Saturday, August 25, 2018

My New Life with Henry

Coming January 2019!
by Gillian Callanan

from Sheila Connolly's 
County Cork Mysteries

Time flies when . . . you have an infant who wants to be fed every few hours. It kind of cuts into your free time.

Not that I don’t adore Henry—he’s a delight. But if I’m honest, I’m a bit relieved that he’s not mobile yet, because if I had to chase after him, I’d never finish a painting.

That’s right—before I became a mother, I was an artist. I actually sold paintings. It’s what I always wanted to do, even though I knew I’d never make much money. But I loved it.

And then Henry happened. One thing I didn’t expect when I had Henry: somehow he changed my painting style. I’m haven’t decided whether I like the changes. My pictures (when I manage to finish one) are softer, quieter, prettier. I never used to paint pretty pictures. I wanted my art to be bold and edgy. Can you outgrow being bold and edgy? Is that what motherhood does to you? Or is my artist’s eye turning to mush? I really don’t know.

Maura Donovan is a true friend (who helped deliver Henry, if you’re looking for proof), and she lets me hang some of my Henry-era pictures in her pub, Sullivan’s, in Leap. I stop by when I can—otherwise I’ve no one to talk to except the fishermen who pass by the house where Henry’s father and I live, that was once a creamery, and they’re not stopping at Ballinlough (which is the small lake behind the creamery) for the conversation but for the fishing. I’m not sure they’re pub-type pictures, but at least tourists who stop by will see them, and might even buy one. How can I complain about that?

One good thing that’s come from dropping in at the pub is a request for help from the gardaĆ­. I never thought I’d be caught up in police business, but I was happy to help. You’ll be hearing more about that later.

Funny how life keeps changing when you least expect it. And just when you’ve gotten used to the changes, things change again. It certainly keeps life interesting.

Yes, Henry, I know you’re hungry . . .

The Road to Eyries, a painting in oils by West Cork artist Avril McDermott
I bought her water-color version--the first thing I added to my cottage,
even before furniture, and the first thing you see when you walk in
the front door.


  1. Hope to read this book soon!

  2. The painting is lovely. Great color usage.

  3. I'm curious what help the gardaĆ­ needs.

  4. When does this book come out? I need to read it soon. Lovely picture

  5. I love, love, love that painting! And cannot wait for this book to come out. I will be pre-ordering it as soon as I can. Thanks for writing all of your series, but this one truly has my heart <3

  6. Love the painting and looking forward to this book coming out.

  7. I cannot wait. I love this series. What a pretty painting to have your cottage!