Doodling My Way into Spring

By Tricia Gillespie

I adore spring and I love that it came early this year.  It’s a time of new life, sunshine, and getting out of the winter rut.  Isn’t it easy to do the same thing day after day?  Before you know it, the seasons blend and another year is gone. 

Not this year!

This spring I’m on a mission to discover the “new”.  I want to shake off the ugly winter caterpillar and transform into a lovely butterfly.  I want to try new things.  That’s why I enlisted the help of my family.

When asked what new adventure I should try, my husband thought for about twenty seconds and said, “Maybe you should buy one of those little Nintendo’s the kids have and learn to play video games.”

Huh?  My husband is a game hater at heart.  I knew it all stemmed from a video he saw of a ninety-six year old woman keeping her sanity by playing a DS every day, but I still have fifty-three years before I hit my nineties and lose all my marbles.  I want to spread my wings and fly, not fold them around a video game, so I went in search of my children and a better suggestion.

My daughter said, “Learn to play video games.”

That apple didn’t fall far from the paternal tree, but my son was a bit more creative.  “Get a job at McDonalds.”

I want to be a butterfly, not a french fry!

That’s when I decided to ignore those closest to me and try Zentangle®.  They say it’s “doodling with purpose” and I was sure I could do that.  You should have seen my notebooks in high-school.  They were doodle-licious!  

I’m already a doodling fool, I thought.  I can bust out some “Zen” and “tangle” with a pen and paper.

Little did I know there are patterns to learn, and squiggles must be planned and precise.  Zen-doodlers are serious about their craft, so I studied shapes and patterns and learned the art of Zentangle®.  Realistically, I suspect I’ll be learning it for many years to come, because I am hooked.  It’s so relaxing, it’s better than therapy.

Hormones gone haywire? Zentangle®
Kids gone wild? Zentangle®
The boss getting on your nerves? Zentangle®
Bad hair day? Zentangle®
Bank account at zero? Zentangle®
Pipes burst? Zentangle®
Snow till July? Zentangle®

When you Zentangle®, it’s like being in another world – a happy world where it’s spring and you’re a butterfly.  Your family will stand in awe of your doodles.  They’ll forget they ever wanted you to play video games and work at McDonalds. 

How about it?  Want to try something new this spring?  Will you join me?  Grab a piece of paper and a pen and doodle your little Zen heart out.

Here are two websites to help get you started: 


Bio:  When Tricia is not doodling, she’s telling funny stories and sharing mishaps from her life on the fringe.  You can visit her @ TheDomesticFringe.com.


  1. You are an Artiste. I've never heard of this before.

  2. I've never heard of this before! I absolutely have to check this out! I love to doodle, but doodling with a purpose? Unheard of! :) Thanks!

  3. I know ladies. It was new to me too. I actually went to several craft/art stores in search of a book, but without any luck. There are a few pattern books you can order online. I haven't done that yet. I did sign up for the emails on one of the above mentioned websites. They teach me new patterns. Let me know if you try it Amy!

    ~Tricia (aka FringeGirl)

  4. Sounds like a lot of fun. Although working at McDonalds would have its advantages as well. Free fries, anyone? : )

  5. My son was standing here going "OOohh that's cool! How do they do that? Wow!" So maybe we are going to have to look into this.

    Your picture is fabulous! Did you do that???

  6. Karen, thank you. I did do it. It was my first attempt, but I'm working on another. I think this next one is working out better. Learn as you go, I guess. I think your son would probably love it. Just check out the websites I've listed and buy some Micron pens. Then doodle away. ;-)

  7. This is really cool, Tricia. I'm not artistic at drawing at all,(you should have seen my drawing class projects in class... talk about a GPA killer), but I love seeing what other people can do. I do have an urge to try something new this spring too.

  8. Awesome, Tricia! So fun, and you can't go wrong with creative. Good for you.

    PS. I'll take the fries.

  9. Love your Zentangle picture!


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