Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Nearly Ready to Head Out


We are nearly all packed and ready to head out for rainy California.  Wouldn’t you know all of last week was sunny and nice then when we are finally ready to head back it pours buckets.  We just hope Donner Pass is not too snowy. 

Most people have not got a clue what my hubby has had to go through this month to get this place cleared out.  But I can give you a small example.  See this relatively small yellow plate of metal he is lifting with the back hoe???  It weighs 1500 lbs. It doesn’t look like much but it is part of a huge gantry machine. 


You can see more of the parts already inside the container, they are also yellow and equally as heavy.


Without the loan of the backhoe and loader by generous neighbors getting all this done in time would’ve been impossible. 

The container ended up being so heavy the trailer hitch bent the bed of our truck.  It will need to be replaced. 

With the equipment he was able to cut a level spot next to the other container and around it so he can get into the doors on the back side. 


Look at this monster, those tires are taller than me.   He did enjoy getting to use these bad boys, it was like a boy with his Tonkas.


Backing it in.


It took a full ten hours to get this moved and into place, I won’t bore you with the logistics but just believe me when I say this was not an easy task. That was just moving it into place, loading it took all week long.

It is so heavy on the left side, where the machine sets, that it sunk that huge beam into the dirt until you can not see it. Actually there are two beams under it. 


This is going to be an eye catcher going down the Hwy on our drive home.  This is an airplane mold.  We had no room in the containers for it and could not swing purchasing another so home with us it goes.  Oh yea, the neighbors are going to love this sitting in our front yard.


Another fun sunrise..a lovely mist was hovering over town.


I have been working on a new website between making sure Tonka man keeps fed and what little bit of packing I needed to do.  I cannot help much outside so I have been trying to keep busy.  I have needed to find a new platform for my website for quite awhile but was too busy to sink myself into learning a new one so this was a good time to give it a whirl.  So far, so good but it is in its infancy, we shall see how easy it is when I have to start loading up photos of products. 

I need to go see if he is ready to load up these chairs. Once we do that I will have to sit on the floor or our air mattress. Hmm, I wonder if he can do that in the morning just before we leave.  At least I hope we can get out of here in the morning, it will be dark soon and there is still a lot he has to do. 

  Later all…


Friday, November 23, 2012

Friday Morning Sunrise


The skies were gorgeous this morning.  The high clouds were fairly glowing as the sun rose. 


My dad loved this view.  You never tire of seeing it in the morning.  The sunsets can be just as spectacular.


The coyotes where howling last night. That is rather an unsettling sound but not as creepy as when the wolves howl.


I have not heard any elk bugling this time.   It may be too late in the season for them to be doing that.  The first time I heard it when we once lived here it took me a good long while to figure out what it was.


I hope you enjoy the sunrise as much as I did.  Now I am off to go get another air mattress.  My sister was mistaken, hers does have a leak and I end up sunk by morning.  I have to wrestle out each morning. Smile

Don’t you know that is a sight to see!


Thursday, November 22, 2012

Today was Sunny and Bright

Our days have been spent packing and cleaning.  Though David has worked and worked his ever lovin’ tail off there is still so much to do. 

He had to give away most of what we had planned to auction off this coming Spring as there was just not enough time to get it moved so that was disappointing for many reasons.

The weather has been rain most of the week but today was fine and sunny.  I took my camera out to try to get photos of the snowy owls in the back of the barn but they were absent today.  When I first saw them flying away yesterday I was amazed at how huge they were and how beautiful. 

Watching the sun rise over the mountain this morning was a visual treat. 


The vantage point on this hill is splendid.  You can see snow capped mountains and the valley below, roaming cattle, airplanes coming in for a landing at the small local airport, and deer bounding thru the tall grass.


The freshly tilled field is quite a contrast to the neighboring fields covered in golden grasses. The small blue buildings in the distance is the airport hangars. 


Though this trip has been stressful we still stop to enjoy the beauty around us.  I went into the greenhouse to check and see if there was anything I had left behind in there and spotted this guy on the window.  Being it was 84 lovely degrees in the greenhouse he must’ve decided it was a better place to be than outside at 40 degrees.


Can you see him?  It is a Praying Mantis.

I had worked on my website some but then the software crashed on me and did not save my changes.  That is so frustrating that I gave up for a day or so.  I should tackle it again soon. 

enjoy your evening all…


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Rainy Day in Idaho

Have you missed me?   Last week I was busy painting and working then I took off Sunday early for Idaho to join my husband for the week. 

The drive was uneventful and lovely.  Going over I-80 was a breeze, very little traffic and only a bit of snow coming over the crest. 

Nevada had amazing views.  The tops of the mountains looked as if they had been turn upside down and dipped in sparkling sugar, the clouds hovered just around the tops but was translucent enough you could still see the  snow. 

The rainbows were huge and so bright in areas were the sun was breaking thru.  Hundreds of deer were grazing in freshly mown hayfields, not the least bit of concern for the cars speeding past.  I know, you wish I had taken the time to photograph some of these scenes but I was in too much of a hurry to get to my destination.

This is the view from our front windows this morning.  A misty morning nearly obscuring the hills in the distance.


One of the nice things about this house is even on dark dreary, rainy days it is light inside. 


With a blazing fire in the woodstove it is also cozy.


I mentioned that last week I had been painting.  I have been practicing this new (to me) style and I can tell you it has been so frustrating at times.  It is hard to press on when you can’t seem to get the results you want even though you know it will take painting hundreds of flowers to get there.

Here is my first attempt at the simple flowers (not so simple in truth) and even these did not come out yet. They are a far cry from what they should be.


The roses are even worse. They are the sorriest little blobs.  But as I watched the videos and tried,and tried again I started to do a little better, figuring out little things that I was doing wrong.


One is I was using too much pressure, a light, light touch is all that is needed sometimes so that the paint does not blend too much and become muddy. 


Another is consistency of paint.  That is a tough one as no one can really explain it, you just have to learn it by trial and error and by painting flowers over and over and over.

This is going to be a long process. I don’t have a lot of extra time to just sit and paint without it paying so I will give myself some latitude and try to just enjoy learning something new without caving in to frustration and giving up.

So now that you see it is hard for me to get good results when first learning to paint, it should encourage you to continue to practice too, even if at first you think you will never get there.

I have tried to make my Learn to Paint series as easy as possible for you and I will continue with more lessons as soon as life is a bit calmer.  

Learn to Paint


Today I think I shall work on my website, it has been woefully in need of updating and cleaning up for a long time. A pleasant chore on a rainy wet day.

Until next time…


Saturday, November 10, 2012

Welcome to a Snowy Day

Maybe you enjoy the snow and perhaps you do not.  Though I am not a big fan of snow (it gets in my way) I can appreciate it for its merits.


It is lovely to look at when fresh and makes for a brighter day, the reflection of light off all the white dispels a bit of the dreariness of winter. (even though it is not technically winter yet)


The apple tree next door draws these garden eating rascals.


 They brazenly come down out of the forest to forage for the fallen ripe fruit. They don’t even bother to come to my yard this morning, it is already eaten to a nub and what is left is fully covered with snow.


All five of them seem to be quite stout, probably all the delicious flowers and green tomatoes they ate in my garden through the Fall.


The road has a nasty little patch of ice on it and they had to gingerly pick their way back across.


I tried to get a good photos of the baby but he was too skittish. 


I figured the lake would make for some pretty shots so I hopped in my Burb and trucked on down there though I had not even finished my first cup of coffee. 


The scenery seems very monochromatic in the early morning light.


The resident geese.


They ran into the water as I tried to get a closer shot.


Many of the trees still bear their fall foliage.  I think after the frigid temps of this storm they will drop them swiftly.

The cedar, sugar pines and firs all look almost festive.


Now that I have regaled you with a look at my morning I need to get to work.  I have spent the past couple of days cooking up a storm and getting things in order so I can spend a few days just painting. 

I have my fridge full of ready made healthy meals that I can grab and eat with not having to worry about stopping to prepare something.  Just reheat.

Now to get to painting.  Of course I shall share, whether I like them or not.



Thursday, November 8, 2012

Apples and Pear Paintings


I have mentioned I am learning a new painting technique.  I practiced first on this hapless pear.  My! but it needs more work, especially in the leaves. 

The artist acrylics blended with medium to mimic oils is a whole new ball game for me. And the technique entails much more tapping and blending rather than stroking on the paint. 


By the time I finished the apples I was getting a better feel for it.

I will do a third one, maybe some cherries or other intensely colored fruit, then they can be sold as a set on my website.

This lovely machine is an industrial tailoring machine that was the pride and joy of my paternal Grandmother.  Grandma Jo (short for Josephine)loved this hearty workhorse and she upholstered a bounty of sofas and chairs with it.  She also sewed countless shorts and tops for children that she sold at the flea market to make ends meet along with the sets she made for her grandchildren. 


It has been in storage and I have finally gotten it brought into the house.  Now to make it pretty again.  I know it was working when we removed it from Grandma’s house but that was quite a few years ago.  I have not been brave enough to plug it in.  I learned to upholster on this machine, it sews beautifully when running properly.  

I am rather liking it in the living room but I am not sure my husband will.  We have a small home and every space needs to pull double duty.  Having something for mostly show is not practical and yet I just may push this up under the window after removing the bench you see behind it and just enjoy it as eye candy for awhile.  

The trick will be gussying this baby up.  And/or getting it upstairs to the sewing/guest room, it is very heavy.  I two man job for sure! I am thinking of a nice gray for the metal base and a warm white for the top…??? Or would the black of the sewing machine be to stark against that?  Decisions, decisions.
I have one more Japanese Maple shot for you from the other day.


The rain has started and the cold has arrived.  It felt frigid when I ran to the Post Office earlier this afternoon.  The chill bit right through my jeans.  

So I came on home and started cooking and the spicy sweet aroma of delicious pumpkin bars is wafting into my office as we speak.  Time to see if they are ready for their scrumptious cream cheese frosting.

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