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Weekend Recs: December 3

By Jenna Renaud

Happy Friday, Wildcats! After a year off, Falvey Memorial Library is bringing back Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

Thanksgiving is over, and it’s officially December, which means it’s fully time to celebrate the holiday season!

This weekend I’m providing recommendations to get you ready for the most wonderful time of the year. Take a break from studying to get into the Christmas spirit–I promise it will be the perfect stress reliever and put a smile on your face. Whether you have less than 10 minutes or the whole weekend to relax (if that’s you, tell me your secrets!), I have the perfect recs for you! 

If you have 5 minutes… and need to prioritize studying next week, stop by Falvey’s Carrel-tas Commitment station and enter to win a drawing for an exclusive study room for one night next week. In addition, you’ll be entered in for the grand prize that gives you access to the Falvey room 206 study suite for you and five of your friends during the entirety of finals week (Dec. 10-17). Read more about the contest here. 

If you have 20 minutes or a whole evening… drive around the area and look at people’s Christmas lights and decorations! Get some inspiration and then bring it down to a smaller scale to decorate your dorm room or apartment.  

If you at least 90 minutes… watch one of the movies on Den of Geek’s Christmas Movies: A Complete Holiday Streaming Guide. Seems like a big claim to have the complete streaming guide of holiday movies, but they definitely did have some good ones on the list! 

If you have 2 hours… read The Father Christmas Letters by J.R.R. Tolkien. A quick read, the book is a collection of letters that Tolkien, as Santa and Santa’s right-hand polar bear, wrote to his children and their responses. The book is available in Falvey’s collection! 

If you have 4 hours… drive into the ‘burbs and visit Shady Brook Farm’s drive-through light display! The display is on most Philly-area Christmas lists and is a must-see if you haven’t been before. After you drive through the lights, park to walk through their market, grab some hot chocolate or other drinks, and cozy up around one of their many fire pits.  


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a graduate student in the Communication Department.


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Peek at the Week: November 29

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Word of the Week: Air Fryer 

Each year Merriam-Webster dictionary adds new words and definitions to its dictionary, from slang to new science and tech jargon. This year, they have added 455 new words! We don’t have enough “Peeks” to cover the new words, but I decided to share one of the newly added words that also may make the perfect Cyber Monday shopping purchase. 

An air fryer is now defined by Merriam-Webster as, “an airtight, usually small electrical appliance for quick cooking of foods by means of convection currents circulated rapidly by a fan.” Although invented in 2010, in recent years air fryers have become more popular, leading to their addition. Other newly added food-related words include “fluffernutter” and “chicharron.”  


This Week at Falvey  

Monday, Nov. 15–Friday, Jan. 7

Cabinets of Curiosity Exhibit / Falvey First Floor / Free & Open to the Public 

Wednesday, Dec. 1

Fall 2021 Falvey Forum Workshop Series: Introduction to QGIS / 12:30–1:30 p.m. / Virtual / Register Here 

Friday, Dec. 3 

Villanova Gaming Society / 2:30–4:30 p.m. / Speakers’ Corner / Free & Open to the Public 


This Week in History 

Dec. 5, 1945 – Aircraft squadron disappears in the Bermuda Triangle 

On Dec. 5, 1945 at 2:10 p.m., five U.S. Navy Avenger torpedo-bombers took off from the Ft. Lauderdale Naval Air Station in Florida on a routine three-hour training mission. Two hours later, the squadron leader reported that his compass and back-up compass have both failed. The final communication heard over the radio was the squadron leader telling his team to prepare to leave the aircraft due to a lack of fuel.  

A mariner aircraft with a 13-men crew soon took off to find the five U.S. Navy Avenger torpedo-bombers, only to never be heard from again. Although naval officials maintained that the remains of the  men were not found because stormy weather destroyed the evidence, the story of the “Lost Squadron” helped cement the legend of the Bermuda Triangle.

Read more about the Bermuda Triangle here. 

A&E Television Networks. (2009, November 24). Aircraft squadron disappears in the Bermuda Triangle. History.com. Retrieved November 29, 2021, from https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/aircraft-squadron-lost-in-the-bermuda-triangle. 


Jenna Renaud is a graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a graduate student in the Communication Department.


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Thanksgiving Break Recs

Happy Thanksgiving break, Wildcats! After a year off, Falvey Memorial Library is bringing back Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

We have officially made it to a much-needed Thanksgiving break. Take some time this long weekend to relax, enjoy time with family, and maybe catch up on a little bit of work so you can come back and crush the end of the semester. For your downtime, we’ve compiled a list of recommendations, from delicious recipes to train-ride books to TV recs. 

If you have 25 minutes… stream A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving on Apple TV+ because no holiday’s complete without a Charlie Brown special! 

If you have 1 hour… start your virtual Christmas shopping in The Skimm’s virtual Holiday Village. It makes you feel like you’re going from store to store, but you can stay in your stretchy pants and comfy sweatshirts! 

If you have 47 minutes… watch the first episode of Marvel’s newest Disney+ show Hawkeye. Yes, so maybe this isn’t technically a Thanksgiving rec, but the series drops Nov. 24 and it’s going to be good! 

If you have 2 hours… sift through Taste of Home’s “30 Unbelievably Easy Thanksgiving Desserts” blog post and then put your baking skills to the test with one of the recipes. 

If you have 3 hours… Tune into the 95th Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. Watch the countdown and learn more about who’s in the parade this year on the official parade website. 

If you have 5 hours… read Home Cooking: A Writer in the Kitchen by Laurie Colwin. Part cookbook, part biography, Colwin’s book is the perfect read to complement the smells of Thanksgiving dinner coming from the kitchen.  


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a graduate student in the Communication Department.


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Peek at the Week: November 22

By Jenna Renaud

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Recipe of the Week: Thanksgiving Pumpkin Dump Cake 

In lieu of a word of the week, we’re sharing an easy Thanksgiving recipe that you can try out this holiday season! For students (and just busy people), it can be difficult to find time to contribute to Thanksgiving, but you also don’t want to show up empty-handed. This recipe from Cookies & Cups by Shelley Jaronsky offers an easy solution! 

Prep Time: 10 minutes / Cook Time: 45 minutes / Serves 12 

Ingredients: 

1 (15 ounce) can pure pumpkin 

1 (10 ounce) can evaporated milk 

1 cup light brown sugar 

3 eggs 

3 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice 

1 box yellow cake mix 

1 cup (2 sticks) butter melted 

1 cup coarsely crushed graham crackers or pecans 

1/2 cup toffee bits (optional) 

Instructions: 

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9×13 baking pan with nonstick spray and set aside. 
  2. In a large bowl combine the pumpkin, evaporated milk, sugar, eggs, and pumpkin pie spice. Stir to combine and pour into your prepared pan. 
  3. Sprinkle the entire box of cake mix on top, followed by your nuts or graham crackers and toffee chips. 
  4. Pour your melted butter evenly on top. 
  5. Bake for 45-50 minutes until center is set and edges are lightly browned. 
  6. Serve warm or at room temperature. 

 This Week at Falvey  

Monday, Nov. 22  

Mindfulness Mondays / 1–1:30 p.m. / Virtual / https://villanova.zoom.us/j/98337578849 


This Week in History 

Nov. 26, 1941–FDR establishes modern Thanksgiving holiday.

The following Thanksgiving information comes directly from History.com’s “This Week in History” post. 

“President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs a bill officially establishing the fourth Thursday in November as Thanksgiving Day.  

The tradition of celebrating the holiday on Thursday dates back to the early history of the Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay colonies, when post-harvest holidays were celebrated on the weekday regularly set aside as “Lecture Day,” a midweek church meeting where topical sermons were presented. A famous Thanksgiving observance occurred in the autumn of 1621, when Plymouth governor William Bradford invited local members of the Wampanoag tribe to join the Pilgrims in a festival held in gratitude for the bounty of the season. 

Thanksgiving became an annual custom throughout New England in the 17th century, and in 1777 the Continental Congress declared the first national American Thanksgiving following the Patriot victory at Saratoga. In 1789, President George Washington became the first president to proclaim a Thanksgiving holiday, when, at the request of Congress, he proclaimed November 26, a Thursday, as a day of national thanksgiving for the U.S. Constitution. However, it was not until 1863, when President Abraham Lincoln declared Thanksgiving to officially fall on the last Thursday of November, that the modern holiday was celebrated nationally.  

With a few deviations, Lincoln’s precedent was followed annually by every subsequent president—until 1939. In 1939, Franklin D. Roosevelt departed from tradition by declaring November 23, the next to last Thursday that year, as Thanksgiving Day. Considerable controversy surrounded this deviation, and some Americans refused to honor Roosevelt’s declaration. For the next two years, Roosevelt repeated the unpopular proclamation, but on November 26, 1941, he admitted his mistake and signed a bill into law officially making the fourth Thursday in November the national holiday of Thanksgiving Day.” 

A&E Television Networks. (2009, November 24). FDR proclaims Thanksgiving a national holiday. History.com. Retrieved November 18, 2021, from https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/fdr-establishes-modern-thanksgiving-holiday. 


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a graduate student in the Communication Department and graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library.


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Weekend Recs: Red (Taylor’s Version)

By Anna Jankowski and Jenna Renaud

Happy Friday, Wildcats! After a year off, Falvey Memorial Library is bringing back Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. This week, student worker Anna Jankowski will be joining her in the search for news!

Miss Americana is back and better than ever. Taylor Swift re-recorded her iconic 2012 album Red and the world is loving it. In the first 24 hours, Red (Taylor’s Version) became the most streamed album in a day by a female with 90.8 million global streams. This weekend, sift through our recommendations below to find out more about the new 30-song album and why it is changing the music industry forever.

If you have 14 seconds… watch this behind-the-scenes Tik Tok from Taylor’s newest music video “I Bet You Think About Me.” The video features Blake Lively in her directorial debut! Then be sure to watch the full 6-minute video featuring Miles Teller.

If you have 3 minutes… scroll through this tap story in the Wall Street Journal that details how Swift’s re-releases are having an actionable impact on the future of the music industry.

If you have 15 minutes… watch “All Too Well: The Short Film” on YouTube starring Dylan O’Brien and Sadie Sink. This film was both written and directed by Taylor Swift and uses her 10-minute version of the song as a background soundtrack.

If you have 2 hours and 10 minutes… listen to Red (Taylor’s Version) on Spotify, Apple Music, or wherever you get your music. And then, if you want more Taylor, listen to the other albums she fully owns, Fearless (Taylor’s Version), Evermore, Folklore, and Lover

If you have 3 hours and 11 minutes… have a Taylor movie weekend and watch Miss Americana on Netflix, the documentary where Taylor reveals intimate details of her life while showcasing backstage and onstage concert footage, followed by Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions on Disney+, an intimate concert performance of Folklore.


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a graduate student in the Communication Department and graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library. Anna Jankowski ’23 CLAS  is a Junior Communication Major from just outside Baltimore who ​​works as a Communication & Marketing Assistant in Falvey.


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TBT: Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week

By Jenna Renaud

The above picture was featured in The Villanovan in 2001. The 36th Annual Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week (HHAW) included food and clothing drives, a hunger run, a solidarity sleep-out, and a keynote address by Sr. Mary Scullion. This week marks Villanova’s 46th Annual HHAW. 

HHAW was started in 1975 by Augustinian priest Rev. Ray Jackson, OSA, and a group of Villanova students operating on their three pillars of education, advocacy, and service. The week has since expanded to over 700 campuses and communities nationwide. 

For this year’s HHAW Villanova has hosted a wide variety of events to educate people about the homeless population in the United States and do our part to serve. To learn more about the remaining events this week, visit the Villanova HHAW website: https://vuhungerweek.wixsite.com/mysite  


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a graduate student in the Communication Department and graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library.


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Dig Deeper: Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week

By Jenna Renaud 

Villanova University is celebrating the 46th Annual Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week (HHAW) from Sunday, November 14 through Saturday, November 20. To kick off the week, we dug deeper into the history of HHAW and provided resources to help you learn more about homelessness, hunger, and poverty.  

Did you know? 

  • 37.2 million Americans live below the poverty level
  • 580,000 Americans are homeless on a typical night
  • 44 million Americans are at risk of suffering from hunger
  • 1 in 6 children in the U.S. live in poverty 

Hunger & homelessness. Hunger Homelessness Awareness Week. (n.d.). Retrieved November 15, 2021, from https://hhweek.org/hunger-and-homelessness/. 

History of HHAW 

HHAW was started in 1975 by Augustinian priest the Rev. Ray Jackson, OSA, and a group of Villanova students operating on their three pillars of education, advocacy, and service. The ultimate goal? Zero people affected by hunger and homelessness. Although starting at Villanova University, HHAW has since expanded to over 700 campuses and communities nationwide! Each year, HHAW has hundreds of thousands of participants that raise millions of dollars for local service providers.  

To learn more about HHAW at Villanova visit: https://vuhungerweek.wixsite.com/mysite  

To learn more about HHAW nationwide visit: https://hhweek.org/  

HHAW Villanova Events 

Monday, Nov. 15
Postgraduate Service Fair; Villanova Room-Connelly Center, 5–7 p.m.
Postgraduate Service Chat; The Refectory, 8-9:30 p.m. 

Wednesday, Nov. 17
Fair Trade Craft Fair; Connelly Center Ground Floor Atrium, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.
Keynote Event: The Heart of Camden, the Story of Father Michael Doyle; Connelly Cinema, 7 p.m. 

Thursday, Nov. 18
Donate A Meal; Campus Dining Halls, Lunch
The HHAW is hosting its annual Fast Day. For every meal donation collected, Dining Services will donate an amount for each meal to partner organizations helping those experiencing hunger and homelessness. 

Solidarity Vigil, The Grotto; 7 p.m. 

Saturday, Nov. 20
Back On My Feet Turkey Trot 5K; The Oreo, 9:30 a.m. 

For more information on HHAW and its schedule of events for 2021, visit the HHAW site. 

Book Recommendations 

All books are currently displayed outside of Holy Grounds on the first floor of Falvey. Books will be available for check-out starting next week.

Poverty and the underclass: changing perceptions of the poor in America by William Alton Kelso 

Confronting homelessness: poverty, politics, and the failure of social policy by David Wagner 

Homeless not hopeless: the survival networks of Latino and African American men by Edna Maritza Molina-Jackson 

Tell them who I am: The Lives of Homeless Women by Elliot Liebow 

All You Can Eat: How Hungry is America? by Joel Berg 

Local HHAW Events & Initiatives

Below is a list of ways to get involved in HHAW in Philly. Click on the following link to view more information and a full description of events: https://www.phila.gov/2021-11-08-hunger-and-homelessness-awareness-week-2021-philly-events-and-information/


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a graduate student in the Communication Department and graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library.


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Peek at the Week: November 15

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Word of the Week: Fika (v/n) 

Staying in Scandinavia for this week’s word of the week (if you haven’t read last week’s Peek at the Week, give it a look) we’re learning about the relaxing Swedish coffee break, “fika.” Although fika is a daily part of people’s lives in Sweden, we could use a little more of it in America.  

Fika is more than just a coffee break. It’s an opportunity to slow down, grab coffee, pick up a sweet treat, and engage in meaningful conversation with friends. I know I’m not very good at the “slowing down” part of a coffee break, but by focusing on engaging in fika throughout my day, I can work to be more mindful and accomplish more the rest of the day.  

Want to learn more about the art of fika? Check out The Little Book of Fika: The Uplifting Daily Ritual of the Swedish Coffee Break by Linda Balslev in Falvey’s collection.  


This Week at Falvey  

Monday, Nov. 15th–Friday, Jan. 7th  

Cabinets of Curiosity Exhibit / Falvey First Floor / Free & Open to the Public 

Monday, Nov. 15th–Friday, Nov. 19th  

Undergraduate Research Symposium Poster Display / 8 a.m.–5 p.m. / Falvey’s Digital Scholarship Lab & Room 205 / Free & Open to the Public 

Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week Display / First Floor Display Case

Monday, Nov. 15th–Wednesday, Nov. 17th  

Virtual VuFind® Summit 2021 / 9 a.m.–12 p.m. each day / Virtual / Register Here 

Monday, Nov. 15th  

Mindfulness Mondays / 1–1:30 p.m. / Virtual / https://villanova.zoom.us/j/98337578849 

Wednesday, Nov. 17th  

Fall 2021 Falvey Forum Workshop Series: Creating Interactive GIS Maps with Leaflet and R / 12–1:30 p.m. / Virtual / Register Here 

GIS Day Lecture: Signe Peterson Fourmy, JD, PhD, Villanova University, on “Digital Mapping & Last Seen Ads” / 5:30–6:30 p.m. / Virtual / Register Here 

Thursday, Nov. 18th  

GTU Honor Society Talk & GEV Colloquium Lecture: Gordon Coonfield, PhD, on “How Neighborhoods Remember: Mapping Memory and Making Place in Philadelphia” / 5:306:30 p.m. / Mendel 154 & Virtual / Register Here 

Friday, Nov. 19th 

Villanova Gaming Society Meeting / 2:304:30 p.m. / Speakers’ Corner / Free & Open to the Public 


This Week in History 

November 19, 1863 – President Lincoln delivers Gettysburg Address 

On November 19, 1863, President Lincoln delivered arguably one of the best speeches in the country’s history at the dedication of the Soliders’ National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. The 2-3 minute speech consisting of less than 275 words ended up being exceptionally more powerful than the 2-hour speech delivered by orator Edward Everett.  

Here are the concluding remarks from his little speech: “The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.” 

A&E Television Networks. (2010, March 10). President Lincoln delivers Gettysburg Address. History.com. Retrieved November 10, 2021, from https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/lincoln-delivers-gettysburg-address. 


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a graduate student in the Communication Department and graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library.


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Weekend Recs: Potatoes

Happy Friday, Wildcats! After a year off, Falvey Memorial Library is bringing back Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

Whether they’re fried, mashed, roasted, or baked, everyone loves a good potato. That being said, this week our weekend recs are all about potatoes and a surprising amount of potato news. The idea for this post sparked when in reading my daily news update, I saw an article about Doug, the spud-tacular potato found in New Zealand. From there, an office conversation about potatoes commenced, and I now present my findings on potato news whether you have 4 minutes or an entire weekend to devote to potatoes.  

If you have 2 minutes… read this article about Doug the potato. 

If you have 2 minutes and 23 seconds… watch this Stephen Colbert clip (starting at the 5:33 mark) of him talking about mysterious potato appearances. 

If you have 1 hour… visit Potato News Today, a publication dedicated to covering all things potatoes. You could probably spend more than an hour sifting through potato news, but an hour is plenty of time to expand your potato news knowledge further. 

If you have 3 hours… read this article with the top 30 best potato recipes and then take some time to put your potato cooking skills to the test! 

If you have 9 hours and 45 minutes… read this psychological fiction novel, Milkman, by Anna Burns, that takes place in Northern Ireland. We all know you can’t think of Ireland without thinking of potatoes! 


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a graduate student in the Communication Department and graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library.


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Weekend Recs: Space

Happy Friday, Wildcats! After a year off, Falvey Memorial Library is bringing back Weekend Recs, a blog dedicated to filling you in on what to read, listen to, and watch over the weekend. Jenna, a graduate assistant from the Communication department, scours the internet, peruses the news, and digs through book stacks to find new, relevant, and thought-provoking content that will challenge you and prepare you for the upcoming week. 

We earthlings have always been fascinated by space, whether it’s looking at what we can see through a telescope, watching movies and TV shows about space, or dreaming of one day traveling to space. This past September, a new Space Race concluded with a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket being the first privately funded, non-government trip to orbit. This weekend, take some time to indulge your love of space by checking out these recs.  

If you have 4 minutes… read about the winners of the Space Race 2.0. 

If you have 11 minutes… read this article about the Discovery Channel’s new show, Who Wants to be an Astronaut, and make sure to watch the embedded video about the commercialization of space. 

If you have 33 minutes… listen to The Skimm’s pop culture podcast episode entitled “Why We’re Still Obsessed with Space.”  

If you have 7 hours… borrow Apollo to the Moon: A History in 50 Objects by Teasel E. Muir-Harmony through InterLibrary Loan. The book uses 50 key artifacts from the Smithsonian archives to tell the story of the space exploration program. 

If you have all weekend… Binge-watch this list of Star Wars content in order to prepare for Disney+’s newest Star Wars show The Book of Boba Fett. 


jenna newman headshotJenna Renaud is a graduate student in the Communication Department and graduate assistant in Falvey Memorial Library.


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Last Modified: November 5, 2021