I’m Gonna Build a Library

I have a goal. Just a small little goal. I am going to build a library.


I said I am going to build a library.

Spring cleaning is always an ordeal when you have kids. They grow out of toys, clothes, and books. I have a deep fondness for books and struggle getting rid of them. After piling up 30+ baby/toddler books I took a break and called mom. “Geeze mom, I have tons of books I gotta take to Goodwill”. “No! Build a Library!”, she tells me. Then launches into this little free library she heard about on the news. Hm. Cool.

I looked into it today. What a cool concept (you should take a look at it!). How to do it? This is my plan:

  • Draft a proposal letter to the owner of the vacant lot on which I’d like to put up my library. It’s a corner lot the kids use for volleyball and tag.
    • Within this letter I have outlined the who’s, what’s, and hows of it, as well as what I feel it will do for our neighborhood. The response to this will determine my timeline. If he says yes, I can process. If it’s no, I need to find another place for it.
  • Collect the Supplies
    • Lying around my house I have the post materials, as well as the screws and probably most of the wood. I was thinking of asking my dad to donate some cedar shingles for the roof (it’s a bit like a bird house in shape/style).
  • Get it Ready
    • The kids and I are going to design and cut the pieces of the house at my mom’s (power tool heaven!). Then when it comes time to put it up it’s no big deal. It will be ready for the kids to decorate (I’m thinking all the helpers should do a hand print…).
  • Book Drive
    • I created a little flyer for it. It’s an invite to come down, bring your books, and get recognized as a part of the project. The kids and I will walk around, pass it out and explain what we’re doing.
  • The Build
    • Once the library is ready and the books are coming, we’ll have the “building party”. Lemonade, cookies, and a lot of paint and wet wipes. Bring the kids down, put in your books, get new ones, and read!

There’s some other parts, organizations I would like to get involved, donations I would like to see, but that will ultimately depend on the lot owner. In third grade the students get a pine tree for arbor day. Maybe some families would donate one? I know we will. Find a couple park style benches. Get some neighborhood volunteers for “park upkeep”. That shouldn’t be hard around our area. It’d also be something to let the school know about. And the churches. Just to get the word out.

Having this library would also give the kids in the area something to be responsible for. I think if they’re involved, there will be a lot smaller chance of things going wrong (someone boosting all the books, taking the library, etc.). They’d have something to be proud of, be a part of, and know that it is good.

Plus, how cool would it be to have a little corner across the street to drop off your read book, borrow a new one, and sit by a tree and read on a warm summer day??



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