2017-The Year of the Cat

Revisiting the year….Last week of April Mama had a litter, but we didn’t know where they were. She must have shown up very soon after she had them because she was still showing signs of birth, but she was starving. I knew she had to be in one of the neighbors bushes and she would make her way over briefly 3 or 4 times a day to eat. Then one day we found the group in the hole by the automatic pool cover. It was dangerous there and one of the kittens got caught in the rope. We were very broken up about that. She took them away again somewhere. Then one morning they all were laying on top of her in the porch chair, all four of them. She looked like a possum. They stayed in our bushes after that. See the little guy in the back, I was never able to catch him so I couldn’t find a home for him.

Here are the three, the one who is missing is in the bushes. I front two I found homes for and the back one became part of our clan.

This is the big guy as of this morning. He is six months old and just got neutered yesterday. He is doing fantastic. His name is Miggy and he has a voracious appetite. We kept his claws because he goes in and out to be with his brother Pookey, who finally came out of the bushes and can be cuddled and loved.

This is Pookey’s place that Kevin built. It is on our covered porch. The roof is on hinges so I can open it.

It is insulated and it also has an electric heated pad, that warms up with their body temperature. We made it large enough so that Pookey, Miggy and Mama can fit in. I am sorry I don’t have a picture of Pookey, he is big and handsome like his brother and he also yesterday became neutered and received all of his necessary shots. I have a swinging door for it but I am afraid he won’t go in if it is on. We have to tighten it up a little more with spray in insulation and glue some on the roof too. But he is getting used to it. If it gets too cold, he can come in the house but he seems happier outside.

So I wasn’t fast enough to get Mama spayed after that litter and she got pregnant again. I put her in the sunroom near the end of July so we would know where the kittens were at. She was not happy about this the first week. But then she became accustomed to the Bed and Breakfast. She had the kittens August 10th and it was an awesome experience for me. We now have a very special bond. She has come such a long way since January when I first met her on my front porch. She was skittish and scared and kept looking behind her like something was chasing her.

Here is Mama and the kittens maybe 3 days old.

Here they are at 3 weeks old. They were as much of a joy as the first litter. Easier because I knew where they were at.

From 7 weeks on I have been introducing you to the people who have given the kittens their forever homes. The last two left on November third they went together to my friend Joan. She has named this little boy Dooley.

This little girl is name Lacey. They are so funny because they do everything together, sleep, eat, play, poop. If one does it then the other does it. They have a wonderful home as all of the kittens do. I am so grateful that our friends, family and friends of family have given them their forever homes. I am also happy to say that Mama has been spayed. That woman had a workout this year and we are taking care of her, she can go inside or out and gets lots of love and food.

So we had our sunroom empty for two days and this little lady is occupying it for a couple of weeks. She can’t be more than four weeks old and she was found in the neighborhood. One of our neighbors who loves cats was fostering her then they couldn’t keep her anymore. We found a wonderful family that will be moving into a new home soon and they are giving her a forever home. She is a sweetie! Such a happy story.

So I made this painting this year and it says it all. I have seen Pookey eating a frog, Miggy with a mouse and a Vole and who knows whatever else they find in the surrounding yards. They are a treat and we love them. By the way, this print can be purchased in my Etsy Shop.

 

A Memorial-Violet Grace

This sweet violet painting was a commissioned piece. A customer requested a small painting to send to her friend because her three month old grandbaby passed away from SIDS. She was not able to go to the funeral as it was out of state and she wanted to send something personal and unique. She felt flowers would just get lost in the abundance of flowers and eventually they die. So she asked if I would paint a small canvas with Violets because the babies name was Violet Grace.  I added layered hearts for the leaves and little pink rosebuds and a white butterfly.

I enjoy using gallery stretched canvases that have larger profiles (1 1/2 inches) for several reasons. 1. I like the stability of them. 2. If it’s a smaller picture sit easily on a shelf. 3. You don’t have the cost of framing them. 4. I like to paint the sides with a decoration.

A print of this can be purchased in my Etsy shop.  It will be signed and have a matte included for $18.00 plus shipping. Or if you would like to have a small original made to give to a family instead of flowers there is an area on my Etsy shop where this can be ordered. It is under MEMORIALS. The cost is $65.00 plus shipping ($7.00) plus tax if you are in Indiana. Once I get an order from you I will send an email for more clarification about your order. The size would either be 5 X 7 or 6 X 6. The prints will always be titled with the love ones first and/or middle name. The original will be securely shipped by USPS in a box with bubble wrap and included will be an informational paper about the painting and about myself. When the painting is completed I send photos of it to get your feelings and verification that it is what you had in mind before I mail it. I thought that this customer had a very heartfelt idea and I wanted to extend it to others.

Halloween Faces 2017

Every year I try to get pictures of my Halloween visitors. I never have any problems getting them to stop. These were my first treats, loved the red hair.

Batman and a cute pirate.

The mask with the rosie cheeks makes me smile.

Ode to stripes. A sweet honey bee.

A hot dog and kind of like those blow up things that wave back and forth.

Our neighbors….a zombie softball player and I think he looks like Robin Hood.

NINJAS!

The adult with his animal head was good.

Creepy baby doll head.

Ugly clown head!!

Shiny orangy mask!

Got Mom in there too, her costume was good too.

Gilly suit.

Witches. They were fun to watch coming up in the shadows. Not as big a crowd as usual, but it was a very cool night, it went well. Another one on the books.

Thrift Store Books

When on vacation this past July, one of our routes took us through Vermont, the green mountain state. I could immediately see why they called it that.

To get from one interstate to another we had to take this charming (I am serious) two lane road, which of course had the usual summer construction. The scenery and towns were so quaint and beautiful. We would not have gotten to see it on the interstate.

I don’t even remember the name of this little town but the next few pictures are a sampling of it. I loved the fence and the flowers and the white and black house.

This structure was so neat with the blocks of rock and the muted colors were fabulous! I even got the informational dog waste sign in the picture. I was taking these photos from the car, on a sunny day. That’s why they are kind of crooked and I did have to adjust the brightness and contrast to make it show how it actually looked.

This tells you we were near Vermont 12 and I don’t know if Suicide six is a ski mountain or what. There are also two other town names that may help. Before we hit this town though we came across an old bunch of buildings that had artist studios, a huge thrift shop, a pizza shop with a bar. We pulled off to take a break. It was the Bridgewater Thrift store in Bridgewater Vermont.  I had the best time there, came out with a heavy box and a heavy bag and spent $50.00!

I had been intending to get some art books to brush up on the old masters and I found four good ones at the total price of $11.00. Many religious pictures in this one.

This is a great one about Van Gogh.

I love the impressionist painters.

Another good one, my head will just be bursting with knowledge. I have more books to share, but will save them for another time.

 

St. James Court (Fourth Street) Art Fair, Louisville

On October 6,7 and 8th I participated St. James Court art fair in Louisville. This is a huge (overwhelmingly so) art fair. In fact it has 700 artists. It is on three streets and also the side streets and then there are off shoots like in a church parking lot and such like that. It was in Old Louisville area with large houses like this one. It was behind my tent and for sale.

This house was exactly behind my tent and they made the most of the inconvenience of having their street blocked off for three days, they provided food and bathroom facilities for the artists. I felt very fortunate to be at this spot. This couple has been through many of these shows and just joined in.

The tents were only given a 10 X 10 space and there was no space between the tents whatsoever. Load in went pretty well because you had a time limit of two hours to unload and set up. For the most part we had a good portion of it done and did the rest the next day. Margaret, my helper for this show was fabulous!

All set up and ready to go.

This was before the show actually started and people were out taking walks. There were thousands of people walking the streets, so many that it was not just an easy walk to look in each booth.

We were very close to the airport and I was not able to get the lower planes. They were so close though that you could hear them throttling down and hear the landing gear come down. The first few times it was disconcerting.

Sunday was a bust. Hurricane Nate made his way up and kept dropping rain. When it rained harder, this is what my tent looked like. They finally found the blockage and it helped, but this was the most rain that I had experienced. Thankfully it let up by the time tear down came. I have to say it was a great experience, I saw my cousin, met some really nice people and Margaret and I had a good time. I won’t go back though, I feel that smaller shows are more beneficial to the artist.

 

Kitten Update

Andy took the grey and white kitten home to be with her big sister who is also grey and white. This kitten received the name of JJ and the big sisters name is Winter.

Nick took the little boy tiger back to college with him, he lives in a house and goes to Purdue. The kitten received the name of Pete. I understand that he is a constant traveling companion for Nick when he comes back home.

This is Miggy who was from Mama’s litter of kittens born the last week of April. He and Tom were reading the paper and it must have been boring news. He is just a long cat.

We tell him he has a milk mustache. Oh and Mama got all fixed up and there will be no more kittens. She is doing well.

This little boy will be going to my friend Joan along with his sister. She had some plans and couldn’t take them until Nov. 3rd. This one is happy and purrrrrs a lot.

This little girl has so many toes on her one foot, you can kind of see them on the bottom foot. She is a lap sitter and a hand licker. They love each other and she will have so much fun with them. 

Just hot off the easel

A the Satek Winery show, I was asked if I ever did paintings with sunflowers. Since it was almost fall I thought that it would be a perfect time to do one and I was looking for an idea for my next painting. I chose to start the background with cool colors.

I knew I wanted to do different sunflowers because variety is the spice of life. Here I was choosing the placement of them on the canvas.

This is one of the sunflowers that I depicted in the painting.

Another one, I love this puffy sunflower!

I used molding paste with acrylic paint with a skewer as the tool to get the texture. Note that the goldfinch has wallpaper wings.

Adding in the leaves, deciding how I would tone down the background. In the upper right corner is the sun and I eventually add a yellow circle in the middle for another layer.

I eventually decided not to do the usual leaves and stems but to add geometric shapes, to be fun and funky. Then a gentle all white butterfly.

The completed painting. This was really fun to do. I finished the painting on Thursday and it was purchased on Saturday by a lovely woman for her daughter.

This is my tent at Art at the Riverside in Leo Indiana, September 23rd. The painting is on the back wall and is showing quite nicely. That is a wonderful art show that is growing every year. This year I was told that 10 more artists were added. The only downside was the unusual heat wave, it was kinda crazy. Be sure to put it on your calendar for next year if you are in the area.

 

Forever homes

Today the kittens are seven weeks old and last night two of our kittens went to their forever homes. I understand that they had great nights either cuddling with each of their new family members or running and climbing helter skelter through the house. Here is the first kitten with his new family. They have named him Chase and he was the one running through the house. They have gotten Chase a cat castle to climb on. I have seen the pictures and it is impressive to say the least. You can tell he will be receiving a lot of love and good care.

This is a picture of Chase when he was two weeks old. I was amazed at how fast they grew.

Here is our second kitty, he was the one with the dark legs. He was being taken home as a surprise and everyone fell in love with him…even the neighbors. As of this time I don’t think a name has been chosen yet. His new family has 4 children ranging in age of 4 to 13 and two adults.

Here is his two week old picture also. Both cats are polydactals like their mother, or have the extra toes.

The front two are the kittens and here they are probably four weeks old, I am so thankful that they have homes but I am gonna miss those little peanuts.

Pile of Cats

Today the kittens are five weeks old. I had to capture this rare moment of non movement. They are funny because they can fall asleep anywhere in the room, but eventually they will migrate back together into this pile.

Four of the six are using the litter box, which is fabulous! I can’t wait till the other two catch on to this great idea, it will make my workload lighter.

Sorry these pictures are blurry, it’s because they are moving all the time when they are not eating or sleeping. When I come into the room immediately I have two or three standing on my shoes. You really have to be careful when you are walking around.

Then they will start climbing my leg, and when I have capris on I will look down and see blood running down my leg. I went in to get a pedicure and had to explain about all the scratches around my ankles.

They are so funny and cute and such a joy!

On My Camera

This past weekend I participated in the Arts and Apple Art Fair in Rochester Michigan north of Detroit. It is put on by Paint Creek Center for the Arts. This is Paint Creek and it was behind my booth.

It was held in the Municipal Park and my tent is the one with the rounded top on the curve of the sidewalk. I was in the area of trees and had to wear a jacket often.

I brought this painting along with me to work on in my room. I plan to have this it done for the Art at the Riverside show in Leo, IN on Sept. 23rd. I did this 3 day show solo and I missed my helpers, but it is always good to know that one can get the job done alone.  I did have help from a neighboring artist to bring down my tent roof though.

Felicia from housekeeping left a note for me, that she liked my painting. I really appreciated that.

I am so happy to say that our kittens are growing nicely. They are the sweetest little creatures! We have forever homes for every one of them, makes my heart sing.

Beautiful sunset to end our day before we are supposed to get some rain. We do need some. Thinking of all the people who have been affected by the recent hurricanes, what an event!