Sunday, January 23, 2011

Monday's Tips and Tricks Party

My family uses the library a lot.  We have a branch just 1/2 mile away, and we often pop in for books, magazines, or videos.  In addition, whenever I come across a book I'm interested in, I go to the library's website and see if they have it; if they do, I put in a request for it, and they email me when it's available.

What this means is that at any given time, I can have anywhere from 20-40 items out on my card, with 5 or 6 different due dates.  About the only way to keep on top of them all is to check the website every single day.  Somehow, I just can't remember to do that, which means that I often have fines.

Here's where the tip comes in:  Library Elf.  Have you heard of it?  If your library system is a participant, you register your card and Library Elf will email you when you have an item coming due in the next few days.  That gives you time to either return it or renew it so you don't accrue fines.

Unfortunately for me, my current system does not participate!  But I used it before we moved here from a neighboring county, and it save me a lot of fines.  At that time it was totally free.  Now I noticed that, while you can still get free basic service, there is a yearly fee for "premium" service ($12/one card, $20 multiple cards).  For my purposes, I think the basic would be enough, but even if I decided to pay for the upgrade, it would still be less than I currently pay in fines per year.

Check here to see if your library system participates.

Please share your tips with us!
  • share a tip that makes your life easier
  • you must link back to me in your post
  • link to your specific party post, and not your general home page
  • please be polite and visit several other participants and leave a nice comment
  • I will delete entries that don’t link back to me or do not fit the party theme
Linky open until Monday Jan. 24 at 11:59 pm central.


Amanda @ Serenity Now said...

We love the library too, and I am (admittedly) a girl who knows how to load up the fines. My library even sends an email, just like in your tip. :s Unfortunately, I just get so busy and crazed that I forget to call and renew or drop the books off. Embarrassing!

hawkeyejlp said...

Love this! I only get an email once a book/movie is overdue.

Nicole said...

This makes me so grateful that my libary's system has an e-mail notification piece built in! I almost always have 40+ books/videos/audio CD's checked out for me and my kids, and the e-mails are the only thing that keep me from having fines. I have had to pay for two books in the last year, one because my son wet the bed with the book right next to him, and one because he threw up all over it in bed in the middle of the night. New rule: no library books in bed after lights-out! (Home books only) ;-)

Country Dreaming said...

When I check books for our library, I always put the due date on our calendar---it's good visual for me.


A Home Made by Kiki said...

Just came across your blog today and I am now your newest follower! Now I am going to have to spend some time browsing through your previous posts!

Beverly @ The Buzz said...

Not surprised that my library doesn't participate. We're the 5th largest city in the state and have such a lame library, it's embarrassing.

Julie @ The Family CEO said...

I LOVE this tip and - yay! - my library participates. Thanks so much for sharing this.

Paula said...

My library participates but I couldn't get it to work when I tried to sign up the other day. I am definitely trying to sign up again because I'm terrible about getting fines. Thanks for the tip!