Saturday, December 27, 2014

Sunshine!! Blue Sky!!!! I see them both! It’s been a long, cold, dreary, cloudy month, and I’m glad it’s on its way out. We got about an inch of snow yesterday, so everything looks fresh and clean now. Life is good…

I finished my zebra drawing, and I like the way it turned out. I’m on an African wildlife kick, so my next one is of a leopard.ZebrasConfusionofStripeslores-2014-12-27-10-38.jpg

Sunday, December 21, 2014

It’s appropriate, I suppose, that the darkest day of the year should be so dark and dreary. But we’re over the first hump of winter, and in about three weeks, the second hump, and the days will start to get warmer. Spring will be on the way!

I’ve been dragged kicking and screaming into Facebook, selling beads at auctions there. It’s been quite satisfying selling beads again, it’s inspired me to get back into torching. Here’s a couple of really neat ones I just sold yesterday. they have metallic shimmers that the camera just hints at,


My zebra drawing has been progressing quite nicely, I’m almost done with it and have started planning another drawing already.




Thursday, December 11, 2014

Are news writers so young these days that five years of time can so impress them?
Headline: California Braces for Rain, Snow and High Winds in Worst Storm in Five Years
My zebras drawing is progressing nicely. I think I’m going to put a little bit of blue on the water to add some color.

Thursday, December 04, 2014

Less than three weeks to go until the winter solstice, the shortest, darkest day of the year. That’s the first hump to get through the winter, then three weeks later, the days start getting warmer (statistically). Once we get past that, I can start feeling like the worst is over and I can start planning my gardens. I’m going to get some moving around of my bird feeders. I read an article that feeders should be closer than three feet or more than 30 feet away from windows to prevent birds from crashing into them. And of course, right now all of my feeders are inside that danger zone.

After finishing my bird drawing, I was wandering around feeling lost because I just couldn’t settle on a new drawing. I decided to get my embroidery machine out and try working on that, but couldn’t find the power cord for it!! I cleaned out the half of the foyer closet where I keep my boxes of thread, not there. Cleaned and went through the boxes of fabric and misc. on top of the bookshelves in the middle bedroom. Not there. So after wasting two days (well, guess not wasted since I cleaned or organized) I decided to go onto Amazon and see if I could get a replacement cord. Had to check the embroidery machine to get the model number, and guess what I found under it. The power cord.

Work in progress, A Confusion of Stripes, (I got inspired after watching some National Geographic shows about zebra migrations). This one is larger than my normal size, about 9x11 inches.
We had a surprise at our bird feeder the other day,
I think they’re cute, but I’m not enthused about having them around, since they’re so destructive, so we had Suka chase him up a tree a couple of times. He got the hint and moved on to more peaceful feeders.

Speaking of Suka, this dog has a huge personality! When I get Lukas up to shower him, Suka has to find his toy and claim his spot on the bed. Such a silly puppy!
I must have been especially uninspired August of 2013. I just finished photographing the last of the beads from that month, and there are quite a few ‘blah’ beads. My bag of rejects is going to be growing as I winnow through them.

I’ve gotten a few new funny photos off the web, here’s a couple,

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Sales on Etsy have pretty well tanked for small shops and artists. Last year they opened it up to manufacturing, so individual lampworkers are competing even more with cheap Chinese beads. I’ve been urged to try selling on gasp!! Facebook! Oh gosh, I get overwhelmed just going and looking at my page on Facebook. But either I quit making beads, which I don’t want to do, or find some place to get rid of these things. I’ve got bags of them from the past year and a half.

So, I’ve got my headphones on listening to Tommy Cash, Waylon Jennings and Neil Diamond, and a tutorial on listing beads on one of the FB lampwork groups. Wish me luck, sigh….

ETA: Well, I think I did it.


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

I am in a funk! I can’t get centered on anything to do. Made some very uninspiring beads, pulled out some quilting, spent an entire day installing and re-installing Parallels and Windows on my laptop, and got totally frustrated with it. Spent hours going through photos looking for something to hit me as a drawing, ZIP! Even toyed with the idea of finding my needlepoint stuff, but gave up when I couldn’t remember where I put it all. Sigh.

I’m sure part of it is the SAD, it’s been so cold and windy and cloudy, it’s hard to find the energy to do anything. We always have wind here, but this has been constant, a cold and bitter January wind. Just listening to it makes me want to crawl into my bed.

It’s been some years since I tried using light therapy, so I ordered one from Amazon. Hopefully it will give me some oomph! (I know that’s a word because the spell checker passed it.)

No flower pics, no bead pics, not even any bird pics, since the English sparrows have been swarming the bird feeder. I do have some Internet pics though.


That could go for Minnesota too.


I could see one of my cats doing this,


Monday, November 17, 2014

This is the United States, where 1 in 30 children have been homeless in the past year, and a baseball player just signed a contract that comes out to $68,000 a day for 13 years.

I can’t think of anything more to say, except that it makes me sad.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

I finished my drawing of a female red-breasted grosbeak. I’m not satisfied with the leaves, but I do like the way the bird turned out. Now I have to figure out what to do next.

Friday, November 14, 2014

The folks at Farmer’s Almanac must be gloating right now. The weather forecasters thought this winter was going to be warmer than last, but Farmer’s Almanac predicted a colder winter. We’re having January weather here, it’s -1°.

On the bright side, only another 5 1/2 weeks until the days start getting longer.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Am I getting old or what? Listening to the news this morning, Today Show sent in a reporter ahead of the snowstorm, and she said, “we should easily pick up more than a foot of snow, making this the first double digit snowstorm this area has seen in two years!”

Two years?!? Excuse me if I’m not impressed.

We were out yesterday getting outside stuff wrapped up, moving tractors, getting the stock tank moved and electric run to it, and got the bucket on the bobcat. That thing should make things a bit easier than they were last year. I sure am glad I went for the bigger bobcat that had a cabin heater. Sigh, they’ve been changing the forecast the closer the snowstorm got. Just a couple of days ago, it was 4”-6”, now that it’s started, it looks like we’ll be in the heaviest band, 14”. Today we’ll just hunker down and see what we end up with by the time it wraps up. I do have to go get the snowshovel, though, and get a path to the bird feeders, they’re flocking around, and the feeders are covered with snow.
My latest drawing is progressing nicely, I’m much more pleased with it than I was with the Baltimore Oriole drawing.

Thursday, November 06, 2014

I must be getting old! I’m watching a rerun of the Country Music Awards and wondering, when did country music morph into rap and rock?

I’ll stick with Johnny and Waylon, and Alan Jackson.

Saturday, November 01, 2014

What is it about a northwest wind in the fall sounds different than it does in the summer. A summer howler brings a welcome relief from the heat, while a howler this time of the year makes a person shudder. It just sounds cold and depressing. Winter is on its way, but at least we don’t have the snow that other places are getting, thank goodness.

I have some nice bird photos to show, a cardinal pair and a pileated woodpecker,
If you’ve never seen a pileated woodpecker, they are HUGE! About the size of a crow.

I had fun watching this cardinal. I have a hose running to a fountain, and it froze, leaving the bottom bowl covered with ice. The cardinal landed on it and was skittering all over trying to keep his balance.
Free entertainment, LOL!

I finally got around to listing some beads, and this is my favorite,
and some laughs for the day,

Friday, October 24, 2014

It feels like the calm before a storm, no wind, no birds (except the chickens) or insects (except for the flies). Just very, very quiet. The other day the wind was blowing so hard this guy really got his feathers ruffled.
Cleaning off my camera, I came across some flower photos I took last month,
The dahlias are all dug up now, ready to be packed in sawdust and put in the basement.

I was just amazed at this red-headed woodpecker! I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t seen it for myself.
He pulled out a big chunk of suet
and hopped up to an empty hole at the top of the log, put the chunk into the hole and pecked it into smaller chunks.
I’m stuck on my Baltimore Oriole drawing, just something about the feathers I’m having trouble with,
so I’ve started working on a female grosbeak,
I’m liking the way this one is turning out so far.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

What a gorgeous fall day!!! It’s sunny and a little bit of breeze and a wonderful 61°. The birds are enjoying it too.IMG_2359copy-2014-10-15-13-52.jpg

Monday, October 13, 2014

It's that time of the year

October… winter is just around the corner, days are getting shorter and shorter, and I find myself craving pies, cakes and cookies. I made some pecan sticky buns the other night, and oh, they were soooooooooooooooo good! This winter I am determined to excise on a regular basis and lose weight instead of gaining it, in spite of sticky buns.

I was fully aware of the inevitability of limitations with growing older, but was not at all prepared for the pain involved. Whether it’s fibromyalgia or arthritis or whatever, I am having a hard time dealing with the pain. If it were just one thing, I think it would be easier, but I have issues with my back, my neck and shoulders, and then the sudden stabbing pains range from a deer fly bite to breath-stopping, teeth-gritting waves of pain. I get to go to a rheumatologist next month, yippee.

So far we’ve had a pretty pleasant fall, although we really could use some rain, as you can see in the photos of the cows at feeding time,




Suka and Pyr helping to get the cows in,


Such loves chickens, a bit too much, which is why he has a very expensive shock collar on him. Here he is in his stalking mode,



He’s intelligent enough to respond to verbal ‘don’t even think about it’ commands.

Speaking of chickens, we have a lot of multi-colored ones now, and they like to fly up to the deck railing to try to get to the bird feeders.


A pretty Joseph’s Coat bead on my Etsy shop,


and a chuckle for the day,



Friday, September 26, 2014

Indian Summer?

It’s a warm fall day here, the wind is blowing and the leaves are drying up. I don’t know what it portends, but we have a LOT of pine trees drying up and turning brown, even the big mature pines. I don’t recall seeing so many turning before, even in the drought years. We could use some rain, certainly. I’ve been watering my front flower garden because I plants some new perennials and bulbs. Much as I hate the hot weather, I do wish we could have another couple of months of this. I don’t think this is Indian Summer yet, because we still haven’t had a hard freeze.

We’ve got our wood and hay in for the winter, 50+ bales of hay and three-four cords of wood.
The mosquitoes and black gnats are out in force to get their last licks in. This big boy will be going to the butcher next month, and I won’t be too sad to see him go. He’s been sparring with Dexter, our bull, and I don’t want Dex getting hurt.
I was thinking this morning that I should probably take down the hummingbird feeder, but then I had a little straggler stop by, so I’ll leave it up for a bit yet. This is an earlier picture of a little girl preening herself,
I love storms, as long as they aren’t severe. The power of nature is always awe-inspiring.
The cat was sleeping on the kiln and fell off, here she was giving me the evil eye for laughing at her.
Some bead pics,
and funny Internet pics,