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Stuck on Sidney Poitier Movies

The winter cold, staying inside makes me want to watch more movies. The death of an actor like Sidney Poitier always prompts me to watch their movies. I listened to some Meat Loaf the other day too, a little Bat Out of Hell to get the morning started. I have not watched the Golden Girls though, but I do enjoy the little bits that come up about Betty White on shows she did that Facebook keeps putting in my feed because I watched one and now as I get many. I always liked Mary Tyler Moore, so I may watch some of those if I run out of movies. I love that she was such an animal lover and supporter and that totally warms my heart. I am sure that animal rescues received so much needed support on her birthday. One more feed that I get and that usually makes me stop scrolling to watch is the Dodo. Everytime at the end of the video when the Dodo winks and and a little ding happens, makes me laugh.

So back to the movies, I have both Amazon Prime video and Netflix on my I pad, and they are my go-to for movies. I love it that it is just so portable, and I can sit anywhere and watch. My first Poitier movie was Lilies of the Field. A Black and White from 1963. Poitier is driving on his own, in the desert in his station wagon with his sparse worldly belongings in the back. He comes across a building and stops to get some water for his car. This building contains seven or maybe nine nuns in it. The head nun is older and can speak some English, but the younger ones cannot. The head nun spots an opportunity here, she is pushy and can change the subject quite quickly especially when it comes to money. Poitier finds himself fixing a roof, then building a chapel. It is apparent that there is no extra money and the meals are so meager it is painful. He was doing hard labor building this chapel, brick by brick and runs out of supplies. The nuns start writing letters to get donations, Poitier or Homer which is his character, finds a job on a construction site and gets paid and brings back food. Even though this benefits the nuns the head lady is always yelling at Homer. At the end of the three movies I have watched so far it always turns out good. People who are enemys begin to like each other and when people become helpers and there are painful racist things that are said or that happen. I read that Poitier always did movies that were on the edge and make definite points. I recommend this one.

The next one was In the Heat of the Night, I rented it as they had not made it free. The setting was Sparta, Mississippi in 1966. He played a detective from Philadelphia and had been visiting his mother. He was in the train station in the middle of the night waiting for the next train to come so he could get back to Philadelphia. A murder had happened, and he was picked up by the police because he was an unknown black man. He had a suit on, which he wore through the whole movie, and it was never ever wrinkled! He was well spoken and smart and the racial remarks that were made just made my skin crawl. People should watch this movie to see what it was like in the south for Black Americans. In Philadelphia he was a highly regarded homicide detective and they begrudgingly accepted his help in the solving of the murder. At the end as Mr. Tibbs was boarding the train to go back home it is apparent that the Sheriff realized what a good man he had with Poitier.

The third movie Defiant ones, a black and white from 1958. Poitier was in prison and was being transported back from somewhere with fellow prisoners. They were chained two by two and they were in a box truck. Well it was sideswiped and drove down an embankment and flipped on its side. They were the only two that escaped and ran away, his chained partner was a young Tony Curtis. They had to try to steal food and got caught but the townspeople did not rat them out or a women with her 8 year old son living in nowhere did not rat them out when the police questioned her. They almost hopped a train to get a way but didn’t make it. They were dreaming of a better place and life. In the end Poitier and Curtis became friends like happen in these movies. It was good also.

The last movie I watch recently was The Tender Bar directed by George Clooney. It was very good with an eclectic cast of characters. I recommend it also.

I am starting to list on my website original paintings that are for sale. This is the first “The Garden Beside Me”. It is mixed media and is a sizable 23 X 28 inches. I painted this later in the year and it only had a couple of shows to be seen at. It looks fantastic on my wall right now and gives it such interest. Here is the link to read all about it and also please contact me if you have any questions.
This picture I took last year in July in Frankfort, Michigan. I don’t even know if I showed it as when we came back from vacation, I had a show the next day in August. I was so busy from then on until my knee replacements in October that my pictures got put on the back burner. Now in the cold of the winter I can enjoy them. This week we paid our deposit on the same place for July. The people are standing on the breaker going out to the Frankfurt lighthouse. Isn’t that sunset gorgeous?
Two weeks ago I had gone to the Ortho guy for a lower back pain which I think I developed when I slept in a chair for the first six weeks after surgery. During X-rays I had to lay on my stomach which might have irritated a disc. On our way home it decided to slip out of place and my gosh that is excruciating pain. All weekend I sat on the couch, iced then used a heating pad and eventually the pain subsided, it took four days. This is what I created during that time. I am going to take it to the Shops @ the Sanctuary in my booth. I am getting a cortisone shot on February 2, because I have two nerves in my back that need calming down.

I follow Jessica Seinfeld on Instagram and how I found her is that she is friends with Beth Stern who runs a cat sanctuary. Jessica is married to Jerry Seinfeld and Beth Stern is married to Howard Stern. I started following her because I saw an article when she opened the cat sanctuary and Billy Joel and Rachel Ray helped with the funding of it. See how that goes? Jessica wrote this Vegan Recipe book and after watching for a while I decided to try it

The first recipe I tried was chocolate banana bread. It turned out really well and I had to use vegan chocolate chips which my Kroger did have. This does not have milk in it or eggs and I used extra virgin olive oil. The two things I changed was that I used pecans instead of walnuts and I only had sea salt instead of kosher salt.

Here is my loaf. I thought it was really smart of Jessica to tell us to use the parchment paper and have the sides to pull the bread out of the bread pan. Worked great! This is a very heavy and tasty bread. The thing I would do differently is to leave out the cinnamon. It takes away from the taste of the bananas to me.

That’s it for now, till next time.

Robin

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Book Review – The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah

I have decided that Kristin Hannah is one of my very favorite authors. Her books call to my interests, history, romance, drama and family, I have read The Great Alone, The Nightingale, Night Road, this one, The Four Winds and I have watched the series made out of Firefly Lane. There are so many more to read and I look forward to each one.

This book starts in the early 1920’s in Texas. In the beginning of the book the farmers in Texas had great crop weather year after year and the wealth and abundance was high. Then the 1930’s came along and rain dried up everything and the dust storms started. They were not able to grow anything, the water dried up, the animals were dying from lack of food and water. The dust storms would just blow in sometimes for days. People would become ill from ingesting the dust into their lungs and stomach.

This was the time of Franklin Deleno Roosevelt and the New Deal but the dust bowl was slow to get recognition to get help. Finally, when a government official from the Conservation Corp. who had been touring the Great Plains, spoke with the farmers he met with resistance. Farmers are very proud and do not want to receive assistance from the government. Also what they were told was that they were part of the reason that caused the dust bowl. That did not go over well, of course. By getting rid of the natural prairie grasses and turning the land into farmland then essentially nothing growing on it the dry topsoil would blow and blow. I remember from my reading of Laura Ingalls Wilder this was mentioned when they lived in Kansas and farming was so hard much earlier. The government wanted the farmers to turn their land back into prairie grasses again and the farmers would be subsidized for this. It was slow to catch on and people started to move to the west coast like California and Oregon with the promise of jobs.

The 25 year old female character in the beginning of the book was named Elsa. Her family was very wealthy and contributed much to the community. Elsa had been unwell when she was young, and the family treated her as if she was still sick and really didn’t think or let her be part of the family. She wasn’t listened to, wasn’t asked to be part of the fun of the family. She spent much time in her room, read a lot and did needlework. She was also made to feel she was ugly and no one would want to be married to her. One day she went to the store and found some red material. She decided to make a dress out of it and went out on the town. She met a young handsome man and one thing led to another and she became pregnant. The family found out who the young man was, took her to their house and dumped her off because she has shamed her family. This is really when Elsa’s life became interesting, and this family became everything to her.

She came to love the farm, learned things, worked hard, wanted to be a good wife and fell in love with her in-laws. She ended up having a little girl, then a boy and another child that passed away. Her husband couldn’t stand the sadness of the dust bowl and left the family, and they were of course, devastated.

Eventually Elsa had to make her way away from the prairie and took her two children to California. To drive hundreds of miles with so many others, across the desert to find a better life. Of course, it is never as good as they think it is going to be but Elsa and the kids learn and become strong and meet others who are in the same boat. These people who once had been wealthy but lost everything. I will leave it here, pick up this book, it is very good to find out how Elsa and her family survive.

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Happy 2022

Let’s Party! These five sweet cats had a heck of a time last night. I heard them running through the house. I only made it to 11:30. I said to my husband lets just watch it on TV and sit in our warm bed. Well, I heard him turn off the TV and he said we might as well go to sleep you are already there. The New Year still came in without my watch.

Little update on my new knees. My last day of therapy is Monday. It is bittersweet as I have seen my therapist since the third week of October, and he has helped me so much, but it is time. I can walk without my cane (kind of like a duck, but it is coming along) I have my exercises to do at home, I can climb up into my husband’s truck, I had to use a public restroom that was not the handicap, and I was able to get up. If one doesn’t have a problem that they are coming back from they wouldn’t realize these things. That and chairs with no handles. They shouldn’t even make them.

I hope that you had a lovely Christmas as we did. Eating, opening gifts and playing Heads Up. We can get about three hours out of that game.

I had my operation on Oct. 18th and then I sat out in the garage on Halloween and took pictures of the trick or treaters. Here are a few I especially liked.

I have been getting the applications in for the art shows. My son Kevin has a different job so he won’t be helping me this year, and my husband has a different job so he will be my helper this year. The changing of the guard. I so appreciate the help.

I have to get to making and painting, tomorrow. Lots of things to do.

Take care till next time.

Robin

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More Paintings added to the Store 9/1/21

This mixed media painting is called “Spruced Up Succulent”. I was browsing through a Small Garden Style book and came across a page with this image that called to be painted. I believe it was the blue bowl that really caught my eye. If you would be interested to look at it click here.
“Lovely Lily’s Flower Crown” This is my bullseye tabby cat who has a very solemn look on her face. This is the look I get when it is time for bedtime treats at 9:00 p.m. The link to Lovely Lily is here.
“Jubilant Sisterhood” mixed media painting has just a lot of happy movement. It shows different races of women through wallpaper. Black, White, Hispanic, Asian, Native American and Middle Eastern. The black and white checks resembles a dance floor. To get a good look at this painting click here.
Ahh, can’t you see yourself out on the lake, letting the wind take you to a place where no problems exist. “Favorable Wind” does just that. Click here to take a good look at the the painting. The originals are going with me to the upcoming art fairs. I also bring prints and cards. My next show is this Saturday in Auburn. Market on 6th.

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Added to my store

I am catching up and getting the newer paintings added to my online store. These are only for reproductions as I am taking the originals to the art fairs that I am selling at. This painting is Titled “Just Visiting”. A beautiful Luna Moth stopped by in my yard for a short visit till it hopped the next breeze that came through. This reproduction can be purchased in three sizes and click here to go to the store.
This painting is called “Heart of Man” and it has 44 different species added to it. I enjoyed researching and painting each and every one. I had taken an early painting and gave it a facelift. The early painting was titled “Pursue the Passion” and it is listed in my shop also. To find “Heart of Man” click here. The original painting is sold.
“Rejoice” was completed two weeks ago.. It is a mixed media painting and the next time I will be showing the original is at Market on 6th in Auburn, Saturday September 4th. This barn owl is showing it’s beautiful wings while it lands on the nest sheltering three precious eggs. The title came from the Henry David Thoreau quote used on it. Click here to go to the store for a reproduction. It can also be purchased in three different sizes.
“Lets Party” has finally made it to the store. I started this years ago then misplaced my pad. I then started another which can be found on my store titled “Party Cats” which it is very similar but smaller. These are some of our family cats who I thought needed a party. They have their hats, balloons, confetti and must have started dancing on the wall. This is perfect to give to a cat lover for their birthday. It comes in three sizes also. Click here to go to the store.

I will be posting more this week and also working on a larger blog post about other events that are happening in our lives. I have lots of pictures to share.

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New: Art, Art Ventures and Art Shows

This sweet painting is “Lovely Lily’s Flower Crown” after our bullseye tabby Lily. I used Shiva Oil Sticks because they blend so nicely. She really does have that stare, especially when it is 9 p.m. and it is time for treats. It is on an 8 X 8 canvas.
“Jubilant Sisterhood” an artists job is to observe and I see many people especially during art fairs. I had this painting brewing in my mind and finally got it on canvas. The background has so much movement and is a fun atmosphere, with a checkerboard representing a dance floor. My goal was to show many different women and nationalities. dancing. I first drew outlines from a pictures, then traced it and traced it again onto wallpaper cut them out and adhered it to the painted canvas. I have a pregnant woman, a woman vigorously dancing, a Hispanic girl in a tutu, Asian woman in high heels, a Native American girl, a tall black woman jubilantly dancing, a Middle Eastern woman and an elderly woman and it is on an 18 X 36 canvas. No matter who we are, as women we have families, jobs, problems, happiness and are a sisterhood. I will have these listed in my store if you are interested in prints or if you would like to purchase the Originals come and visit me at the local art shows I will be at. Look at my list on the home page.

A new art venture I have added is having a rented area at the newly renovated old church in Columbia City. It is called The Shops at the Sanctuary and they also have a Facebook page The Shops at the Sanctuary. I will be putting art and also stitchery items in it. I am excited about this and now to get “makin stuff”. The Grand Opening is August 6th.

This last weekend was Art in the Park in Downtown Fort Wayne. I have never done this show with cooler weather before but it was fantastic. I was worried that it was going to rain a lot on Sunday but it held off thankfully, through teardown. My son, Kevin helps me put up the tent and tear it down, but the rest of the shows I am on my own. So I don’t take pictures. I would have liked to take some pictures of peoples t-shirts because there was such an array of sayings and it would have been great to do a collage. This was just my second show of the season and customers were generous and I met many new art lovers.

July is a busy month here at the Hawkins House, along with the art shows, we are helping our sons move and get established in a new to them home. Tom and I are going on a weeks vacation to Frankfort Michigan right on the lake and I have another show right after that at Covington in Fort Wayne. We are so looking forward to a little R and R time.

With the rain and humidity my garden is growing crazy, some things that are spent do need to be trimmed up and that will wait till that humidity floats away. The tree swallows babies have flown the nest and I think there is a new bunch of eggs, someone is sitting on it constantly. I hope that they hatch and we will have Mom and Dad and maybe Uncle or Aunt flying in and out and feeding them. We have a screen that we put down but not during this time, they become very agitated and we hate to rock the boat. I will keep you updated when we see their littles heads.

Take care till next time.

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Going Many Ways

Things are going well here at the Studio. We as a family have many things going on this summer. I had an art show early June. It was as the Village of Winona. I had not been there before as an artist and it it was well run, well organized and it was nice to be back at it. My son Kevin, is my helper for the summer. My knees are not good and he agreed to accompany me to all my shows. We set up the date yesterday for a double knee replacement for October. So with cortisone and Kevin and Tylenol I will be able to get through the summer and have successful shows. This Painting is a new one that I finished last month. “Favorable Wind” was purchased at the show.
This renewed painting was also purchased by the same sweet customer. It is “Heart of Man”. It was great fun deciding which animals to choose to paint.
The pot of flowers also was purchased “Makes Me Happy”” is the title. Oh and Snoop Doggy original 6 X 6 is available for $50.00 plus tax.
Another painting sold at the Fort Wayne Artists Guild Pop Up Gallery. This one is titled “Under Our Feet”. I am so thankful that people get a connection with my art.
I am really thrilled that I figured out why so many of my I phone pictures were not accessible for my computer. I have so many good ones but I figured it out and will be entertaining you with this post, hope you won’t be bored.
Another exciting thing for our sons are that they have purchased a house together and will probably be moving in by late July. It is close so we can do it a little at a time and it is going to need to be painted and carpets cleaned. The thought of moving something overwhelms me, so I am kind of the organizer, which I can do.
This large painting was recently completed last month. I call it “Blooming Fireworks”. It was fun to do and is 36 X 48.
Had fun painting this rock for a confirmation gift along with the paper mache box. I will probably have a few of these at certain shows this summer.
My friend Theresa and I took a little trip to Fort Recovery Ohio this week. There was a really fun home shop that we picked up a few items at. Then we ate at a little restaurant. It looked like the town was going to shut down the Main Street to have some kind of Jubilee and they seemed excited about it. People were walking around smiling and saying it was a good day. As you can tell by the name it has a Fort and these murals are really great that they had painted on the walls of the buildings.
We also stopped at a strawberry farm that had Upick. Thank goodness we didn’t have to do that and could buy a bucket of them. I made shortcake and Theresa has made freezer jam and that is also on my agenda for today.
I am also working on a line of stitchery to sell at some of my shows. Some art shows you jury in with just the art and others an artist is able to sell other items because it is not a juried show. I love hand embroidery and putting fabrics together. Some are made from old quilt blocks and some tattered quilts. I have so much fabric and other fun items that I decided to make pictures and frame them. I will be adding some other stitched products to be announced later. I grow catnip and will be making cat toys with stuffing and catnip made with upholstery fabric. That fabric is tough and cannot be torn apart “usually”. I just signed up for a summer workshop with a favorite stitcher House Wren Studio. She is an inspiration. The workshop is called “My Indigo Kitchen”.
This is a recent picture of four out of six of our cats. I thought it was funny with them all in a row. There is usually at least one in my studio but not four at once.
This is Sophie the ornery one. She is a paper shredder. You have to make sure that any important papers are put up. There will be chunks out of them by the morning. It must just feel good. I found her on the road and she had been thrown or had been sleeping in a car body that left for work and she was thrown. Her bottom lip was bleeding because it was pulled back with road rash. She was all of twelve ounces. She has overcome her disability as you can see. I say she is just too short. This picture makes me laugh. I keep my wallpaper books in this closet and she gets in there and tears up the loose papers.
This beautiful Luna Moth stopped by on the outside of the bug zapper. I read up on them. They have no mouths and don’t eat and last just a short time, maybe two weeks? It was a pretty sight to see.
We have our usual tree swallows that have produced three babies. They are some hardworking parents. I don’t see them in the nest anymore so I think the babies have taken off. I am wondering if there will be another round of them.

So my next show is July 10 and 11 at Art in the Park in Fort Wayne’s Freiman Square. Then we are taking a weeks vacation to Frankfort, Michigan. So looking forward to this, it has been a long time. Then July 31 and August 1 will be a nice Fort Wayne show at Coventry.

I would like to get a couple more paintings completed, they are in my mind, just have to get them on Canvas. I am not a fast painter and am always amazed of the painters who are. I have some books to show but that will have to wait till next time. I had scanned them in a PDF format which is not supported here.

We are having Fathers Day dinner this Sunday, grilled steaks and chicken, Texas sheet cake, make ahead potatoes, Naan bread, fruit salad. Looks like Sunday will be warm, we have paint colors to talk over. Have a wonderful holiday and say thanks to Dad ❤💙

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Teddy Bears and Tea Towels

Last month we got many rooms painted so, we had to move furniture in the middle of the rooms and that also meant to take things off the tops of bookcases. Then I have also decided not to put anymore up on top again. Too much dust. The bears had been up for at least 8 years and maybe dusted once. In my defense they are pretty tall , but anyways….

I just love teddy bears and before I put these away for awhile I thought they should be shared. My Mom sewed beautifully and liked to make dolls. She could sew anything and also made my wedding dress, which has been securely packed away for 40 years. I have many of her dolls and sometime I will take them out and share more.

These are three of the bears that she made with moveable arms and legs and stuffed so tightly. I just love them so.

The bear that is standing is made of mohair and I picked him up in Canada on vacation probably 30 years ago. My Mother in law loved bears and dolls too and the one in front she had given to me, he is so soft. The other one sitting was her bear, I love him because he has some kind of weights in his bottom and legs and sits very well anywhere.

This big bear I found in Gettysburg. It has nothing to do with the Civil War but he kept calling me back to him until I brought him home with me. The little white one my friend gave to me, I believe it is mohair and the the bear with the gangly legs and patriotic hat I picked up at a craft show. The one who it hiding her face I believe is a small Boyds Bear.

They needed to come down and get dusted off.

The other day I tucked a tea towel into a friends birthday package and that prompted a discussion on tea towels or kitchen towels, whatever you like to call them. Her towel was green with three big carrots on it.

I had told her that I like to pick up these inexpensive towels and just save them to give to people. I don’t like to use them to dry dishes but many other things. I am showing you the hedgehog towels I had sewn together .

We have this narrow window that certain times of the year and certain times of the day, usually dinner time the sun comes in and blinds us. I needed something to stop it but didn’t want to make anything or put a lot of time into it. The two towels are just the right width and length together and they are hemmed already. I found a small spring tension rod and hooks and clips from Ikea and our problem is solved.

These towels I picked up at the Raven Book Store in Lawrence Kansas in 2015. I had no Idea what I would do with them but the cats drew me in.

I bought two because they had different images. I got a big idea one day while the sun was beating into my studio that I needed something to put over the window for about two hours in the afternoon. The are just the right weight to mute the sun so I can see to paint. Again I used a spring tension rod and Ikea rings and hooks. To open and shut I use a yard stick and I have it higher because the cats have to look out underneath.

The next images are the towels that I have in the drawer. I picked these up at Wal Mart. I sometimes make loaves of bread and wrap the loaf in a towel to give away as a gift or to a new neighbor or friend.
I also use them to wrap around a casserole dish if we are going somewhere.
You can wrap one around a bottle of wine to give to someone.

I also use them to just dry my hands on in the kitchen or place them over food in the summer if there is a party going on.

This towel could be used to take a box of donuts to ones home. I love good donuts and coffee. Wrap this one around a bottle of liquor for a house warming. They can also be used as mop towels at the bar.

These two I have washed and need to iron to get that crisp look back. The one on the left my friend Colleen sent and the one on the right came in an order from Carrie Schmitt an artist that I know and love. I used these to put on the back of a black chair that was against the wall and would leave a mark on the wall. Having them on the back of the chair prevented the mark.

If anyone else has good ideas for these towels that you do, please leave a comment. I look forward to hearing from you.

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Book Review: “Open House” by Elizabeth Berg plus more

This author also wrote the recently reviewed book Arthur Truluve which was a new publish. “Open House” had a copywrite of the year 2000, 20 years ago. There were similarities to each of the stories as that people who didn’t know each other moved in with each other. There were also spouse and parent deaths as part of the story.

So the story starts out with a woman, Samantha, trying to come to terms with the separation of their marriage that her husband, David, wanted. They were married for 15 years and had one son who was 11 years old. They were comfortable, lived in a nice home in a nice neighborhood. The husband just wanted more and she was happy with her life. She knew that he was becoming distant and wanted to go to a counselor and figure out the problem. He eventually moved out and she was playing the “what if” game in her head. She eventually had to figure out how she could stay in the home, work out the visiting arrangements with her husband for the son and she had to find a job to have an income. Still she needed more income and she decided to take in boarders.

The first boarder was a lady in her early 80’s with a boyfriend. The second was a young introverted Asian student with a very negative outlook on life. The third was a gay man. Through all these people she gained friendships. She also took a job with an employment agency where she had different jobs weekly. One was at a laundromat, another at call center that was not on the up and up and she was happily fired from it.

Through all this she had to see her husband move into a nice apartment, and have a girlfriend with the talk of marriage. She dropped their son off one day and he wanted to show his room and she noted that her husband had a white couch. She had always wanted a white couch but he knocked that idea down, now he has one. All this time she really missed him, missed the life they had, she had taken care of him, really too much. He had this yearning for something else and he couldn’t see how good his life was.

Time went on and she tried dates that her mother set up for her. Her mother was something else and thought her daughter should just start dating right a way, after all that’s what she did when her husband died. It always bothered her daughter and eventually she realized that was how her mother had coped with his death.

Throughout this book we will live the roller coaster ride of Samantha finding her self confidence that she had totally lost due to the separation. She had always given into David and he got whatever he wanted. His family had money and he pretty much got what he wanted there and had strong opinions about having things “just so” for himself.

I liked this book, it didn’t make me want to read it in one day but it had its moments. I would say, “give it a try”.

Our house is in disarray right now. We have lived in our house for 10 years and it is time to paint and update colors. We try to do a couple of rooms each year but due to covid we didn’t have any painting done and are catching up. The last two rooms are in process. The kitchen is a called peppery and the great room will be a sage green.
I had tried the color on the wall and I believe it will be great. I have had to unload the two bookcases to be able to move them away from the wall. I really loved to become reacquainted with books I forgot that I had. The garage sale pile is growing too. The refrigerator has been pulled out and swept under, things have been dusted. It has been a lot of work but needed for sure.
Pavel had to see what I was doing this morning. He is such a sweetheart. Tom and I are getting our second covid shot this friday. I also had a cortisone shot in my knees, and they feel better so still waiting to see how long it lasts. Trying to get through the summer before I have anything done permanantly.
Our newly painted foyer. I love it and the door is a deeper color. We always have a lawn service come out and clean up the landscaping. It lasts all growing season and I have to just trim up plants that grow a little wild. We had a spicket added near our well head, and that tore up some plants and uneven ground. Having that water access will be worth it. The last thing we will have done is getting our carpets cleaned. Then we can sit back and enjoy the hard work.
Here is a great picture of a morning moon that I took recently. I like to have pictures for reference and the sky was so blue and it was clear.

A quote that made me laugh.

An intellectual is someone who can listen to the “William Tell Overture” without thinking of the Lone Ranger.

If you have any questions or want to contact me send a note. I would love to hear from you.

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Book Review – The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

Kristen Hannah is one of my favorite authors. I have not read a book of hers that I did not like. This is a historical novel and she wrote in her notes at the end that tried to be as historically accurate as possible.

I gained knowledge from this book, for example I honestly did not realize that France during WWII had surrendered to Germany early on in the war. I don’t know how I missed this but always imagined that they were in the air and on the ground in the fight.

I had read “Returned to Auschwitz” years ago and it left such an indelible mark on me. It was an awful book that told of the horrible conditions from the Nazi’s that I have never forgotten it. Not awful because of the writing, just the horrifying content. This book left the same feeling and for a day I was depressed.

“The Nightengale” spotlights the women of the French Resistance who saved Jewish children and rescued downed airmen to help them back to their country so that they may fly again to fight.

Picture Paris being overrun by the Nazi’s with Nazi flags flying everywhere. The rounding up of Jewish people and the yellow stars having to go on their clothing marking them as Jewish and the atrocities that happened to them.

The book starts out in the year 1995 in Oregon. An elderly woman is telling about her house being for sale and that she will be moving into assisted living. She is leaving a home that she has lived in for over 50 years and her husband has passed away not too long ago but her son is watching over her and he feels it would be better for her to move.

She also talks about a life she once had in France, a life that her son knows nothing about. She left it behind after the war and she and her husband and children moved to America.

The book bounces back and forth from America to France in 1939. A woman has a young daughter and her husband has been mobilized to go into the war. But they will be able to take care of the Germans and the war won’t go on long, he will be back home soon.

But the war doesn’t end soon, and French army was being beaten by the Germans and most of the country surrenders. The little French town that they live in has the Nazi army take it over and ever so slowly it keeps putting stipulations on the French people. Taking the food, taking the art, taking the furniture, learn who the Jews, homosexuals, communists and Freemasons are. Then the Nazi’s would gather up targeted people and put them on trains to go to concentration camps. Radios were confiscated so they would not have contact with the outside world along with valuables and clothes. They had to go through cold winters, and would put on layers of clothing so that they could stay warm. There would not be wood to burn for heat. They had to stand in line for rations of food daily and if you were the last in line you may not get anything. All the while the Nazi’s were eating well, staying warm, taking all the best for themselves and wasting food. The rest were losing weight and becoming gaunt, getting sick and dying.

The book centers on two women, sisters, who were very different but brave by what they went through. Chapter by chapter it would go back and forth between what the sisters were doing during the war. One stayed in the small French town and the other left for Paris to participate in the French Resistance.

By the time we get to 1944 in the book and life is just so destitute, there is hope when you read that the Allies are freeing the concentration camps and the Nazi’s are leaving quickly. This book is so well written I felt that I was living it too. Made me think about the waste of throwing away food and reusing items. It was interesting and depressing at the same time.

So, as I said before, there are two sisters. It has you guessing till the end, who is the elderly woman? Is it one of the sisters, or the daughter or even one of the Jewish children that were saved. That is where you have to read this book to find out.

I read this book in three days and it has nearly 600 pages. It had me captivated and it also made me wish that my parents were alive. I would have had so many questions to ask. My Father was a young man in the army in Italy and my Mother lived in the USA while the war was raging in Europe. My Father passed away 24 years ago and Mother 22 years ago but it would have been an interesting conversation.

If you like history, family love, romance and daring escapes I do recommend this book. War is Hell.