Thursday, February 19, 2009

Winter Break Update

Long Lines Late in the Day, 2009, Oil on Birch Panel, 12x24

Here's what's up this week:

1. The kids are home all week for winter break and just to insure that I don't get much of anything done, Doug scheduled a business trip for this week as well. Actually, he didn't do it on purpose, usually I mark the vacations on the MASTER CALENDER and he is supposed to check the MASTER CALENDER when he schedules a business trip but I missed this one for some reason and so he has been gone since Sunday, returning tonight, thankfully. I guess I shouldn't complain because this snafu is definitely my fault.

2. And I really shouldn't be complaining at all about not getting any work done this week either as the kids have been totally doing their own thing and while they have been coming up to my studio quite a bit with various issues, physical ailments, and their side of the story concerning the most recent argument, overall I have been able to be in the studio everyday. I haven't been terribly productive but it's been ok. The KIDS should be really bored, but they don't seem to be. I guess it's nice for them to take a week and just do some quiet relaxing things, like reading, art projects and watching tv, as normally they have pretty busy and full days when school is in session.

3. Part of the reason that I haven't been terribly productive is that I fell off the wagon and straight into a river of chocolate! I was doing great with the no flour/no sugar thing (still no flour actually) but I had a few Lindt truffles which sent me spiraling out of control and back into a full out obsession with procuring and eating chocolate. Dang! Will be spending the next few days trying to get that back under control again.

4. Mr. Wilson is feeling better today after his return yesterday from a night at the vet's office. He had um, a procedure, and is now, well let's just say he is more neutral about things. Lately he has been driving us all crazy with his doggy adolescent behavior, panting and whining all the time and humping Penny's feet (he's short, she's tall, it's all he can get to), the cats (they were not happy about that) and even the furniture legs.

PS. If you are opposed to altering pets and feel the need to write to me about it, save it. I already know the pros and cons of this issue, plus I am also a little crabby today so my response might not be pretty!

5. And while I am at it, I may as well give an update on the chickens too. They stopped laying eggs in September or so. I figured they were molting, although I was a bit surprised that they were all doing it at once, since some of the hens are a year younger that the others. But after talking to a few friends that also raise chickens I learned that often the whole flock goes at the same time. I could have messed with the molting by supplementing their light to get them laying again, but our chicken house is pretty rustic, no power, no water and so getting them extra light seemed like way too much work. So I let the chickens have a rest from popping an egg out everyday. Anyway, we really suffered without our daily eggs, it was a sad day when we started buying them at the store again. Even the cage free organic eggs were disappointing. Not as fresh as what we are used to I guess. The chickens look beautiful now though after their rest, they grew back all their feathers (some of them were almost completely bald before they began molting, they looked VERY scary) and they seem more friendly too, although I might be imagining that. They gradually began laying eggs about a month ago and now we are overflowing with eggs again.

6. I have five landscape paintings finished for my upcoming show (one is kind of iffy, so there might just be four), and also have four underpaintings ready for color. If I work on those this weekend I will be able to get right back on schedule. I am really enjoying getting back to the landscapes. After a six month break from painting the landscape I wasn't sure if I would feel good about them again, or stifled.

7. Am still working on the People You Know series, today I plan to work on the two larger panels that I started a few weeks ago. I worked on one yesterday, but kept getting sidetracked, but I will try to finish it up soon.

8. Oh and I missed my blog anniversary again. It's been three years (as of February 10), 635 posts, and over 200,000 unique visitors since I started this project that has nearly ruled my life! I am still enjoying all this but also sense that some changes here in Tracyland may be coming too.

Well, I guess that's it, that's all I have going on. Even though I have much work to do, and am making progress with it all, I still feel like I am floundering around in a haze.

I blame the chocolate.


Gary Rith Pottery Blog said...

CHANGES, oh no!
Don't look at my blog, T, I have a five minute chocolate cake recipe there that kicks a$$

Melody said...

Tracy, I am in love with this it new? Makes me long for a good road trip on a beautiful sunny day

Barbara J Carter said...

I LOVE this painting! Fabulous!

And I'm jealous. I want chickens too.

Ellen said...

I love this painting, lonely and beautiful, very atmospheric. Would look great in my family room *sigh*.

I can relate to the chocolate binge, was on the sugarless wagon, but that dang Valentines day! Sober up and stay strong...Easter's just around the corner.

Deborah Paris said...

Gorgeous painting, Tracy. Mr. Wilson will be fine and everyone else a lot saner. With five dogs (4 females and one male) I can relate!

Tracy said...

Gary, too late! Already, noticed that cute little mug cake recipe! Not sure what direction my blog will take, just that maybe I have a bit less to say these days......

Thanks Melody. That image is one I have painted a number of times, always trying to "catch" it. I think I got it this time too. The other pieces were good, but not like this.

Thanks Barbara. Do you live in a town or a city? Sometimes one can have chickens even in a city, may need to be a bit crafty about it though:)

Ellen, Thanks and nice to know that V Day got you too. Although technically I fell off a few days before, you know, to prepare for the big day, hehe.

Deborah, wow, your boy dog must have been in heaven there for awhile! I think Mr. Wilson would have busted open if there had been even one more female in the house for him to get a hold of:)

Michelle said...

ALWAYS blame chocolate for everything.
I think you 'got it' right too in this one.

Patrice said...

Another beautiful landscape - and congratulations. You and Mr. Wilson will both be happier.

Reading this made me miss my hens of old... but as the doc told me to cut back on the eggs, I'd best not have the temptation...

Sydney Harper said...

I like this painting.

A friend brought us a dozen eggs from his chickens today. Now I have chicken envy. ;)

Ghislaine Bruno said...

Beautifull light effect on this painting. So true to what we might see in the evening. Plus, I really appreciate the human presence hinted at by the car lights... They are car lights, aren't they ??

Natalya said...

i always blame chocolate for everything! those Lindt truffles are good... my in-laws raise chickens and those are some good eggs, i miss them in the winter.
please don't chance too much, i need my almost daily Tracy fix....

L C Godfrey said...

Hi Tracy!
Our chickens started laying eggs again about 2 weeks ago. My husband gets really bummed when we have to buy chicken feed and eggs at the same time. We try not to calculate how much each egg from our chickens costs. I've read that they don't live as long if you give them the light treatment to keep them laying but ours do like a little heat lamp action when it is below 10! Love the painting!

Katherine Tyrrell said...

I love that landscape! Really, really great.

Could you do a picture of you falling off the chocolate wagon next?

The dog gets to be neutralised and the girls get a rest - sounds OK to me! ;)

GiselleG said...

Love the painting Tracy! Beautiful. Looking forward to seeing the work for the new show.

My kids are on break this week too! I didn't get any studio time in, and am looking forward to getting back on track next week. Oh, and I'm seriously contemplating chickens. We had them at our last place, the rental, and really enjoyed them. Rental chickens were a great way to try them out! I currently have the space/time/energy to do it... I just need to figure out how to buy/make a secure coop. We have a lot of hawks & raccoons, plus our own dog, that they would need protection from.

But I digress. I love the work, and just wanted to say hello!

sarahfburns said...

You're off the white flour and sugar too? I've been off for months, - I'm not supposed to have alcohol either, as it turns into sugar. Alcohol is my achilles heel. I've avoided the chocolate, the smell can tide me over, but wine and martinis, mmmm. I break down once a week. We can hang in there, though, it's worth it.