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For the Love of Lupine & Literature (and a little bit of news)

April 5, 2012

Maine lupine, photography, Lupine Lady, Barbara Cooney, Miss Rumphius, children's literature

























Each year, Thetford Elementary School in Thetford, Vermont celebrates reading, children’s literature, and favorite authors with Book Character Day!  And every year I worked there in 2nd grade, I dressed up as the same character in the same children’s book….. Miss Rumphius, otherwise known as The Lupine Lady.  The children’s book, Miss Rumphius, is written and illustrated by award-winning Maine author, Barbara Cooney. It tells of a little girl named Alice Rumphius.  At her grandfather’s knee, Alice explains ” when she grows up she wants to travel and see far away places, and then come home to live by the sea.”   Her wise grandfather tells her that is wonderful but there is a third thing she must do… Alice must also “make the world a more beautiful place.” This proves to be the most difficult of all.

I have been entranced by the words and illustrations of Miss Rumphius forever. My daughters have probably heard me read it to them at least 100 times.  Of course, a big part of my love for the book is I am a Mainer too!  But also, I love the ocean, lupine flowers, the call for social action, and have always dreamed of living near the sea, all of which are entwined into this book. It’s a beautifully written Spring story (lupines blossom in late May, early June in Maine) with gorgeous and whimsical water colors of lupine, the ocean, and Maine.

Maine lupine, Barbara Cooney, Miss Rumphius, Lupine Lady, photography

As a collector of children’s books, I often find photography inspiration from re-reading my favorite children’s books, “listening” to their words, and enjoying the illustrations. Miss Rumphius is one, if not “The One,” of my very favorite children’s books. Well worth the read, even if you no longer have little ones in the house to read to! And… you will need to read it to discover how Alice was able to fulfill her grandfather’s important wish. (Probably at this point you have an idea!)

What is your favorite Springtime children’s book?  Do you love it for the story, the illustrations, the message or all of the above? I would love to hear about it! I am always on the lookout for the next great children’s book to add to my collection.

And a little news…beginning next month, I will be writing a monthly column for Model Life Magazine! It will be a children’s literature book review article, each month focusing on 5 children’s books relating to the magazine’s monthly theme! And of course, I will be adding my own images to each article! The opportunity to combine my two loves of photography AND children’s literature has me a little on the excited side!  If you would like to follow along on my magazine writing journey, please add your email up there on the right hand-side of this page. I will let you know when the articles are published!

Happy Springtime!  Until next time….

Creatively yours,


Vermont cow, photography, Nanette Faye Photography

Keeping his eye on me as I enjoy the lupine!

7 Comments leave one →
  1. April 5, 2012 6:29 pm

    Exciting news about the monthly column for Model Life!! I am so Happy for you and look forward to each article you write. And you know how I feel about literature. You have just given me the gift of your beautiful photographs, your endearing writing, and your love of literature all in one place, every month. I am buying your favorite book this weekend when I see you. I am hoping it is still in print!

  2. Paula permalink
    April 5, 2012 9:04 pm

    Super news! yay! Looking forward to reading your monthly column…I am sure you will do a wonderful job and can’t wait to see your beautiful talent with the pictures! Too funny you wrote this…this has always been one of my most favorite books to read to my kids too and I think I have it stored away in the box of children’s books to keep! Love this story…it is a treasure. So happy for you Nanette…will love sharing this journey with you.

  3. Paula permalink
    April 5, 2012 9:06 pm

    Oh…forgot to write how absolutely gorgeous these photo’s of the lupines are! LOVE LOVE the first one with the bee! Wow! Such special flowers and you have done them justice in a photo. So often things are not as beautiful unless you see them in person, but you capture the beauty most often.

  4. April 5, 2012 9:54 pm

    The bee photo is awesome. Very nice! When were the shots taken?

  5. April 5, 2012 10:32 pm

    Thanks for the sweet compliments on the photos, and the support concerning my new endeavor!! Means so much!! And Chris, these were shot last June when the lupine were in full bloom.

  6. April 6, 2012 9:23 am

    Absolutely LOVE the first photo of the lupine with the bee!! My all-time favorite children’s book is “Old Turtle” by Douglas Wood. The illustrations are beautiful (watercolors done by an Oriental artist) and the message is heart-warming. I have it on my bookshelf, if you’d like to see it. Congrats on the column and have fun!!!

  7. April 6, 2012 9:46 am

    Loved the lupine and the bee photo

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