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Hobbyist enjoys making playhouses

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A hobbyist at heart, Arend Wielinga most likely can fix anything. He is creative in many ways, knows the measurements to the “t,” and yet he will say, “I am Jack of all Trades and Master of None.”

Anyone who has been in the Wielinga yard will vouch to the attractive way Arend has it assembled, everything in the right location.

Working at the Fort Frances mill, his off hours were always busy doing things at home, and he had a list that kept him occupied. There was a lot of time at hand so why keep those hands idle, he would say.

He usually made his own blueprint, of course, it had to be mini-size so as not to take up too much room. His basement is just the place--a neatly-designed workshop and tools to match.

To build a small playhouse, furniture included, would take about 550 hours, said Arend, using one half-inch plywood with shingles cut out to two-eighth of an inch, cutting it up about six times to get the right size.

The house requires 1,810 shingles. This, like carving out the furniture, takes patience.

The base is one-half inch thick plywood with wheels underneath so it can be mobile.

Arend used rubber pieces for the chimney, also cut to the precise size, while the windows are plastic double glass inserted into the framework, which is cut out prior to assembly.

Carpet is used on the interior, with wallpaper as a border. The furniture (Barbie doll furniture) can be bought by his grandkids, which is easier than going through the carving process.

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