Monday, August 11, 2014

A busy week

It has been a busy week. Sara is here helping DH with the fence.  There have been a few problems so not as much has been done as they hoped would be by now, but they continue to work and hope to get it all done.

I have been drawing as well as working in the house and taking another painting class. I try to get one thing or group of things put away/taken care of/hauled off every week. Today I made a trip to GoodWill with several bags of things and also trimmed some more bushes and some small dead limbs out of the dogwood. If I do a little every day or week, it will get done.

A little drawing for Liz Steel's online class at Sketchbook Skool. 

A sketch of the bell tower of our church. I had never realized how detailed it is until I started to draw it. Obviously I did not use a ruler. The line in the upper right sky is a detail of the bricks. I think I will be drawing this or parts of it for a while. 
Following a suggestion to use pictures of yourself to draw facial features I took some photos on Photo Booth and drew myself. You should try this!


Last of all, this is a necklace I bought from Sara's online jewelry shop. They will be having a sale August 15 through 25. They (Sara and her mother-in-law, Mary ) have estate pieces, precious stones, watches, and others, in all price ranges. The things I have bought have been very inexpensive but lots of fun to wear and I have gotten compliments on all of them. Please check them out hereGandB Jewels.com





















Wednesday, August 6, 2014

CBerk: artist and furniture mover


After moving all the furniture I decided that I missed the table in the kitchen so I moved it all again - by myself this time except for some help from DH with the big table.  I THINK that I might leave it this way for a while. DH and I decided to give up the cable TV ; that gave us more room in the living room. We have a small antenna that we can place in the window upstairs and there is a nice but small TV up there (in fact the larger one is there ,too) so I think that we will be able to go up there and watch anything important. Tornado warnings, Downton Abbey, you know what important stuff is.
Here is the end where the TV used to be. There is seating for six and there are lamps for reading and a coffee table.
At the other end is my work table where I draw and a chair where I read. It is more or less my office when I am not in my studio. 

This table has been replaced in the kitchen. I moved the rug in there for Jackson who is having more surgery for his knee. The stitches from the first time didn't hold and he is limping even more than before. Getting up on the slick floor is very difficult for him. There is a little bag under the table with my art stuff ready to go to class Wednesday. 
DH brought these flowers home when he last went to the grocery store. They have been sprayed with purple dye before they were open it appears. Some leaves are green and some are purple. I put them in old silver tea and coffee pots and I think that they look very nice. The table is a sofa table at the sitting room end . 

And, we can now use the front door again. There is enough of the porch to get to the steps. Sara came tonight and she and DH are going to get all the stuff that is on the steps and in the front yard up on the porch and organized then they will start working on the fence that was supposed to be finished before Sara's wedding. Yea!

When you just don't know what to do, sharpen your pencils then draw the pencil sharpener (in ballpoint pen) and then draw the pencil (in pencil and ballpoint). 

I also drew this collection of soap bars (sorry that it is sideways) Collections are interesting things to well, collect and draw. I am working on a key collection and thinking about others. 

I am having so much fun drawing. Give it a try. Look closely at what you want to draw and make those lines - just what you see. Don't worry if it isn't star quality the first time or the tenth or whatever. If you keep at it you will improve and as a bonus you will train yourself to look more closely at the world around you and that is a good thing. 

All is well, 
XOXOXO
Caroline



Thursday, July 31, 2014

Every time

Every time that I decide that this is just too much and I am going to quit blogging, one of you writes or calls or comments and you just suck me back in. (smile). So, here goes another chapter.
After Jackson's surgery, (which went well and he is recovering nicely)Sarie brought him a toy. Of course Bella took it away from him every time he picked it up and they, together, removed the squeaky parts, but I see it around the house from time to time. I thought that this was a really cute pose when I found it. Such a happy, smiling little fella. 

The city cut down the tree that was so badly cracked. The neighbor's house is suddenly visible and I am sure that it will be quite different on the inside, too. The tree was planted when the homeowner was a young girl and she is my age and it was a shame that it had to be cut down.  I thought that I had taken more pictures but what I had actually done was make more sketches. I am just a sketching fool these days. 

This poor quilt had so many worn and torn places in it that I was afraid to wash it. I mended one place by hand then just took it to the sewing machine and zig-zagged it everywhere there was a bad place. On three places I had to add a patch. Then I washed it and - voila!- it looks decent again. Today, though, I sewed the binding onto the new quilt and I will hem it, on the sewing machine, tomorrow. I will do a tiny little hemstitch. After all, it is a quilt to be used, not one to be entered in a show. 

When I was in Cashiers I bought a little red-painted coffee table. DH wasn't crazy about it but I liked it. When we moved to the garage, though, it didn't fit and I sent it to Jenny to be used as a desk/craft table for the kids. It is with me again and today I was scrubbing it in preparation for painting when I found this. Do you see "MOM, Drew, Zonas"? the Z is reversed. Farther along there was scratched "Sarie" and finally "Dad". I took pictures so I can paint it although it was suggested to me that I could put a little glass over that part and just paint the rest. Thanks for the suggestion, Vicki, but maybe not. 

I am going to submit this to the gallery for possible inclusion in their next exhibit which is based on Literature. This was inspired by my rereading of To Kill A Mockingbird. 

Today DH was working on flooring the porch when a young man who lives a street over asked if he could help. He explained that he liked to do work like that but as a graduate student he didn't have much opportunity. He helped and they talked. I think it was good for both of them. 

All is Well
XOXOXO
Caroline

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

One hundred seventy-six

That is how many times I have posted to this blog. The number of comments would come closer to 40, but who is counting. I just can't make it work. 

Today I did a little demolition. Someone had added cornice boards to our bedroom windows. The problem was that they were attached at heights different enough to be obvious - especially to me. so today I took the hammer to them and knocked them down. There will have to be a little patching, but I like it better already. I think I might make Roman shades for the windows and not having to work around those uneven cornices will make it easier. 

 A little patching and painting and it will be great. As you can see, the trim in this room was once pink. It was also once blue and once robin's egg blue. Now it is white. 
I think that Roman shades on this window will be a big help. This is all there is now and the neighbors have a yellow light which is always on during the night. If I get ambitious I could try to make shades that raise from the bottom and lower from the top, but I am not sure that I want to do that much work. What do you think? 
Jenny came last weekend and brought this top which she had pieced for me (I hired her because I was way behind). We set up my machine quilt frame, loaded the quilt and she quilted it in about three hours which included time for multiple new bobbin insertions and fixing a few broken needles. It is not perfect, but it is great and for a quilt that the dogs will get on perfection would be such a waste. I still have to cut the binding and attach it which I will do on the sewing machine. At 100' X100" that is a lot of binding to cut. 
We also got the puzzle finished except for the two missing pieces. Jenny marked the box picture to indicate where they go and we scratched out 1000 and wrote in 998 for the number of pieces. Carl Larsson is one of my favorite painters so I enjoyed the puzzle although it was not easy at all, at all. 
I have been painting and drawing on book pages for the show that is literature based. Loosely based. The other sketch is a painting I might want to do for something else. These little pages will be mounted on paper and then wrapped (cellophane with a cardboard backing) and put in a bin for a cheap piece of original art. About $10 or $12, I think. 

Tomorrow I have to go with Vicki to clean an oven in one of the rental houses. She asked if I had some EZ-Off. Ha! Hahahahaha. No, I don't. 

All is well, 
XOXOXO
Caroline

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Show and Tell

So much to tell you. First of all, the baby robins flew last Saturday. I happened to look up and see one standing on the edge of the nest and saw no other heads. Mom and Dad came by and left. The fledgling teetered on the edge a second then decided to move a little. He inspected the new place, rather like someone daring herself to jump off the high board. After another adjustment and another teeter he took a deep breath and flew away! I saw him leave. I was so glad to be able to say goodbye instead of just noticing that they were all gone!. What a wonder it was.

Today I went to Chattanooga with Vicki, Kay and our new friend Lorraine P today and went to the gallery and saw my paintings.
The one on the left and the bottom one are mine. Above mine is one by my classmate Kathleen. The one on the bottom has broken eggshell (encased in acrylic) on it. See that little line along the bottom of the large egg-shaped form? There are also some on the top right. There was no way to get a glare-free photo. On the green one you can see me in a light top and dark skirt. Haha. 

These are all on canvas. The long one is 36" long, I think, to give you a sense of the sizes. The one on the top is 22" square. The one on the right is a puzzle to me. Not sure what it is but I like it. It seems to be some kind of machine or the door to Hades or something. 



You might remember this one from when it was pink and purple. I am going to try to finish it and submit it for consideration for their next exhibit. 

Meanwhile, back at the ranch... I am still working on this 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle. Sometimes I think that I will never finish it. If I get 10 or 15 pieces placed in a day I feel like I have done a lot!. This one is a challenge! 

So, to take a break, DH and I moved the freezer to here from 

here where it was in the way of access to the shelves and the cabinets. Now I am looking for a little bench or table to put on the wall adjacent to the freezer. Just a little at a time and I hope to have this all done before... well, I hope to have this all done one day. 

I brought in these little pieces today from my studio. On the right are my father's grand parents, Richard Manson Tewell and  Marie BarrĂ© Tewell. In the center an unknown woman whose photo I drew over and on the left some old statues that might be Thai. They are all mounted on pieces of 2"x4" that were scraps.  


I think that they are kinda cool.  

I talked to several gallery people today and got some hints and some new places to try. Tomorrow has to be a studio day in the morning and then Jenny and Sarie are coming. J and I are going to set up the quilt frame and, after a practice quilt, I will quilt the top she has pieced for me for our bedroom. The one I made ten years ago is falling apart. 

All is well, Life is good, 
XOXOXO
Caroline



Thursday, July 10, 2014

The WEEK

This has been a week. My seven-year-old granddaughter has been here for "Chief Camp" and we have been busy. Not that I did so many wonderful things with her - we have just been busy. And Dean has made several trips to Nashville, the latest two(2) today so I had to take Jackson, who can't get the the car without help, to be x-rayed. The x-ray trip was complicated by the fact that J had to be sedated and although I got him out of the car he collapsed in a heap and I couldn't move him any farther. I had to call my brother to help me get him in the house. Living near your sibs is a good thing.

Jackson had surgery on his knee this evening; the traveling vet came by the house to pick him up because I knew that I couldn't get him back in the car. Jackson will be there until he is feeling better and getting around okay. (Here's something funny - the vet had looked at this house and considered buying it about 10 years ago.)

Jenny was coming tonight to take Sarie back home tomorrow but her car is in the shop and the repairs aren't finished yet so unless things change I will get my hair cut in the morning then hit the road to take the girl child home then hurry back to go to a deb party tomorrow evening. My nephew's long time girlfriend is one of this year's debutantes.

I promise pictures a in the next post but tonight I am just too tired. Well, I do have one. When this little bird had held his heavy head up as long as he could he dropped it down and rested it on the edge of the nest. It was just so cute. They NEVER closed their mouths.
My little fledglings are about ready to leave the nest. I will miss them. Thy have feathers now, and they flap their wings and the parents have to take stuff out of the nest to make room for them. Having them just outside the window has been such a treat. 

All is well, 
XOXOXO
Caroline

Friday, July 4, 2014

Happy Fourth!

Happy Independence day to you and yours! It is hard to even imagine what our life would be like as a colony of Great Britian.  I guess by now that would have changed even if it didn't way back in the beginning. I certainly hope that this country can get back on track. The world is changing so much and we need to find the way. 

DH and I  continue to be fascinated by the robins outside the window and spend many minutes several times each day with binoculars, camera and just plain eyes focused on them. We see baby heads stretched out on long necks and with open mouths when mom or dad arrive with food. In fact, they stretch up so high that I am afraid that they will fall out of the nest. The chicks now have fuzzy little beginner feathers on them so mom doesn't have to work so hard to keep them warm.
 Walking in the neighborhood a few days ago I came across a robin's eggshell on the ground. I think that the bird had hatched.  I have come to the conclusion that they must eat the shells most of the time. The shells are very thin and I am sure that the mother birds need the calcium. In fact, we put out other egg  (crushed) at this time of year for birds to eat. But this little shell was just so sweet that I had to bring it home to show you. 
Here is the little shell piece. Robin's egg blue. 

Last night it was cool. Strangely enough it has been cool on many July 4s in my memory. But last night we turned off the a/c and opened the windows that we have been able to get open and turned on that huge attic fan that came with the house. It curtains blew in so far that I thought things in the room might start floating away. This morning (noon, actually) they are blowing again but with just the breeze of the day. That is just what I like about these little linen panels  - watching them be lifted by the breeze. Something about that just calms my spirit. 

I managed, finally, to get my work table in the living room somewhat organized. I like to sit here to work on the computer and to draw, but I have a terrible time keeping it neat. One the other hand, this is my house and my mess and I just have to try to keep it under control. On the other, people have expectations about a living room and this is not one of them. House Beautiful we are not, but that is just what it is. My circus, my monkeys. 

Having said all that, I am thinking of reupholstering or slipcovering. 

Which do you like? 

Can I do both? 

Awaiting your answers, which you will probably have to email me since I can't make the comments work for anyone other than spammers. 

All is well, 
XOXOXO
Caroline