Lisa's blog

ARBOR DAY TAKES ROOT

Look out any window, and you'll probably see a tree or two - each and every one of them planted by someone, since Denver is a high plains desert region and by definition has no native trees.

The Nebraska Territory was also treeless when pioneer J. Sterling Morton and his bride, Caroline, arrived there in 1854 from Detroit and staked a claim in Nebraska City. He became the editor of the town's newspaper and built a 52-room mansion based on the design of the White House.

CHANGING MOVIES IN THE MIDDLE OF A STREAM

David and Jackie Siegel

Feature films are supposed to be entertaining, while documentaries present us with grim reality. But the best documentaries often introduce us to extraordinary and intriguing people -- and sometimes go places even the filmmakers didn't anticipate. Here are some documentaries with a few unexpected twists.

Watching a movie doesn't usually make me want to fill up my car with items for the Goodwill, unless that movie is The Queen of Versailles. Filmmaker Lauren Greenfield started out wanting to tell the story of billionaire David Siegel and buxom third wife Jackie's quest to build the largest and most expensive house in the country. In the middle of filming, though, the housing crisis nearly wiped out Siegel and his predatory timeshare business.

GLOSSOPHOBIA, OR HOW I STOPPED WORRYING AND LEARNED TO LOVE PUBLIC SPEAKING

We've all seen the statistic: Most people rate their fear of public speaking higher than fear of death itself.

This commonly cited (and questionable) statement seems to have originated from The Book of Lists (1977), which got its information from an elusive 1973 study called the "Bruskin Report," a study consisting of a small sample of people who were asked to choose and rate their biggest fears from a list which also included heights, bugs, flying, and elevators.

JOSEPH PILATES - FROM CIRCUS PERFORMER TO FITNESS PROPHET

What do Madonna, Oprah and Sting have in common, other than being obscenely wealthy and only needing one name?

They, along with millions of other people, practice Pilates. 

German-born Joseph Pilates (1883-1967) was a bullied, sickly child who suffered from asthma, rickets, and rheumatic fever.  As he grew up, he devoted his life to developing a self-improvement system, drawn from Zen and the ancient Greek notion of a man ideal in body, mind and spirit.  He came to believe that bad posture and improper breathing were the causes of poor health. 

USING CROWdFUNDING FOR NONPROFIT FUNDRAISING

Crowdfunding (the collective effort of individuals to pool their money through the Internet) has gotten very crowded in the last few years, with over 35,000 projects being funded since 2009 by industry leader Kickstarter alone.

Forbes Magazine reports that 2013 will be the year that this relatively new method of fundraising will consolidate, rather than expand -- it's time for the leaders with quality sites to prevail, much like Amazon, Ebay or Craigslist did.

Crowdfunding can be divided into these categories:

ATTENTION, STUDENTS OF ALL AGES

Happy 2013! A new year means new school assignments, and we'd like to help you have the best learning experience possible by offering you a one-on-one appointment with your very own librarian.

Our goal is to supply you with reliable and scholarly sources of information that are customized to your particular topic. We'll even share all of our secrets and tips so you can do it on your own next time. All learning levels are welcome, from grade school to college.

Resources that we offer include:

FEEDING FRENZY - 12 DOCUMENTARIES ABOUT FOOD

Once again, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) has proclaimed Colorado the most fit state.

No one is exactly sure why only 20.7% of us fall into the "obese" category (obesity is defined as having a BMI equal to or above 30). It could be the absence of Southern cooking, our fondness for hiking and biking, or our participation in the Farm to School program.

HAVE A MOVIE NIGHT PARTY ON NEW YEAR'S EVE!

Are you looking for a fun way to ring in the new year? A movie marathon provides safe, low-key entertainment for revelers of every age.

If your celebration includes both adults and children, you can set up two different movies, space permitting. Just select two or three films, and switch over to TV at midnight to watch the ball drop. Here are a few ideas to make things festive:

THEODOR DREYER'S PASSION OF JOAN OF ARC

Twenty-first century movie fans would never have seen this 1928 silent masterpiece if not for an employee of a mental institution in Oslo, Norway, who found some film canisters in a janitor's closet in 1981.

The canisters, which were labeled "The Passion of Joan of Arc," were sent to the Norwegian Film Institute, where they were in storage for three years before being examined. The prints were discovered to be the original, uncensored cut of director Theodor's Dreyer's landmark version of the trial of Joan of Arc.

PETAID COLORADO ANIMAL HOSPITAL - NONPROFIT OF THE MONTH

It's every pet owner's worst nightmare - your dog is injured or in need of medical care and you can't afford the necessary vet bills. Fortunately, PetAid Animal Hospital (formerly Harrison Memorial Animal Hospital) is here to provide comprehensive and compassionate veterinary care for pets of the economically disadvantaged and has been doing so since 1990.

The animal hospital is just one of the services offered by its umbrella organization, PetAid Colorado, which collaborates with veterinarians and community partners (like the Animal Assistance Foundation) to prevent animal suffering and relinquishment through a unique array of programs, including PetAid Care Grants, PetAid Disaster Services, and

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