Gardening, Painting and Photographs

I found the perfect spot to plant basil. This year I planted it in an alcove between the garage and house. It gets late afternoon light and none too directly. Consequently, the two plants are plentiful and lush. A verdant abundance of aromatic joy. I will be making pesto and cabrese galore.


I’m still painting. I have done less this summer because there are other things to do. This week I have been down in the dumps because summer is nearing it’s end and a particular malady I am prone to keeps rearing it’s ugly head. Since I’ve been trapped inside I thought I should make use of my time by putting paint on canvas.


It would seem that I have an affinity for calves. Their big doey eyes just reel me in.


I also love ravens. Their sociability and intellect are amazing. I keep trying to paint them.


Owls are the rage too so I tried to paint one. I’m proud of this one too.

Lastly, photographs. I need to do more but this one makes me smile. Yes, it’s my Joe. I’m not a pro at any of these hobbies. I don’t suppose that’s the point though. I derive great pleasure from doing them, a certain amount of peace and contentment. One has to fill the time doing something productive. The state of the world will get you down. You have to find a way to keep sane, to put light and hope in the world. Hopefully, these efforts will radiate to the small part of the world I influence.


I could use a vacation.

We haven’t taken a vacation since our honeymoon in 2012. Granted that was to Europe but my need for the beach is endless and I yearn for a week near the water. I want to take my paint and pencils and just relax with a tasty beverage.

In 2007 I was fortunate enough to travel out of the country for the first time. My dear friends Trish and Tom got married in St. Kitts. It was breathtaking. I didn’t own a camera at the time and so I had to borrow a little digital one. I managed to take a few good pictures but the fact that my photos aren’t perfect doesn’t diminish my cherished memories of that time.

I’ve been trying to paint a landscape based upon a photo I took there. I have a lot of work to do but I think I’m off to a decent start. It’s probably not a good idea to post photos of my work before they’re finished.

St Kitts Turtle Bay

Oh well. Being home alone most of the time and wanting feedback leads me to put myself out there. It’s a thing.

Insomnia and daylight savings … ugh.

My husband and I bought a new mattress. To say that it’s “firm” would be an understatement. It’s more like sleeping on a rock slab. As a result I end up in the guest room sleeping on our old mattress which is a pillow top and feels like sleeping on a cloud. I occasionally will take over-the-counter sleep aids but feel guilty every time since they are reportedly so harmful to your liver, ugh.

Anyway, I couldn’t sleep and lost another hour thanks to Woodrow Wilson and FDR and their effort to create more daylight for wars and what not. Geezsh, really?

So here I set on a Sunday a.m. contemplating stuff. Wishing I had more light to paint with. Which is something I finally got to do yesterday. I am continuing to paint cows. Those big black eyes just call to me for some reason.


She’s a Jersey calf. I feel okay about it. After watching a few more instructional videos I think I definitely need to invest in better quality paint. As with everything else in life, the better your tools the better the outcome. Maybe I should keep painting and use what I have. I’m no Mary Cassatt.

The good news is we are that much closer to spring and the snow here is melting away. Soon I will be paddling in my new kayak and life will be grand.

Have a great Sunday!

Snow and more snow. I thought I moved to the south.

Here in KY (and most of the south and east) we’re snowed in. My distaste for this crap is endless. I want to live on a beach. I can run from a hurricane. Naturally, my hubster is out of town when the snowpocalypse hits us (three times and counting). Last time we got 13 inches. This time over two feet and don’t get me started on the drifts. Since he won’t be home until Friday and the Prius is not a jacked up 4×4 I will have to carve out a place for him to park when he comes home. I guess I’ll get some exercise this week after all. Ugh.


Oh and I found a great way to pass the time … Adult coloring books…


I spent last evening practicing my sketching and admittedly I have a long way to go until I’m even “proficient” I love doing it.

My subjects last night were a pelican and lion?

pelicanlion runs

IMG_0002 IMG_0003 His hind leg is a bit off, huh?

Yeah, I think the pelican is so fierce and thinking … “I would love to eat you.” Actually, both of them seem to have hunger in their eyes.

Today I’m painting another cow. I’m not sure why I find them so interesting. Maybe it’s their big doey eyes and long lashes. If it turns out okay I’ll share it.

Stay warm and safe out there. I’m off to start the shovelling. Ugh.

Yesterday I opened for business…

So, I am offically a freelance marketer. I have two clients. My husband is hiring me to handle all his video editing and a local shredding company has hired me to handle all of their marketing. I have no grand illusions of getting rich doing this but it will certainly be nice to work at my own schedule and pace. My new company is called … Here is my logo.

rmjcreativelogo small

Do you like?

I love ravens and crows.

Some time ago I watched a documentary or heard a news magazine about crows. The story detailed how intelligent and social they are. I figure they are great subject material for a new painter. Birds as a whole are rather simple.

Here is my raven chick. I’m pleased.


He’s sweet and slightly angry. I’ll probably try again and tweak it more but he makes me happy.

A new start. A new day. A new hobby.

I never imagined that I possessed even a modicum of artistic skill or talent. It’s never been a hobby or interest I seriously considered. While being an admirer of painting, sculpting, drawing and what not I never imagined I could be one myself. I’ve never really thought I had talent or skill of any kind. Well, except for cooking and I suppose the only “artistic” endeavor I’ve considered was writing. Although, I grew up playing the piano and had the ability to play by ear. In fact, I remember how dissapointed my instructor was when I quit playing. Yeah, I could kick myself for that decision.

So, over the last few months I realized I needed to do something with my free time (besides watch TV). I needed to use my brain for good. Cooking is all well and good but too much of it makes the backside big and well I have plenty of that. About six months ago I participated in a painting workshop. You know the kind … with wine, food, and paint. The instructor was obnoxious and overbearing but I learned that I might actually enjoy painting and with some instruction could possibly be okay at it. With the encouragment from a new friend I have begun to paint and sketch. Granted I am not great nor will anyone be chomping at the bit to buy any of my work but it is such a nice way to spend time. I find great peace in just spreading the paint on the canvas. Many times I paint over what I start and even that has something satisfying about it.

Mostly I’ve been painting animals like birds, cows, and elephants. I also now spend an inordinate amount of time on Pinterest looking for inspiration. I watch YouTube videos for instruction. It’s a great way to while away the cold wintery days.

Here are a few of my attempts…