In With The New!

Yuval Zommer

Wishing everyone a happy, healthy, abundant, joyful 2019!

Carefree we step to a fresh start, renewed with childlike wonder. I decided to post some beautiful illustrations from wonderful Twitter chums who illustrate, and write, children’s books. (see below for links to their websites, contacts, etc.) Without fail they always thrill me and make me smile. And, they all work and reside in England. Hmm, interesting…

So here goes: first image (above) by Yuval Zommer;

Of course our v. special and dear friend Mr. Colin West;

Colin West








and darling Beccy Blake in Bath with her parliament of owls.

Beccy Blake

There a more illustrators I want to mention…so many talented and imaginative people all. I would like to think being a children’s illustrator is a happy happy profession. If I were wealthy…reminds me of a quote by Jane Austen, not this one but it will have to do: “Give a girl an education and introduce her properly into the world, and ten to one but she has the means of settling well, without further expense to anybody.” Well anyway, I would buy prints and lovely gorgeous things from all of them! I will have to close because it is crazy windy here and the WiFi connection keeps dropping out. It’s taken me hours just to wish everyone well.

I hope we can hold closely, yet gently, the joy in being present – at the same time as we ride the whirlwind. Binary opposites to be sure, but if we can be okay with that “tension,” we will prevail.


Clare Irwin

You may also contact Colin West on Twitter:

Spiders, and Ghouls and Skeletons…Oh My!

I know! I’ve been absent, and I have missed not posting regularly. My apologies. September was busy and October busier still. Work was hectic, paperwork and other obligations begged my attention, as well as dodging the myriad of colds that hatched with the weather changing. I did have time this past Wednesday to take a walk along the sea in my beloved charming village near where I live. I’ve written about this beautiful place in a prior post (see “Luca Brasi Sleeps with Oscar Mayer” – August).

Wednesday was a spectacular day, not too cold, a cloudless sky and so clear you could see for miles. Even with the seasons changing the flowers were still blooming. I was delighted to see that most homes have gotten into the spirit of the season with either Halloween decorations or more “harvest” themes. I realize that sometimes they can be pretty awful, but without exception these were cute, funny and tasteful.

Lots of spiders this  year, zombies and ghouls, skeletons and a new one for me that I can only describe as evil baby zombie?

Pretty creepy but also amusing. I enjoyed it all immensely. I hear from a friend who lives in the village that Halloween is a night where so many children trick or treat that the streets are full of parents, strollers, dogs on leashes, and of course children in costumes. He told me that his house gets over 100 trick or treaters! It’s reassuring to know that there are some safe places where kids can trick or treat en masse and not worry about weirdoes or people putting horrid things in candy. He also said they have a neighbor with an old fashioned hot dog stand which he sets up and hands out hot dogs and other treats for everyone — including cigars for the adults. How nice. There is also a Halloween foot race, in costume of course, and other events planned for the townsfolk. It’s endearing and I know a bit corny, but it’s also heartwarming to know there can be moments that are sweet and innocent. These are the memories that stick, aren’t they? So, I hope to post more shortly — this weekend is my goal, but I wanted to check in and wish everyone a safe and enjoyable holiday —  kids from 1 to 92. Isn’t that how the song goes?

Clare Irwin

P.S. On a humorous note I was thinking of the Curb Your Enthusiasm episode where Larry David refuses to give candy to two teenage girls because they are not in costume — or convincing enough costumes for Larry. Of course an argument ensues, and the next morning he wakes up and finds his entire property toilet papered. It’s pretty funny. Check it out if you haven’t seen it.