art show

A funny thing happened on the way to the art show

Taken from an American Greetings card I received in the hospital.

My last two blog posts have been about my excitement and preparation for the art show this past weekend, but, instead of appearing at the Sunbear Gallery I was languishing at the luxurious St. Anne’s Hospital resort.

A bumpy detour

Continuing the road metaphor that I used in my last post I will say that the road suddenly became bumpy and detoured straight to the doors of the hospital. The past week was especially hectic as I completed my work and prepared displays for the show. During that time I wasn’t feeling up to par but pushed it to the back of my mind saying I didn’t have time to be sick. Everything had to be turned in to the gallery by Wednesday to give them time to prepare their displays. Throughout Thursday I continued to feel “ify” and began to think I wasn’t feeling well enough to stand for two days in the heat and talk with the people when all I wanted to do was be in bed. Friday I went to our local Urgent Care and asked the doc to patch me up for two days to give me time to get through the weekend. He examined me and then said, “I can patch you up but you will hate me later. You need to go to the ER right now.”

A popular term for the miniature White Castle hamburgers is “gut busters” or “gut bombs”—WELL—I felt like a couple of those bombs had gone off in my gut. Without going into graphic detail let’s just say the belly was bouncing. After a bad reaction to some meds things went from bad to worse. That is when I went into seclusion, had the phone disconnected, and saw few visitors.

Happy faces equal happy pills

Fortunately, I responded well to a heavy dosage of antibiotics and was able to come home on Sunday. But, the best medicine of all was a series of happy faces drawn by my niece’s four-year old son Aidan. Posted on the bathroom door was a dry erase chart where the nurses wrote their names for each shift and at the bottom was a series of emoticons to help the patient measure his pain. At the end of the series Aidan drew a sad face because Aunt Sheila had an “ouwee”, then he drew a happy face in the blank space meant for the patient to list a goal. At the very end of the chart he drew what can only be described as a blob which meant that Aidan didn’t have any “ouwees”. He then drew me a card full of various happy faces which looked to me like happy pills. All those happy faces must have worked because by the end of their visit I felt much better and even the nurses agreed my condition was much improved.

Take it from me, if you are ever feeling poorly the best medicine is the happy faces of a four-year old.

Meet my critters


I now know what the phrase suffering for my art means. My journey of creating my critters has been marked by blood, sweat, and tears—literally!

Countless pin and needle stabs resulted in big drops of blood which I quickly attended to so that the material wouldn’t be stained. I sweated over every detail, and, yes, there were tears—tears of fear and frustration. But now that they are finished I can say that it was worth the effort. They accurately portray the picture that was in my mind and that is an accomplishment for any artist.

This is the end of a long journey and hopefully the beginning of a new adventure. The pathway is littered with many rejection notices from publishers but I never gave up.  The publishing industry is in a state of flux these days with production costs ever-increasing and electronics taking it in new directions. With all these unknown variables publishers don’t want to take a chance on an unknown author.  Today, authors have to create their own stage or platform as they call it. I’m hoping my renewed creative efforts will eventually land THE BIG ONE someday. In the mean time, I’m having fun visiting with all of you on my blog and doing what I love—writing.

Now my books (teacher recommended for grades K-3) will come alive for the young ones. One day when I was working, my niece visited with her four-year old son and as we talked he played with all the birds scattered about the room, he lined them up on the ironing board and talked and sang to them. I hope this is an indication of good things to come.

Two of the books are about birds—The Beautiful Bird from Birdburgville and Robert Robin’s First Flight—and the third is about a flower, a late bloomer—The Sad Seedling. The Sad Seedling is planted in a pot on the cover which actually holds sunflower seeds compliments of de Monye’s Greenhouse.

For a fun time this weekend stop by Sunbear Gallery in Alexandria, Ohio on OH Rt. 37. It is just 10 miles east of New Albany on Rt. 161. Take the OH Rt. 37 exit towards Johnstown. For those not familiar with Alexandria it is a typical charming rural Ohio farming village midway between Granville and Johnstown.  We will be there the whole weekend Saturday 10 to 6 and Sunday 11 to 5.

Come for fun and be amazed by the art.  There will be live music, artist demos, door prizes, a children’s art auction, container gardens from Baker’s Acres, great snacks and antiques too!

When you are there be sure to stop by and say “Hello.” All my critters are freshly groomed and tagged and tucked into their nests waiting to say Howdy!


Below is a short synopsis of each book.

The Sad Seedling   

A flower is a late bloomer when its seed is planted in a dark corner of a crowded garden. When it blooms its only friends are the wiggly, giggly worms and the icky, sticky spiders until a new friend, Sadie the Ladybug, shows up.






 The Beautiful Bird from Birdburgville

A beautiful but vain bird suffers a terrible injury when a cat catches her. With the help of a friend who overlooks her deformities she learns to adjust to her injuries and live a normal life. (Based on an observation at my birdfeeder.)







Robert Robin’s First Flight

A young robin isn’t paying attention to his mother when she is teaching them how to fly. The result causes a BIG problem in Birdburgville.