Hopalong Hollow....

Hopalong Hollow, where the Blueberries grow sweet, and the moss feels soft beneath your feet.

Monday, January 11, 2016

And they marched down the shore with a waddle and a quack!

Thank you darling ducklings. Not only have you provided me with the most delightful task of caring for you over the past 4 weeks, as your stand-in mother, but you've been most entertaining throughout.

From the time I rescued you from the drowning rainstorm....
video

till today!
video
 I've watched you grow up very quickly, right before my eyes. In the mornings, when I come to fetch you from your straw pen, I wonder, "Are these the same little ducklings I tucked into bed last night?! Why, they have grown at least 2 inches!"

You would have made wonderful artist models, if only you could stay still for one minute. Thank goodness I took dozens of photos,
and did a few pencil studies,
as you grew and grew!

.
There are only 5 ducklings, but they have lovely little shapes and put themselves in the most interesting positions, I could have filled the page with ducks, if only I'd had more space.
 This piece will be painted in watercolor AFTER I've finished 4 more illustrations for this book.
 I hadn't planned on putting any ducklings in this book, but since they made themselves available, I decided they would be a nice fit in the Gardening Book I am working on.
This book goes hand in hand with 2 others I am working on simultaneously. I will explain later. Suffice it to say, all the books have something to do with a GARDEN
Okay, back to the drawing board,
and I promise this is the last Duckling picture you will have to endure..for a long time.... okay?
My babies!

36 comments:

  1. A gardening book sounds very interesting, Jeri. Can't wait to see it. Such sweet ducklings. Deb

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    1. Deb, I had been planning this book for years and had already completed 8 of the drawings so I don't have a lot more to do before paint pots come out.

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  2. They are darling. Posed perfectly. Can't wait to see the book with them. Maybe they'll be weeder ducks and not touch the flowers and veggies. Sounds like you are getting on with the resolutions. I've already backtracked on mine to 'cutting down on sweets.'

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    1. Donna, they should be weeders, ducks usually are, but those blasted chickens are ditch diggers, as you probably already know. Well, cutting down on sweets is a beginning... and you and you an go from there. James and I have cut sugar and wheat, going on 2 weeks now. I feel much better.

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  3. Darling ducklings. Do they follow you around?

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    1. No, they actually run away from me! Talk about ingratitude! But when it is time for kibble, they waddle on over.

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  4. reminds me of my pet ducks from when i was little....seymore and charlie. i loved those guys.

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    1. I think I am making up for never having ducks as a child, I missed out on that.

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  5. Good evening dear Jeri!
    Your gardening book is a must have... Love your studies in pencil...These are just the sweetest ducklings ever.. Boy they sure HAVE grown up...
    Thank you for the video.. The one on the far right is really having a ball in the little round tub.
    You certainly are off and running full steam ahead....
    fondly,
    Penny

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    1. Penny, you should see them AFTER they bath, they preen and fuss for 20 minutes or more.

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  6. Oh please show us more photos as they grow up! Divine providence showed these little ducklings to you so you could show them to us! A Garden book sounds lovely! ♥

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  7. Endure? Heck, we would love even more photos. And, just perfect for your wonderful garden book!

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    1. Ducks and gardens go hand in glove, they weed, I plant.

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  8. Oooooooooooo fuzzy wuzzy waddlers! I WANT ONE! teeehheeee I have always wanted a real duck as a kid, yeah right...in the middle of Los Angeles?

    Oh Jeri, for some reason your first two photos don't show up....it's a total blank. BUT your illustrations and the last darling photo do. They have GROWN so much! I love them at this stage (tweens) where they seem a bit slim and they just look hilarious with no arms....I am thrilled that you are going to work closely with their likenesses because they truly are a fascinating bird and tell a great tail. Have you ever seen the bronze sculpture in Boston of "Make Way for Ducklings?" It's charming.

    CARRY ON! Or, waddle on!

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    1. Anita, The top two are short videos, are you viewing from a phone? They do grow from fat and fluffy to tall and slender and next they will fill in with body fat, They feel quite hefty when I pick them up, they are well fed! I do know the story of Make Way for Ducklings and Have seen photos of the sculpture, sweet old book.

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  9. I just LOVE that last photo. They are so dear.

    Enjoy ~ FlowerLady

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    1. You should hold one of them, then you would just fall in love.

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  10. What sweet babies. I bet it was almost like a time-lapse sequence to see them growing so quickly. They remind me of my two "Easter ducks", Diddle and Doddle, when I was about 7 or 8.

    I can't wait to hear about the garden book! Enlighten us soon!

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    1. It really is amazing how fast birds grow, I guess they have to for survival in the wild. But these babies are leaving cute-land way too fast!

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  11. Oh please don't stop showing us see pictures of the sweet ducklings. And the garden book! Goodness, I remember your saying some time ago that you were thinking of writing a garden book. I absolutely cannot wait! Your gardens, house, animals - I love it all.

    The ducklings remind me of the time when I was about seven years old and received a baby duck for Easter. Of course he grew into a really big fellow and loved to stand at the downspout and splash about. I remember that my mother was not happy at all that he splashed mud onto our asbestos siding that she had to scrub several times to keep it from staining the siding. But what fun to have a duck for a pet. He eventually went to live with my grandfather in the country, along with the many other Easter pets I received from time to time. Once I had a purple chick that was one of my favorites. I remember being disappointed when this little biddy's feathers came in and they were not purple.

    Your posts seem to always stir childhood memories and I thank you for that.

    Diane in North Carolina

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    1. Diane, I was afraid people were going to start mumbling to themselves "Not those Ducklings AGAIN!" I do have lots of pics..... The gardening book is an unusual project and I am excited about it, I will clue you in on it very soon. A purple chick?! perhaps it was dyed for Easter? However, there are Lavender Chickens, I am getting some chicks in May, they are actually a gorgeous lilac shade. I am glad your little pets had a farm to go to when they outgrew the city!

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    2. Yes, the chick was dyed for Easter. Back then you could buy colored chicks at Easter from the local hardware store. I expect they were dyed with some kind of food coloring. Goodness, I didn't know Mother Nature actually made a real honest to goodness lavender chicken. What fun! Can't wait to see your new chicks in May...and I'm just so, so excited about your gardening book.

      Stay warm and dry.

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  12. your drawings are amazing, but your fluffy ducklings are completely wonderful - for a city girl, there are never too many duckling photos!

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    1. Suz, have to admit, I took at least 20 new photos today..sleeping ducks, splashing ducks and ducks at play. Ducklings are just the happiest little people!

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  13. such wonderful ducklings, in life and in your sketch. fun to find inspiration right in your home!

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    1. Tammie, I have models everywhere I look of all shapes and sizes. it is fun!

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  14. Jeri,
    I do remember Shari Lewis and Lambchops... I believe you are right.
    Thanks so much for wandering over and leaving such a kind note.

    I had a dream last night that I was duck sitting for you.. How funny!

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  15. It is impossible to grow tired of pictures of those adorable little fluff balls!!! Cannot wait to see your next projects!!!

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  16. Jeri, I almost forgot to ask: have you heard of a cherry tomato named "Rapunzel"? I saw a picture of it yesterday and it looks tasty and so spectacular with its long tendrils of red cherry tomatoes. I think I'm going to order some seeds for this year's garden.

    Diane in North Carolina

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  17. Hi Diane, I will have to look up the Rapunzel. I'm not much of a vegetable gardener, but always plant tomatoes, because they are so easy to grow. Here in Grainger county, the area is famously known for their scrumptious tomatoes. As for the lavender chickens, they are a very pale color, but obviously lavender, especially when you put them next to a white duck. And this breed will lay colored eggs, greens, blues and pinks.

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  18. Oh Jeri - you did such a fine job raising these little ducklings. I hope you will keep an update on these survivors. Can't wait to see your watercolor finished. I am sure it will be delightful. Hugs!

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  19. Dear Jeri, I loved seeing your recent posts, with your pencil drawings, adorable ducklings growing up videos, and descriptions of the gardening book in the works that could include both a peddler cat and sweet duckings yearning to help weed a garden.

    Sometimes the month of January can represent a dark let down time of the year after the Christmas lights dim. Your posts point in an entirely different direction. New life, longer daylight, and lots of creative energy.

    I did manage to complete knitting a new hat yesterday, and make several soups this weekend, but my promise to myself to start filling a new sketchbook is unkept. Thank you for keeping me inspired to do more drawing and painting. It's still early on Sunday evening, and there's a light snowfall outside, and I might just get that sketchbook opened.

    xo

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  20. Bonjour,

    Mon dieu qu'ils ont grandi !!! Ils sont bien nourris et ils semblent vraiment heureux !... Ils ont aussi beaucoup de chance d'être croqués de cette manière... grâce à vous, talentueuse artiste ! Un livre qui sans aucun doute va être fascinant et incroyable.
    Vos dessins sont remplis de poésie, de féerie... de la douceur qui me touche.
    Continuez à me faire rêver.

    Gros bisous et plein de caresses à tous ces merveilleux canetons !

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