A child’s Easter greeting

If Penelope were to make a drawing for us for Easter

what would it look like?

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I figure it might be pretty simple:  Easter eggs, and smiles!

Then again, who knows.  If she were feeling particularly imaginative, almost anything could end up on the paper … 😉

But for now, here is an Easter smile and a hope that you all found lots of chocolate this weekend.

And good luck with the sugar rush!

Penelope and Snowie

Laughter is the best medicine.
Just ask Penelope.
She dressed Snowie in a tutu…poor doggie.
And found the result hilarious–in a tears draining from eyes, giggle-fit kind of way.
Our hope today…that you would see the world through the eyes of a child and find happiness and laughter in your day.
Penelope and SNowie

Penelope Bloom: We can FLY!

It’s a fairly common misconception amongst adults, that humans are unable to fly, unassisted.

Children know differently…

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Especially when there is a big pile of  leaves to land on.

Junjie, Eloise, and Penelope Bloom find adventure in every season.

What memories of fall do you have?

Penelope Bloom’s Scary Campfire Story

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Penelope peered at her friends through the crackling flames with a mischievous grin. “Once upon a time,” she lowered her voice, “there was a dark, dark forest.”

Gripping the hands of her chair, Eloise’s eyes widened with fear and anticipation.

“And inside the forest,” Penelope spread her arms wide, “there was a dark…,” she paused for effect, “dark tree.”

Above their heads, a large maple swayed, its limbs black next to the starlit sky.

“You can’t scare me!” scoffed Junjie.

She leaned closer. “And in the tree, was a dark,” she lingered on the word, “dark nest.”

“Ohh!” Eloise covered her mouth with a trembling hand.

Overhead, a branch creaked.

Junjie’s eyes shot toward the sound. “Nothing but a bird, I bet.”

“And in that nest,” Penelope’s words barely rose above a whisper, “there was a dark, dark….” Her body tensed.

Eloise and Junjie hung on her every word.

The pounding waves filled their silence.

“BOO!”

Eloise shrieked.

Junjie almost fell out of his chair.

Penelope giggled. “Gotcha!”

Their laughter carried across their campsite.

“My turn,” said Eloise.

They quieted.

“Once upon a time….”

Penelope Bloom: Summer Camping

You know that moment when everything stands still…

when only the waves whisper alongside the gentle murmur of the evening breeze…

and the stars glimmer in the dark as the sun sets on the painted horizon?

These things I love about camping.

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Penelope Bloom is doing what I love to do.

Standing in silence, she takes it all in.

It’s amazing how the majesty of nature can calm the energy of a child. In this moment, Penelope remembers all of the fun she had playing during her busy day. She wonders on how such a busy place could now be so peaceful. Contemplating it all, she stores it up as a treasured memory.

~Tricia Bos

What inspires you?

The winter Olympics are over now, but boy were they fun to watch when they were happening!

The athletes of every nation are so inspiring, they make me want to try many of the amazing things they are able to do … (this year I decided I might want to try hockey … lol).

Near the end of the 2014 Olympic games in Sochi, Janna and I wondered what Penelope and her friends might be doing in response to the inspirational athletics they were watching.  We decided that they would most likely join in, with great imagination and enthusiasm, and that it might look a little like this  …

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Dream big dreams!  These three sure do!

Sketching Junjie

Junjie, as one of Penelope and Eloise’ close friends, will end up in many stories and pictures in our books.

Before drawing scenes to illustrate our book, I like to spend time getting to know the characters.  I’ve done that with Penelope and Eloise so far, and now I’m doing that with Junjie.

I do this by drawing him (all of them, in fact) in as many positions, activities, and scenarios as I can imagine.

It’s a lot of fun to do, and it helps me build a history and rich personality for each character (besides the one that they were each created to have).

Below is an example from my sketchbook of some exploratory drawings of Junjie.  As I draw, I become familiar with how he stands, sits, and moves … which allows me to focus more on the imaginative settings in the story .

Getting something right, often means a lot of repetition and practice!

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