Friday, May 19, 2017

a tiny complaint about springtime

Springtime! Daffodils! Tulips!
What is there to complain about?
Just this; why does it happen so fast? Why does spring have to come all at once?

I feel like the guy in the zombie movie who is in a hospital in intensive care. He wakes up after two weeks spent in a coma and the whole world has changed. Nothing is the same, nothing even looks the same. And there are zombies everywhere, in all the flower beds, the suburban lawns, the shopping malls, everywhere.
I go outdoors after months of coma-like cold gray winter weather and spring has exploded, tulips and daffodils and little blue irises. Like fireworks going off in celebration but then poof, gone, withered away into smokey blank stems.
My tiny teeny complaint against Spring is that it happens too fast.
Oh, and the allergy season, all the trees blooming at once?

Sunday, May 7, 2017


God could not be everywhere, so he created mothers. ~Jewish Proverb

I know it isn't Mother's Day today. The commercial Day is still a week away. I had made these sweet sketches while visiting in Mexico. 
My daughter-in-law finding a shady spot to nurse her very wiggly 9-month-old child in a park. The park is called the Alameda. I wonder if every town has an Alameda?

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

a book to travel

The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page. Saint Augustine of Hippo

Monday, May 1, 2017

as small as a world

“may came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world and as large as alone.” 
― E.E. Cummings
maggie and milly and molly and may E. E. Cummings1894 - 1962

Sunday, April 30, 2017


Janice Skivington 2017 Fruit and vegetable market in Queretaro, Mexico
I love fresh fruit almost as much as I love traveling. Shopping for fruit in the open air market in Queretaro was all my senses could ask for. Colors, smells, textures. I went a little crazy and had to walk home weighed down with a very large papaya, mangos, guavas, and a couple of guyabano. Worth it for the sweet fruit to eat and a painting that happened from the memory.

Saturday, April 29, 2017


“Not all those who wander are lost.” 
― J.R.R. TolkienThe Fellowship of the Ring

QuerĂ©taro, spring break consisted of days wandering the city alone, sitting in peaceful plazas with my sketchbook and paints. 

Sometimes I simply wandered from one shady spot to another. This city has many buildings, still used as residences or shops that are 400 years old. Here I had found myself a shady perch with an old fountain featuring a noble priest from the 1800s and a wealth of pink and red bougainvillea.

Friday, April 28, 2017


The traveler sees what he sees, the tourist sees what he has come to see. 
Gilbert K. Chesterton

I was sitting on a bench across the street from this old church in Queretaro, Mexico drawing and painting with my watercolor kit. The doors opened, people went in to Mass and heart-touching angelic music came wafting across the street to me. It sounded like mostly women singing hymns and songs of praise in Spanish.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

holding my breath

As I was sketching my 9 month old grandchild from life, I had to hold my breath for fear of adding one shade or line too many to this delicate image. Of course, she was moving about with the intensity of a new and rapidly changing life force. I did not use a photo!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

babbling April

Comes like an idiot, babbling and strewing flowers.” 
― Edna St. Vincent Millay

Monday, April 17, 2017

Easter celebration

I sketched this with a ball point pen on a blank page in the service missal while standing in the noisy happy crowd.