Friday, March 3, 2017


Eloise came to Danvers when I was almost a teenager. My cousin Janet, then probably twice my age, brought her. I didn't know what to think, at first. Eloise was such a city girl; I was a country girl and couldn't immediately relate to her life. But Janet really loved Eloise, and soon I too was laughing heartily at the escapades of young Eloise.

Eloise came back into my life this week, and it was a joyous reunion. Oh! Eloise!

On Wednesday March 1, while driving from one errand to another in Amherst, MA, I passed the sign for the Eric Carle Museum, paused, turned the car around, and drove into that parking lot. I'd recently read in the newspaper about their newest exhibit, and was curious to see it.  I only intended a 5-minute peek, but I probably stayed half an hour, delightfully revisiting the world of Eloise, and learning more about her origins.

This very LARGE, life-size image greeted me as I turned from the open lobby area into the small passageway to the special exhibit room:

Here are a few more images from this remarkable exhibit.  I am so glad I stopped to see it.  I was surprised by the strength of my emotions for this little girl I'd almost forgotten.

What a clever invitation to join Eloise and her Nanny for tea!  I immediately wished I could invite my cousin Janet to join me.  (I'll invite her to view this blog entry, as soon as I finish typing it.)   I'm sure Janet will enjoy the fact that the Eric Carle Museum drew on the walls.  In Danvers, Janet and her husband Jed drew colorful characters on the walls of their sons' bedroom to entertain those boys. Janet now lives in Maine, in a house with many examples of her artistry painted directly on the walls.

I'll thank Janet for bringing that book to Danvers, back in the middle of the 1950's, and introducing me to 6-year-old Eloise.

"A book for precocious grown-ups, about a little girl who lives at The Plaza Hotel."  
And, I'll tell my friends to visit the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art.  For seniors like me, the entry fee is only $6.

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