In 2012 author Corinne Ruff and Illustrator Lisa Benjamin put together a collection of contributions from those who have loved and lived on Long Beach Island, New Jersey. In “Life Lessons” some lucky entries from “island children” of all ages were chosen and showcased for the book. My paragraph was chosen in the chapter subtitled “Starfish.” I am most grateful to my friends JoAnn and Don Fannon who have shared their beach house in Ship Bottom on LBI with me. It continues to feed my soul every time I am there.
When I walk along the shore of the Island, I never tire of seeing myriad numbers of sea creatures – from the channeled whelk to the sand dollar to the thousands of colored shells deposited on the shoreline. I stop and look in awe and think of the long journey they took before these sea creatures arrived at the water’s edge. The lesson I learn is to admire the beauty, the symmetry and the utter uniqueness of each of these small miracles of nature. On my walk I hope to be inspired to go deep within myself to create something of beauty so that I, too, may leave something behind in my creative journey – just like the ocean does every minute of every day, 365 days a year. And I hope my art will inspire others just as the Island continues to inspire me and attract people of all ages to come, look, listen and take in every aspect of its beauty.