Unlocking the keyhole bed

gblog1By Jim Demosthenes, TPL garden volunteer and Master Gardener

First made popular in Africa due to dry growing conditions, keyhole gardens are growing in popularity in other hot, dry geographic areas. From a view above, the garden is shaped like a keyhole because of a notch that is cut out of the round shaped bed to enable access to a compost bin situated in the center. The compost bin is supplied with organic matter such as leaves, banana peels, and other kitchen and garden waste. The compost decays naturally over time. When it rains the decomposed compost material (fertilizer) seeps into the surrounding area within the garden providing moisture and nutrients necessary to grow plants and vegetables.

As part of the TPL demonstration garden, a keyhole bed was built in the summer of 2015.  It was created over a base of woody debris, which gblog2is shown to enhance water retention and help build high quality soil (see diagrams).  Last October, half the bed was planted with seed garlic grown organically in Midcoast Maine; this will be harvested around July of 2016.  This spring, a different organic crop will be planted and cared for on the other side of the bed.

The expectation, based on the garden construction, is the lack of need to add any additional water to the garden, even during the warmest summer months. All of the harvest will be donated to the Midcoast Hunger Prevention Program (MCHPP). Future plantings of other vegetable and herb crops will continue to supply food to those in need.


Vacation Week Activities and Events

If you have children in school, you know February vacation is next week!! Topsham Public Library has scheduled events to help parents, kids, and community members stay busy.

telescopesmallerTo start it all off, this Saturday, February 13, from 10am-11:30am Topsham Public Library is hosting a Love Your Library Open House. There will be gelato from Gelato Fiasco and coffee from Topsham’s own Wicked Joe!! There will also be a Tech Petting Zoo, telescope demos, free raffles, tours and crafts! You don’t want to miss this!

Photo Feb 14, 1 27 34 PMTeens (ages 11-18), come to the open house and get some free gelato and then stay and participate in the Chocolate Wars from 1-2pm. Events include: Chocolate Pictionary, Stack & Sort Races, Chocolate Shuffleboard and more. Please register by Friday, February 12 at noon as we need 10 teens to run the event. Get your friends together and may the best chocolate eater win! (You can register at the circulation desk or by calling us at 725-1727.)

Parents, on Wednesday, February 17 bring your children ages 6 and up to Legopalooza from 1-3pm! You can build unique creations using our extensive Lego collection. If you need ideas, you can take one of our design challenges or use our Lego books. At the end of the program, we will take pictures of the cool creations you build!

People of all ages make sure you come visit on Thursday, February 18  from 10am-3pm as there will be a Model Railroad Display! The Maine 3 Railers 0-Gauge Model Railroad Club will set up a running model railroad. Come see how they work and talk to club members!

Do you have a baby, or a toddler, or a preschooler? If you do, be sure to join Mariah Friday, February 19 from 10-11am for Maine Family Booknic and explore the gross motor games that will help your little one develop.

Photo Jul 23, 5 07 52 PMIs your lightsaber gathering dust? Are you just itching to speak in Star Wars quotes? If your inner Jedi, or Sith, is dying to get out, join us Friday, February 19 from 1-3pm for Friday of the Force. Star Wars themed snacks, crafts, and activities will be available! Wear a costume too, if you want! This is open to all ages! Oh, and may the force be with you.

Then to wrap up the week, on Saturday, February 20 from 11am-12noon, Joy of the Art winners will talk about their work, the People’s Choice Award will be presented and the winner of the Library Lovers’ Lottery will be announced. If you can’t make it to the Artist Talk, the Crooker Gallery is open all week, so make sure you come in and see the show before it’s gone!

Phew, there’s a lot going on! And those events are just the special events – don’t forget that our normal programming, like Young Critics, Preschool Story Time, Drop-In Tech Support, Men’s Book Group, Genealogy Drop In, and Sip-n-Stitch are going on as usual.

Hope to see you at Topsham Public Library!


It’s Tax Time

For better or for worse, tax time has arrived. Topsham Public Library has a variety of ways it can help you through tax season.

Income-Tax-Form-240063We will be receiving the following forms and instructions that you can pick up here: Form 1040, Instruction 1040, Form 1040A, Instruction 1040A, Form 1040EZ, and Instruction 1040EZ. They have not arrived yet. Please feel free to call us to inquire if they have arrived before you come to pick up the forms.  Our number is 725-1727. We will not be receiving any Maine State Tax Forms.

If there is a form that you need that the IRS has not provided we can print one blank form for free. The normal fee for black and white copies of 15 cents per page will be applied for any filled-in forms or  instructions.

Also, on Thursday mornings, AARP will be here to help people with their taxes. You need an appointment to use this free service and can make that appointment at the circulation desk or by calling Topsham Public Library at 725-1727. When you come to your appointment, please remember to bring a photo id, last year’s tax return, proof of health insurance and the social security number of each person listed on the tax return. If you make an appointment, but for whatever reason you cannot make it, please let us know by calling us at 725-1727.

The staff is happy to help you in any way we can, but remember we are not tax preparers ourselves. Thank you and by working together we can get through this!

Livin’ Lovin’ Maid

The following is the continuation of the series in which I interview staff members of Topsham Public Library.

If you were to open the staff refrigerator you would see yogurt – lots of yogurt. One of Lynne’s lunchtime staples is yogurt. Usually, it’s the greek style yogurt, but on the day that I had the privilege of interviewing Lynne, she had decided to try a coconut milk yogurt. Coconut milk yogurt left Lynne Dazed and Confused about why anyone would make the stuff. Needless to say, there will not be coconut milk yogurt in the fridge anymore. After her experience with the stuff, Lynne might prefer a Tangerine, or a piece of Custard Pie, or perhaps even a Hot Dog.

It has been more than Ten Years Gone that Lynne has been with us. She tends to be one of the quieter members of our staff, but she knows her stuff and is always willing to lend a hand. In addition to being the Circulation Manager, Lynne catalogs the children’s items which is a detail oriented job, and you might find her from time to time helping Mariah with the children’s programs. She also liaisons with other libraries concerning a variety of situations, like a Communication Breakdown, when the need arises.

rabbithillLynne has many and sundry hobbies. Of course, she loves to read. Her first favorite book that she remembers, and she still possesses, is Rabbit Hill by Robert Lawson. In the Evening, when not reading you can find her walking and hiking. She might be The Fool in the Rain you see walking on days of inclement weather and on beautiful days you might see her hiking Over the Hills and Far Away. No matter the weather, Lynne likes to Ramble On. She also enjoys knitting, beading jewelry, and pouring a Whole Lotta Love on her grandchildren. You will probably not find her cooking. Even though she has an Italian background, of which she is proud, she would prefer someone else do the cooking. Cooking, to her, might feel like hanging from the Gallows Pole.

Lynne would like to travel more and you will find her Down by the Seaside as she prefers The Ocean to the mountains. You might even find her as far a field as Kashmir, but with her Italian heritage I think she would spend a lot of time in Italy. When I asked her who she would invite to dinner if she could invite anyone in the whole world, Lynne’s great grandparents on her father’s side topped the list. These great grandparents died when her grandfather was six and he was left to live on the streets of Italy until he immigrated to the United States. (Perhaps her grandfather taught her an Immigrant Song of his own.) She would love to know more about them and their daily lives. Lynne would include Robert Plant, Sir Paul McCartney, Edgar Allen Poe, Sherlock Holmes, Robin Hood, and Robin Williams to dinner as well.

concertNow what I am about to reveal is what I absolutely love about Lynne. As I mentioned earlier, Lynne is one of our quietest members on staff. She is petite, and subtle, and polite, always saying please and Thank You, and just goes about her business and helps who she can in Good Times Bad Times, so when I asked her what she would be if she could not be a librarian, I was a bit shocked at her answer. Lynne would love to be a singer rockin’ it out on stage! I knew she was a Rock and Roll music buff, and usually she’s humming or singing a tune, but I never saw that coming! She says she loves karaoke, so before I climb that Stairway to Heaven, I hope to hear her belt out a hit!

What’s going on out there?


For obvious reasons, most gardeners don’t write much about their activities during the growing season, at least not this far north, where the summers are short and the winters long.  On this cold bright day in January I am thinking of last season’s gardens, as well as all that needs doing before spring.  The light is getting stronger and March does not seem far away.  But first, there is a tale to tell.

Back when the air was warm and the days long, some of you may have sat by a tall sunny window in the library and noticed flowers blooming, birds busy at feeders, pumpkins glowing orange, and hummingbirds zipping about.  You may have seen people doing normal garden tasks, such as weeding, but you also may have seen them hauling bales of straw, piling up logs, laying down newspaper, and making large mounds, among other odd activities.  And, you may have wondered, “what is going on out there?”

It turns out that a lot is going on out there.  It started back in 2007 with a boy scout project: a beautiful path of spiral stepping stones from the back door of the children’s area.   A few years later a garden to attract birds was installed by another group of scouts (girls this time).  Perennials began popping up here and there.  A children’s flower garden grew around the spiral path.  Volunteers appeared and began experimenting with funky growing techniques such as keyhole beds, hugel mounds, vertical growing, and strawberry spirals.  Plans were hatched for an Edible Forest Garden – which is just what is sounds like, but more on that later.

The gardens were attracting attention.  A handicapped accessible gravel path around the building was put in.  The gardens spilled over with food for the birds, pumpkins for the kids, nectar for the bees, plants from which to make tea, and even some squash & cukes for Mid Coast Hunger Prevention.  A library friend brought wonderful greenhouse specimens into the main reading room.  A fanciful teepee of white birch sprung up – under which at least two couples were married – and when it rotted out this year, another garden friend found the very best wood with which to replace it.  Around the front, the large circle bed was redesigned and the first trees were planted.

The original spiral stepping stone path opened a door of possibilities, each with a small story of its own.  In the next few months I, along with some of the other folks who made the gardens grow, will write a short post with some more details about all that’s been evolving outside the library walls. We’re going to name some names, we’re going to explain what hugel mounds are, and we’re going to tell you what is the very best wood from which to make a teepee.  Stay tuned.

Sarah Wolpow

TPL Garden Coordinator

Top 5 of 2015 – Part 2

This is the continuation of the Top 5 Picks of 2015

Susan’s Top 5:



The Art of Hearing Hearbeats by Jan-Philip Sendker






Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Atul Gawande






All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr






The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen






The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness




Cyndi’s Top 5:



Smoke Gets In Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory by Caitlin Doughty





Jackaby by William Ritter





Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Atul Gawande





So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed by Jon Ronson





Rook by Sharon Cameron




Helen’s Top 5:



Crossbones by John L. Campbell





The Harvest Man by Alex Grecian





Werewolf Cop by Andrew Klavan



blood infernal


Blood Infernal by James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell





The Dead Play On by Heather Graham




Jennifer’s Top 5: (I was an English major, so I have a little trouble with numbers…)



The Truth According to Us by Annie Barrows





So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed by Jon Ronson





Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys





Devil in the White City by Erik Larson





Stay Where You Are and Then Leave by John Boyne





Destiny of the Republic by Candice Millard





All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr




And then there’s Dave’s Top 5: (Dave goes above and beyond!)

Dave’s Top 5 TV Series:



River starring Stellan Skarsgaard and Nicola Walker (This is a Netflix original and not in the Minerva system.)





Transparent starring Jeffrey Tambor (This is an amazon original and not in the Minerva system.)





Grace & Frankie starring Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda (This is a Netflix original and not in the Minerva system.)





Happy Valley starring Sarah Lancashire





Blacklist starring James Spader




Dave’s Top 5 Movies:



The Martian starring Matt Damon






Spy starring Melissa McCarthy





Mad Max: Fury Road starring Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron






Still Alice starring Julianne Moore




Mr. Holmes starring Ian McKellen





Dave’s Top 5 Books:



The Nature of the Beast by Louise Penny






A Banquet of Consequences by Elizabeth George






A Fine Romance by Candice Bergen





Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Atul Gawande





Dead Wake by Erik Larson



So those are some favorites amongst the staff at the Topsham Public Library. What were your favorites from 2015?

Top 5 of 2015 – Part 1

It’s that time of year when the staff of Topsham Public Library reveal their Top 5 Picks of 2015. The criteria that a top pick must meet is pretty basic: the staff member has to have read it, watched it, or listened to it in 2015 and loved it. Click on the picture to find the item in the library catalog. Drum roll, please!


Emma’s Top 5:

So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed by Jon Ronson

A121-o1kPHLBy the author of The Psychopath Test, So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed is an examination of people who have been vilified in public, often online, for different reasons and how they coped with the aftermath. In turns fascinating, terrifying and funny. This is a real eye-opener on the power of the internet, mob mentality and resilience.

The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell

1000autThis was originally published in 2010 and I only got to it this year despite being a huge fan of the author. This is an epic book detailing the life and times of Dutchman, Jacob de Zoet and the people he encounters in his years spent as clerk on a tiny trading post island in Japan at the very beginning of the 19th century. What is astonishing about this novel is just how much you care about some of the characters. Mitchell puts them in real jeopardy throughout the course of the book, forcing the reader to hold their breath waiting to see if the characters that they care about will survive.

A Head Full of Ghosts by Paul Tremblay

ghostsI can’t say too much about this novel without giving too much away but if you were ever a fan of horror movies such as The Exorcist, Poltergeist or Amityville Horror or are aware of the current crop of paranormal ‘reality’ shows, then you will love this book. It is terrifying…but not for the reasons you think.


The Sleeper and The Spindle by Neil Gaiman and illustrated by Chris Riddle

sleeperI had read the story before, a retelling of the Sleeping Beauty fairy tale, in Gaiman’s short story collection, Trigger Warning, but it was Riddle’s illustrations that really caught my attention in this book. Rendered in black ink and accented in metallic hues, they are gorgeous, intricate and darkly humorous—just as fairy tales should be.


We Were Liars by e. lockhart

liarI couldn’t put this YA title down. Again, I can’t say too much without giving too much away. The book tells of a privileged group of teens who summer on a private island close to Martha’s Vineyard. To me, it was reminiscent of one of my favorite books, The Secret History by Donna Tartt.


Special Mention: You Have Never Been Here: New and Selected Stories by Mary Rickert


I’m only half way through this book. I started it after I gave Jen my Top 5, but I am enjoying it so much I had to add it to my list. Mary Rickert is a Shirley Jackson and World Fantasy Award winner, and her stories are the kind that I love to be immersed in and wish I could write. Her tales are uncanny and darkly dream-like yet portray humanity in all its beautiful and painful guises. Highly recommended with the caveat that she takes you to some very dark places.



Julie’s Top 5:



Dreamer’s Pool by Juliet Mariller





Jackaby by William Ritter





Chew Vol. 1:  Taster’s Choice by John Layman





Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige





Undertow by Michael Buckley




Lynne’s Top 5:



State of Wonder by Ann Patchett





A Head Full of Ghosts by Paul Tremblay





Deep Down Dark by Hector Tobar





We Were Liars by e. lockhart





Finding Jake by Bryan Reardon




Linda’s Top 5:

The Cutting by James Hayman

cuttingThe set-up is familiar. Big city cop moves to a smaller New England town (Portland) to live a more peaceful, family-friendly life with his teenage daughter. A body is found in a local scrap heap: a star athlete with his heart cut out. The adventure begins as Mike McCabe and his partner, Maggie Savage, rush to find this cruel murderer before there is another grisly crime. This is a real page turner with lots of action and suspense. It’s not for the faint of heart.


The Truth of All Things by Kieran Shields

truththingsIt’s 1892 Portland, Maine, and the body of a young prostitute is found laid out to form a pentagram and pinned to the earth with a pitchfork. Deputy Marshall Archie Lean is assigned to the case. He is soon joined by noted criminologist, former Pinkerton Agent Perceval Grey, who is also half Abenaki. I love this book for its historical detail and the uniqueness of the story. The characters are engaging and realistic as is the setting.


A Study in Revenge by Kieran Shields

revengeThis is the second in the Archie Lean/Perceval Grey series. Something is definitely not what it seems when Lean finds the burned body of a man he knows was buried two days earlier. Once again, he seeks out his friend Perceval Grey for assistance. Mr. Grey, busy with his own case which also may not be what it seems, agrees to help. Could the two cases be related, and will they live to tell the tale? This is another great historical mystery that will take you on an exciting journey from the streets of Portland through towns to the south and all the way to Boston.


Sunset by Al Lamanda

sunsetEx-police detective John Bekker lives in a little trailer on the beach. Following the death of his wife and the institutionalization of his traumatized daughter, he hides in the bottle until one day he is kidnapped. John comes to a week later, all dried out, in the home of crime boss, Eddie Crist, who supposedly had Mrs. Bekker killed. Mr. Crist, now dying, wants his name cleared as he insists he was not responsible for her death. I enjoyed the fast pace of this book and the concise writing style of the author. The characters are well drawn and the relationship between John and his “next door” neighbor at the beach rings true. There is plenty of action, too.


Moriarty by Anthony Horowitz

moriartyBeginning at Reichenbach Falls after the deaths of Holmes and Moriarty, Scotland Yard Inspector Jones and Pinkerton Agent Chase meet over another body found there. In his pocket is a clue to a meeting scheduled between Moriarty and a new American criminal who wants to take over London. Jones and Chase join forces to bring an end to this new and even more cruel menace to the city. Full of action, adventure, twists and turns this novel will take you on a ride. Written in the Holmesian style, this is the second mystery written by Horowitz that is sanctioned by the Conan Doyle Estate. It does not disappoint.



Mariah’s Top 5 (actually 6, but who’s counting?):

We Were Liars by e. lockhart (seems to be a popular title…)



If you have not read this book, then I am not allowed to say anything about it. Except READ IT!!! And then come talk to me about it!!!


The Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo



Awesome world building, characters, just awesome all around. Be prepared to go without sleep if you start this series – it’s too good to put down! Also, you will be very very sad when you are finished because you will want to read these books forever!


Overwhelmed: Work, Love, and Play When No One Has the Time by Brigid Schulte



Fascinating read, with some very interesting ideas for the future….



The Books of the Beginning Series by John Stephens



Possibly the best kid’s books I’ve read since Harry Potter!



The Supernatural Enhancements by Edgar Cantero



A spooky and quirky read – another weird format book (I’m starting to think I just love books that are written in strange formats…)



Ballet Cat: The Totally Secret Secret by Bob Shea



If you like Elephant and Piggie (and who doesn’t like Elephant and Piggie???!?!?!?!) you should read this book! A laugh-out-loud picture book with a sweet message.



Dale’s Top 5:



Everest (movie)






The Martian (movie)







Mars Crossing by Geoffrey A. Landis






Super Mutant Magic Academy by Jillian Tamaki




Meru (documentary)





Look out for the rest of our staff’s top picks in Part 2 next week!



2015 Year in Review

Here is a quick look back at the many happenings in 2015 at your Topsham Public Library!



Connie Bailey was the first recipient of the new Whitten Society Award.





Photo Feb 14, 1 46 18 PM Photo Feb 14, 1 46 53 PM


Never mind Star Wars. The Teen Room hosted Chocolate Wars!




2015-02-19 14.34.33 Photo Feb 19, 2 14 00 PM

A smashing time was had at Steam Punk Stem Day!





Photo Aug 11, 6 35 00 PM


We hosted our first, and won’t be our last, adult coloring night!





Photo Sep 08, 6 36 37 PM



As always, the summer reading program was a hit!




IMG_0454 Photo Aug 05, 10 05 10 AM


We welcomed two new staff members – Sharon and Dave!




Photo Apr 11, 1 38 11 PM Photo Apr 11, 1 09 17 PMPhoto Apr 11, 2 05 26 PM


The Poetry Festival had a diverse and gifted group of poets!







And we all LOVE Big Truck Day!





Plus, we now have two telescopes available for circulation, Joy of the Pen saw a growth in application numbers, a bookmark making class was held through a collaboration with Maine Fiber Arts and we now have a volunteer helping people with genealogy searches!

This is only a smattering of what Topsham Public Library has to offer. For a more in depth look at what happened in 2015 pick up the Annual Report at the circulation desk or view it here. And make sure you check us out in 2016!


To Resolve or Not To Resolve. That is the Question.

The year is coming to an end, and the new year is right on the doorstep. I don’t usually make New Year Resolutions. I avoid them like the plague because it seems to me that I am setting myself up for failure when I make a resolution. But this year, I do want to make some changes. I’m sure it’s just semantics, but I like thinking about changes and not thinking about resolutions. So, in no particular order here are some things I have been thinking about.

  1. Time is not slowing down, if anything it seems to be speeding up. I don’t like that. I want to be more purposeful and slow myself down, even if I can’t slow time down.
  2. I like to craft, and I am not going to start another project until I finish, or get rid of, the half-finished projects I have sitting around.
  3. I am going tosaipua_winter1 read that pile of books that has been sitting neglected next to my bed. They are books I want to read, but in my defense, it is difficult working the circulation desk at the Topsham Public Library and watching all these new, old, and interesting titles pass through my hands every day and not taking a few of them home.
  4. I am going to spend less time with a computer on my lap or a phone in my hand.
  5. I am going to find time for silence.
  6. I want to fix up my garden so it is pleasant to the eye.
  7. I am going to take one day at a time.
  8. I am going to be more kind.
  9. I am going to spend more time with my husband.
  10. I am going to learn how to carve.

These aren’t goals that I think will make me a better person, or put me on the road to success. They are goals that take me to the type of life I want to lead. What about you?


Mariah is Our Princess!

The following is the next installment in the series in which I interview staff members of the Topsham Public Library. 

My main task at the Topsham Public Library is to cover the circulation desk. I welcome patrons as they enter, I help people find items they are looking for, I check in items and I check out items, I answer questions, and if I can’t answer their questions, I find someone who can. I also get to witness the children as the enter the library. Ninety-nine percent of the time, the children are eager to be here. Some enter shyly and quietly, while others make their presence known with an exuberant “Hi!” Invariably they will head for the fish tank, and then on to the train table. While making their way to the children’s section, I can hear the children talking to their parents, and one hundred percent of the time I hear them ask about Mariah hoping she is here.

Mariah is the most loved of our staff members. The children love her, the parents love her, her co-workers love her. If you haven’t figured it out, Mariah is the Children’s Librarian and I am not exaggerating when I say, the Topsham Public Library is blessed to have her.

Mariah is sincere in her concern for children and their development, and she is passionate about the role libraries play in a child’s growth. Mariah, weekly, has three story times geared to three different age groups. She also facilitates a book group for older children in grades 4 and 5; plus, she runs parent-child workshops and organizes other monthly programs for children.

But there is so much more to Mariah than what we witness here at the Topsham Public Library, and that is what I’m interested in!

When Mariah is not here and not in class (she is working on her Masters of Library Science), she might be found playing gigs with her bands. She plays guitar, piano, recorder, bass, mandolin, and doumbek AND she sings! If you are available, her band, Steamboat Gypsy, is playing an event at Fort Andross this Friday, December 18 from 6pm-8pm, and it is open to the public.

little princessLike the rest of us, she loves to read, and her first favorite book she remembers is A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett. Mariah prefers nonfiction to fiction, but will take mystery over romance and drama instead of sci-fi. She would rather hold the book in her hands then read it with an e-reader.

As far as food goes, Mariah enjoys eat-in more than take-out. After much pondering, and perhaps changing her mind a time or two, Mariah would take vanilla over chocolate and cake over pie. Salad instead of soup, scrambled over fried, and mexican food before chinese food.

Mariah picks country over city and ocean over mountains; Apple over android, ukulele instead of accordion, and she prefers antique to new. And she one of her favorite sounds is the sound of rain. Mariah would choose Jason Bourne over James Bond and Superman over Batman. If she had a super power, she would like to read minds instead of being invisible. As well as her musical interests, Mariah also enjoys crafting, cooking, and participating in yoga on her off time. It was only under duress that she chose singing over dancing when I made her choose.

Mariah, usually very calm, friendly, and professional, can be giddy at times. And what would make her lose all sense of decorum, you ask? Mariah loves costumes and dressing up in costumes and Halloween just about sends her over the edge with anticipation and excitement. Mariah plans her costume weeks in advance!

When asked what she would do if she didn’t have to concern herself with cost, she said she would travel first to Ireland and then somewhere tropical. She also prefers Paris to London. When asked who she would invite to dinner if she could invite anyone in the whole world, she asked, “Would it be tacky if I said, my family?”

What I find most surprising in the most pleasantest of ways, is her answer to my question, “What profession would you be if you were not a librarian or a musician?” She said she would own a cake shop. I totally see her doing this! Mariah, whether in the kitchen or while crafting, can take a bunch of ingredients, or odds and ends, or bits and baubles, or notes and chords and make something beautiful.