This is a time of finishing up for me….last weekend was my last show for many months, this week has been spent filling the orders for June, and my son and I are finishing up his studies and preparing his portfolio. And soon it will be time to truly move into Summer. The weather is proclaiming loud and clear that it is here, but the accompanying freedom and ease have not quite arrived. That is alright with me….I can feel it coming and am enjoying the little hints of it’s presence. The last few evenings, our mockingbird has been singing in the night and it gives the loveliest feeling to the warm darkness.

I have spent the past several weeks in the company of my lovely notebook and have lost the Winter weight that I gained being much too cosy. Someday, I hope to be more balanced and not go through this yearly ritual, but if feels good to be light and fit again, I must say. Lightening is in the air around here as I begin to plan for a good clean-out of our home and even in Small Meadow Press. When I first began in business six years ago, I bought two printers, which have seen me through all these years. A few days before my last show, my laser printer gave up-with the classic terrible noise and parts laying at the bottom of the inside of the printer. I did my best to bring it back to life, to no avail. A few months ago, foreseeing this time in the future, I told myself I would probably not replace it, should it stop working. Now that the time has come (and with filling orders this week), I see how challenging this is going to be. So many of my designs were “designed” with this printer in mind.

But I do want to lighten my footprint on the Earth, enjoy more quiet (that printer was quite noisy!) in my studio, and keep exploring the world of tree-free papers that feel good and interesting…and that don’t work well with laser printers. So this summer will see my whole line of goods changing to accommodate my new vision and my longing for less printing and more hand-made going on in my studio. I shall keep you posted!

I was able to make several collages and one-of-kind garlands and journals for the last show and sold many of them. I will be putting the rest up on the website in the weeks to come, and adding more as the Summer flows on. They were so well-received and the show was beautiful in many, many ways. I am so grateful for it. And also grateful to have a summer at home to look forward to, with lots of ideas to manifest on my website and conversation to share here.

This is a photo of my paper suitcase, after I had just made the first of my new paper chains and was deep in the midst of cutting up wonderful scraps for my handmade offerings. It looked so scrumptious, I had to pull out the camera. And now I have to close, as my dear-io and I are about to get on the road for his out-of-town gig and some visiting with friends. I shall look forward to checking the letterbox in the hedge when I return. And I have a question to leave you with.

With the summer, my mind is on the sea and the idea has come to me to have a little-book-club-of-sorts with A Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. I feel the need to to read it again, and am also wanting to learn a bit more about her life. So what do you think of a weekly chapter, here at The Bower? We can use the comments section to share our thoughts and to link to your own posts about it, if you desired to write about it on your own blogs. If we start in a week or two, we can spend the Summer with it, in a leisurely way. In addition to the reading and wisdom, I am hoping to catch some of the atmosphere of a New England beach, while I stay here in the warm, green fields.