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Since I launched Bonsai Akira in February 2016 at the Northwest Home and Garden Show, I have had a roller coaster ride of fun exhilarating and somewhat precarious experiences keeping my small nursery and art studio for bonsai afloat on he seas of change! This year will be no different in that regard—(whew! bring it on, baby!) so I am tooting my own horn a little bit here, reviewing past success…. High points include being accepted to that fateful show aforementioned— thank you forever, Linda! And all the chance encounters it led to that cemented me in the Northwest plant/art/bonsai market and art show scene. With 2021 and over fifty art shows under my belt, followed by a year’s hiatus while we waited out the coronavirus… I am now focused on building local clientele and studio teaching to continue to serve the bonsai lovers present and future who find me…. This entails developing my nursery display area and adjacent publicity to incorporate monthly Open Studio events for gardeners and bonsai aficionados. As a work in progress for twenty plus years now my garden has become a place of welcome and delight for eyes, ears, and yes, nose— as the local bird population will attest. Being swooped in my back yard by bald eagles— not one but two! is among he high points. So was traveling with my “mobile greenhouse” to Chicago for 4th of July weekend to set up for the vaunted  Chicago Botanic Garden Art Festival— in 90 degree weather at 6:00 am on a Friday, followed by a weekend of thunderstorms where patrons fled for cover…. (sigh).         So many memories— mostly hauling large items across grassy wet turf with too much irrigation to set up a spontaneous display garden under a ten foot canopy, to provide shade and a backdrop for the bonsai collection which had travelled two thousand miles for the privilege of being seen. Oh, the life of an artist. Well, here we are, after five years of shows— fun ones like Best of the Northwest— my family away from home— and the Sequim Garden Show hosted by the local soroptimists. And locations like the waterfront at Edmonds and Everett, Washington, with their steady and kind patrons, and Bellevue Botanic Garden, with its beautiful Takeuchi Pavilion where he bonsai were graciously housed. Thank you again, garden staff and event organizers, for your devotion to the arts and your clientele. Having been with the very best artists on the Pacific Northwest— let’s not forget our own Lake Oswego Art Festival, and others— I will miss the cameradie and gentle nudges to excel in my chosen craft by my peers. Here’s to Portland Open Studios, which I hope to continue being involved in till I die, or they decide I’m too old… god forbid. Come by and see me in the garden sometime. I’ll make tea and show you the latest work in progress. Teaching schedule to follow, when it is safe to work across from one another at the outdoor picnic table under the canopy. Lucy