Friday morning Tomie de Paola was in town promoting his newest Stroga Nona book at Blue Willow Books, one of the last independent bookshops in Houston. It's also on the other side of town from where we live. I decided that I had to go. The man is a legend in his own right. Not to mention that ever since my mom bought me this book (The Legend of the Bluebonnet) for Christmas, I've wanted to illustrate for children.
So we bundled up, packed into the car, and headed towards town.
Can't you feel how excited he was?! haha....I think he was worn out from a morning of intense play.
We arrived at the bookshop, and headed to the back lot, where Tomie was speaking to some schoolchildren about his new book. They were rapt with wonder as the magic unfolded in front of their eyes. It was so cute how they all went "ooohh..." at the same time! Then back into the store we went. When you purchased a book to get signed, you got a little postcard with Tomie and his dog, Bronte. (I hung it up on my inspiration board in my studio.)
You also got a numbered card for your place in line. The whole thing was very smooth and well-organized. I'm impressed, Blue Willow! Then it was my turn to get our books signed. I tried to get Connor out of his stroller so he could get in the picture, but he was way too interested in eating his crackers, and I didn't think either of us would be in a good mood if I forced him. So the picture came out like this:
Just me and Tomie. I think it came out wonderfully. Do you see the walls of books? You couldn't ask for a better backdrop! He was very gracious and a little tickled when I passed along some "hellos" of facebook friends. We chatted briefly, and then Connor and I left with our two new books:I could look at both of these all day long. I'm so glad I bought the legends book. It has all of my favorites in it! Except I bought these books for Connor *ahem* and I'm just taking care of them until he's old enough to carefully appreciate them *wink-wink!*
Here's a peek at one of the spreads of Stroga Nona's pop-up book. So gorgeous...the day was well worth the travel.