During my stay in Pittsburgh, I was privileged to work with 6-12 year olds in conjunction with Braddock’s Carnegie Library activities program. This story is about D (photos of the children and using their real names are not allowed without parental permission).

Rachel, the children’s librarian, introduced this little girl to me – saying she was very creative.

D was a gorgeous child, very shy, and avoided eye contact. There was one other little girl participating, so to start with, we made a magic book. Then I suggested we fill it in- the theme was, ‘My favorite…’ and they could choose whatever topic they wanted. The other little girl, B, was sitting  with her mother, and chose,’My favorite person”, a book dedicated to her mom.

D looked away, deep in thought. I was sitting right next to her and felt it best not to interfere or prompt, I had thrown out a few suggestions at the beginning, and evidently one of these eventually did take. She wrote carefully on the front:


Then she worked drawing a tiny hand in the middle of the next spread- and I asked her what that was. It was a hand, and she clarified just what type of hand it was by writing this:


Since she didn’t offer any other explanations, I said, great, might there also be a home sweet home leg? At this one tiny corner of her mouth twitched a fraction up.  And the ‘Home sweet home ear’ soon followed,  bringing with it a delightful suggestion of a grin.


She continued further, absorbed on her  own, except for me asking if she wanted a pop- up house. That was affirmative. I also asked her where this house was- in a forest, by the sea, in the clouds?  ‘In the clouds’.


Here is the rest,


and finally the topper, the revealing of this wonderful personality just underneath the shy exterior.


Wow, would I have liked to stay and do more art with her to see what else she had to say!!