Wednesday, November 04, 2009

What's Hot + What's Not

I love playing along with this theme with loobylu. Be sure to visit her site and see all the other bloggers participating - lots of inspiring and pleasing things to check out.


Squash and Squash Players
My husband is in charge of a squash (the sport, not the vegetable - though that could be interesting too) tournament in Pittsburgh this week, so it is all squash all the time for our family this week. And of course my husband is hot. And we're also hosting a very nice young player from France - a bonus for those of us who enjoy a cute French accent and a chance to try to remember our high school French. It's also making me want to plan a trip to France again soon.

The reds are looking a bit faded after a couple of freezes, but the yellows and golds are still breathtaking. I've been pressing leaves like mad this year, and even doing the iron them between sheets of waxed paper and hang them in the window thing. I've decided I'm just going to go back to doing all my little kid crafts that I love right now and not wait for grandkids to give me an excuse to indulge in them again, because that will likely be a long wait still (well, I hope so on the whole at least).

The Western Pennsylvania Society for Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) Fall Conference
It's coming up this weekend, and I'm looking forward to seeing some old friends like Marc Harshman, who's working on a book project with me (and my daughter Sara) involving this bear, who is still in the development phase, and possibly a chipmunk too.

The keynote speaker this year is Bruce Coville, and I can't wait to hear him in person. I've heard and read interviews where he consistently comes across as funny, smart, talented, inspirational - and best of all, just plain nice. I have high expectations.

If you are interested in writing or illustrating for kids and don't already know about SCBWI, you should definitely check out their website and consider joining. They have lots of useful info, especially for newcomers, and they're beginning to offer more and more for experienced people in the field too. It's a great way to meet people too - and like gardeners, kids' book people are nearly uniformly generous, interesting folks.

Unfortunately some good friends won't make the conference this year, having had the gall to move away and have busy lives (just kidding - but I do miss all of them.) This includes my dear friend Julie Stiegemeyer, with whom I have TWO new projects in the works with these characters: The Little Red Monster and Benny.


I do not understand how my yard and pond can be completely covered already again right after I raked a zillion leaves two days ago. Nor do I understand how there can still be so many left on my oaks, most of which don't even appear to have changed.

The weather. The dark.
Geez, it's cold! 28 F (like -2 C) this morning. And SNOW in the forecast for tomorrow. It is much too soon for winter. And daylight savings time ended last weekend so now it is dark, dark, dark when I go on my walks with my friend Mary Lou in the evening, and there are still only the first glimmers of light when I have to get up in the morning - not enough help as far as I'm concerned to be worth the end of day light.

How many plants I have yet to get in the ground

We have been too insanely busy this fall on the weekends, what with traveling and frantically trying to clean my house for visitors, so planting has not been happening. But lots of plant buying did, so this Sunday, snow or no snow, visitors or no visitors, I MUST plant.

Swore I was going to do it this year. Have. Not. Written. One. New. Word. on my novel. Poop.


susan vanhecke said...

Yay! You're back! I was starting to worry...

The new art/projects look/sound totally fun, the costumes are amazing (love the mantis!), and those leaves – on and off the trees – wow!!

Hope you've been seeing all the great Apple Pie reviews – your art's stopping folks in their tracks!

Claire said...

I know the leaves are a pain - but they look so beautiful - look at the colours! BTW - your artwork is totally HOT. xx