*Phone rings*
Me: “Hello?”
Colleen: “You HAVE to enter this contest.”
Me: “What contest?”
Colleen: “The one I just emailed you about. If you win, Bloomimdale’s will sell your design as a tote bag. Go come up with something!”

This is my friend Colleen. She calls/emails/Facebooks/tweets with all kinds of crazy ideas for me. She’s like a one-woman brain trust for all things creative, and I always nod my head and do as she says, having long ago learned to trust her incredible judgment about these things.

So, Bloomies wants a design for their “Go Green” campaign, do they? I happened to be standing outside, barefoot in the grass, at the time she called me. As Sheba, the resident crazy dog and professional paw model galloped passed, this image popped into my mind.

One problem.

Have you ever tried to get one dog, two boys, and seven Scrabble tiles to sit/stand/lay nicely in the green grass on a beautiful sunny spring day? Let’s just say I’m happy there are multiple “R” pieces in a Scrabble game, because Sheba nearly ate one (and wet, dog-saliva-covered wood tiles are not the same color as the nice clean, dry ones). The boys were, of course, complete angels and never once poked, prodded, or pushed one another. At ALL (please read that last part with all the sarcasm it implies).

I took about five or six shots before Sheba collapsed in exhaustion on top of the words “go green,” Lucas discovered there were far more interesting things to do (like dig for ants at the base of a tree), and Danny informed me he had to take a call. On his cell phone. Which was really a twig he discovered in the yard.

Now it seems this little memoir of one sunny day and three marginally cooperative models has reached #4 in the country in the polls. If it wins and you see random women wandering around carrying my bag as they shop at Bloomingdales, you can tell them that the “R” is a replacement letter because Sheba slobbered all over the first. Then, please do come back here and tell me if they enjoyed the story. Or if they called mall security. I’d love to know which one it was.