Friends of the Library Booksale

“Never trust anyone who has not brought a book with them.” - Lemony Snicket Each May and October, a phenomenal transformation occurs. Over four weeks, a giant warehouse  filled to overflowing with more than 250,000 volumes of books, magazines, DVDs, puzzles, and games, is emptied by booklovers across Tompkins County and beyond. It's the Friends of the Library Booksale, one of my top three favorite things about Ithaca. I have attended and bought books at every sale (and numerous times throughout the sale) for at least ten years, though I skipped one or two during Covid.  It's an event that reinvigorates my hope for the world. Aisle after aisle of books of every genre you can think of, and many you can't, all donated with the sole purpose of passing on entertainment and education, as well as raising money for the TC Public Library. In this modern world of digital media, virtual reality, social technology (all of which have their costs and benefits) I remain astounded that I

Childhood Dollhouse- The Finale

It all started with a book and a Facebook post from a friend. Now, several months later, my first dollhouse is complete. 

It turns out I love miniatures. I love building mini houses, decorating them, and filling them them with mini things. I learned some new skills, including how to use a Dremel. I stocked up on glue and paint and random bits of plastic from the ReUse store. 

Though I made so many things from balsa wood and scrap items, I did discover the joy of Etsy. And OMG so many people selling minis. Now I even have a favorite Etsy shop, which includes a mini thrift store!

I loved imagining the story of the person who lives here. It gave the house purpose and life. It gave me something to work toward.

Working on the house has been a great escape from the pandemic, winter, politics (both local and national), writing and publishing. It's given me something to put my energy into that is unmarred and unfettered by the real world: it is pure creation, pure fun. 

Along the way, I realized there is a whole big world of minis that I knew nothing about. So, I began to explore. I joined Instagram to follow the million miniaturists sharing their work (no clue how to use Insta, btw). 

I found the Greenleaf dollhouse company in upstate NY, which offers a wide range of dollhouses to buy and build yourself. Greenleaf hosts an amazing Forum for miniaturists that contains 20 years worth of conversations about dollhouses and everything related. I joined up and have been asking questions and learning. 

I also discovered Facebook Marketplace. Did you know there are about a billion dollhouses and dollhouse-related items for sale on any given day? 

I also remembered Pinterest. And wouldn't you know it, a trillion people use that platform to post and save dollhouse pictures. Now I'm one of them. 

There are a few more things to work on in this house: a lamp for the bedroom, and globe for the library, a ridge cap for the roof. But all in all, I have marked this house as complete, as I look forward to spring. 

My dollhouse story isn't over. I've been scouring the interwebs for my next project(s), and I've found (more than) a few. I'm ready to take on a full house. One with stairs and windows. One with someone else's lapsed childhood dreams lurking in the shadows, ready to see sunlight again. This house, full of verve and love from my childhood and brought into today, is just the beginning.