Yard Visitors and New Miniature paintings!

Happy Memorial Day!

We’ve enjoyed a couple of interesting encounters with wildlife this past week in our yard, aside from the numerous birds and squirrels that already frequent our yard and deck. Boomer, the little Red Squirrel comes often now, and is such a joy to watch as he stands his ground against the larger Gray Squirrels. I’ve decided that he sounds a lot like a Sandhill Crane when he fusses and chatters at the surrounding squirrels. You can hear his fussing all throughout our house, which proves to be quite amusing! One evening this past week, Wes and I were enjoying our supper on the screen porch, when a beautiful Gray Fox slowly and quietly walked right by the porch down into secret garden. From there he went behind and wound up underneath the Mulberry Tree laden with berries! Once there, he sniffed through the numerous berries lying on the ground, until he found the perfect ones to eat. He did this for quite some time, while Wes and I, full of excitement and wonder, sat very quietly and still and watched this precious and beautiful visitor! He slipped away as quietly and quickly as he came, and was soon out of sight. Although I myself, love eating . . . okay, pigging out on the delicious Mulberries, I also love sharing them with all of my critter friends!  We were delighted to enjoy seeing another Gray Fox while at our neighbors, Jim and Uschi’s house last evening, eating supper. How great was that, and this time I was able to get a couple of nice photos, of which I’m sure one will become a future miniature painting!

During the past week, we also enjoyed a visit from artist friend Carol Andre and her husband Robert. After having supper together at our Pizza Hut, they along with friends, Catherine and Kent, came to our house afterward to enjoy a bit of dessert while sitting on the back deck, relaxing and visiting. A couple of hours passed, filled with laughter and conversation, and the time had come for all to leave. Mere minutes after returning inside, we heard a small crash on the back deck. Thinking it was Petunia, the Possum, or Bandit, the Raccoon, I quickly turned on the porch light and stepped outside, pulling the door closed behind me. All of a sudden I found myself three foot from a Black Bear, and from the look on his face, I think we were both completely surprised!! I very quickly backed into the house, closing the door behind me, and announced “That is not Bandit . . . it’s Bear!” The bear had already begun descending the steps, and excitement broke out as Wes and Kent quickly went out the door chasing and clapping after it until it crossed the street, going back into the woods on the other side. They did this for its safety, as this is what our other neighbors had been told to do by the local bear rehab center, to keep them from wanting to return to residential areas. I must admit however, that it was an amazing encounter for me, one that I will always remember and treasure!!

Me, Catherine, Wes, Bob, Carol and Kent’s arm  🙂

A wonderful example of nature’s camouflage at it’s best!  Can you find the moth? . . .  it’s on the right side of the dead blossom.  Isn’t it amazing!  Wes plans on painting a miniature of this.

Fresh off the easel: I finished my miniature painting of a Polar Bear that will be available for purchase at the National Museum of Wildlife art in Jackson Hole, WY, at their Western Visions Miniatures & More show, later this year. This miniature expresses a strong concern that I, as well as many of us hold for the natural world, with the man-created threats it faces, such as global warming, thus the title, “Icon of and Uncertain Future”. Wes finished two miniature paintings this past week. The first “Trumpet Duet”, was painted from a photo taken during one of our trips to Yellowstone. His second miniature, “Kermit’s Barn in Winter”, is of one of the beautiful barns that remains in Cades Cove. Kermit was the last resident to live in Cades Cove, who passed away several years ago now.

“Collect the future’s history today, while it is still affordable.”

"Icon of an Uncertain Future" by Rachelle, is 2 1/2 x 3 1/2.
"Trumpet Duet" by Wes, is 2 3/4 x 2 3/4.
"Kermit's Barn in Winter" by Wes, 2 1/2 x 3 1/2.

Currently on the easel:
I’m working on a miniature painting of a beautiful Nautilus for an upcoming show “Art of the Dive”, curated by Dr. David J. Wagner. Wes is painting on a miniature of several Pelicans on the side of an island cliff that we photographed during our recent trip to the Sea of Cortez.

I wish to give a personal thank you to the many Veterans that have served or are serving our country and especially to those who gave their lives for the rest of us! Wes and I  will be enjoying Memorial Day at a BBQ for our entire neighborhood! I hope you enjoy a wonderful one as well! If you know a veteran, give him or her, a great big thank you and a hug!

Until next time ~ Rachelle 🙂


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