Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

Google image enhanced.
Tried uploading this image half a year past unsucessfully. Tonight it was achieved. What was I thinking when I downloaded this picture? A horse of a different color? Maybe things aren't as they appear? Or was it back when I looked for meaning of a zebra toy discarded roadside? In any event, the individuals although similar in appearance would have different spirits and attitudes. We often hear, "act as if," as if things were as we would like them, as if lifes meaning were just around the next bend, as if peace were possible in our lifetime? I do wish for peace for all this new year, 2009. Not someday...but this year. Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

It's a Wonderful Life.

Finally weather held up and gave me an outing to draw! Bob is a great model and I look forward to future sessions. After three Tuesday nights cancelled because of dangerous roads...the glistening of flurries as we left this evening were still welcome. Added to the atmosphere. Enjoyed parking in front of the dam and seeing the rushing river, listening to it's powerful roar. The were sheets of ice breaking up and crashing below. Could have spent time right there, there was much to breath in. I'm overdue for a trip to the river. But a visit to David Hettinger's studio was in store and a glimpse into the working habits of a great artist were upon me. The flight of stairs to his studio raced my heart and breath...I do remember a time when I could race up and down stairs laughing...where did they go? Might I find them again? I was disappointed that the few artists I had invited could not make it out this evening, but with space constraints it may have been nicer with just the three of us anyway. Adds another plus for me since my large group conversation skills seriously lack...unless of course I am leading discussions. I felt as if I were back in my heart again, where time didn't exist. I was drawing...with light conversation and companionship and welcomed the return. Why don't I do that more often?

Friday, December 26, 2008

Hypothermia and Frostbite

Hypothermia and Frostbite

Many companion animals are at greater risk during the winter season than their counterparts. Those with an underlying illness, very young or very old, stray or outdoor companions without shelter, and those in shock from other trauma are at a greater risk for hypothermia. Dogs will shiver to speed up metabolism, temporarily raising their body temperature. Move a companion indoors promptly if he/she exhibits prolonged or aggressive shivering, shows no interest in playing, lifts one paw at a time, acts weak or lethargic, is confused or disorientated, walks in circles or doesn’t respond when called and begin the warming up process. Wrap him/her in a warm blanket and turn up the thermostat until he/she stops shivering. Warm water bottles or a heating pad on a low setting may be used to expedite the process, being certain to wrap the heat source in a towel to prevent accidental burns. Monitor the pets rectal temperature. A normal temperature for a dog ranges between 99.5-102.5 degrees Fahrenheit. A cat’s normal temperature range is 100-103.2 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove heat sources and un-tuck blankets once normal temperatures have resumed. When warmed and alert, offer food and water to provide added warmth and strength. If his/her condition does not improve or worsens, contact your veterinarian immediately. Signs of hypothermia include a weak pulse, decreased heart rate, dilated pupils, shivering, pale or blue mucous membranes, stupor, unconsciousness, and coma. Frostbite will generally affect the tips of ears, tail, genitals and footpads. Alongside the symptoms of hypothermia, there may be pale skin, blisters or hair loss. Quickly re-warm affected areas by immersing in warm water. Do not rub. If possible, elevate the area and apply a sterile dressing and bandage. Consult with your veterinarian on tissue damage or loss to the affected areas. May your winter season and be safe and comfortable and your New Year be filled with joy for you and your companions!

Upcoming article...repeated seasonally, but so very important. I picked up many frostbit strays after weather had warmed and snow is wet. Kittys lose tips of ears and tails quickly...and pads of feet are easily burnt by salts!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Morning

We had a lovely Christmas Eve celebration with my family. My daughter had worked late and had not made it, but family and food and carols and joy pervaded the evening. Here my children came for breakfast. Familiar waffles and sausage, tea, coffee and juice. I always make plenty and freeze some quick breakfasts. Plenty of gratitude as we spent the morning together.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Dreaming of a White Christmas?

Finally the solstice, tomorrow our days begin to lengthen, even just a few minutes each day brings optimism. The dangerous wind chills and drifting snow are causing emergency warnings. But the predictions give us a white Christmas that we generally just hope for and more often than not don't receive. I'm working at rearranging my living area for working and I have 7 dogs underfoot. To take a break from that I have a cat who needs to wrap around my neck while I'm on the computer. Well actually anytime, but at the computer I'm a sitting duck. She needs a nail trim. I'm somewhat scarred from being her climbing post. She doesn't understand at all why I'm so displeased with her affections. It must be cabin fever. Captain is balking at the cold and I should fashion him a sweatshirt of sorts since his coat is barely a half inch thick. Dixie, the chihuahua also refuses to go out. Back to the reorder of living quarters for Christmas much to little time.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Black Iris Gallery

I intended to share this info a while back and life just keeps happening. The gallery is hosting Kendall Art Guild's Holiday show. I'm exhibiting my small holiday prints here through January 1st. Was not aware it existed before KAG's newsletter. It is a gallery/frame shop and owner, Nicole has been swamped with holiday gift jobs. Hoping they'll shop when picking up their orders!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Winter Wonderland

I was snowed out again. Tuesday evening and plans were for life drawing. I felt fortunate to make it home safe. This morning I saw a car wrapped around a telephone pole. It must have been overnight as a Com Ed truck was parked behind it. Do I want to know it's story? Not sure I can handle it right now. So awful are the roads and so unsafe for travel. I got off at 3:00PM, an hour after the snow began to fall and it appeared that many, many others got off early today. The roads were full of cars, and the ride home was harried. Once home, I could begin to enjoy the snow and did a little shoveling. Not much as most likely drifting will cover whatever I remove. The dogs enjoyed the snow. It was not like last weeks ice storm. It glittered. It was cleansing. I had emergency furnace repair on Saturday and new part installed on Monday afternoon, loads of gratitude as the part and service were written up under warranty. Seems just in time, propane tank filled and repair before storms. Tonight I matted a group of my Christmas prints. It was a good thing, to spend some time with my art. My finger is not healing as quickly as I'd like and many different projects have made me wince. It is numb while I type. I'm working hard to keep myself out of general winter depression and am so looking forward to the upcoming solstice and lengthening of days! I don't mind cold as much as darkness.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Is it winter yet?

Hit black ice on my way to work and wondered if I'd stop 20 feet past turn! But the skies out west were blue and it cheered my spirit. Before I got to work the skies above were sunny and I was able to get my lunchtime walk in today as the sunshine cleared the main roads. It was lovely, I was getting warm till I turned back to the chill and I could feel my cheeks brighten. I needed that sunshine more than I needed food or rest. The days are growing so short and my time so restricted. The dogs decided to craze me back over as the sun went down...barking at the honking geese...playing door games...I'm sure you've been out three times and haven't you been out four? They're asking to go out again but I've shushed them all, I'm winding down and need to keep a single focus for a moment and half. A Christmas letter was really appreciated today. Cousin's son was married in September, I hadn't heard, was someone expected to fill me in? Positive family tales are so soothing in the bleakness of this recession. It's so easy to only hear those trials and hardships that challenge our core beings and keep us from moving forward. As usual I hadn't accomplished my intentions today, but I did move forward...maybe tomorrow the camera will come out again.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


New pictures would be nice! I am saddened that winter has arrived early...there will be a lot of snow before spring, and drifting and shoveling. Canceled evening plans to draw, should have worked on comission while home but putzed through some more decluttering. Keep on hoping I'll find my lens. Guess it's the needle in the haystack and when the haystick is gone, there it will be. Had a busy day with projects at work, all day hoped an evening of drawing would be in he plans, but then an evening of reading would be nice also. Several books I've been setting on for awhile while trying to keep up with tribes journey through some great inspiration. Maybe I'll get some snow pictures. Best get off to bed to rise and shovel my way out!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Somewhere Over the Rainbow.

All the intentions for the day seem to just fall to the wayside as pertinent tasks reclaim my time. As I drove home from work/chiropractor/grocery, I saw off to my right a brilliant orange sunset and to the left a sherbet rainbow heading directly above me. The weather had finally broke from the freeze and I spent an hour out with the dogs cleaning up after them in the backyard. That pleased them so. Hopefully the evening rains will not freeze a layer of ice over the car and roads. I'm so looking forward to an evening of drawing tomorrow and will be disappointed if predicted storms come to pass. A coworker was laid off today, and I couldn't feel positive about the downward spiral my finances and life have taken. Still no lens for my glasses. No repair for car break in. Rear brakes still needing repair. And the phone calls to elicit donations? They don't want to hear what I am saying, likely what the majority of their calls are saying, but I was once told charity begins at home. When new glasses become reality, I will be able to consider giving cash donations again. The upside of having rescue supplies come through for me and knowing the dogs will have food for the next four months without weekly concerns if enough money will be made to feed us all. The odd correlation this week is the famous icon photo of the great depression by Dorothea Lange referred to as the Migrant Mother made the news again and I've been considering borrowing my ink wash of same for fabulous fakes exhibit coming up in February at Naperville Art League. Or maybe I'll do a color pencil drawing of Michelangelo's David. Time will be a factor in determining directions. I will never forget my son telling me that we should leave it all and live out on the beach in California. We could be the poster for current recession. Homes being lost...time to buy into the promised land. Is it on a beach out there? Is that job offer still good?

Saturday, December 6, 2008


Winter's not even here and I'm tired of it! The frigid temps and icy roads are rather uncomfortable. We've been through odd temperature changes and this current chill is unsettling. We could be here for three-four months since it isn't officially winter yet! Tonight there are tractors out taking down corn for silage. It was odd to see them out warming up with lights across the fields. Now they're nearly in my back yard! My rescue supply of dog food came through today and we're set for a couple months. Big sighs of relief as I had to buy last weeks 4o pounds. Not sure how I was going to swing feeding the pack without aid. How do you release misfits back into a system that condemned them? The food took up most of my day as I had some total rearranging to fit 540# food in an overcrowded basement. Besides unloading the car to the living area then 30 trips downstairs to the basement. I had about three bags left, when my legs began arguing about stairs. But it is done, I got a great workout, and made progress on cleaning the basement...which is where I print and mat and frame! And of course colonise my rescue cats!I am cold yet now...the heat is not rising as quick as my body temp needs it to. I'll probably need to start dropping the temp less while I'm gone...unless of course a warm up is going to return. So my day off, or I should say my day of just one evening job was eventful, exhausting, and even encouraging. Hope tomorrow brings good.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Winter is here.

The shortened days are quickly passing. Does that mean Spring will soon be here? Triple shifts, extra errands and certainly my day is overfull.I had a child's Grandmother a half hour late on Tuesday! I was unable to drop off my work at new Sandwich gallery, and quite fearful of what weather forecasts were sharing!Evening shift started rather late yesterday as I made time after children's class to fit that errand into agenda. What am I looking for at this point? Christmas sales will come in handy in January.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

I found it!

Well, I had intended to drop off my work at Black Iris Gallery in Sandwich but a little girl's Grandmother was a half hour late picking her up in the class I substituted today. Hopefully I can swing it tomorrow. It's quite frustrating when drop off hours are only during working hours. Some artists have to support themselves and children at regular jobs. I was able to get down and print up the beginnings of editions of my series. I will have to remember that I must wear clothes to get inked rather than clothes to teach!
Im watching for the winter wonderland that other's are reporting but I didn't get four inches snow, but snow mixed with rain and walks are icy yet. Tomorrow is expected to bring more of the same. I'd intended to get weights in the back of my top heavy vehicle, we'll see how the morning progresses. Another day, another class and hopefully a run to the gallery before evening shift at clinic.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Where did they go?

I was uploading image for NAL's Holiday Art-Craft Show, I blink my eyes and it's lost in cyberspace! Overtired. Managed to get art to holiday show and returned home to finish pot of turkey rice soup and finish framing piece with mishap yesterday. Picked up a new piece of glass and it snapped! Finally re framed without the mischievous cat hair that vexed me yesterday. In touch with life group invited to next weeks session. Hopefully a go. Tomorrow I substitute for a Yorkville class then off to Sandwich to turn in pieces at Kendall Art Guild's exhibit there.