Friday, October 31, 2008


It's not so scary after all. Corn on side of me still up, althougth, to my left they started late this afternoon. Pictures of slight color changes. Yellow leaves surround the new Halloween scarecrow. Looked for Super nova this evening in moon alignment, saw nothing. Or, I should admit I saw an exciting array of stars. Came home late from work and did burning tasks.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Almost All Hallows Eve!

Some close ups of decor.
My world seems to be flipping around like a fish on land. Will I get back to water in time? Animals are vying for attention. Gretel my tamed feral kitten has returned to insisting on lap time or even fur stole time, when she expects me to carry her around on my shoulders! She hates her nails trimmed also. You'd think it meant death! Sadie and Captain finally stopped wrestling and are quite ready for bed, which means Aggie can relax as she needn't continue to scold them for roughhouse inside.
I did get my new spare tire cover today from being rearended two weeks back. Emptied a few more things out of my car as presently it doesn't lock. Transplanted a couple more new plants from sis Darlene. Caught up and new issues as trailer no longer available to move new furniture. Quite paradox, unseemingly unkind. I took Friday off work so that I could manage the extras and now the extras may not be available. Is there a reason for the stars to hide from me? Not aware that I've done anything whatsoever that should cause me so much hardship. I need the current world to express that I've done more than my share and it is time that I receive compensation.
Seems any good so distant.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Fall Decorations

So sorry I hadn't dusted my shelf first. Priorities. Sharing the new gourds and pumpkin candy at my entry way and the new scarecrow I brought home last night. Along with my collection of pumpkins from Ben's Giant Pumpkins.I think I need a close up on the pumpkins.
Had a nice young model this evening, never modeled before yet her poses were classical and timeless. Worked very lightly with aquarell pencils and the sketches are waiting to be painted and add more color. Probably too pale to photo. Series of 20 minute poses, and worked to get all in place. A little baroque music added to the atmosphere. Mesmerized by the flute. Evening had ended before the music and didn't want to stop it.
I called police officer who had taken my information about robbery last week to add the broken latch and pulled wires which disabled the back door lock. He was extremely disinterested. Of course I wanted it added to the report! Why did he think it was so unimportant. The thieves intended to break in, had the tools and knew exactly where to damage the door to open it. The missing dash alongside the missing CD player wasn't even important to him. I was simply another statistic and so unlikely to solve the case that no investigation of the damage was even noted. I had plenty of time to simmer that without any music on my drive in and home this evening.
Did he not realise it wasn't the rich or even the middle class, but poverty level that was robbed...or is that more to the point? I don't matter. Another person likely could go out the following day and replace what was stolen and damaged. I will have to live without, including the ability to lock my doors. So if I become another statistic rather than my vehicle, will it then all matter? At least with the help of my brother last week I was able to figure out why my interior lights did not work. I'll now be able to see an attacker and identify. So was it for food? Was it for drugs? Was it sold to pay the electric bill? There have been so very many people without any work this past year. How much can you get for a CD player? Tomorrow I will photo the damage and email the officer the pictures to add to the report. He never even looked inside my car. Licence and insurance labeled the report. Maybe tomorrow It won't anger me so.

Monday, October 27, 2008

More state park pictures

These pictures are areas again I rarely frequent. Drawn to the water and its dance. The bridge here crosses a ravine probably only water in severe weather or fast winter thaws. I worked this evening, not normal routine, but Wednesday evening work is interrupted by teacher meeting I need to be at. Headed over to my sister Darlene's after work and filled my van with nonessentials that won't be moving with her this week. Pool supplies. Plants. A set of end tables to go with couches I'll be getting later in the week. Car was loaded and another chore to unload. Then of course the computer rebels and I need to shut down and restart. A scarecrow came home with me and tomorrow I shall see to it that it sets out with the pumpkin display. I'll need to erase some photos off my cards to get that image up and running. Life is full, probably fuller than it should be. Thanksgiving just around the corner and gratitude is forthcoming.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

I held a fall leaf.

"I held a fall leaf
In the palm of my hand.
It wept bitterly
As it dropped to the ground,
To the ground, to the ground,
The cold frosted wind
Blew it to the ground." from Ellen: A Short Life Long Remembered

Forgive my walking shoes in my photo, didn't notice them at the time of picture. Fortunately there aren't camera straps or fingers blocking the view! Long hike today, listening to the harsh winds above the woodland canopy. Occasionally ducking as dead branches were coming down. Up and down trails I haven't frequented in years. Even climbed the toboggan hill twice for the elevated heart rate. As winds started to frighten. I saw a muskrat scamper down to water's edge and a doe and fawn fleeing the frightening weather.Just keeping up today, so many projects on the backburner that need prioritizing.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

The Great Pumpkin Patch

A few more shots of my boys at Ben's Giant Pumpkins. Getting ready for the upcoming holiday. I imagine there were costume parties already tonight. I was held up 40 minutes crossing town this afternoon for the business trick-or-treaters. Bank was closed by the time I crossed the river. Was able to get my hazardous waste in for environmental collection today. Another collection November 1st, and more sorting to catch up on.


I thought I had found another frightful tree from Oz when I took this picture, but here is the opposite, like Glenda the Good Witch, this tree evokes comfort and warmth. Protection for many from bitter winter winds.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Homestead

Sorry about another bad picture. I framed this picture up today, $1.99 frame from the Goodwill store. It has a glossy finish to argue with me. This aerial view of my home and the neighbor's surrounding property. The photographer thought it was all my property. Talked his price way way down as he brought it to me already blown up and suitable for framing. It endured quite a bit of damage being stored improperly, but it means a little more to me now than it did 15 years ago when taken. The old neighbor rode English, and the pasture filled with jumps, was property I tried to buy way back when but previous owner would not parcel off a piece. Now to consider something like that would not be rational. The neighbor's house has been remodeled and looks quite nice now. At one time the stories I was told was that it was an original pony express with additions added to the home and desperate hangings executed in the trees. It's hard to say what do I believe? As the neighbor started remodeling and opened walls up, the rough hewn beams and plastered walls were quite a delight to see. The corn rows came down today, I am saddened by their loss but enjoyed the fragrance. Knowing that rebirth in the spring will bring green again is comforting. A long cold hibernation ahead. Furnace is repaired, one less concern but now I need to pay for that also. The aerial view here would still be identifiable if Sunhawk were to pass this way with her rainbow of colors.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

If I hadn't...

Do I belong on my bike or what? No wonder so many bike enthusiasts travel my road! These views are from last Sunday's bike ride and I've been anxious to share them. When I got home I thought boy, I really need to lower my seat a tad since I keep stopping to take photos!
Today's events are like the past weeks there a reason why I can't just have a day without trials? Today my cd player was stolen from my van while I worked. I stopped at local police station to report it although it's done, I can't afford a new player, and extremely unlikely the police can identify a player that I can't. My days have rolled cycles and I'm not sure why. The motherboard part for my furnace should be in tomorrow and I may have heat at days end. My rescue supplies came through this evening and I now have almost a months supply of dog food. When I saw a new cat tree in the dark I first thought maybe by new spare tire cover had arrived after being rear ended last week, then wondered what a robot could be doing on my front patio! So my rescue came through for me and my four legged companions will flourish.
I had called art league about the sales check I hadn't received from September and it was reasoned that it was not a significant check and was overlooked. It is still income and most of a weeks gas. Groceries in lack. I am in Oz and not sure how that came to be.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Recognizing the Muse

Patti aka Selena
This evening synchronicity had the upper hand and I was in awe. I was listening to Yanni on my drive in this evening, considered changing it but decided it would be a great intro into an evening of life. I was certainly amazed at seeing the same model I had framed up just last Saturday. It seemed so surreal, I had to pull the model aside and show her my perception of her back when. She asked about the old group of artists, where they were today and so saddened to let her know that Theresa had passed last year. I never questioned why, hadn't the answer but David was able to share what he knew. Her favorite music at sessions was Yanni and she regularly compared surgical notes with our evenings model. I came home to the end of musical score to City of Angels and believe I am quite fortunate to have such a beautiful muse as Theresa. Thank you!

Monday, October 20, 2008

There's no place like home.

Heading back on Sunday afternoon's bike trip, I stopped to take these photos of my homestead from distant views that will be gone shortly. The grove of trees is my yard...they've not yet changed color, but likely when they do the rows of corn will be down.The pasture belongs to the neighbor, but this a great reminder when the days are gloomy that although my house is run down and depressing, I planted most of those trees as little whips. I chose to have an ever changing view of my world. In peace and stillness.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Day Dreams

This picture is also framed and available at Naperville Art League. I thought her hands looked quite small, but her hands are quite small. Wonderful model, quite a few finished pieces of her. The image is about 10 X 13in. Framed 16 X 20 inches. $150.00
Slept in this morning, trying to keep up on rest and self care. So opposes my schedule to accomplish such and such by such and such time! Like where did the day go? After mass and visit with my folks, a little raking and burning of their 3 acres oaks. I did a nice hike at Silver Springs State Park. There were many people there. Quite different from winter walks or even last weeks walk in the rain. Wondered if there were some sort of fishing contest going as the cental lake was wall to wall people. Dogs of every size and color out relishing the autumn sun. Took pictures to share of changing seasons. Bike ride this afternoon, amazing skies, more pictures. Caught up with a bit of projects around the house and yard. Busy work schedule and plans ahead for the week.

Saturday, October 18, 2008


I'm not really sure what her name is, but she certainly looks like Selena to me. There's something so assured about her appearance and comfortable that I chose to frame her. She's about 10 X 13 inches and framed 16 X 20 for $150.00 at Naperville Art League.
The day was for rectifying lost time. I slept in, which is major lost sleep reparation or maybe rejuvenation. That itself, seemed backward as I lost daylight hours...but sleep is something I need to schedule or age far too quickly. Framed up two pieces for NAL's Coup de Foudre exhibit. Apparently that means "Into the darkness." Maybe so as that was titled on another artist piece. Framing accomplished, delivered two pieces to NAL, ran across town to Barbara Lipken's Studio Sale and splurged on a small pastel rendition of Paris. More framing on that piece and off to slow evening at work. Really hard on the pocket, especially after buying myself a gift rather than overdue necessities.

Friday, October 17, 2008

A few nore river photos

"It is the nature of man to rise to greatness if greatness is expected of him."
~John Steinbeck

Now that I've shook those perfectionist tendencies, he tells me! Pushing myself too hard, never enjoying life as there's too much to fill in each day. I suppose I did enjoy that hike at the river! Does anyone other than myself expect greatness of me? There must be a balanced zone! Still had restaurant work this evening and fortunately there were several late night tables as early evening wasn't panning out. Stopped for gas tonight and it was only $55.00 to fill up! That's about $30.00 less than last week. Yee haw! Could it possibly drop even lower?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

In the Land of Oz

More pix from the state park! Is this not one of the trees that frightened Scarecrow and Dorothy. I was amazed to find it out here, so far from Kansas. Actually quite beautiful and home to several woodland creatures? If he so tolerates. I do hope this majestic spirit isn't the one I see uprooted next year! Although certainly his roots must be as interesting as his crown! Deep in the woods, under the umbrella canopy, while listening to the rain above, stirring the imagination, why am I holding a camera instead of a sketchbook? I'll need to revisit that question yet another time.
The moon wasn't quite as full tonight and I accomplished some extra tasks at vet clinic. Quite far behind, but still moving forward. Changes seem to be blatant all around me. As the price of gas drops lower and lower, I wonder if again people will venture out and spend some cash? It's important that people learn to trust and accept change. The dogs are playing now, certainly this is the time and not after I've gone to bed. My eyes are dropping...will tomorrow remember us? Or do we need to start again anew?

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

National Feral Cat Day

The picture is blurry but it shares the plight of the feral cat today. This pair are living in state park and who is feeding them? Some good soul. They are beautiful creatures. Always wild? Or maybe reverted after abandonement? In any case they are ambassadors for their cause.

The Vacuum Effect

Stray cats provoke many different responses from differing segments of society. The understanding of the cat as predator and a survivor under harsh circumstances leads some to justify their abandonment of pets when no longer desired. All stray cats are not feral, many are lost. A frightened housecat will display self preserving behaviors towards strangers, causing some confusion as to the cat’s true temperament. A feral cat is an unsocialized cat, born outside or one that has been stray for a long period of time developing distrust for humans. Feral cats prey on rodents and have been taken in to keep granaries and barns clean. Feral cats are opportunistic feeders, scavenging on garbage and moving into territories we may not find acceptable. Rarely do cats prey on birds, although indoor pets with high curiosity and a full belly may lead society to believe differently. A single queen may have several litters in one year, all of whom may reach maturity before six months and begin creating their own offspring. Cat populations climb steadily out of control without sterilization. Many believe they are a problem that can be dealt with by outdated ideals of trap and kill. Trap and remove is a costly process. The territory and its resources of food and shelter become available for other cats to move in and quickly form a new colony. Unsterilized survivors bred prolifically. This is known as the “vacuum effect” and is well documented. Many animal control services who have dealt with the killing of stray cat populations are turning to programs of trap, neuter and release or TNR. The feral cat colonies may be trapped; sterilized and released back into the area they were caught. They are ear tipped while under anesthetic to ease identification. Kittens under twelve weeks may be socialized and adopted into new homes. Stray cats joining a feral colony may also be re-socialized and adopted. TNR is cost effective for communities who develop a comprehensive program enlisting community volunteers. By implementing TNR in an area, the cat population becomes reduced gradually. Some areas have banned feeding of stray cats which also adds suffering to the problem forcing scavenging of garbage. October 16th has been designated National Feral Cat Day and many communities are planning educational campaigns. For more information check out Alley Cat Allies website at

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Life Tonight

The days activities were as bizarre as they can be. Surrealistic in fact. Chickens in the woods as I walked! How delusional is that? And a little boy, Corwin, whose attention span challenged my very large, very young class today was picked up by a police officer as his mother was involved in an accident. Dear child was quite happy to leave with the officer. It was really that or me, who he'd only met an hour earlier. Throughout the hour he kept mentioning how important it was that I wait till he got to his mother. All this after morning dreams of Gila monster living in my livingroom, sharing the sofa seating casually with my sons. Surrealistic dreams followed by surrealistic day. I zoned this evening at life with Vivaldi's Four Seasons, Seabiscuit Soundtrack and music of Cezanne. I think that last score threw the group as they started leaving? Stayed late and chatted about elections past and present, likely a TV will be in the workshop on election night? Pictures here were efforts of the evening...thinking I need some finishing touches...uncertain if these are the ones to frame. Camera batteries were flashing so the photos themselves are weak. SO what do ya think? Do these sketches deserve frames? Honest critiques appreciated.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Ben's Giant Pumpkins

Can you believe how many pumpkins are waiting for children to choose them here in this great pumpkin patch? I brought my boys here after last year's visit and tale, I think they were in awe as I was last year. The Great Pumpkin will come, the moon is full but in hiding yet. I had a nice chat with Doctor Angie, veterinarian I used to work with whose husband is the organic farmer growing these wonderful pumkins and gourds. The lad in dreadlocks carrying the pumpkin is my delightful musician R.C. And the writer squatting at land level is my handsome Randell. Sometimes I worry about his introverted qualities and then I realise, he's just like me. Just don't tell him that! He still has so much to learn...pain so initiates change and growth. I was hoping for a poem for a birthday card...but he's not sharing his works yet. He doesn't know I was looking at his 3rd grade Mother's Day poem just this week, thinking how exquisitely beautiful while tears gushed at the innocence. Emotions are so strong at birthday times. This day, I pulled into accomplishing as much as possible when I realised needed new work for NAL exhibit this week. Will it still happen? I found three pieces I'd like to frame, but larger than frames in the house. Counting on creating a pair of masterpieces tomorrow at life workshop to fill frames by Saturday. Ah, but I've always performed better under pressure.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Chicken Little and The Sky is Falling!

I had a wonderful birthday!My boys arrived early for mass and surprise birthright breakfast I wasn't aware of. We visited my folks and my nephew dropped in for Grandma to give him a haircut. It was good to see him and visit. Memories of his Mother, she's been on my mind a lot these past another year has gone by without her. Occasionally when I smile...we have the same smile. I miss her so.
The boys went with me to Ben's Giant Pumpkins, I hope they were awed as I was last year when I dropped through and walked the giant pumpkin patch. Came home with assortment of treasures I still need to photo. There's much left to October and pondering our glorious Indian much longer will it be with us. The bean crops are mostly in. My nephew, who repairs farm equipment hasn't had a day off in several weeks. Tis the season. The gravel road I've been traveling to buy my fresh eggs and the lovely ladies who supply those eggs are shown here. This uphill gravel road seems to go on forever. The ride home on my bike is quite a bit easier. I'd hoped to photo neighbor's goats today, but they weren't out. The lovely ladies curiously clucking the day's gossip sufficed for photo op. My daughter called for my birthday. Laundry had been prioritized over Mummy and I pray her recent life choices are not devastating mistake. I'm rather fearful she's being controlled and not yet aware of her codependency. Like my lovely lady friends whose destiny lies with the strong.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

My roots are showing!

I bet that's better than my slip showing, but that seems to be the fashion trend with undershirt two inches linger than the shirt! Remember when it was so totally embarrassing if your shirt or sweater was longer than your jacket? Or when your bra straps were showing? Anyway these roots unearthed in some storm were quite a delight to see. Today was full of accomplishments...even pushed the whole yard. Finished up just as it was time to get ready for work. Found a nice cat condo at Goodwill store. Had brought in pair of crutches that needed to find a new owner. Flea sprayed the condo, hope the kitties enjoy it. Got a pair of curtains washed and hung out on the line...will have to finish that project tomorrow! Washing those windows ready to close for winter. Indian summer will be here another day, tomorrow will be enjoyable, especially since the lawn is already done! Didn't get out on jaunt to get my fresh eggs maybe that too will fit in tomorrow.

Friday, October 10, 2008

I need a river quote!

I was dozing while these pictures uploaded! So done for the day but wanted to share yet more pictures from state park. Here the river's edge allows me to climb rocks and get close enough to the river to inhale it's season. Soon the colors of fall will show...will I make it back so soon?

Thursday, October 9, 2008

The best way...

"The best way to escape from a problem is to solve it." ~Brendon Francis.

This uprooted situation... just captured my attention. Roots are so beautiful! Except when a stripe of undyed hair. Or is it exceedingly much more beautiful? I'll never forget my Annie Orphan it grew out it was so evident the damage done to my hair...the dull lengths, the new growth healthy. Today, I substitute taught for Yorkviile class. The kids were great, the teacher's helper was phenomenal. So much transpires in an hour. Students were 2nd and 3rd grades and much learning crossed wires! They were pleased with their results and so was I!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The Fox

Here are a couple shots I took of what I considered river regalia. Those kayaks were so bright and colorful and the group sounded to be enjoying their afternoon immensely. This is the river that captured many a winter morning walking down the snowmobile path. Today was a full day. Rushing to get 8 hours taskwork done in 6. Teaching this afternoon and the challenges of giving individual attention to 13 kids in the same hour is mind taxing. Got done there and managed some banking before work at vet. Was finally able to locate my article on feral cats and sent it off to the newspaper for National Feral Cat Day on Oct 16th. I'll have to share that here...maybe on the 16th! A friend called and I went out walking with him this evening. Was rather pleasant coversation, especially for someone like me who talks through a computer! Here to close out my day with sharing. I finally saw Sunhawk out traveling this aftermnoon and somehow she appeared snow white against the gray skies. I was entranced, wondering if she bleached herself blonde since I had seen her last?

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Alice's Mushrooms

I had seen many varieties of mushrooms at the park, but these captured my eye. Looked good enough to eat. Don't know much about picking mushrooms...think they'd make me small?

Here's a new model! She was fantastic! She even worked at holding her facial expression! The long pose was really enjoyable, especially as she was able to fall back into similar position and then of course I had to! Originally I was opposite position and had to move as all I could see was pillows! I'm so glad I had the evening to continue to play with my new pencils. I must take time to add water brushmarks. That will also be brand new to my repetoire!

Monday, October 6, 2008

There is no path.

"There is no path. The path is made by walking." ~Antonio Machado

The path here, is snowmobile path at state park. Four miles, not all as beautiful as this section, includes fields not as comfortable for walking. And I needed to share a glimpse of coming colors. The naysayers keep saying we'll not have fall colors this year, maybe not as much, but this certainly isn't brown or barren.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Silver Springs

I took an art date today to reconnect with the river that had captured much of last winter. The bridge and road repair have been completed and the route to visit my folks passes the state park. I had a wonderful walk, starting with recognition feral cats being fed and ending with why? Why hadn't I been here since maybe March? It hadn't been convenient, I hadn't had free time, and why hadn't I planned a snack and drink for my outing? It was thoroughly unplanned, I keep my walking shoes in the car,so it happened. As I left, the pavilion was empty and I thought what a nice place to set and sketch awhile, but it didn't happen. I was blown away by the whole experience. I walked under the woodland canopy and listened to the rain above me. It was quite gentle. I was astounded at the changes the weather and river and past year had wrought for the river edge. I was pleased to photo the silver springs that move all winter long, with currents and fresh plantings that continue through the darkness of winter. The springs feed down into the Fox River and the imagination added to the photo winter cold and ice falling from the pipeline rather than forced water. The hike was overdue, the river has been beckoning me. I took a nice long bike ride against the wind to buy a dozen fresh eggs for this evening's cooking. Got some weekly cooking in and rested this evening rather than push myself. We'll see what tomorrow brings.