Thursday, April 21, 2011


A feature in my April copy of Watercolor Artist 
encouraged me to hurry out and buy a set of watercolor pencils.

 Who am I to ignore such a direction??  I ordered a small set of Faber-Castell –Albrecht Durer Watercolour Pencils.  They came in a satisfying metal box.  Almost too delicious to use.

I found them great for sketching and fine details.  This discovery took me to making a set of ACO’s (Art Card Originals) which are the same size as baseball cards and are traded and collected in the same way.

I made a dozen cards with paintings of sailboats.

 I’ve only been on a sailboat a couple of times, 
but loved the ride and the way they look.

 Some of the pictures were from a sailboat race 
I saw with Linda Sue on a sunny day in Bellingham, Washington.

 Another was from a quiet morning on Orcas Island Sound.

For others I used reference photos taken…

 …while riding the big super ferries…

 …in Puget Sound.  The watercolor pencils were perfect for adding tiny details yet, because they contain actual watercolor pigment the colors can be lifted, blended, textured and layered with water.  Cool tools! 

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


When you are growing up there are those ahead of you who try to tell you
and warn you about the puzzles and pitfalls.  But who listens to them when they 
have no idea how much a mess your life is?  
So you carry on and find surprise and misery at
every turn.  There are paths and quicksand and bridges and 

  Good things come your way but sometimes you need help to get at them.

Life is not all bumps and tumbles.  There is a lot of joy right in front of you.

Almost anything good ...

...can be overdone.

* * * * * * * * 
Other things I might have been told but I didn't believe.

♥ Even though you focus on the imperfections--
the body you have when you are twenty isn't so bad.

♥ People who talk behind your back are seldom talking about you.
And if they are, it usually doesn't matter.

♥ It is really true.  Your friends are your future.

♥ Before you get all upset; honestly ask yourself, 
"Will this matter one year from now?
How about one month?
One week?"

♥ Don't compare yourself to others.
They are more messed up than you think.

♥ If we are always guided by others' thoughts,
what is the point of having our own?

♥ Once you carry a child inside you, that child
will be a part of you for the rest of your life.

 ♥ The music you live by in your teen-age years
--no matter how bad and how cheezy--
becomes your forever favorite.

♥  Good nature is more important than good looks.

♥ Big changes in your life usually start with small decisions.
Permanent changes--good or bad--often happen gradually.


A get well gift from ten thousand miles away
--give or take a mile or two.

Anairam in South Africa sent me a package.

Inside was a post card with an Edvard Munch painting
embellished with Anairam's own stitchery and
"A Book of Unnatural Scribbles."

A hand made treasure!

From the upside down part of the world 
where the seasons are backward and
it never snows.

Bringing light...

...and cheer!

Entertainment and mystery.

Plus my blog nick engraved on a tag.

Thanks, Anairam!  Isn't blogging just FUN!

Sunday, April 17, 2011


Back in 2009 I put up a post about bathing our cat, Thomas.  As I stated then, my past experience with cats and water has been one of panic and hysteria for all involved.  Then Thomas moved in and took over.  He doesn’t do much hunting, he doesn’t like to jump.  His foremost task at our house is to serve as a speed bump.

His heritage as a Maine Coon cat gives him thick wooly fur which over time becomes itchy and hot.  Shedding is a problem even when the knots in his wool are combed out.  So in desperation a few years ago I put him in a sink of water and scrubbed him down.

To everyone’s amazement he seemed to enjoy the process.  
He stands patiently as he gets a shampoo and rinse in warm water.

By the time we get to toweling off he is getting cranky but he deals with it.

I’d love to help him with my hair dryer, but 
anything that makes that kind of noise sends him running.

So I make sure he can recover in a spot of warm sun.

He’s got way too much fur to handle with just a tongue.

 Way, way too much wet fur.  
But after a few hours of air dry and some combing …

 He starts to look pretty spiffy…

 …and is now a very handsome speed bump.