All posts tagged "families"

  • Increase
  • Decrease
  • Normal

Current Size: 100%

  text size

Geocaching - Modern Day Treasure Hunting!

Image of a GPS or global positioning system

Are you looking for a fun way to get your family or a group of friends outside for fun and some exercise? Go geocaching! Geocaching has been around for a little over a decade. Using a GPS unit or smartphone, you are given the hidden container’s coordinates, or the "X" marks the spot, and you are off on a new adventure. The fun is in finding the "treasure" but for kids it might be all about trading the goodies in the box with a small trinket brought from home. The idea is if you take something from the cache you should replace it with something you brought of equal or greater value. The cache typically has a log for you to record the date and your name or alias and a collection of miscellaneous items. Geocaches are located all over the world but the San Francisco Bay Area, in particular, has loads of hidden caches just waiting to be discovered!



To get you started, you can find more information about geocaching before you head out in the San Jose Public Library collections.




Other Resources – comprehensive site with information about geocaching, GPS coordinates of cache locations as well as upcoming events.


Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District (MROSD) – offers beginning classes to introduce you to geocaching. They also have a passport program, the Preserve Circuit Geo-challenge, where you locate the MROSD’s  hidden caches in a number of their preserves, stamp your passport with the official stamp then turn the completed passport into the district office for a limited custom District cache tag (while supplies last).

Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence book coverWhat is domestic violence?

Domestic violence incidences at their core are about one individual’s desire to have absolute power and control over another person. When a perpetrator begins to feel that power eroding, they will do whatever they can to regain power, including killing the people they seek to control. In the end, the perpetrator ensures that the victim cannot leave and start a new life. Children, other family members, neighbors, co-workers, and innocent bystanders are all put at risk if they are near when the violence erupts. Domestic violence affects every aspect of our community. It is not just a problem for those in a particular economic class, age group, ethnicity, religious group, or of a particular sexual orientation.  (Santa Clara County Domestic Violence Council 2011)




Risk factors:

  • Separation or talk of ending the relationship.
  • Extreme jealousy and/or possessiveness.
  • Controlling behaviors, including social isolation, financial dependency (limiting access to money and information about finances), threats involving taking away children, threats regarding deportation, and extensive monitoring of daily activities.
  • Prior reported and unreported acts of domestic violence.
  • Stalking behavior.
  • Threats of suicide and/or homicide.
  • Kidnapping or falsely imprisoning someone.
  • The lack of any, or very few, friends outside the relationship.
  • Untreated and inadequately treated mental health conditions, including issues stemming from early childhood trauma and depression.
  • Previous use of weapons or threat of using weapons.
  • Access to firearms- sometimes legally obtained especially once a person has been served a protective order and has not relinquished their firearms.
  • Prior strangulation and choking.
  • A need to “co-opt” a partner’s friends to monitor a person’s activities.
  • Mental health issues. Aging may exasperate mental illnesses making a person more dangerous.
  • An over important sense of self and a lack of empathy for anyone else, including children, possibly increasing the risk to family members and friends.

What can be done?

  • Listen without judging. Don’t rush into providing solutions.
  • Make surethe victim knows she/he is not alone.
  • Let the victim know you support and care about her/him and that the violence is not the victim’s fault.
  • Tell the victim help is available. It is free and confidential.
  • Tell the victim you are worried about her/his safety and the safety of the victim’s children.
  • Tell the victim that you are there for her/him and that she/he deserves better than this.
  • Call 911.
  • Contact a victim advocacy agency and inquire on ways to help a victim.
  • Ask victims if they are fearful of the perpetrator and why. Let them know that you are there for them.
  • Determine if there are deadly weapons in the home and contact local law enforcement or advocacy agencies about the threat of the use of these weapons.
  • Assist victims in calling a domestic violence shelter to create a safety plan, obtain a restraining order, or seek domestic violence counseling. This is especially important if the victim wishes to end the relationship
  • Protect children. Do not be afraid to tell victims and perpetrators that domestic violence is harming their children. When necessary, contact the Child Abuse Hotline at the Department of Children and Family Services.
  • Take all threats seriously even if the victim says that the perpetrator is just “blowing off steam.”
  • Learn about domestic violence and share the information with others.



DVDs provide:

DV 101: Safety Planning

Child Custody

Impact of Domestic Violence on Children

Elder Abuse

Housing [English]  [Spanish]  [Vietnamese]

Domestic Violence in LGBTQ Communities

Medical Effects

Restraining Orders   

Batterer Intervention Program


Library Materials:

Alzheimer's - What's it Like for the Grandchildren?

An Early Winter by Marion Dane BauerAlzheimer's... so many families are coping with this disease, trying to make sense of it, and trying to figure out how to help suffering family members or friends. I just read an excellent fiction book that tackles this subject, and the nice twist is that this book is for young audiences, generally about 10 to young teen. An Early Winter by Marion Dane Bauer is the story of an 11 year old boy who can’t believe there's anything wrong with his grandfather... he seems just fine most of the time. The book is thoughtful and sensitive, and very on target with the confusion, emotions, and difficulties faced by so many families in this situation. I recommend this book highly, but it made me wonder if I could find similar books for a young audiences. I found a few:  A Beautiful Pearl by Nancy Whitelaw, The Graduation of Jake Moon by Barbara Park, and If I forget, You Remember by Carol Lynch Williams. For younger children there's What's Happening to Grandpa by Maria Shriver. In Spanish there’s El Abuelito Ha Cambio (Grandpa Has Changed). All are available in SJPL libraries.


- Claire Glennon, SJPL

April is National Autism Awareness Month


National Autism Awareness Month


My Brother Charlie, by Holly Robinson Peete



For all ages, My Brother Charlie is a beautifully written, heart packed, brightly illustrated, clear and simple introduction to autism.







National Autism Awareness Month (A few facts)

  • "Autism affects the brain's normal development of social and communication skills. A baby with autism spectrum disorder may be unresponsive to people, or focus intently on one item to the exclusion of others for long periods of time.  A child with ASD may appear to develop normally and then withdraw and become indifferent to social engagement."


San José Public Library Resources on Autism:


Social Workers in the Library

Story time


Additional Resources:

24th Annual San José Children’s Faire

Celebrate the Month of the Young Child at the San Jose Children's Faire! 


Saturday, April 21

10:30 a.m.-3 p.m.


The Faire is expected to draw over 5,000 attendees to the outdoor festival, held at Discovery Meadow (in front of the Children's Discovery Museum), in downtown San José.



The theme this year is "Rock, Roll & Read" and features family-oriented stage entertainment, special attractions, and activity booths offering hands-on activities for children ages 2 -12.  Families can obtain information about education, child care, recreational programs and health and safety resources. 


For more information call (408) 808-2617, or visit