Tuesday, October 27, 2015

this year's pumpkins

I had hoped to revive our pumpkin carving party tradition this year, but fate was against us. I had gotten rid of our old dining table and ordered a new one but  the shipping company somehow lost it. We have been using this red bench as our table for the last five weeks:

I finally just canceled that table and ordered another from somewhere else. Crossing my fingers the new one makes it!
A pumpkin party without a table seemed rather inconvenient, so we carved solo again this year. And again, we themed them to her current obsession. Right now,  she is in love with Curious George. She started with the books but now prefers the TV show. I know, sacrilege!!

But she likes better that "the man catches him" (and George doesn't break his leg) in the TV episode and she is never satisfied with my answers when she asks, "Why did he open the ether bottle? Why did they have to put George in the cold shower to wake him up?" when I read the book(!). And, I've kind of accepted it because the TV show is a bit more contemporary with characters of different races and women working. In fact, Rain Dragon is so interested in the female firefighter that it was one of the characters she chose for the pumpkins:

Hundley (or Pretzel, she always makes me change the name when I read that book), Lady Fireman (that's Rain Dragon's name for her) and, of course, George

In the years past, I mainly used a plain kitchen knife. But this year we bought some new carving tools and what a difference! So much easier!

And they come out so much better too! I think these are our best pumpkins, yet:

I know Rain Dragon thinks so!

Monday, October 26, 2015

on my desk monday

The Ling and Ting: Together in All Weather magnets have arrived! Would you like one? You'll get one with your book when you order an autographed copy of the book at my local bookstore! All the info HERE!

Friday, October 23, 2015

memory pearl

a carousel of shoes

Me: What is this?
Rain Dragon: A merry-go-round, of course!

Duck is on the brown horse, by the way.

Monday, October 19, 2015

on my desk monday

I'm sketching the cover for When the Sea Turned to Silver:

I've started doing my sketches in pieces, all on tracing paper so I can move things around. I guess it would be faster if I could draw on the computer...but I am too old-fashioned!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Join me for a Live Video Chat!

The Girls Leadership organization chose Year of the Dog for their October Parent-Daughter Book Club selection and to cap it off, we're having a live video chat! You are welcome to join! Send your questions and find out more HERE!

Monday, October 12, 2015

on my desk monday

I've been trying to return to rituals in my work. Since I've had Rain Dragon, I've let a lot of things become rather slap-dash which is okay in some things (I've accepted it when it comes to, say, the state of the living room floor) but I think, for me, the act of writing and illustrating needs ritual--if only to cement in my mind that this is something of importance, that I must be considerate of.

One of the rituals I want to do with my writing, which I began with Starry River of the Sky is to print out the version-of-last-approval (basically the absolutely last time I can make changes), take a morning and read the entire thing out loud. Anyplace that I stumble or feels awkward, I mark and reconsider and, usually, change. 

And it's almost time for me to do this for When the Sea Turned to Silver.  To prepare, I decided to adapt my illustration tradition of making paper folders to this. I decided to make a custom decorate three-ring binder to hold my manuscript:

the decorative paper, the glue and a cardboard 3-ring binder (bought pre-made)

I'm kind of envisioning the colors of the cover of the book to be like the paper I chose for the binder:

beautiful japanese paper with a wave motif! All glued and clipped together to dry smoothly! 

Now it's all ready to go:

I hope some of the beauty of the paper infuses into my writing! Wish me luck!!!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

on my way to the grocery store

Moving to the country has it's perks! Only here could you have an honor-system farm stand:

with the most amazing farm-fresh eggs:

I bought 2 dozen and will be coming back for more!

Friday, October 2, 2015

memory pearl

We don't know what this is, but she spent all morning making it:

I think it might be a beaver dam