Tasha Tudor, one of my very favorite childrens illustrators has died.

She lived out her dreams and entertained many children and adults throughout her long life. I had the opportunity to see her in person in 1982 at the Childrens Museum in Indianapolis. She was tiny, witty, whimsical and kindly. It was a happy thing to have her sign the book about her life by her daughter Bethany, Drawn from New England. I have collected Tasha’s books for years and years and recently have been able to follow her and her family on her website. I wrote to them several years ago asking about how Tasha was doing. They very graciously answered me.

Tasha chose to live in an old fashioned manner with no electricity or running water for many years. She illustrated her books with paintings of her children and Corgis, cats and ducks. In A Time to Keep, Tasha wrote for her granddaughter about what life was like when her mother was a little girl. Within the pages of this magical book was an illustration of a birthday party celebrated on a river at night.

“The table was set with birch bark plates and gourd drinking cups. There were favors made from walnut shells and families of wooden animals in little baskets and meringues made in the shape of toadstools. But best of all - the birthday cake came floating down the river.”

The images and whimsy captivated and enriched me. I was the mother of three little ones when I read this book and my husband was an Army Captain. We didn’t have a lot of money but I always wanted to make my childrens’ birthdays special. Tasha inspired me to be creative with the everyday and special happenings in our lives.

As my Dad says, she was a dandy. There will be no more like her.

To read more about the prolific Tasha Tudor go here.