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Oooo, La La!


By Gini Rainey

Okay, I’ll admit it!  I’m a slacker.  Actually, I took a couple weeks away from writing my blog, but the time was well spent.  My husband and I had a wonderful time in Paris.  Such a good time that I believe we experienced cultural overload.  Paris, like so much of Europe, is filled with so many wonderful treasures that to try and see all of it is nearly impossible.  We not only went to The Louvre, The D’Orsay, and the Musee Marmottan Monet, among others, but also went to Notre Dame, Sainte-Chapelle, and Saint Sulpice (the largest church in Paris.  We took a half day side trip to Giverney  and walked through the gardens and home that inspired the artist, Claude Monet.  I even ran my right hand down the banister in hopes that a small amount of inspiration from the father of French Impressionism might cling to my painting hand.

Not being much of a walker, my pedometer didn’t quite know what to make of the nearly 5 miles a day that we covered while in Paris.  The only thing that saved me was the periodic stops  adult beverages we made at the sidewalk cafés that are a standard fixture in Paris.  One of the best was the Brasserie Les Deux Palais that was across the street from The Sainte-Chapelle (that has the most amazingly beautiful 40 foot high stained glass windows) and the Conciergerie (once the palace of medieval kings prior to being used as a prison).

We ordered the mixed cheese board and were pleasantly surprised with three kinds of cheese and three kinds of meat, along with a basket of crusty baguettes, butter, and mustard.  Our intent was a light snack, but after eating all of this along with a couple of glasses of red wine, we found that there was not need – nor room – for anything else .

My favorite French chef, Jaques Pepin, has a recipe for rolls and baguettes in his cookbook “Today’s Gourmet” that was published in 1991 by KQED, Inc., and while you might not actually be in one of Paris’ sidewalk cafés, you can certainly recreate the experience at home on your own patio and take pride in the homemade baguettes you made with your own two hands.

Pepin’s recipe has you placing 2 envelopes yeast, 2 cups tepid water, and ½ teaspoon sugar in the bowl of a food processor and it proof (sit) for 5 minutes.  Then, add 4 ½ cups bread flour, 1 cup rolled wheat, and 1 ½ teaspoon salt to the processor bowl and process for 1 to 2 minutes until the ingredients form a ball.  Grease a bowl with 1 teaspoon peanut oil and place the dough in the bowl.  Cover with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature for 1 ½ to 2 hours until double or triple in bulk.  Push down gently to let the air out and place the dough on a large cookie sheet and spread it out with your hands to a rectangle about 14 x 9 inches.  Cut the rectangle into four strips and move two strips to one side of the sheet and spinkle them on both sides with ½ tablespoon cornmeal.  They should extend the length of the sheet and these will make 2 baguettes.

Cut the remaining 2 strips into three rectangles and arrange next to the uncut strips and sprinkle on both sides with ½ tablespoon cornmeal.  These will make your rolls.  Oil the rolls and loaves lightly on top with 1 tablespoon peanut oil and cover gently with plastic wrap.  Let rise for 45 minutes to 1 hour until double in bulk and sprinkle with flour.  Make lengthwise slashes or criss-cross slashes on the rolls and bread and place in a 450° oven and throw 2 tablespoons of water onto the oven floor, closing the oven door quickly to help create bread with a crustier exterior.  Repeat 5 minutes later.  Bake for a total of 22 to 25 minutes and remove from the oven when they are brown and sound hollow when tapped with a spoon or knife.  Cool on a rack and serve with your favorite cheeses and meats.  We had camembert, blue cheese and brie, along with hard salami, prosciutto, and ham, along with a nice red wine.  Who could ask for anything more, except for a wonderful French waiter standing by ready to refill your glass!


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April 5th-7th: Smith County Medical Society Alliance Book Fair

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Smith County Medical Society Alliance Book Fair:

Thursday-Saturday, April 5th-7th

The annual Book Fair, the primary fundraiser, began in 1968. A spring and fall sale event, each consisting of a three day sale, gives 75% of net proceeds funds to health career scholarships at Tyler Junior College and the University of Texas at Tyler.

The Smith County Medical Society Alliance Book Fair will be held at 2004 Broussard St., Tyler. The book fair will be held April 5th-7th, 8am-6pm. Only cash and checks are accepted.

“The community looks forward to our sales and anticipates all the great ‘deals’ and wonderful books they will purchase. We have shoppers from all around the state. We enjoy greeting our seasoned shoppers and meeting new ones as they line up early Thursday morning in anticipation to opening,” said Kelly Michaels, current President of SCMSA.

She continues, “‘Achieving Dreams’ a group of exceptional young adults volunteer every Monday to sort, shelve books, clean, and help with other various jobs. The “Achievers” love working at the Book Fair and show us the meaning of giving back to the community. They are a huge part of Book Fair success.”

Now, shoppers have a nicer shopping experience with more room to roam and more books to choose from. There are books for everyone! There are children’s books, collector’s books, cookbooks, new releases, coffee table books, fiction, non-fiction, hobbies and “How To” books, autobiography and biography, sports, religion, self-help, romance, travel, children’s, gardening, history, and much more.

If you would like to donate books, please drop them off at the book shelves outside in the front of the building. Donations can be made any day, at any time. Donated books are brought in daily. For a donation receipt, please leave your name and address information with your donation or call (903)561-1353 to schedule a drop-off.

For additional information visit or call Book Fair at (903)561-1353.

We also take monetary donations. If you would like to donate to Book Fair, please see the Donations page at This is a wonderful way to honor or remember a friend or loved one and to further health care education.


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March 2018: Book Worm Events!

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March 23rd (3-5:30pm) – Meet Local Author Alma Ravenell  and discuss her book “Our Baby.” The Tyler Public Library is located at 201 S. College Ave., Tyler. Most events hosted by Club Reads are free. The Library is open Monday-Thursday 10am-7pm, Friday 10am-6pm, Saturday 10am-5pm, and Sunday 1-5pm. For more info call (903)593-7323 or go to

March 27th (10am) – Club Read – Join the Club Read group in discussing this month’s read, “Manhattan Beach” by Jennifer Egan. The Tyler Public Library is located at 201 S. College Ave., Tyler. Most events hosted by Club Reads are free. The Library is open Monday-Thursday 10am-7pm, Friday 10am-6pm, Saturday 10am-5pm, and Sunday 1-5pm. For more info call (903)593-7323 or go to

April 5th-7th (8am-6pm) – Book Fair – This year’s event focuses on the sale of donated books which will go to endowed scholarships for nursing and healthcare at TJC and UT-T and for community health projects. Thousand of books will be available for purchase. This is held at SCMSA, 2004 Broussard St., Tyler.

August 4th (1-5pm) – Book Bash will be held at Harvey Hall Convention Center, 2000 W. Front St., Tyler. They are doubling the authors for 2018’s Book Bash! Tickets will be on sale until the day of the event. Come on out and find a new favorite author as well as meet the authors behind the stories. For more info go to Tickets are $12.


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Spring Programs at the Library

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Spring Programs at the Library

The Tyler Public Library is located at 201 S. College Ave., Tyler. Most events are free. For more info call (903)593-7323 or go to


All storytimes will be in Taylor Auditorium. Storytimes will not meet the week of Spring Break, March 12th-16th.

  • Leeme un Cuento/Read to Me Storytime (children 3-6 years old), Mondays at 10:30am
  • Lap & Play Time (babies up to 18 months) features stories, songs, and playtime with developmental toys at 9:30am every Wednesday
  • Toddler Explore Storytime (children under age 3) is on Wednesdays at 10:30am
  • Read Aloud Crowd Storytime (children 3-6 years old), Thursdays at 10:30am

March 3rd (2-4pm) – LEGO® Block Party – Children ages 3 and up, bring your imagination for an afternoon of building and playing! LEGO® and Duplo Blocks are provided.

March 10th and 24th (2-4pm) – Makerspace – This continuing STEM education for children and teens will feature March 10th, Multiplication Bingo; and March 24th, Cardboard Challenge. This will be held in the Library Treehouse.

Spring Break: March 12th-March 16th (10:30am) – Spring Break Movie Matinees – Families are invited to watch a fun feature length films in the library’s auditorium. A different movie will be shown each day. Pillows, blankets, and carpet friendly snacks welcome.


Every Tuesday (4:30-5:30pm) – Teen Tuesdays – If you are in Middle School or High School you’re in! The Library will have games, activities, and fun just for teens. Earn volunteer hours completing special projects. Descriptions for weekly activities can be found at Events are:

  • March 6th: Silent Library Games
  • March 13th: Movie
  • March 20th: Whose Line? Improv Games
  • March 27th: “And Scene!” Reader’s Theater

March 3rd (11:30am-1:30pm) – Tips and Tricks for Dog Owners – Pick up tips and tricks for handling your dog from Certified American Kennel Club Evaluator, Judy Parson. No pets in the Library.

March 7th (12 noon) – Great Decisions is a foreign policy lecture series. Books are available for $22 at the circulation desk. The March topic and speaker is “China and American: The New Geopolitical Equation,” Dr. Robert Sterken.

March 9th (11:30am) – “Raised Bed Gardening on a Hillside” with Wayne Elliot will be presented as part of the Smith County Master Gardener Series. Free to attend.

March 15th (5pm) – Reel Talk – This event is like a book-club, but for movies! Free to attend.

March 23rd (3-5:30pm) – Meet Local Author Alma Ravenell and discuss her book “Our Baby.”

March 2nd and 16th (1-3pm) – Veteran’s Movie – Join this biweekly screening of movies presented especially for veterans. This free event is held the first and third Friday every month.

March 27th (10am) – Club Read – Join the Club Read group in discussing this month’s read, “Manhattan Beach” by Jennifer Egan.

Every Tuesday (10am-1pm) – Quilting Class – Learn the art of quilting at the Library. Fabric and quilt patterns will be provided. Participants are asked to provide their own sewing machines, if you have them, plus scissors, and neutral or white thread. For details and a complete list of supplies please contact the Library’s information desk.

Every Tuesday (5:30-6:30pm) – Evening Meditation – Learn the practice of Heartfulness Meditation with Gayathri Kambhampati.

Every Wednesday (5:30pm) – Gentle Yoga – This gentle yoga class will be taught by Meagan Vrba who is certified in yoga, CPR, and first aid.

Every Saturday (11am-12 noon) – Crochet Classes will be held in the 3rd floor Internet Center Workroom. These are free classes. Learn to crochet with Library staff and volunteers. All materials are provided. All experience levels are welcome.


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