Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Allied Artists of America

Yesterday morning I received such exciting goods news. I didn't tell anyone I entered this national art show and for the past few days I kept checking and checking knowing the announcement would not be made until Tuesday sometime.  I checked and checked off and on all morning long.  Linda, my art studio partner was in the studio doing some work and I was finishing a little dog painting but checked and checked, then...I opened the website once more, typed in my password,, I saw a tiny green circle.  I'm used to seeing a red circle with a black X but this time it was a green circle with a check mark!!!!!   WHAT!  I screamed, "LINDA." I know I scared her but the green mean INVITED!  I had juried into a show that has been around for 105 years!  OMG!!!  I cried, I'm telling you I cried.  I've entered in a few national shows but only the red circle showed up.  THIS IS A BIG DEAL guys.  I juried into one of the oldest and biggest shows in the country.  You have to know too that these entries aren't cheap.  Sometimes they're $25 to $75 dollars a image or for 3 images and I've done several for a few years.  
My painting, "Morning Glories" juried into the Allied Artists of America show that takes place in September in NEW YORK CITY, at the Salmagundi Club!!!!! Allied Artists of America has been around since 1914, very prestigious and I am very honored to be a part of the show, my first national show.
 My first thought was, "Oh no, I'm not going to NYC!" But you know, it's tempting.  One fear conquered at a time please.  Just don't think I can manage it anyway because I may have to be in LA for the newest granddaughter's birth at the same time.  But guys, it's the The Salmagundi Club and that is extremely prestigious in the art world, I may have to...

Oh, I'm so excited and over the moon.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

I Don't Want To Be INSIDE!

Thursday I tried, oh how I tried to scoot off to the cabin, but alas, it was not going to happen.  By the end of the day I was pooped and didn't want to drive an hour.  Should have, but didn't.  That's really okay because I did fly off there early Friday morning.  It was so, SO very quiet once I arrived with Clayton as my wing-man in his crate.  My friend Peggy and her hubby Tom invited me to eat tacos with them and I very quickly said YES.  The Hubby wasn't coming until Saturday but that was not going to stop me.  I know tacos were not on the diet but there were no beans and a smidgen of cheese.  The kicker was that Tom bestowed upon me a ice cream drumstick because he knows how I LOVE those things.  I couldn't say no could I.  I happily ate it.  Saturday night (last night) we went to another cabin Lesa and John's for ribs (Tom cooked), potato salad (I made by the request of Tom - he LOVES my potato salad), baked beans and a nice gin and tonic.  It was a very nice evening with friends.  

The cabin experience has been so much more calm and quiet since the upheaval that happened this spring.  I won't go into it but IT WAS NOT A GOOD THING!!!  Now life is back to normal and I am back in my happy spot, my screened porch.  
This weekend I felt the need to sketch.  I grabbed my bag of sketching stuff from the studio and Saturday I sketched all day long.  It was quite fun and wonderful practice.  

Friday evening I took a golf cart ride to check out the water levels and they area still up, up, up but are definitely down.  We probably won't be able to get to the actual creekbank until August or September.  Sure ruins a kids summer of swimming in the creek with all the flooding.  The geese love it though. 
Oooo, found these lovely black-eye Susan's and hope to have another painting soon. 
Don't you love this gate!!!  I love the turquoise blue of it and want to incorporate it somehow into a painting. 
Then it was back to my happy place, in my chair, lounged back watching the bird feeders and the multitude of sweet birdies flocking in for dinner.  Gosh I love this screened porch.   
Sadly time for the bird watching, life contemplating, and general laziness comes to an end on Sunday mornings as I have to head back to reality.  As I climbed in my car and started up the road, the dappled light filters through the trees onto the road and I feel like I'm in a dream, a dazed dream of joy.  
The beauty our little heaven on earth has to offer is something I could never give up, ever.   
When we get there it's like I'm home, truly home.   

But sadly we do have to come back to life and the reality that we still have to work.  Someday we can stay past Monday, Tuesday...

As I got closer and closer to home I snapped a few shots from the car window.  I wasn't sure how they would turn out because I just snapped without looking!  A little cropping and they turned out beautiful.  In fact, may have to paint one or two of them.

I'm actually writing this on our porch at home because I don't want to go inside  I love being outside when the it's warm, I don't care how warm.  I go outside to soak up the fresh air and rejuvenate myself. 

Monday, July 08, 2019

Summer Fun

Sunrise, sunset, slowly go the years...
It has been a whirlwind of nearly two weeks celebrating and spending much needed family time with THE ENTIRE FAMILY!  My happy place with my most happy family rushed off to the cabin for the annual fireworks show and incredible sunsets.   

First, a quick update on Clayton.  He is doing so well and hopefully the bandages will come off today.  He's spinning for his dinner and has been caught jumping up on the furniture, sometimes not successfully.  Our little guy is on the mend.  He has been playing with his doggy friends Mondo and Vinny which was a great joyful surprise.  He is eating and sleeping like a champ.  I think we will have him around for a few more wonderful years.  
As I said before Af and Nick drove in from LA for a visit and a baby shower for the new munchkin that arrives in October. 

All the girls are here.  Three generations in attendance.

Time spent with their goofball dad... 

My wonderful, WONDERFUL girls!!!!!

Then, we as an entire family unit, scooted off to the cabin to enjoy the annual fireworks show (I don't enjoy anymore after The Hubby's fireworks accident several years ago!)  I was in charge of the four-legged friends, Clayton, Mondo and Vinny since the big guys have a bit of fear with fireworks.
We lounged...
We ate... 
We laughed and had a most wonderful time before the tribe grows by one in a few short months. 
My summer is complete.

Friday, June 28, 2019

Life Update in General

 We have company this week...
She, hubby and BABY are here.  They're here for a couple of weeks for just plain visiting and a baby shower for the "little baby girl."  I got to feel her bumping around and that's always such a fantastic feeling.  Makes me just plain giddy. 

They made their way from California driving and met up in Sante Fe with B and B2, and Snicklefritz.  They went a few days  early for their family vacation.  So, that being said they had to farm out their white lab, Vinny and I was responsible for going to their house everyday to feed and love on the grandkitty, ZeeBe.  He's a giant of a yellow tabby and was very lovey back.  But the Big Dog, Mondo, our favorite granddog, got to come stay with us and our sweet Clayton.  They love each other but of course Clayton was gone a lot because he was back and forth with the vet to take care of his wound.  

But, in the mornings when we let Mondo out it was an act of congress to get him back in.  He preferred to stay out and so we did.  He LOVED to dig a small hole in my flowerbeds and sleep all day long and with the weather fantastic, we just left him.  
Can you see him...
There that handsome boy is.  Love this guy.
This little guy has been styling different colored dressings for about 2 weeks now and by Monday he may be RELEASED from this daily, and now every other day trip to the vet.  He is healing so well and getting around like nobody's business.  His appetite is back, he can come in his doggy door, not out yet, and sleeps better than ever.

With all the coming and going happening I took a brief evening off to go and see one of my favorite authors speak.
Elin Hilderbrand, author of the recent "Summer of '69," of which I read this past weekend.  It's a great book and I highly recommend it.

Also some quick strokes of paint on canvas was in order.  I finished these two recently and they have been big hits on Facebook.

"Morning Glories" 9x12 oil on linen panel 

"Plethora of Pansies" 9x12 oil on linen panel 

Then I went to see pastel artist Jude Tolar demo at one of my art groups and this was her set up.  I quickly snapped a photo and started it in the studio. 
I think it will be really nice.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Another Update and More

So much has happened lately with our baby boy dog, He's actually doing so much better.  We do have daily trips to the vet to change his bandages and Friday I really got a good look under the bandages...EGAD!  His once closed up surgery incision is a wide open gap and very deep, although the tissue looks quite healthy and it's not bloody.  This brave tough guy lets the vet probe and touch and never moves or makes a peep.  And a sure sign he's healing is that he actually JUMPED up on the couch twice and, because dogs like to dig to make a bed and he's a dog, he tried to dig in his bed.  It was really kind of cute when he made the motion with his left side and head like he was digging, then with the right.  Oh man!!!  He's getting better.
On a good art note...
I entered this painting, "Fishin' Hole" in an online show, on a website called Light, Space and Time Gallery and was notified that it got a Special Merit Award.  What that means is that our of 572 entries from 22 different countries is that I was recognized.  They awarded 10 top and the next 60 were awarded Special Merit and that is where I fell.   


I had entered these two, "Jackmani" and "Pink Is The New Black" in another of their competitions, AND was notified that I won more things.  Granted it is just online with certificates but it does mean something.

This competition had 1,165 entries from 30 different countries as well as 34 different states including the District of Columbia.  My friend Linda took a first place and second and an honorable mention!   
For "Jackmani" I placed in the top 20 and with "Pink Is The New Black" I took another Special Merit award.  Wow, talk about good for the ego. 
 .  Then I finished this sweet one yesterday and after the response on Facebook, it will surly be entered in some more competitions.
"Morning Glories" 

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Short Update

He WAS home but yesterday had to go back because the drainage and infection.  
It's still going to be a long road to recovery.  He seems to be getting the hop down and was very excited yesterday to have a treat, until the rush back to the vet.  He will be there for a few days, hopefully not long.  

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

The Tale of Clayton

About 9 years ago The Hubby and I were given the opportunity to take this little guy into our lives, our hearts.  He belonged to a friend of ours at the cabin retreat place and as it turned out was also a neighbor in town.  Anyway, at the time she was traveling way too much for this young lad and he needed to have a more stable life.  When we would see Clayton we would jokingly say, "Rose, we're just going to take Clayton." He was the cutest and friendliest little guy and we loved him, everyone did.  
Then one day the phone call came where she asked us if we would like to have him.  Oh GOSH!  We thought and thought and decided we would make him a part of our world.  Clayton was a young, 3 year old puppy.  This photo is the day we said yes.

The next two photos are bringing him home and me trying to capture his picture.  I thought we had made a mistake.  He was manic and it scared me.  


Very, VERY quickly it was determined that we did indeed make the RIGHT decision.
This face... 

This personality... 

The love... 

Clayton has melted our hearts and we couldn't love him more.  

He so loves our granddaughter and any little child that comes through the door. 

He especially loves his daddy. 

...and me. 
...and occasionally he has overnight guests, Mondo the Wonder Dog, Snicklefritz's companion. 
Oh MY he loves Mondo. 

Clayton is a huge part of our life, even breaking bread with us on a nightly fashion. 

 Sadly, about 2 years ago things took a bad turn for little Clayton.  He developed a connective tissue tumor on his hip and another on his left front leg, the one that is short from birth.  
The hip one was successfully taken off.  It was baseball size!  

Then we went for the one on his leg.  The vet said he didn't know if he could get it all because there wasn't much fat or skin on his leg and the likelihood of it coming back was very high.  He was right because about a year after it was taken off it was back very quickly.  We again tried to take it off and that time around the surgery was so stressful on our little guy I didn't know if  we could stand it.  Poor baby cried and cried when we got home.  I was heartbroken for him.  
The second surgery for the leg was just in September and about 3 months ago that dang thing was back with a vengeance.  At the time The Hubby took him back to the vet for a consultation and he said that if it ruptured (abscessed) to bring him back and they would try to cut down some but short of amputation, there was really not much chance of getting rid of the thing.  In the past month that mass started growing at a rapid speed and we made an appointment to get him in but had to wait two weeks as our vet was booked.  Well, this past Memorial Day weekend, it abscessed!  BLECH!  It was a horrible weekend with a trip back to town at 2 am to the emergency vet and yesterday we were told by our vet that amputation was our only option.

So tomorrow (if the surgeon can get in schedule) our little Clayton, our heart, will go through major surgery to lose his leg.  I am absolutely distraught over the decision we have had to make.  If it was a back leg there would not be a hesitation but with it being a front leg the learning to walk again is much tougher, and the vet said his recovery will be much slower not only because of that but because he is 12-1/2 years old.  He's an older dog.  We will not put him down because he is in great health and this is the only thing wrong but I fear that he will not weather this well and that we will go down that road.  I DO NOT want to make that decision.  

Please say a LOT of prayers for our little Clayton.