Happy Birthday, Tasha Tudor!

  Today would have been the 98th birthday of one of my very favorite illustrators, Tasha Tudor!
  Ever since discovering her books and reading more about her lifestyle, I have been a big fan of this hard working and visionary lady.
   She wrote dozens of books, illustrated hundreds of cards, calendars and posters, and also created a lifestyle and home for herself and her family that was purely out of the American imagination--- a lovely place filled with flowers and animals, where her stories truly came to life.
   In celebration of her birthday, I thought I'd share with you a great treasure of mine--- a copy of Tasha's "Becky's Birthday"-- where the famous 'birthday cake floating down the river' image was first shown.
   This book is also special to me because it is actually signed by Tasha.
  What a treasure, indeed!
Tasha Tudor photo by Richard Brown

    Becky's Birthday is a sweet old fashioned story about Becky, who lives on a New England farm with her parents and sister and two brothers. She wakes on the morning of her tenth birthday, eager to see what the day holds for her. Ten seems to be a big event for Becky--- remember how exciting it was to be able to show your age with all the fingers on your hands? And for Becky, it seems to mark that she is indeed growing up.



    Family life in Tasha's story is sweet and full of comradery. The siblings are all in on the birthday surprises for Becky, and simple treats like getting to go to the store alone with Father and getting all the groceries excites this little girl's heart. 
   There's homemade peach ice cream (still a treat today, I'd say!) picking corn for dinner, not having to the dishes, and getting to fix her own hair.
    Tasha's illustrations are gorgeous and details--- I love all the animals lurking about, waiting for a crumb to drop-- looks like dinner at my house!
   I noticed too,after watching Take Joy, that "Father" in this story looks strikingly like Tasha's own father. And I imagine the children in the story take closely after Tasha's own four kids.


   Of course the grand event of the day is a picnic at the river at dusk with family and friends. There are games and a dinner that would make any veteran Pinterest party pinner weak at the knees (dinner served on grape leaves! A chair made of vines and ferns for Becky to sit in! Flowers all over the place!) 
   Then at the end, a real surprise--- Becky's birthday cake comes floating down the river towards the party on a little raft, all aglow with candles and magic. It is, ultimately, the dream day of any old fashioned-at-heart little girl (or little mama!)
   And so--- along with Becky-- I wish Tasha a merry and lovely birthday, where ever she may be. And also my deepest thanks for the inspiration she has given me over the years, in all sorts of ways!~

    Happy Birthday, Tasha!~
H



28 comments

  1. Hi Heather! I'm sorry to be so late to visit. I was offline on vacation. I love your folk art/illustrator blogs. Tasha's art has timeless beauty. What a sweet story!

    Since you're planning a trip to Maine, this post might be useful:
    http://blog.sarahlaurence.com/2012/03/maine-vacation-advice-from-local.html

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    1. Thanks so much for the blog link, Sarah! I cant wait to see Maine for myself!

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  2. This is definitely a treasure, Heather! Lovely photos, too. Thank you for joining us in celebrating Tasha Tudor's Birthday! ~Natalie from Tasha Tudor and Family

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    1. Thanks so much for your visit, Natalie! Happy Tasha Day! :D

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  3. Thank you for including us in Tasha's birthday remembrance . Her stories and art work are so timeless and sweet!

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    1. How fun that you are remembering Tasha all the way in Norway, Winnie! Hope you're having a fabulous day!

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  4. Happy Tasha Tudor day Heather. Oh Becky Birthday is my all time favorite Tasha book. I mean who would not want a birthday cake floating down a stream! Clarice

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    1. I know! Who would have thought of that? Tasha was the first epic mama birthday planner ;)

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  5. So beautiful- I love that book. I really feel the need to have my birthday cake lit with candles float down the river (though just not the Hudson River please!) :)

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    1. Honestly, I think I might have a panic attack if my cake was floating down the river ;) too many chances of drowned cake! And I wouldnt want my cake in the Arkansas river, either ;)

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  6. What a beautiful book... I love Tasha Tudor. Did you know I own a signed copy of one of her books as well? The Butt'ry Shelf Almanac :-) Maybe I'll take a photo of it and display it on my blog later too! ♥

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    1. Yes, you gotta share Erin! Doesnt it just feel so special to know she held the book in her hands and signed it?

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  7. Hi Heather,
    A lovely post. I hope to have a floating birthday cake someday ~ maybe next year. I see you are planning a visit to New England next month, you should stop by the the Tasha Tudor Museum and take in the current exhibit "Unending Delight" it is truly delightful. I was just there and posted about it on my blog if you would like a peek. This was my second visit to the museum ~ it is just lovely there!I love Tasha so these are great events in my life!!
    You have a great day.
    Melissa
    Ps. Congratulations on the baby ~ we seem to have all girl in my little family!

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    1. Do you have the blog link, Melissa? I'd love to see the post!

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    2. Sorry I thought I added. elegantlyhandmade.wordpress.com
      Melissa

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  8. Thank you for a beautiful post on Tasha.

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    1. Thanks so much for stopping by, Linda!

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  9. Beautiful post about Tasha. I' ve adored her since I read about her Victoria Magazine. She is a true original.

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  10. Gorgeous. I would love to see a hard copy of this book someday.

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    1. I think its out of print, but sometimes you can find used gems on amazon!

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  11. Dear Heather,

    Thanks for sharing "Becky's Birthday." Now that I have a Becky of my own, I need to get a copy of this book! Tasha's spirit is alive and well in all of us, and we are so blessed by her.

    Love,

    Marqueta

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  12. Such a fabulous Tasha post! Sadly, I do not have one this year. I was not too familiar with Becky's Birthday - thank you for sharing it. I'm going to celebrate the day a bit late - on the weekend I'll be baking up some stuff. I hope Tasha will like that! Enjoy the day!

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  13. It makes me so happy that we share Tasha Love together, Miss Heather! WHY don't I own this book?? I have to own this book.

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  14. A lovely tribute to a beautiful, creative lady !
    Amazing how, we as women, can have an impact on others, most of the time not even knowing it.
    Rose

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  15. That looks like a cute book. I just requested a bunch from the library after reading your post.

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  16. Such delightful detail in her work, as you say, an inspiration :)

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  17. I grew up in Vermont (where Tasha Tudor lived and died) and keenly remember her sweet illustrations from my childhood. ♥ She was a true artist.

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Each and every comment is appreciated! Thanks for coming to visit me :) ~Heather

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