Most Adorable Baby Squirrels Ever

bunny photo by rachelle siegrist

I have so enjoyed my breakfasts in the garden every morning this past week! I’m always joined by numerous feathered and furry friends, who bring so much entertainment with their hilarious antics! My bunny is so tame, that she comes right up when she sees me walk into the garden, and patiently waits for me to put out the seeds that she absolutely loves. Within minutes there are several squirrels and at least two or more chipmunks running around eating. Chippy the chipmunk has come so close to jumping up into my lap, and I expect it will happen any morning!

chipmunk photo rachelle siegrist

At one point I had several squirrels by my feet, and the hummingbird came up right beside me to drink from one of the beautiful purple Hosta blossoms next to my head, and of course I was in heaven! I know, it’s truly a case of “conditional love” but that’s okay, I’m more than happy to continue passing out the treats to keep all my critter friends hanging around!

We eat our other meals on our screen porch which looks out over “secret garden” where we feed our critter friends, and during supper last evening, the bunny walked up and started eating off of the little blue picnic table. And if that wasn’t cute enough, she then put her front paws up on the table, while continuing to eat, and it was totally adorable! I’m so sorry that I didn’t have the camera with me, and didn’t get a photo for you. Maybe I’ll be able to this next week! 

adorable animal photo

Okay . . . get ready to “Ooo” and “Aww” while watching this precious video of my two adorable baby squirrels, which I promised to make for you a couple of months ago. So here it is as promised… Enjoy!

As some of you know, Wes and I are working towards selling and moving soon. We have been significantly downsizing for nearly two years now, and have already sold about two-thirds of our furniture and other stuff. That being said, we are now currently having a moving sale on our artwork. So if you would like to be sent the link for this wonderful opportunity to own one of our paintings, or add to your current collection, please email us or comment below.

Subscribers to our monthly email newsletters, are also getting these notifications, and we’re sending out a BIG heartfelt “Thank You” to our collectors and friends who are already enjoying their “Christmas in July” artwork, purchased through this sale!


See our miniatures in person this week

 Exquisite Miniatures is currently at the beautiful Elliott Museum located in Stuart, FL 

We are delighted to have our history-making tour on display in this beautiful museum! So if you’re in, or are going to be in the area, plan a visit to see over 60 of our miniature paintings in person, grab a magnifying glass and experience the “wow factor!” And if you fall in love with one . . . well, it can be yours forever, as all paintings in the exhibition are available.

We still have paintings available through these miniature shows listed, so visit their websites linked below to see what can still be yours!

Masterpieces in Miniature
 May 2021: Picture This Gallery, Alberta, Canada

To see our available miniature paintings, visit our website:

Would you like to commission us? If so, contact us by Email

Until Next Time ~ Rachelle

Who left the freezer door open?

The kids eat up before the cold and snow comes!

Brrrrrrrrr . . . . . . . who left the freezer door open? So much for the mild and delightful temperatures we were enjoying Thanksgiving week, they’re long gone now, and “Baby its cold outside”!! And quite appropriately that very song is playing on the radio at present! A couple of inches of snow fell this afternoon and they’re calling for more to fall during the night, and it certainly has revved up the appetites of all of my feathered friends. Even little Scarlet the chipmunk came out of hibernation today to store up on the sweet feed. And speaking of sweet feed, it has really grown on everyone, and lots of them are enjoying it now, from the Juncos to the Doves! Yesterday at one point, there were at least 8 to 10 Doves on the back porch eating, or trying to get close enough to grab a little too. Once Dovecakes even snuggled down, fluffed up and took a nap while laying in the dish of feed after obviously eating to her heart’s content!

Dovecakes and a few friends enjoys the sweet feed.

After eating, most of the time the doves will all casually walk over to the bird bath and enjoy drinking several big gulps of the fresh water. At one such time this past week, I happened to look out the window, and there were 6 Doves wading in the birdbath and getting drinks! I had just filled it with nice warm water, so the steam was rising from it. Who knows, perhaps they thought it was Siegrist hot springs! P.W., the beautiful Pine Warbler is still coming daily and chirps to me when he sees me out refilling the treat piles. The best part is that he answers, when I give his call to him, and comes down close in hopes to be the first one there for the feast! This afternoon after I had just put out all new food, there were over 50 birds on the rails eating. Peedeepeeps, the Carolina Wren, came and while looking at the mass of confusion, was trying to find a space where he could join in, and it looked like he was thinking to himself, “Good grief . . . this is absolutely ridiculous . . . where did all of these pigs come from!” I couldn’t help but chuckle as I watched him try to jockey into a strategic position!

P.W. scopes out the treat piles below!

Friday of this past week, our dear artist friend, Tricia, came and spent most of the day with us. We enjoyed a fun and delicious lunch consisting of homemade sweet potato bisque, jalapeno cheesy cornbread, and individual chocolate lava cakes with a thin piece of red velvet with cream cheese frosting for dessert. After filling our tummies we enjoyed looking through the new book, “Modern Masters of Miniature Art in America” together. We then showed Tricia the DVD of our trip out to CA for the 50th SAA show and our wonderful visits to Sequoia and Yosemite. Since she had spent 3 months in Yosemite one summer, she really enjoyed “visiting” there again. There was still some time left, so off to the studio we all went to get in a bit of painting time. The day too quickly came to an end and it was time for Tricia to go home. Wes and I then enjoyed a brisk walk down to Pizza Hut where we enjoyed a yummy, hot pizza! Although the walk home was a bit on the cold side, it was beautiful with the faint light of the moon highlighting the surrounding mountain ranges and the one field that we pass on the journey home, with a beautiful old barn in it.

Tricia, me and Wes enjoy our time together at lunch.

Last evening we enjoyed attending one of our neighborhood Christmas parties. We were some of the first ones to arrive, so thankfully that gave plenty of time for me to pet and love on our neighbor’s precious little Yorkie, Lulu, that I dearly love! She was so adorable and dressed to kill, in her little Mrs. Claus outfit! The evening started off with enjoying some edible goodies that everyone had brought, followed by games and a Dirty Santa gift exchange. Happily, one of our sweet neighbors switched gifts with me and I came home with chocolate, so of course I was quite happy!

Lulu and I dressed in the holiday spirit, while Lulu watches for Santa to come.

Lulu dressed in her holiday attire.

Fresh off the easel; we’re still currently working on several different commissions, and shown below, is one by Wes. I’m also sharing our latest progress on the old fort, and the Bobcat that I finished this past week.

2 1/2 x 3 1/2 inches.

The old fort in progress.

The Bobcat finished, is 3 x 4 inches.

Well, since Christmas is just around the corner, I thought you might be starting to gather recipes, so I wanted to share one of my absolute favorites with you. It’s one of mine that I came up with by using parts of different recipes and experimenting a little. It’s delicious and I think you will really enjoy it!

The Best Carrot Soufflé You’ll Ever Eat
2 lbs carrots chopped
1 medium sweet potato peeled and chopped
2 Tbsp butter
1/3 Cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 Cup sugar (splenda, honey, or other sweetener)
3 Tbsp flour (I use white whole wheat)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
3 Tbsp orange juice mixed
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
Cook carrots and sweet potato until tender, for 15 minutes. Drain and pour into a food processor. Add the remaining ingredients and process 30 seconds to 1 minute. Pour mixture into a greased, 2 QT baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 Degrees. Top with 1/4 to 1/3 cup of chopped walnuts.

Keep warm!

Until next time ~ Rachelle  🙂

Here comes the snow and the critters . . .

Mr. Goldfinch says . . . "Got snow?"

My apology for not posting last week, but alas it had been very quiet around here. This week however, has been much more exciting with our first snow, albeit a very little snow, and the return of lots of my precious birdies, including P.W., the gorgeous little Pine Warbler that graced us with his beauty and presence last year. I’m simply thrilled that he has returned to me! He along with the rest of the kids have been enjoying lots of seed and nut treats that I put out several times throughout the day. Peedeepeeps, my Carolina Wren, continues to sit outside the studio window and let me know in a very loud scolding chatter when the nut crunchies are all gone. So to keep him happy I go out and before I can hardly get any out, he’s right there with me eating the first fresh crunchies! Very spoiled they are, and with the temps we’ve had the past couple of days, I sing to them “The Things “I” do for Love”.  🙂

Handsome P.W. enjoying his peanut crunchies.

Mr. Cardinal and peedeepeeps enjoying the peanut crunchies.

One of the gifts on my wish list was a big bag of scratch feed, so off we went this past week, to Tractor Supply to get one. Now, this store is one of my favorites, as I dearly love the fresh, strong smell of sweet feed that hits you square in the face as soon as you walk into the front door! It’s also where Wes and I buy our favorite brand of blue jeans, Wranglers, and I love to look at all of the John Deere things as well. After loading my bag of scratch feed, that I was told would be best, and a big bag of sunflower seeds into the buggy, we headed for home. I was so excited as I just knew my Doves were going to love this Christmas treat! Well, when we returned home and opened the bag, I soon discovered that it wasn’t quite what I was after, like the kind we use to feed our Quails in FL. So with hopeful expectations anyway, I filled a big flat dish with some and placed it on the back deck. At first the squirrels were actually running away from it after tiptoeing up to it and giving it a sniff!! I thought to myself that this surely couldn’t be a good sign, since if the squirrels won’t eat it, probably nobody will . . . sigh. But alas it’s amazing what a bit of ground up pecans and a few sunflowers added into the mixture will do, and after that slowly but surely, it’s growing on them and it’s slowly disappearing. I’m happy to say however, that little Scarlet, the chipmunk, loves it and can pack it away quickly in her chubby little cheeks. So I’ve made Scarlet happy for Christmas anyway!  Regardless, at this rate, the bag should be completely empty by the year 2020!!

Scarlet says, "Hey, who you callin' chubby cheeks?"

As usual the squirrels continue to eat us out of house and home and are starting to take on the appearance of very hairy little Sumu wrestlers!! Petunia the Possum continues to come nightly and eats whatever is left and what extra treats I may have put out. Moreover,  I was told yesterday that she is enjoying yum yums at one of the neighbor’s house nightly, as well. This may explain her,too, looking like she is planning to join the squirrels in her own Sumu category!!  . . . . At least they all go to sleep with full, happy tummies.

Chester "stuffed" into his warm, goodie filled feeder.

Inside the house, Christmas has come and we’ve been enjoying the Christmas tree once again. We’ve also been doing a lot of painting and enjoyed eating out with friends a couple of times this past week.

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Fresh off the easel;
we’re currently working on several different commissions, so I’m sharing two of them with you that are getting close to being completed.

Rachelle's commission in progress, a miniature painting of a Bobcat.

Our other commission in progress, a painting of an old Roman fort.

Well, I hope that you’re keeping warm and are enjoying the Christmas season thus far!

Until next time ~ Rachelle  🙂