Sunday, January 26, 2014

Olivia Wild

 This is Olivia Wilde. A beautiful gal, for sure:

But this post is about another beautiful gal: "Olivia Wild," no "e" at the end, formerly known as "Adventure Cat":

In the past nine weeks, we have had a great time getting to know her, and to watch her interact with our three pugs:

And strike silly poses:

And check out what's tasty on the kitchen counters:

We've noticed she gravitates to places that show off her beauty, especially if there are flowers nearby:

She is very fond of flowers:

She has joined us for afternoon tea:

And for snuggles on the sofa:

 And for snuggles, in general:

And now, Miss Olivia Wild, it's time for your next adventure. You are moving from our house to your Forever Home, with Lovely Daughter #1. You've come a long way since we first set eyes on you, when you were a hungry, feral thing:

Who was very, very tiny:

And had kinda stumpy, short legs:

Best of luck in your Forever Home, beautiful girl, and may you live long and prosper:

And don't forget us--your first, foster home.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Baby Bulldog

My local jeweler is a great guy. He repairs watches, re-sets stones, and offers a beautiful array of jewelry for sale. Lately I've been dropping by his shop a lot.

But I'm not there to drool over diamonds or ooh over opals.


I'm there to visit this precious pupster:

This is "Stella," a three-month-old English Bulldog. She comes every day to the shop and hangs out with her daddy even while he's helping customers:

Her fur is softer than silk. She feels like a warm ball of bread dough. Her cuteness level is off the charts:

And she rocks some adorable clothes:

Puppy butt: More precious than pearls!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Tossing Flowers

A while back--okay, a long while back--I bought a bunch of these acid-free archive boxes. For years, they held magazine and newspaper clippings. Each box held articles and pictures close on topics close to my heart: gardening, decorating, travel, etc.

But then, the Internet happened.

With Google, Google Images, and Pinterest, who needs clippings? I can type in "French flower garden" or "where to collect sea glass" and in an instant be flooded with info. Clippings are just clutter, now. So I opened up these boxes and started recycling:

Well, first I had fun looking at the images one last time. THEN I recycled all the paper. Because really, anything in the box could be called up on my laptop in a matter of seconds:

Still, it was fun going through the boxes once more. I found stuff I saved when I was planning out my rose garden, including the colors of roses I wanted to plant:

I faithfully kept these "What to do in Southern California" articles from Sunset magazine for years. I mean, YEARS!:

And in the clippings, I recognized certain trends. I love clever containers for forcing bulbs:

I'm a sucker for a cottage garden--especially if there's a birdhouse or two involved:

Sweet Peas are my love:

As are hydrangeas:

And lavender:

And fragrant, home-garden roses (not those scent-less creatures they sell in grocery stores):

I adore white flowers. And tulips. And white tulips just send me over the moon:

Did I mention I love hydrangeas?

My goodness. Look how long I've kept some of these articles! My mother grew gorgeous Bearded Iris in our back yard when I was a child. One whiff of an iris, and suddenly I'm a knock-kneed six-year-old again, thrusting my nose into these glorious, perfumed harbingers of spring:

Day lilies--but only pink and white and pale yellow day lilies--make me crazy-happy:

And I never met a chippy, Victorian-style, white-painted garden thingummy that I didn't immediately love:

Ooh, look! Packets of sweet peas--with seeds still inside!:

Oh, dear. They are 13 years old. *Sigh.*

Too bad. I love Sweet Peas to distraction. (Or did I say that already?)

And although I can't grow African Violets worth beans, they always make me smile, because my mother and her mother were both champion African Violet growers:

I would travel to the ends of the earth to see a flower this blue:

And this French-looking garden? Magnifique!

I have a tuteur, although mine is a much more rustic one, made of precisely cut twigs. My tuteur doesn't grow anything on it. It just looks so darn cute:

Oho. Now, this brochure is worth saving. California is going through a drought, and by all accounts it is going to get much worse before it gets better:

Yes, indeed. I'll be keeping this one, too:

But as for the rest of the paper and ephemera, it's outta here:

Won Ton is showing you the size of the bag that I filled with the clippings I don't need to save in physical form any more:

See ya on da Interwebs, pretty pictures! Knowing I can always call you up, it wasn't hard to let you go.

And now, I have a stack of beautiful, empty archival storage boxes waiting for my next project.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Angel Dog

Friends of mine had to put their beloved Jack Russell to sleep last week. She took a sudden, irreversible turn for the worse. Her owner posted this beautiful painting on his Facebook page today:

He also posted this poem:

I stood by your bed last night, I came to have a peep. I could see that you were crying, You found it hard to sleep. I whined to you softly as you brushed away a tear, "It's me, I haven't left you, I'm well, I'm fine, I'm here." I was close to you at breakfast, I watched you pour the tea, You were thinking of the many times, your hands reached down to me. I was with you at the shops today, Your arms were getting sore. I longed to take your parcels, I wish I could do more. I was with you at my grave today, You tend it with such care. I want to re-assure you, that I'm not lying there. I walked with you towards the house, as you fumbled for your key. I gently put my paw on you, I smiled and said " it's me." You looked so very tired, and sank into a chair. I tried so hard to let you know, that I was standing there. It's possible for me, to be so near you everyday. To say to you with certainty, "I never went away." You sat there very quietly, then smiled, I think you knew... In the stillness of that evening, I was very close to you. The day is over... I smile and watch you yawning and say "good-night, God bless, I'll see you in the morning." And when the time is right for you to cross the brief divide, I'll rush across to greet you and we'll stand, side by side. I have so many things to show you, there is so much for you to see. Be patient, live your journey out...then come home to be with me. Author ~ unknown

The poem and the painting both tug at my heart. I tried to find who the painter is. It looks like something by Charles Burton Barber or Arthur Elsley, Victorian painters whose works often featured children with dogs. But a Google Image search didn't turn up anything; neither did a regular Google search of "painting ghost dog."

Does anybody recognize this painting? I'm guessing Victorian, and English, but that's all I've got.

In the meantime, if you have a pet, give it an extra hug from me today.

And if you have lost a beloved pet, I am thinking of you today.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Cat-and-Dog Détente

Adventure Kitty is getting more and more comfortable roaming around our family room and kitchen. The pugs are handling it well. A few days ago she shared the chaise with Pao Pao:

She kept one eye on him and the other on the big world outside the windows:

A mid-lick closeup!:

"Pao Pao, what do you think of the kitty?"

"Umm, well...lemme see...."

"Da kitty iz okay, I guess."

"But dose claws of herz are vewwy scawy!"


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