More than Weeds

A week ago it was in the 30s, and this morning I walked out to the driveway to find that The first wave of dandelions had already bloomed and float away. This is a member of the second wave getting ready to open.
I know they’re weeds, and I probably won’t be so philosophical when I’m yanking them out of the garden next month, but right now, after a long rainy spring, they’re a lot more than weeds. They’re miniature sunflowers.

May Flowers

If was rainy and cooler for most of April, and the May flowers arriving right on cue. A couple weeks ago, I bought a basket of pansies.  I am the world’s worst waterer –so bad that the Society for the Prevention of Picking on Pansies has sent several threatening letters warning me not to buy hanging baskets anymore. Mother Nature intervened this year and made sure they survived. 

Adventures in Business

It’s spring and a young man’s thoughts turn to visions of popcorn -at least around here. Thing2 has become a dedicated foodie, as interested in making it as he is in eating it.

For me, spring is the beginning of the craft fair season. They’re moderately profitable, and there are worse ways to spend a sunny day in Vermont than sitting in a meadow surrounded by other artists. Thing2 loves to come and help me set up. He loves arranging things. He usually brings his own sketchbook to keep busy, and there are always other kids at the other booths to play with.

This year he’s more serious, wanting to start his own booth. In addition to selling Icelandic style hotdogs that we discovered on our trip, he’s decided to start selling flavored popcorn. he’s been testing recipes for the last couple weeks, and we been finding stray popcorn everywhere. It’s a small price to pay for doing our part to help small business in America.

A Fish Tale

Today, on All My Guppies, The little Thinker Girl tries to arrange a quiet algae dinner with Herman the Hermit, but is foiled by the snails who, toddling nicely at the ripe old age of the five days, have developed a severe case of Herman worship (T1, who wanted me to attach a picture of T2 glued to his tuxedo sleeve, mentioned how well he empathized with a guy who only wanted to have a nice quiet date without snails or siblings trying to tag along.)

Herman, preferring to be left alone by everybody except the little Thinker Girl, was last seen plastered to the glass border of Tankland, screaming “Get. Them. Outta here!”

Creative Coffee

My morning pages are caffeine. I start off with a drawing exercise from Charles Bargue’s classic drawing course and get loose with a three minute life doodle of the fish or the dog or cat before I get down to business with book illustrations or–time allowing — an actual painting.

My creative coffee doesn’t just jump start painting or illustration. It’s part of the 10,000 hour journey towards mastering an art, and it’s the reminder that anything worth achieving takes practice and persistence.

 It fuels the rest of the day, but it also drives every part of my life.