Breaking Bread

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Mr. and Mrs. Mallard were looking for a place to live. But every time Mr. Mallard saw what looked like a nice place, Mrs. Mallard said it was no good. There were sure to be foxes in the woods or turtles in the water, and she was not going to raise a family where there might be foxes or turtles. So they flew on and on.

When they got to Boston, they felt to tired to fly any further. There was a nice pond in the Public Garden with a little island on it. “The very place to spend the night,” quacked Mr. Mallard. So down they flapped.

Next morning they fished for their breakfast in the mud at the bottom of the pond. but they didn’t find much.

Just as they were getting ready to start on their way, a strange enormous bird came by. It was pushing a boat full of people, and there was a man sitting on its back. “Good Morning,” quacked Mr. Mallard, being polite. The big bird was too proud to answer. But the people on the boat threw peanuts into the water, so the Mallards followed them all round the pond and got another breakfast, better than the first.

“I like this place,” said Mrs. Mallard as they climbed out on the bank and waddled along. “Why don’t we build a nest and raise our ducklings right in this pond? There are no foxes and no turtles, and the people feed us peanuts. What could be better?”

-Robert McCloskey, Make Way For Ducklings

Percipience

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15 1/2 x 20 1/2″, colored pencil portrait of a young Beatrix Potter-looking Olivia and Lady

“Thank God I have the seeing eye, that is to say, as I lie in bed I can walk step by step on the fells and rough land seeing every stone and flower and patch of bog and cotton pass where my old legs will never take me again.”

“I hold that a strongly marked personality can influence descendants for generations.”

“I remember I used to half believe and wholly play with fairies when I was a child. What heaven can be more real than to retain the spirit-world of childhood, tempered and balanced by knowledge and common-sense.”

“The place is changed now, and many familiar faces are gone, but the greatest change is myself. I was a child then, I had no idea what the world would be like. I wished to trust myself on the waters and the sea. Everything was romantic in my imagination. The woods were peopled by the mysterious good folk. The Lords and Ladies of the last century walked with me along the overgrown paths, and picked the old fashioned flowers among the box and rose hedges of the garden.”

“Thank goodness my education was neglected.”   -Beatrix Potter

When Homework’s Done

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“Well” said Stuart, “a misspelled word is an abomination in the sight of everyone.”  -E.B. White, Stuart Little

Now that just cracks me up since the homework in this  piece is my daughter’s book report on Ramona’s World, in which she spells Ramona 4 different ways but never correctly. Perhaps it will all be corrected in time to go out and play before the rain. But I doubt it.

Piedmont, the gerbil-model for this piece, belonged to a teacher friend. He was actually helping with report cards in one adorable photo, but as this needed to be a Fall piece for a  Colored Pencil Magazine competition (Draw the Leaves), I made it a piece about homework. Piedmont is sadly no longer with us so this is a tribute to his big, little character.