Christmas holiday hours 2019/2020

The Christmas holiday season and the end of the academic year are upon us. As a part of the holiday break over December and January our hours of operation will be changing.

For the period Monday 16th December 2019 -Sunday 26th January 2020 the Library will observe the following hours:



Our normal hours of operation will resume on Monday 3rd February 2020. Please note we will be closed on Thursday the 6th February for Waitangi Day.

From all of us at the Library we wish you a safe and happy Summer break.


Let it snow, let it sn… Wait – what?

Christmas treeTis the season of seasonally inappropriate Christmas songs! It looks like we might be having a beautiful sunny Christmas day (fingers crossed), so next time you hear ‘Let it snow’, ‘White Christmas’, or ‘Frosty the Snowman’, have a little snigger with me.

The library will be closing at 1pm tomorrow (Tuesday 23rd December), and we will reopen at 8 am on Monday 5th January.

We hope you all have a safe and happy Christmas and New Year.

See you in 2015!

Have yourself a merry little Christmas

Over the next few days I am looking forward to plonking myself down in front of the box with a glass of wine and a mince-pie to enjoy some festive flicks to get me in the mood for some Christmas cheer.  You may notice there are fair few children’s movies in this list, but I always find Christmas brings out the big kid that hides inside us for most of the year.

Again this list is in no particular order and, unlike my music selection, I have too many movies to choose from and can’t bring myself to omit any of them!  Last blog of the year so have an amazing Christmas and we will see you in the New Year rearing to go!

 13. Miracle on 34th Street (1994/1947)

I find the 1994 a bit saccharine and I have never seen the 1947 version, but always good to remind us what it’s all about.

12. Love Actually (2003)

One for the girlies…

11. It’s a Wonderful Life

I have a terrible confession….I have never seen all of this film.  However, I have just found the entire film on You Tube, so guess what I’m doing tonight!

10. Trading Places (1983)

love it!  Eddie Murphy at his best.

9. The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)

8. Bad Santa (2003)

Can’t really put a clip here cause of all the swearing but hee hee heee

7. Home Alone 1 and 2 (1990/1992)

Great fun.


6. Die Hard 1 and 2 (1988/1990)

Has to be two of the best action movies ever with a Christmas flavour (ha that rhymes!)


5. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)

This is my traditional wrapping presents movie.

3. Elf (2003)

I’m not a big fan of silly movies and I was very reluctant to watch this when it first came out, but boy was I wrong…sooo funny.

2. The Polar Express

Visually this film is beautiful and a firm favourite in the Smith household.

1. The Snowman

Brings a tear to the eye every time….beautiful.

I believe in Father Christmas

Every year back in Scotland I would complain about how early the Christmas cards would be in the shops and the lights would be switched on (5th of November in Paisley!) and I have therefore been enjoying the lack of forced commercialism here in New Zealand in the past few weeks. However, I do feel a saddening lack of Christmas cheer with the apparent absence of Christmas movies on the box and very few tunes on the radio. So to get me and you into the Christmas mood I thought I would share my top seven (couldn’t think of ten) seasonal music in no particular order, but feel free to comment on which is your No.1.  With a follow-up blog of my top ten Christmas movies to come next week. I know this has little to do with CPIT library, but as it’s Christmas……

7.  In my humble opinion the only decent song Mariah every did, argue at your peril!

6.  This brings a tear to my eye nearly every time. Beautifully sung by Judy Garland in the 1944 movie  “Meet me in St Louis” 

5. The hair!  The jumpers! The smouldering looks!

4. I almost didn’t put the video in for this as Shane MacGowan of The Pogues really is a sight for sore eyes.  

3. I love this song…so dark and moody and about anti-commercialism with fits perfectly into this blog.

2. Couldn’t really have a top ten without this classic…

1. Such a great video, again a bit dark and moody (reoccurring theme!)

Bad Santa?

According to the British Medical Journal in their annual Christmas issue, Santa Claus is a bad role model.  Not only is he obese but his reckless speeding has been well documented, travelling the world in a single night.  He’s also been suspected of drink-driving due to the alcohol consumed at many of the households he visits with empty beer bottles left as damning evidence.

He has also been known to endorse Coca Cola, cigarettes and may other unhealthy products.  But it hasn’t always been this way, modern life hasn’t been kind to Santa Claus ( or Father Christmas, Saint Nicholas, Kris Kringle as he’s also known).

Wikipedia says that the modern Santa Claus is amalgam of a number of  real historical figures and characters of folk law the main 3 being Saint Nicholas, a 4th Century Greek Christian Bishop who was known for giving gifts to the poor; Odin a mythical pre christian Norse God who rode a flying horse and replaced gifts of food left out for him with candy; and the Dutch and Belgian Sinterklaas (translated as Santa Claus) who used to carry a spear and a bag for holding naughty children.

This is a far cry from the podgy, reckless Santa that we know today, he’s neither a Saint nor enforcer of good behaviour.  So what went wrong with Santa?  Your theories would be welcome.  Merry Christmas.