by Phil Bruckbauer
When my mom was in her twenties, and with the Makahta dance company, she spent a period of time living in Seattle doing dance workshops and exploring the city. The ever lover of unique art, she came across a handmade wooden book, that was filled with empty white pages. I don’t think she had any purpose in mind for the book, but she bought it anyway and brought it with her back home to North Dakota. I know that she didn’t have any plans for the book because it sat on display in our home my entire childhood with the same blank pages until one year when I decided to use the book for a high school poetry project. My poems were terrible. The only one I can vaguely remember was a parody of the Eagles song “Hotel California” where I poked fun at being from North Dakota. Thankfully, somewhere along the way the poems were disposed of and we found a new use for the book.
Fast-forward 10 years and now at my family lake cabin, we have a tradition where if a guest comes to stay at the cabin, we have them write a little message in the book. The messages range from simple explanations of what the weekend at the lake entailed to more comical excerpts detailing epic battles with presumably state record fish, or an intense game of washers. Regardless of the message, it has become a fun way to recall memories of good times had with family and friends.
Always searching for new products or things to build, I was inspired by the book to build something similar of my own. I used some white pine boards, stained Dark walnut, a cream colored leather for the binding, and a cream/ivory paper. I am still undecided if this will have the same purpose as our cabin book, or if it will become a journal, or maybe even a gift. All in all it was a fun side project to work on, and hopefully we will have a few in stock to sell at our next events, the Grand Forks Street Fair and the Fargo Junk Market!