Yes, the rumours are true. After 27 years at the library, our amazing Judi has decided it’s time to start a new chapter in her life. She’s retiring at the end of December, and we’re inviting everyone to help us send her off in style.
Please join us on Monday, December 16th from 1:30pm-3:00pm as we celebrate with cake and refreshments. Come and share your well wishes, a fun memory, and let her know she’ll be missed.
There aren’t many people in this world like Judi Simpson, and we’ve been lucky enough to hear her laughter, share in her joyous events over the years, and marvel at her gift for recommending books to readers of all ages. We’ll miss her terribly, but we know she’ll be busy with that new granddaughter, and enjoying the idea of sleeping in once in a while!
Here are some statements from staff:
“Before working at the library, my family and I were regular library users and my children’s favourite librarian was Judi. She was always so welcoming to young families and made people feel welcome by greeting them with a personal hello. As a staff member, I discovered a friend who loves to laugh as much a I do. Her reader’s advisor skills are unparalleled and will leave a hole for the rest of us to fill in her absence. She will be missed by kids, adults and staff alike.” -Sheila
“Here are the things I love about Judi!!
She is so welcoming and kind
She made me feel at home from day 1
She is a really great grandma!
She is genuine
She has become a friend in such a short time
And I’m really really going to miss her!” – Kristine
“What sticks out for me in many of my memories of Judi is her unique ability to make a connection with anyone. Working at a library, people from all walks of life come through our doors. Judi has always been able to show kindness and share a joke with anyone. She never hesitates to take an extra needed moment with a patron, and when they visit the library again, Judi is sure make them feel welcome with by remembering a tidbit about them: their child’s name, or perhaps their favourite hockey team.
This leads to a common occurrence here at the library: our staff often laugh at the frequency of patrons walking into the library to ask at the desk, “Is Judi here?” followed by a disappointed face when she is not. We love how beloved she is by our community.
Judi’s mark on this library will be felt for a long time.” -Meriah
“Being one of the longest remaining staff members at the Carleton Place Public Library, Judi has been a part of my career and life for the past 17 years, and I can’t imagine this place without her. How many Tuesday nights did we commiserate over a heavy snowfall, or laugh endlessly as one of our young patrons visited with us at the front desk? She was my partner in crime during crazy hair Storytime sessions, my confidant while I worked on super-secret summer plans, and my guide when I needed advice on how to handle a problem with one of my class visits.
I’ll miss her quick wit, her genius with book recommendations, and her willingness to always give a new computer skill a try. But most of all, I’ll miss seeing her come through these doors, already mid-story about her walk in, with a wide smile and a question at the ready about my day. It’ll be a very different library without Judi.
I wish her many afternoon naps, plenty of time with her sweet granddaughter, and a treat basket that she can fill with her wonderful baking. Happy retirement, Judi!” – Heidi
Years ago my brother-in-law called to tell me that my sister Robin was sick, so the next day I drove down to see her. The minute I walked in the door and looked at her I saw my late mother’s eyes looking at me. I knew she was terminally ill although everyone around her had such hope. Within three weeks she was diagnosed with the family disease called Lymphoma.
And so began the 3 hour return journey every second day to see her at the Kingston Cancer Hospital. Most times she was unconscious and did not know I was there. One day I sat in the waiting room and saw a copy of the teen book series “Sweet Valley High” and started reading it. Suddenly the book’s characters Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield became people I could rely on to get me through the day. If you asked me today what the stories were about I could not tell you. But every second day I was at the Carleton Place library checking out “Sweet Valley High” books as I was living their normal lives in my mind.
Every time one of the nurses in the ICU unit would see me they would ask me what was going on in Sweet Valley High. While I sat beside my dying sister I read to her about the twin’s daily antics that did not include a cell phone or texting. My sister died that August and the only thing that got me though everything was continuing to read books. I think I read every Sweet Valley High Book in the Carleton Place library and not once did the librarian question why. All she ever did was stamp my books and keep me going with her words and love. Thank you Judi!