As I walked out one winter's day
with my woolly cap
I saw lots of snowy ones
Can you imagine that!
Annabelle's was big and round
But one was pointy too!
Warming her in winter time
Fluffy white and new.
The feeder where the birdies eat
wore a snowy hat
It looked a little like my own
But did not have a strap!
Francis too he wore a cap but it was rather small
He is quiet like the snow and stands so straight and tall.
But my favorite one of all was atop the spiky cone
Tall and pointy like the hat of a garden gnome!
You never know the special things on a morning walk you'll find
Caps and hats of snowy white of every shape and kind.
written by Christine Summerfield/March 18, 2019 ©
Brown and grey
Brown and grey
What does the winter garden do all day?
White and brown
White and brown
Nothing much to hear, it doesn't make a sound.
Ho and hum
Ho and hum
Grey and brown makes me feel all glum.
Then a voice said "ho!"
Take a little moment now and say 'hello!'"
Beside my boot
In his green suit
He said "I am the one who tends the root!"
"You might say
It's brown and grey
But just you wait til one spring day!"
"Soon the roots
Will send up shoots
And you'll see flowers in the month of May!"
Then the wee gnome
Hid behind a stone
And burrowed down below to his earthen home.
Though brown and grey
On this winter's day
The garden really DID have a lot to say!
written by Christine Summerfield / March 7, 2019
Reflections and Gratitude
It has now been three months since the publication of my first children's book A Boy and His Tree. During the time of all the stages leading up to the publication, there have been many joys and many bumps along the way. There were skills learned while writing, editing, sketching, photographing and formatting. Also new vocabulary and technical skills learned too! Not to mention timeless moments of walking, pondering and dreaming of the characters, the setting, and most of all, the message.
This time of creating was was not unlike a pregnancy. There were many people along the way who supported me and encouraged me. And there times of solitude, where I was in my studio working on illustrations and doing them over and over, letting go of pieces and moving forward with new ones, always exploring, editing and discovering.
I still remember the moment I picked up my boxes of books at the printers in Denver. When I held the hard cover in my hands and turned the pages, I could hardly believe it had happened. My dream had actually come true and I was holding a real book in my hands, One that I had dreamed of creating from start to finish. I cried gentle tears of joy. It was like giving birth. I wrapped up those boxes in my car and sang sweet lullabies to them as I drove back to Boulder, oblivious of rush hour noise and traffic and simply wanting to imprint each book with love.
Then, the next set of skills needed to be learned: how to promote and get the word out and send them out in to the world. Many people have helped support the purchase of A Boy and His Tree, from family and friends to teachers and parents in local schools. Even the Longmont Yarn Shoppe, where I have taught many felting classes in the past was a happy supporter of my book! And new friends and have come my way through word of mouth. The book has traveled near and far, from its hometown of Boulder, CO to Canada, New Zealand, Australia and the Czech Republic. Like raising a child, this has been a process of tending and watching it mature and leave home, to travel to places unknown, trusting that it will be held and loved by people of all ages.
Thank you to every person who helped make my dream of A Boy and His Tree come true.
But like with any book, the story comes alive when it is held and cherished and shared with others, preferably with a warm cup of tea in your favorite chair.
George and Grandpa Russ would approve.
I am humbled by the array of words of appreciation that I have received in the last few months.
What strikes me is how different aspects of a story speak to different people. Every person is touched in their own way and receives a healing element according to what they need. I would like to share some of these impressions with you, from parents and teachers of all ages. Enjoy!
"It's blustery outside today and it felt so nice losing myself in that cozy world you created. I like being left with the image of the Christmas Star." Jullin G., WA
"I read your story and felt George's love for his tree, his family and his interest in doing every day things. Your felted images left something for the imagination of young children to catch."
Donna.H., mother, grandmother, Waldorf Early Childhood teacher, Boulder, CO
"I read your book while sipping a cup of tea. You were able to communicate something so very basic about the love and care of family life as well as a healthy relationship to our outer world and nature." Charlotte. H., Mother and Waldorf Early Childhood teacher, Boulder, CO
"I'm like that old tree! I felt comforted reading how George loved his grandfather AND his tree."
Teddy.L., (93 years old), Great Grandmother, Ontario, Canada
"I really liked it. It left me feeling warm and relaxed." Dave D., BC, Canada
"Thank you for such a beautiful gift and reminder to the world. It really touched on how everything is so connected and that gratitude is one big circle."
Stacie. S., Class 4 Waldorf teacher, Boulder, CO
"Addy and I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your beautiful book. She is really entranced by the images and the story is so soothing.We have read it many times already."
E. Baker, Founder of Living Arts School and the Wee Folk Forest School, Boulder, CO
"Love the story and my supporting role in it. So sweet that our connections around gardening and our love for nature over many years inspired you to include me." Grandpa Russ, BC, Canada
“We have loved reading Christine’s book. My 3 year old daughter is fascinated with the pictures and always wants me to wait to turn the pages so she can gaze at them longer. She loves the texture of the felted images and will rub them with her fingers trying to feel the softness of the wool. I love how the pictures have just the right amount of detail yet it leaves room for the imagination. The story brings such a feeling of wholeness and warmth. I love the simplicity of how the family celebrates the seasons and the holidays. It reminds us all how the ordinary world can be filled with magic if we just take the time to slow down and notice. This book is a great addition to any family library and I know it will be cherished for years to come in my home.”
Orien. M., mother and Waldorf Early Childhood teacher, Niwot, CO
"I love the illustration of George hugging Gus and how they appear so united as one being in their togetherness. I also love the part of the story where Gus is adorned, like an altar, and the beautiful two page spread illustrating this at the end. Worshipping the tree and seeing the togetherness of all creatures." Carolyn. W. O., CO, mother, counsellor @ Mountain Voice Health
I never really thought about the spaces-in-between
Until the winter season came and there was no more green.
For then the leaves had fallen and the branches now were bare
And I can look between them now and something new is there!
That something new it is the sky
in all its shades of blue
With waving clouds that look at me
and say "how do you do!"
And then at night I look between the branches in the tree
I sit and wait a little while in and what do you think I see?
I see the stars all shining bright and twinkling in the sky
I smile at them and twinkle back with my happy eye!
"I never noticed you before when leaves were all in bloom
But now with spaces in between I even see the moon!"
The gift of emptiness it brings a fullness to my mind
A way to look, a way to see what really lies behind.
Who knows what waits behind the trees when there is no green?
Clouds and stars and skies of blue in spaces-in-between.
©written by Christine Summerfield/March 1, 2019
One fristy frosty morning, I walked upon the land
Everything had turned to white, a winter wonderland!
Tiny little crystals on every branch and twig
Standing neatly in a row on pine and cedar sprigs!
Tiny little crystals
On every rose and thorn
Shining like a diamond bright
On this winter morn.
Tiny little crystals dressing up the seeds
Ready for the winter ball, even thistle weeds!
Tiny little crystals on grasses brown and dry
Made me stop and take a look and give a happy sigh!
These tiny little crystals
Felt like grains of sand
But did not last and melted when
I held them in my hand.
What once was dry and brittle in my garden brown
Suddenly had changed to white and wore a silver gown!
Thank you little crystals for all you had to say
Such delight you gave to me on this winter's day!
© written by Christine Summerfield/Feb 28, 2019
Five little star fruits sitting on a plate
The first one said "Oh, I feel great!"
The second one said "I too feel fine."
The third one said "I really like to shine!"
The fourth one said "I'm juicy and sweet!"
The fifth one said "we are a yummy treat."
Then along came mama with a spoon and a cup
And one by one, she ate them all up!
written by Christine Summerfield/February 13, 2019
I am pleased to announce the release of my very first children's book! A gentle Christmas tale of
a boy, a tree and the gift of giving. Soft cover edition, 32 pages, for children ages 3 to 8...and for the child in every human heart! All illustrations are lovingly needle felted with natural wool fibers. Simple images for a young child to dream into.
Put on your walking shoes and cap and go outside for a walk with George.
See what is blooming in his winter garden.
Discover the power of giving with a special kind of friend.
Order today to receive this treasure by Christmas!
See my A Boy and His Tree Book Page for details
Thank you for your support and wishing you all a warm and cozy Christmas season,
with love, Christine
Counting the Years
When I was born the summer sun was high up in the sky
The green beans they did run and run, up the poles so high!
When I was one tomatoes grew all round and red and plump
I learned to walk, I learned to run and even how to jump!
And then I grew and grew some more and turned the age of two
I learned to speak and sing among the violets so blue.
When I was three I learned to say "I" instead of me
The Lilies of the Valley they grew up right up to my knee.
And I remember when I was a little girl of four
My hands were yellow, buttery bright from dandelions galore!
At five years old I started school and got a watering can
To water the geraniums that grew in pots and pans.
And at the tender age of six, I liked to watch the ants
Crawling on the peony buds and other kinds of plants.
Then the sun went round and round and seven I did turn
Asparagus grew tall and green mid soft and feathery ferns.
And then upon the age of eight, I liked to climb a tree
where apples grew in autumn time for our family.
And at the age of nine years old, our tree of apricots
Gave us loads and loads of fruit, we liked them quite a lot!
At ten years old, I sold my own bunches of homegrown dill
The first money I did make, it really was a thrill!
And now I am much older now, the years go by and by
I do not count them anymore, the numbers are too high!
But I do like to sit and tell stories now and then
Of memories in the garden green from ages one to ten!
© written by Christine Summerfield/August 28, 2018
Five little girls one summer's day
Went to the garden to laugh and play.
But when the sun so hot did grow
And no cooling breeze did blow...
Grandma had the perfect treat
Watermelon red and sweet!
Juice - a -running
Seeds -a - spitting
Underneath the shade a sitting
There's nothing like the summer treat
Of watermelon and bare feet!
© written by Christine Summerfield/August 25, 2018
G is for Gunnera
Growing in the sunnera
Showing off your great big leaves!
You are so much funnera
As tall as a dinosaur's knee!
You provide a tonnera
Of shade for my friends and me!
© Christine Summerfield/August 20, 2018