Saturday, March 26, 2016

Come come sunshine! / 陽光快來!


Now rainy days can't influence me, but this past week I felt the blues of rain. Something went wrong with the project I had been working on, which made me have to take a sudden pause. I was totally lost as if the firm rock I was standing on turned out to be nothing but an illusion.


     I wandered mentally for a whole week, but in my confusion, I got to think about many things. Finally, I reminded myself my new year resolutions. I realized that even without any outer goal, I can set goals for myself again.


     Though I had a great time drawing the Thai king a lot, but now I have to say goodbye to kun po for the time being. I'll have the golden sunshine keep me company for the moment!

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Company of a cup of tea / 一杯茶的陪伴


Last year I experienced several failures in writing picture books. After attending some talks and workshops, I made a big decision of focusing on writing first. Every Sunday I would sit in the study for a whole day reading and writing. It was then that I fell in love with drinking tea. On my desk there was always a cup of tea keeping me company. Outside the study, the adults and kids would read and listen to the stories for me. The process was really fun and enjoyable. I got to see my limits and learned from others' feedback. To be honest, I appreciate whatever happened though everything was a blessing in disguise. 


     This past Monday I gave a talk in a school on making picture books. I said, "I really love making picture books. Though I am not very good now, I will spend the rest of my life on it." Upon hearing this, a sentimental teacher suddenly replied, "Don't say anything anymore. I feel like crying." I found her response amusing for I hadn't expected my words to be so moving. 


     I sent five stories to Hsin-y's picture book contest at the end of last year. Though this week I learned that only one story is shortlisted, I am still quite happy that I am working in the right direction. Compared with the past, I am also more active now. Instead of dwelling on the success and failure, I am eager to find out how I can revise my stories. 


     I have so many projects going on this year, but it's nice to have a cup of tea this weekend so that I can look behind and ahead before moving on! 

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Lesson in the herbarium / 下雨天的植物課


After taking a two-month-long break, we are back with more lessons in the herbarium! A six-year-old girl just loves my bee Beebee. 


     Now I am more like a lesson planner, so I don't get to talk much. 


     Auntie Guei-mei is one of our teachers. Because of the azalea festival in NTU, our task today is to study the structure of an azalea flower. 


     The magnifying glass and flower work magics, because even the whiny boy seems interested as well. 


     Then we go on to learn about South American Wax Mallow. We eat the sweet nectar like the bee! 


     Our second teacher Yen-sho tells us about the lovely strawberry. 


     Meanwhile, the strawberry jam made by Auntie Guei-mei is ready. 


     The menu for today's afternoon tea is toast with strawberry jam. 


     As for the tea, it is the blue butterfly pea tea from Thailand. The right cup has strawberry jam in it. What a wonderful rainy afternoon! 

Wednesday, March 09, 2016

He does look back. / 回頭


Dad sees off his son in the airport. Knowing we will feel sad, we walk away right after saying goodbye. Dad stands there alone, waving his hand until the son disappears in his sight. 


     Dad says to us with happiness, "This time he does look back at me." Upon hearing his words, I so feel like crying, and I do cry. 

Sunday, March 06, 2016

After a fantastic trip / 旅行之後的高潮


What can be more fantastic than a trip? One of the choices is going to a wedding, the wedding of my little brother. 


     Of course I feel thrilled and happy for the newly-wed couple. However, God has given me much more than that. In the wedding, I encounter my elementary school teacher, who reminds me that I used to be a good writer. In fact, he cherishes a lot a collection of essays I wrote when I was little. To be honest, I don't remember a thing, but his words greatly encourage me at moments like this. Moreover, I have received a bunch of great Korean and Japanese picture books from Shaggy. I feel the urge to dream in the world woven with words and images in spring. 


     As for my biggest surprise, I receive half of the bride's bouquet, which is right by my side in the study at this moment. I feel it will bring me all the luck in the world!