e are running on fumes here, Marcel maybe most of all, so it was not without some dismay that I heard news of his final, sixth grade social studies project due today: an alphabet book, a primer if you will, comprised entirely of words pertaining to or in use in Europe during the Middle Ages. Each word was to be illustrated with at least half of those illustrations were to be rendered in some three-dimensional fashion.

“Are you kidding me?” I asked him when he told me about the project a week ago. “How long have you known about this?”

He was pretty hazy on that and, in the end, what did it matter? He started to work—an hour here, another there—the project consuming a not-insignificant portion of his weekend and a surprising amount of toothpicks.

When he left for school this morning, there were some issues with his book. Spelling was occasionally problematic (see: the cover) and I’m pretty sure he forgot the letter ‘R’ entirely. But you see it is this very nitpicking that fouls up our ability to see the big picture, the beauty and bounty that is available to us every day. Because if you don’t allow yourself to be distracted by the little things, you can how amazing Marcel’s book truly is—to some degree because of its imperfections. Imaginative and funny, the Medieval period never looked so good. Click through to see for yourself.

I wish each of you space enough to see the ample beauty of your big picture today and everyday.