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Monica's bulldogHand made card – painting of a bulldog puppy

The asthmatic bronchitis is gone and I can breathe easily again.  What a relief. Breathing is important.

In addition to not being able to breathe I have not been sleeping.  Anyone who knows me will not believe this.  I can always sleep.  I can sleep early, I can sleep often.  I can sleep long and hard.  I can sleep in the daytime and the nighttime. There has never been a time when I could not sleep.

Until now.

Not only can I not fall asleep and am up all night,  but if I am lucky enough to fall asleep I wake up at 3:oo am and walk around the apartment or watch horrible 3:00 am TV infomercials.

As I post this I am drinking Chamomile tea. I was told it was calming and could help one sleep.  We’ll see.

I did have some time to paint a birthday card for my niece.  She’s a big fan of bulldogs.  Since I can’t get her the real thing I found some cute bulldog puppies on-line and painted one of them.  Happy Birthday Monica!

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red tulips wip 11-30-2014Red Tulips WIP watercolor on 1/2 sheet of 140# coldpress Arches

I hope everyone who celebrates had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  And if you read the name of this post you might be thinking “that smell” is turkey, gravy, stuffing or sweet potatoes. It’s not. I am referring to the smell of my dog’s paws.  They smell like corn chips. I had always noticed it but I recently read this article in the “Dog-ington Post” which says that smell is bacteria and yeast. Oh great.

The Husband and I were thrilled that we were able to bring along our pooch to the Thanksgiving festivities this year.   Luckily no one complained about her smell since she went to the doggie spa the day before and smelled like a nice, clean dog.   I am very thankful to have such a wonderful rescue dog. (I am the person on Thanksgiving who wants to watch the dog show instead of football.   I was out-voted.)

I’m also very thankful for all of you who read my blog.  Thank you so much for your comments.  They always make my day.   🙂

Kaiya and a ballMy dog

paws

My dog’s Frito smelling paw

The painting above is a work in progress of red tulips I had purchased & photographed in the spring. I’m working on painting more loosely and saving more of the whites of the paper.   A little more to go and then I’m done.

Finally, in keeping with the dog theme, here’s the thought for the day:

Karma

 

In the spirit of being “green” for Christmas, and since I haven’t done another card, and since this one still makes me laugh and since last year’s post is still valid.  Here it is again. Reuse, reduce, recycle!

Merry Christmas, Happy Festivus, Happy Chanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, Merry Winter Solstice and may we all be happy, healthy and extraordinarily creative in the new year.  And of course may there be peace in 2011.

What to do with my hand-made paper from last weekend?

Make a book.  Kind of appropriate since the paper was made from old library catalog cards.

The bookmaking weekend (not the kind of bookmaking that involves illegal activities) started off with the barfing dog knocking me over with her svelte 98 lb body.  She was just so happy to be in the country with her cousin Gus the golden retriever that she ran right into me knocking me into the side of my sister’s house.   I immediately self medicated.

This book was made using about 7 pieces of the hand-made paper folded in half and attached using some binding strips cut from the paper and then sewing into each folded piece (signature).

Now the question is, what do I do with my book? I don’t think the paper is good for watercolor.  Maybe for journaling? I can write down all the random stuff I think about.  Like why when someone shows you a picture on their phone, it’s not just one picture.   It the modern equivalent of someone taking out their wallet to show you a picture of their kid (dog, cat, car) and as their wallet opens,  a 7 foot plastic accordion of photos falls out.  You know you’re gonna be there a long time.

Why can’t I get enough chocolate?

Why is everyone reading “The girl with the dragon tattoo?”

A friend of my sister’s was showing me his accordion of photos on his Blackberry when he got to a photo he called “girl wearing totally inappropriate clothing for her body type”.  I asked if that was Stieg Larsson’s 4th book.   We laughed and laughed.

Kaiya – 5 years old – May 2010

When I moved into my apartment it was located in a “transitional” neighborhood.  There was a corner bodega with bullet proof glass that did a brisk drug business.  Empty lots dotted local blocks.   And shady looking kids hung out on the corner.  It’s  NOW a very desirable location.

If there was any doubt at all that my neighborhood has experienced full-out gentrification (actually, there was no doubt; it happened years ago), this latest experience sealed the deal.

Time: Evening dog walk (approximately 9:45 pm)

Place: 4th Ave in front of McDonald’s

Situation: A man in a suit is complaining to two police officers that he walked up to the McDonald’s drive through window and the man wouldn’t sell him two cheeseburgers.  AND THEN, apparently the McDonald’s’ employee said something like “you people”  which caused Mr. Suit to feel he was being discriminated against.

Charlie and I were extremely amused by the whole exchange but when a SECOND police car came screaming down 4th Ave., lights and sirens blaring, made a U-turn and pulled up on the sidewalk in front of Mickey D’s  I looked at Charlie and said “THIS is the biggest thing happening in the 78 precinct tonight?”

Apparently it was.

Since Mr. whiny suit wearing yuppie didn’t have a license plate nailed to his ass and the drive-through window guy didn’t want to serve him, Mr. wswy CALLED THE POLICE?  Really?  The police?   And they showed up at the scene of “the crime”.  We were amused for days.  I would have given the employee a frosty glare and gone home.   Damn entitled yuppies.

Another way to tell your neighborhood is too gentrified?  When your dog’s bed looks more comfortable than yours. Here is a sketch of Kaiya, our 5-year-old Akita/Shepherd/Lab(?) rescue on her new bed which is “paprika” and black. Paprika? You bet!  That’s what the catalog said and I’m sticking to it!   She’s about 95 lbs, and is a great dog, is very loving, except when those really yappy dogs start with her (I’m talking to YOU, Mango)  or when she meets another Alpha female.  Oy!

Could be worse.  I could be trying to get two cheeseburgers from the drive-thru at  Micky D’s without a car!

Here is another picture of my 100 lb barfing dog.  Her name is Kaiya and she’s 4 1/2 years old.  She hates the car.  What dog hates the car? Apparently this dog hates the car.   I took this picture of her after we drove up to Putnam County. She had already barfed in the car.  Twice.

I hate the car  10-18-09

I am excited to say that my crab apple painting got into the Putnam County Arts Council Juried Show.

http://www.putnamartscouncil.com/PACGallery.htm#FineArtsShow

Lest you forgot, here’s the picture again. This time framed and hanging in the gallery.  (Not the greatest picture as I took it with my phone.)

Crab Apples - Putnam County Arts Council 10-09

Still don’t remember?  Here it is unframed, but finished:

crab apples - finished 8-9-09

If you’re in Putnam County, please stop by and see the show.  My sister has a piece in it too.   A lovely handmade book.  It’s made out of old library cards. She made paper from the shredded cards and then made a book out of the paper.  The cover is made from actual library cards.  How cool is that?  It’s called “Pulp from Fiction” and here it is:

Pulp From Fiction #1

Wow,  what a week this will be.  Today is the winter solstice!  And tonight starts the eight nights of  Hanukkah.  December 23rd is Festivus (for the rest of us).  I particularly like the “airing of grievances”.  Then of course there’s Christmas, followed by Kwanzaa.  I will celebrate them all.  Why not!

waves-in-st-croix-12-21-08-finished

Since it’s the first day of winter as well, I thought it would be best to finish the St. Croix beach scene.  It’s been treacherous out there.  My poor sister and her family got stuck in traffic trying to get to the airport to fly to Alaska and missed the flight.  The flight was actually ON TIME.  Never, in the history of JFK, has a flight been on time during a snowstorm, but this one was!!!  Go figure.  But they all made to safely to Alaska and I have their dog.  I am holding him for ransom.   I haven’t decided yet what I will ask for his safe return, but I’m working on it. So with my dog and my sister’s dog, I have about 170 lbs of dog in my 950 square foot apartment.   That’s about 5 1/2 lbs per square foot.  And the aroma of wet dog fills the air when we all come back in after a walk in the snow and sleet and rain.  Are you sure you want to visit Jim?

Whatever holiday you celebrate, may it be a joyous one.  I have to go dry off wet dogs.

Image size is approx 19″ x 12 1/2 ” on arches watercolor paper 22″ x 15″

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