage Library held a farewell party for Lola Gaither of the circulation staff. I was about to identify her as the nice, soft-voiced, black-haired woman at the front desk, but that describes half the staff. (The other half consists of nice, soft-voiced, brown-haired staffers.) Ms. Gaither leaves Savage for the new East Columbia branch, due to open sometime in August.

Congratulations on your promotion, and although we'll miss you, it's nice to know there will be a familiar face at the new branch.


As I was browsing through Savage Mill last week, I noticed a

young woman taking photographs of the buildings. There's nothing too unusual about that -- it's a photogenic place. But she and her companion carried serious equipment: tripods and extra lenses and other stuff.

The two women were from TAB Stock Inc., a new stock photography agency headed by Tabatha Adams-Baker.

Her intern, Tracy Bailey, was in Savage Mill taking the pictures that go into the glossy pages of the telephone book. There are always pictures of areas of local interest there.

Ms. Adams-Baker moved into our area in November from Columbus, Ohio. Her husband, John Baker, was offered a job with PIE Mutual Insurance Co. here.

In discussing the move, the couple realized that there were few ** stock photo agencies between New York and Washington. A stock photo company provides ready photographs to businesses and advertising agencies that do not want to hire a photographer for a particular presentation.

Ms. Adams-Baker had been a photographers' agent in Ohio, promoting their work and getting them contracts.

"When I left Ohio, I wanted to find a way to stay with those photographers. I didn't really like the idea of opening an agency, but I researched the market, and it looked good," she said.

The agency already has a quarter-million photos in its stock, contributed by 50 photographers, both local and from Ohio.

Ms. Adams-Baker is pleased with the results of her efforts: in a few months she'll have a half-million images on file. She is also working on getting her photo files onto a computer, so clients can scan the files from their own offices.

In addition, her agency was recently profiled in Photo District News, a professional photographer's publication, as one of the most fair to photographers.

All of this has been achieved in only nine months.

About the only regret Ms. Adams-Baker has about moving here is our traffic: "It takes an hour to get anywhere!" But she has enjoyed the people, who have all been really nice, she says.

Welcome to the county!


The Howard County Summer reading game is going great guns at the Savage Branch. Already, more than 600 students have signed up for the games. This is a terrific turnout for this program.

Laura Lunking, Jean Salkind and Tom Neary have visited all the local schools touting the library system, and their efforts have born fruit.

The game for elementary school students centers on the theme of detectives. In keeping with this theme, the Savage Library presents a program for young detectives.

Register next Tuesday for "Play the Part -- Solve the Crime," a program where 7- to 10-year-olds get to act and solve a "whodunit." The program will take place July 11 from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Registration opens at 1 p.m. Tuesday, July 5.

Register either in person or by calling (410) 880-5978.


It's time for the pajama game again.

The Savage Branch Library will hold another Bedtime Story Time for the preschool set.

On Thursday, July 7, at 7 p.m. the children's librarians read delectable stories and lead funny songs. The preschoolers are welcome to attend in their pajamas, to make the bedtime ritual at home a little easier.

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