Daily Archives: May 22, 2013


As an artist, I have many distractions.  Don’t we all?  With a large yard and garden, this time of year finds me outdoors most evenings and weekends.  Yes, I’d rather be painting but sometimes I have to do some other stuff.  Work for one.  Gardening.

Swifts in corner of my studio porch

Swifts in corner of my studio porch

But this spring, as the past three springs, a family of swifts have taken up residence on the porch of my summer-kitchen studio.  I don’t know why they choose this particular corner as there are plenty of other good spots – woodshed, shop, eves, …yes, even birdhouses.  So they get touchy as I go in and out of my studio which puts a bit of a damper on my painting activities, especially at night.  I even covered the window with a black drape so I wouldn’t scare them.  Sometimes I go into the studio by the side entrance although mostly I forget to unlock that door.

Also, I love to garden.  Well, I love the results of gardening…not particularly the labor that goes into making it happen.  But it beats my hours at a desk so who should complain?  My husband plants a little spring garden – lettuces, kale, onions, asparagus, tomatoes, basil.  And I plant the big garden, about a quarter of an acre.  Tomatoes, peppers, beans (those durn rabbits), peas, squashes, corn, sweet potatoes, more basil…and loads of sunflowers.  In the winter when I’m having a nice vegetable soup or some homemade salsa, I think of all the sunshine that has been captured in my vegetables.  Maybe monetarily it isn’t worth the work, but it is to the spirit and soul.

View from the patio towards the big garden

View from the patio towards the big garden


As this blog isn’t totally about being an artist, I thought I’d talk about country life today.

This evening I was sitting on my patio listening to the sounds of the day winding down.  For those of you who live in the city, I know you think you live in a chaotic and noisy environment.  But those of us who live in the country also have the noise and chaos…just a bit different. 

This evening as I was sitting on my patio, I tried to identify all the sounds that I could.

  • Crickets in the garlic chives
  • Birds – chickadees, cardinals, goldfinches, titmouse, two kinds of woodpeckers, mourning doves, and even the stupid starlings in the gutters
  • Peepers (frogs) in the lowlands
  • Diesel engines of the train about a half mile away
  • Neighbor’s son revving up his truck’s engine then taking off
  • Far away highway sounds
  • Jet high overhead
  • Cat meowing in the shop telling me that it’s too early to be shut up for bedtime
  • Wind in the trees overhead
  • Bumblebees in the honeysuckle

Plenty of noise…just different.  You just have to listen.