Little Free Libraries

Little Free Libraries are small personally managed ‘take a book or leave a book’ libraries. They are usually adorable. You can look at their Flickr gallery to see some examples of the awesomeness that people create.

If you want to have your library registered and affiliated with the site you need to pay a small fee. They send you an official plaque and list your library on their map so people can find you.

I would like to make mine with a green roof! I am not a builder type though and have no tools. I have a couple of friends who are and I plan on commissioning them to make this for me.


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Soft ideas, soft lines – hard ideas, hard lines

EPSON044 - Version 2

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Design concepts – The Six Courtyard Houses

The Six Courtyard Houses were designed by Ibarra Rosano Design Architects in Arizona.

This article has images and plan views. I’m not familiar with the climate in Arizona. I must say that I wouldn’t want to live in the landscape pictured for these houses. It’s a bit.. stark and exposed.

What was the thought process for it? “I would like there to be a big central platform viewable from every window in the house. Plus, three plants.” heeheee. I kid! Or do I?

I’m more of a Secret Garden’ kinda gal. But I want to learn more about this starker more modern/contemporary style. This Pintrest Board has tons of great examples.

Various design concept sketches.
I need to pick one to develop further. 1, 6 or 2?





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Color and Pattern Studies



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Sketchbook – Backyard koi watercolor


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Progressive School Natural Playscape – Stage One

This is a great project off to a great start. Stage One has been completed with much community help and the kids have been having a blast exploring it.

This is an under used area at a progressive private school (grades K-8). K and 1st grade teachers have requested this area be transformed in to Create with Nature and natural playscape area.

After meetings with the teachers and Landscape Committee I came up with a fun plan that can be completed in various stages as budget become available


Teacher Requests
– Largish circle of stumps (in combo w/ plants) to enclose the Create With Nature Zone
– Create ‘Storage Library’ for loose parts and tools – organized baskets of materials
– Ability to take over that whole space – involves moving nursery area
– Moving the mulch pile over
– Barriers to keep kids out of parking area and out from under delicate oaks
– Incorporation of other play elements –
– Water, Playhouse, Interesting plants, Pathways

Create with Nature Zone – Enclosed by plants and stumps, inside are some movable stumps and some larger immovable stumps to build on
Loose Parts Library – Includes wicker baskets, wine crates or other containers with well organized loose parts
Mulch Mountain – Large persistent pile of mulch to be replaced as it breaks down or is used elsewhere
River Bed – Includes child friendly hand pump to access water, water flows into basins or sluice and down into dry river bed w/ bridge for crossing
Pathways – Mulch pathways, include two clear entrances, pavers under oaks through plantings, pavers for a curvy path leading to living willow tunnel
Barriers – Natural fencing (willow or branches) along parking area, low mosaic seating wall at south edge, under oak plantings
Playhouse – Small 3 sided playhouse made from natural materials – willow or branches

Stage 1 – Oct 6th – Main goal is to build Create with Nature Zone and Library of loose parts.
Stump circle – Arrange and dig stumps as we have into largish area surrounding tree
Library – Low, kid accessible shelves for storing baskets of loose parts
Loose parts – Tree cookies, tree blocks, smooth river stones, twigs, pinecones, bamboo pieces, interesting seed pods, any interesting plant material
Tools – Small brooms, rakes, trowels

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Next Stages:
Stage 2: move mulch pile, create fencing along parking area, build willow/branch playhouse
Stage 3: plantings and pathways
Stage 4: incorporate water, boulders, watercourse and bridge
Stage 5: K and 1st students create mosaic tiles, organize community mosaic build

Also viewable on my Projects page!

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Sketchbook – Fancy arbor

photo 1

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Cutleaf Geranium – weed – sketch


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Sketching – From On High

A few sketches of the Bay and Oakland from vantage point in the hills.



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Sketching – Wood


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