Tuesday, August 21, 2012

breezy book spree

I've been riding the waves lately with a trio of book outings, three days in a row. On Saturday we zoomed past the ferry on our way to Diamond Cove on the water taxi. Marty's likin' it!

I was the third and final speaker in the Fort McKinley Museum Summer Lecture Series on Great Diamond Island. Built in the 1890's as a defense for Portland Harbor, the fort is now a private residential community. Our hosts, Richard and Jane Cullen, gave us a tour by golf cart. Peaks Island has similar batteries like this, but not as old as this: 1899!

We stopped at the Fort McKinley Museum for a glimpse of the rich collection of artifacts.

Enjoyed a quick bite at the General Store, where hand-painted chairs welcomed us.

The presentation was held in the Diamond Cove Bowling Alley, a great gathering spot.

My house on Peaks Island is just up from the shore that faces the Diamond Islands, so I began with one of many pastels I've created from these views. Having gazed at these islands fondly for 20 years, it was a delight to actually BE there, among new friends.

I shared some personal history, traced the process of my books, and offered a peek at the next one, due out in 2013.

 The best part is always meeting kids! They each have a unique island story of their own.

Later, over dessert,  I saw Jane's lovely collection of hearts. Ah, a kindred beachcomber.

Thank you, Cullens, and friends of the Fort McKinley Museum for loving books, islands, and the gems we call home.

The following day, Sunday, I signed books at Take a Peak, a little shop on Peaks next to the ice cream store.

I sketched Caitlin, granddaughter of island librarian, Rose Ann Walsh, who helped me locate a lobster boat for Ice Harbor Mittens. She colored in her name on the drawing. Nice to have such cute company!

She and Daisy (now 15!) enjoyed a tea party, just like in the book.

Thanks to Eddie Walsh for loaning a swell vessel for imagined journeys.

On Monday, I was off to Bright Horizons in Portland, past Fort Gorges, seen here in my pastel, "Regatta."

My amazing niece, Cristel Sanborn, teaches the preschool 3 class. I visited three classes, beginning with the youngest, ages 2 - 3, reading Seven Days of Daisy.

Those wee ones don't know the days of the week, or even care. Oh, how I miss that chapter!

In the next class, preschool 2, ages 3 -4, the children know some of the days, maybe not the order. But they are FULL of it, questions, telling stories, and eager to create.

Cristel's class is ages 4 -5. They mostly know the days of the week, and love to draw.

They told me all about their own collections of shells, rocks, and toys. It was a blast to meet every one of them. Thanks, Cristel and Bright Horizons. You teachers are doing the most pivotal job of shaping curiosity in children. Being with your classes made my week!

More photos to follow. Today, it's Tuesday and time to meet an illustration deadline for Portland Stage Company.

No comments: