Tuesday, December 29, 2009

After Christmas Cheer

SOMEONE had a nice Christmas!
Fat, full and fire warmth.

My Christmas / Birthday present! Totally unexpected! As you can see it has 10X zoom, which is what I wanted for taking bird photos. So here are some test shots:

Mom and Pop House finch, taken from the kitchen window.

The Jade plant is beginning to flower. Such beautiful star-like flowers, a delicate pink and quite tiny, but the macro works well.

Grass shadows. I've said before that I like grasses, well these are against the back of our house. Can you tell the real from the shadows? Sorry about the date, I thought I had turned it off. Have to go back and check.

"But be doers of the word and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves" James 1:22
The world is full of people who love to say what's right and what's wrong. In our complex world, so full of different opinions and beliefs, how can we know what is right and what is wrong? For me, there is only one place I can go to find the truth, -- the Bible. Jesus says, "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life". I go to Him for what is truth, and since He is the Word, -- the Bible, His Word, is where I find truth, peace and comfort for these troublesome times. Then I try to be a 'doer' of the Word so that I can make some difference to someone or something while I am here.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

In the Midst of Rejoicing, there is Grief

Even as we are preparing for a joyful Christmas season, we have received news this evening from one of our best blogging friends, Jose,  from "Joe Cool" and "Arizona -  but its a Dry Heat", blogs.  His beautiful wife of 28 years passed away unexpectedly, early Wednesday morning, from a heart attack.   Those who visit my blog and are committed Christians, I do ask you to pray for him and his lovely family.  I feel so sad for them all, but we as Christians know there are much better things to come.  In the mean time, Jose needs us to surround him with prayer to get through this very difficult time.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

It's Christmas!

I'm sure Mary and Joseph must have asked , "Why?" many times during those early years.  Like them, we so often ask "Why?" during difficult times. But God knows the end from the beginning and there is always a reason.  We are not alone in wanting to know why.  Those who hold onto their faith in the Lord will one day know why, and for now, we know peace, because God is in control.
May you have a blessed, happy and meaningful Christmas. 

Saturday, December 19, 2009

The Unthinkable and the Imaginative

 The Imaginative....

Sheep in the Valley

I did this almost entirely from imagination.  The sheep I must confess I looked at a birthday card that came to me this week.  This was begun as an experiment because I made up the composition of it as I went along.  It is probably based on somewhere in Wales, because of the mountains and sheep.  It turned out better than I expected and I did it entirely by brush and water colors.  It is approx 5 X 5 inches -- a little larger than I usually do.

.....the Unthinkable

Bailey has a pet door from the inside of the house into the garage to get to his kitti-litter.  It is usually available to him at all times.  But once in a while if we have to have the big garage door open, we have a door that slides in to cover his hole.  Today we had to let a delivery man into our garage, so we put the cat door in its slot "just for a minute", because Bailey is an indoor cat.  (We have coyotes looking for an easy meal not far away).  That was at 2:15 p.m.  It was 8:15 this evening that we remembered!!!  Oh no!!! Panic.  He must have gone somewhere in all that time!  Because Bailey is a very polite cat and rarely demands anything, we were definitely worried.  He could have just as quietly gone away and thought, "Oh, they don't want me in there any more," and performed elsewhere of his choosing.  However, we have scoured and sniffed every nook and cranny in the house -- almost -- and found nothing.  So we are keeping our fingers crossed that Bailey kept his paws crossed!  The really scary thought is that this might be all it takes to make this cat change his kitti-litter habits.  He is so unpredictable as to what he wants to do, where and when.  Never had a cat quite like this one before.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A Part of My Day


 I finished this up today. I copied it from a photograph I took when I was up in Boise last Easter.  He was very cute. The  reflecting blue sky  with  the branches  in the window was a true blue. (ATC 3 1/2 x 2 1/2")

"Aren't you going to feed me, Mom?"

We have one cat who is seriously hooked on tuna juice!  He is doing much better, but is still sneezing a lot.  He seems to have this permanently worried look on his face whenever I make a move to go into the kitchen. (Note the empty dish!) All the work we went to, to get him to lose five pounds last year is quickly going down the drain --  and we still have another 5 days of medication!

Romans 5:8 God demonstrates His own love toward us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died on behalf of us.
President Obama said it in Copenhagen this week: "There is evil in the world".
Other presidents have openly acknowledged that fact. To take this statement even further, we have to say that behind the evil is mankind.  That is not at all popular to say today, but the fact is that it is man who has caused the evils that exist in our world.  In spite of our good intentions, our determination to be tolerant, our decisions to make this world a better place, we continue to do evil.  We may not be terrorists or murderers, but in our own way and in our weakest times, we as individuals do evil -- all of us. 
            There is no solution to it but to start over. It starts with you and I letting God make us over. When the time of this world is over, God will make a New World and finally we will be able to say that mankind is good.   We 'made over' sinners will occupy the New Earth that God is preparing for us and once again everything will be good in His sight -- and ours too.

I did intend to continue my Wednesday's Words regularly, but with going away, the days slipped by.  So now we are back on track again.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

A Shout Out to Nicky


This is just to give a 'shout out' toNicky of mykiwiuklifeinphotos.blogspot.com 

who has just recently moved from New Zealand to Flamborough Head,Yorkshire U.K. which those of you who visit me frequently will know is my most favorite place in the world.
Above is the end of the headland, showing my house far right on the edge of the cliff (no longer there). The field of barley lower far left was washed out in 1953 by waves which broke over the cliffs in a famous nor'easter.

Below is one of me on a breezy day at North Landing  --tide out --taken a couple of years ago.(Mid-summer by the way!)


This is the High Street in the village.  Couple of good fish and chip shops along there.  Note the original white limestone wall.  These are rapidly disappearing because the chalk limestone does not wear well.

This is Little Thornwick Bay. Kind of difficult to get down to but a very nice sheltered spot for a picnic, if you're young enough to climb down. Big Thornwick Bay is the other side of the right hand cliffs.  Another good place for a picnic.

An arch carved by the North Sea at  the lighthouse, called Green Stacks I think.  Puffins to be found there.

A typical North Landing scene, especially in winter.  Robin Lythe's Cave on the right.  Sixty foot high once you get inside.  Villagers have been known to hold meetings in there at low tide years ago..  Robin Lythe is a legendary pirate.

Welcome Nicky!  I hope you get plenty of visitors redirected from my blog to yours. And I hope your life on Flamborough Head is as happy as mine was!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


This is kind of interesting, I think.  A couple of months ago, I was experimenting in my painting on portraying trees.  Then I saw a beautiful picture of some bushes fully in bloom.  So I decided to try painting them using the same technique in a picture about 8 x 6".  But afterwards I didn't like what I had done so I put some birds in the picture picking at seed on the ground.  I still didn't like it so I put a cat in the picture.  See below.

I still didn't like it,  so I put in a border of flowers, blue lobelia and white alyssum. It still wasn't rightI trimmed out all the blossom trees, and made it into an ATC (3 1/2 x 2 1/2") because the cat was out of proportion to the bushes and the sparrows. 
In the end, it sat on my painting table as is, with all it's trimmings around it and I never posted it. It was never just right.

Then today, I happened to glance over the table with a view to getting rid of some of the clutter and my eye caught one of the fair-sized cuttings from the original above.  I thought -- my goodness!  I can see a cat in there!

I left it on the table for a couple of hours and went back to look at it a few times to see if I really could see a cat among the blooms and branches.  Sure enough there was one there!  So I took my pencil and just lightly outlined him using only the bushes and branches as my guide -- and there he was!  I touched him up just a little and gave him blue eyes, trimmed the cutting to an ATC size  and -- voila!

So I call it "My Cat in Camouflage

In fact if you line up the two ATC's one above the other you can see that they exactly fit together.

Just interesting, I think!
BAILEY is improving. He still has nasty fits of coughing, but he is eating everything I put in front of him, including the pills. Today he even chased The White Cat, who was trespassing, from the kitchen window to the den window.  We have to take him back to the vet on Saturday.

Sunday, December 6, 2009


To those of you who have expressed concern, ( I commented on a couple of blogs that Bailey was not doing well), thank you so much, I do appreciate your comments.  When we picked him up Thursday from the kennels (a very good one I might add), we noticed that Bailey had a cough. By Saturday he was having trouble breathing.  We took him to the vet today and sure enough he has quite a bad upper respiratory infection.  So it's antibiotic pill-pushing for ten days, and sessions in the bathroom with a vaporizer going.  I crushed up his pills very finely, mixed them with a fair amount of food, (fortunately he has not lost his appetite, though for a while there we were concerned because he wouldn't eat because he couldn't breathe), then dribbled some tuna juice (water, not oil) over his food and -- presto, he ate it all!  This is a cat who has always turned up his nose at any people food, so I was very happy to see this.  Now we shall see how long I can fool him with the tuna juice.  I think he will perk up quite nicely with all the TLC.









Please respect my copyright on these paintings (31/2 x 21/2")
They are original water colors and Prisma Colors based on my original photos.
Thank you

Friday, December 4, 2009

So Nice to be Home!

The furnace was not working! But being the world travelers that we are, and used to privations, we put another comforter on the bed and slept through the night.
We put on extra jackets and continued through the next day until the furnace man came tonight.  Just a simple thing -- but it worked.  Keeping our fingers' crossed, we now have a happy furnace and a happy family.

Bailey was so happy to see me, he was up and at the cage door when he heard my voice before I arrived in the CAT ROOM in the kennels.  He has a little cold and cough, but seems to be eating well and doing everything else well, so we will just keep an eye on him for a few days.  He soon found a warm place to sleep, (hey, the temperature outside was 57 !)  But this cat who in the 6 years we have owned him never climbed up on the furniture before, discovered that it was warmer on the chair than on the floor.

So now it's on to Christmas preparations.  I know, I know, many of you are almost done, but this is my strategy.  In addition, we don't have as much family to prepare for as many of you do.

Soon I will post my newest ATC's done while at the islands, so keep watching.