Miniature Paintings in Progress

“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass on a summer day listening to the murmur of water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is hardly a waste of time.”   

~John Lubbock

Although it still may not feel like it in most places, alas summer is slowly beginning the process of slipping into the past, and the crisp, cool air, along with the delightful breezes it brings, of autumn will soon find its way here! The skies already appear more blue, and the mornings feel much cooler, making time spent outdoors so much more enjoyable! Things have been pretty quiet here at the home front, other than a couple of game nights with friends, which were hosted here. So, Wes and I have been getting to enjoy a daily bike ride or walk, with several of them starting with a visit to see Cocoa, my horse friend. He now has his own bag of carrots in our fridge, which he seemed most impressed with when told about the arrangement. As soon as he sees me coming, he makes a royal show of prancing about, supplemented with bursts of running gallantly, and he beats me to the fence most times, and patiently . . . well kind of anyway . . . waits for me to hurry up and get there! He then greets me with “PPbbtts” and low rumbles, which of course I reply to, and tell him what a handsome boy he is! Then it’s time to get to the real business end of this meeting, with the feeding of the carrots and gentle scratching along the soft velvety nose, up to the forehead, along the rippled muscles of the neck and ending up on his strong withers. During this ritual, he sometimes stands very quietly, almost as if mesmerized, unless he thinks there hasn’t been a sufficient offering of carrots, at which time I or Wes pick fresh grass for him, as it always tastes better from the other side of the fence . . .  but of course!

Here at the house, I’ve been quite busy, keeping five Carolina Wrens, all members of Peedeepeeps family, happily and sufficiently fed with nut crunchies. I was thrilled one day this past week, when one of the babies ate from my hand for the first time! Baby Hops, the precious one with a hurt leg, is actually doing much better and getting around very well! His trust in me is also growing, as he comes and eats from his dish on the table with me very close by. Sweetly, during one such visit this past week, he showed complete trust in me, while turning his back towards me, as he spread out his wing and tail feathers, while sunning on the deck handrail. He then proceeded to hop onto a nearby, willowy limb of the trumpet vine and drink the wee drops of moisture gathered on the dark green leaves, that remained from the morning dew. What a lovely ritual to watch, as a trusted friend close by!

Most of my feathered friends are currently in the midst of their molting process, creating a most unusual looking collection of visitors! There’s a bald headed Blue Jay, whom I call “Eagle” to his face, so as not to make him feel shamed by his current feather situation, or lack thereof. There are also a couple of other Jays, with partly missing head feathers, as well as a couple of male Cardinals sporting the same look. The doves seem to always appear seamless, as if they’ve just been smoothed down and kept very well manicured. Then there are the Peedeepeep babies, who are all in the process of going from their baby feathers, to their adult bird feathers, thus leaving them looking most untidy. Nevertheless, I always tell them how beautiful they are, so as to keep their confidence levels up! Scarlett and Chippy, the Chipmunks, also visit constantly, eating the offered treats and taking some for the road, so as to stock up for the onslaught of winter. During one such gathering this past week, Scarlett ate and collected from the large feeder at my feet while I was sitting in my rocking chair. This, I thought was most delightful! The Hummingbirds continue to rage their wars over the various feeders and blooms throughout the gardens, even though there’s more than enough for everyone! I do say that I’m particularly thankful that these tiny warriors aren’t the size of Sandhill Cranes, or else we’d all be in trouble!! Oh, how I do love them though, and they never cease to amaze me in their miniature ways!

Fresh off the easel: I’m putting the finishing touches on my portrait commission of “Sweet Sampson”, and have had so much fun painting this precious little guy! This week I’m continuing also to paint on my miniature, “Admiring The Connoisseur” and am now working with the last details in the painting. The most enjoyable part was painting the Jackson Pollock painting, although it was more difficult than one might imagine! Wes is currently painting on a miniature of an Orchard Oriole in the midst of thickly hanging palm leaves, which we photographed during our visit to the Sea of Cortez in San Carlos, Mexico last spring.

My commission of "Sweet Sampson" in the final stages.
My miniature "Admiring The Connoisseur" which I'm still currently working on.
Wes' miniature "Tropical Orange" in progress.

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~ Our thoughts and prayers are with our friends and the numerous others who have suffered or are suffering from Hurricane Irene.

Until next time ~ Rachelle 🙂


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