What do you do when there's someone you love but can't save them from dying? For a woman in Idaho, when it came to trying to save a 110-Year-old cottonwood tree in her yard, she did it by turning it into a library.
Sharalee Armitage Howard, an artist, a librarian and former bookbinder from Coeur d’Alene, Idaho finally decided to chop the tree down in November 2018,, after a branch of it fell down on a car. The tree had been needing to be cut down ever since her family had bought the house 15 years ago. A look inside the tree would explain why - the inside of the trunk was rotten.
However, not wanting to part with the tree, Howard decided to give it a life after death, by turning the tree into a 'Little Free Library.'
'Little Free Library' defines itself as a nonprofit organization 'at the heart of a global network of impassioned and action-oriented volunteers, patrons, and friends who establish community book-sharing boxes.' The Little Free Library Sharing Network serves more than 75,000 neighborhoods in 88 countries.
The concept is simple - it is an open library for people to borrow books from where they can return a book after they are done reading it, or immediately replace it with a different book when they take one out.
Basing it off of this concept, Howard converted her tree stump into a little 'open library,' by carving shelves and a door into the hollow of the trunk. She eventually put up small stone steps leading to the library as well. She shared this in a Facebook post in end-December, which got over a 103K shares.
She added more things in the library, by putting in small detailing, like decorations and carvings.
Her post also stated that it is officially part of a 'Little Free Library' now. Taking a cue from Howard may be what we need, to save the environment and turn things we already have into other things.