Close-ups (Cats #2)

Cat pin circa 1980

Cat pin circa 1980

It’s about time I showed more cat pictures because there are so many to choose from. Cats were the subject of the first post in the Close-ups series, back in 2009. This brown cat pin is over 30 years old. Read about my pins here. The baby leopards are from “Rana is Born”. The piece was the inspiration for Judy Richardson’s story, Come to my Party, which I illustrated in 1993.


detail from “Rana is Born” fabric relief 1992

This costumed cat is a detail from “On Halloween”, which is in my 1997 book You and Me: Poems of Friendship. The whole illustration is printed as a poster, which is available in my Etsy Shop.


detail from “On Halloween” 1997

This seated cat is from my 1999 book The Hollyhock Wall. 


detail from “The Hollyhock Wall” 1999

This kitty is part of the faux tile frieze in my kitchen. Read about that here.


Faux Tile 2001

And this cat topiary is from the verse “Molly My Sister and I” in my book Pocketful of Posies. Autographed copies, plus a poster are available in my Etsy Shop.

detail from "Pocketful of Posies" 2010

detail from “Pocketful of Posies” 2010

to the end of the world and back


The experience of  being in Antarctica cannot be adequately conveyed in photographs and words. The continent is a truly awesome part of our planet, with an environment so different and extreme that my visit was as close to being on another planet as I’ll ever experience.  From the deck of our big comfortable boat, we saw this sailing ship, with some more adventurous tourists aboard. The monochromatic scenery was breathtakingly beautiful! And everywhere there was wild life to gawk at.


We woke up a napping elephant seal pup.


We had to bundle up, but the temperatures were mild for the end of the world–in the 30’s F.


Being the height of summer, the sun was out most of the day and night.


The elephant seals sang (or grunted), “There were 9 in the bed and the little one said, roll over, roll over.”


Polly had a great time!polly

Throughout the frozen landscape, there were signs of growth, like these lichens and moss.


mossThe adorable penguins won our hearts.


And an occasional seal on an ice flow noticed our presence. Antarctica was worth the trip! My husband, Rob Goldsborough took many of the photographs I’ve shown from this trip. See more of his great pictures of Antarctica on Flickr.


penguin pot holders


Our trip to Antarctica has produced penguin fever! Luckily the local fabric shop had some penguin fabric to make pot holders, which I traditionally give for  Christmas. See a tutorial about making my style of pot holder here. I picked fabric scraps from my stash that reminded me of the Antarctic landscape, including a dark purple and blue Mari Mekko design I’ve had forever.


Old cotton mattress pads work well for the padding.


Striped sear sucker fabric cut on the bias finishes the outside edge.




It’s time to wrap them in the penguin wrapping paper I found at the super market. Merry Christmas!


Antarctica: birds


We just flew into Logan after about 24 hours of traveling, beginning in Ashuaia, Argentina, to Santiago Chile, to Atlanta to Boston. After a day of flying and while we wait in the airport to catch the bus to the Cape, I thought I’d write a post and show you the splendid birds we saw in Antarctica. Some were seen from the boat and others we saw on land. Can you guess what they are? Answers at the end of this post.







Birds, top to bottom: Cape petrel, Antarctic fulmar, Cape petrel, Giant Antarctic petrel, Giant Antarctic petrel, petrel, Giant Antarctic petrel.