DEAR SUN SPOTS: I’m responding to the person who asked where Mainers can share their COVID-19 experiences (Oct. 21 Sun Spots). The Maine Community Archives Collaborative is coordinating various local projects. For example, the University of Southern Maine has a Signs of the Times project.  You can link to these different projects from  Also, USM’s Franco-American Collection is documenting the Franco-American COVID-19 experience.  The submission form is at:  These are in addition to the great sites mentioned by Sun Spots. — Maureen, research & instruction librarian, Lewiston-Auburn College, Lewiston

ANSWER: Thank you for sharing this information, Maureen. As a writer, I always encourage everyone to write their story even if they are the only ones who will ever lay eyes on it. Keeping a journal of your everyday life and experiences is such a healthy thing to do and if you choose, you can save it for future generations. Everyone has a story and all stories are important.

DEAR SUN SPOTS:  I am in need of some assistance. We lost the handyman who has worked for us for years.  We are in need of a company or individual to prune our shrubs and clean up our flower beds. For over a month I have tried to find someone. They either do not return my call or say that they are too busy, which I completely understand. If you or your readers have someone they can recommend, I would be forever grateful!

Thank you for all you do. I can’t imagine life without Sun Spots! — No Name, Auburn

ANSWER: Yes, it is a very busy time for people as we all get buttoned down for the coming winter. You mention a “handyman,” but what you really need is a “landscaping” company or just a person or two with muscles and energy willing to do raking, pruning, and haul away the debris and dead branches.

Readers, if you have anyone to recommend or you are someone who can help this couple with their fall cleanup, please write!

DEAR SUN SPOTS: I am looking for one of those ceramic Christmas trees that were popular back in the day. I have seen them at a few big-box stores, but would rather have a vintage tree, not a knock-off, or perhaps one made by a local ceramicist if it’s affordable. — Julie, Lisbon

ANSWER: These classic ceramic holiday trees with little light bulbs attached really have made a comeback in recent years. The Vermont Country Store ( or 1-800-547-7849.) have high-quality ceramic trees in their catalog if you don’t find one locally made. These range in price from about $40 to $80 depending on the size and come in the traditional green or in white.

If you’re feeling crafty, you can purchase a kit for about $35 at  and paint your own ceramic tree then attach the lights yourself. I think that’s a pretty cool idea.

If there is anyone in Sun Spots Land who creates these blasts from the past, I bet you could sell a bunch of them!

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name. We won’t use it if you ask us not to. Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be emailed to [email protected].

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