Jodi Hills

So this is who I am – a writer that paints, a painter that writes…

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Beating Ben Franklin.

It’s probably the worst time to tell you this, but it is true, I never had a Barbie. I don’t remember ever even wanting one.

There was nearly an entire row dedicated to the Barbie world at our local Ben Franklin store. Straight down from the candy. I saw classmates ooohing and aaahing and but, please, mommy-ing as they fogged the plastic containers. I was always two aisles over. In the craft section. Glues and paint and glitter and paper. All I ever wanted to do was make something.

The first time I opened a “grab bag” from Ben Franklin with my grandma during the summer Crazy Days Sale and found the plastic face glued to the crocheted Kleenex box holder, I was hooked. It wasn’t that I loved that “prize.” No, far from it. But I knew, even at 5 years old, I could do much better. I would beat Ben Franklin with their own supplies.

While my friends filled sacks of penny candy to go to the matinee at the Cinema next door, I wandered over to my aisle. I was often alone, or with a grandma look alike who nodded in my direction, understanding the addiction, smiling as if to say it would never end. And it hasn’t. I need to make something every day.

Sure my “aisles” have changed. The daily creation may be making a frame from reclaimed wood. Stretching a canvas. Painting a portrait. Making jam. Writing on scraps of paper with words that glitter in sweet alliteration. Living not in Barbie’s dream world, but certainly mine.

They won’t make a movie about a half-faced plastic girl stuck to a Kleenex box holder.
But I’ll be more than ok. I found my inspiration long ago. I smile as the words rhyme again and again in my head – glitter and “alliter”…. What a theme song!

I’ve had my breakfast of yesterday’s art – homemade bread and jam. I am sugared pink and ready to start the day! Let’s make something of it!