Wednesday, December 31, 2014

New Painting

Once or twice a year (depending on how long/busy our vacations are), my husband does a watercolor. This year he took two weeks off to relax and spend time with the kids and me. And paint a watercolor. And just for the record, artists are every bit as obsessed and grumpy about their work as writers are. (It's definitely different being on the other side. Now I'm the one rolling my eyes when I hear, "It's horrible. I wish I could start over." Etc.)

Here are some photos. Be warned the quality of my camera is very bad. The painting itself has much deeper colors and the images are much sharper. But here's Calvin's latest painting. It's from our trip to France and it's me visiting the Queen's Hamlet at Versailles.

Here is the sketch before the painting begins.

Half painted. The color in this photo is more accurate to the painting.
Completed. But awaiting a frame.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Deja Vu Blogfest

The Deja Vu Blogfest (thanks to D.L. Hammons for organizing and planning the fest) is an opportunity to view some of the best blog posts of the past year that you may have missed. So after my post, please click on some of the links listed to read some great posts.

As I thought about what posts I've done over the past year, I decided to re-share an October post, "The Married Man's Guide to  Women's Shoes." I hope you enjoy it.

The other Sunday morning, I was late. So I asked my husband to grab my black pumps. He came back with black sandals. I said, “No. Black pumps. Those are heeled sandals.” He went back to the closet and came back with another pair of shoes. I sighed. “Sweetie, those are mules. I need pumps.” Eventually, I found the pumps.

It occurred to me that if a man doesn’t even know what a shoe is called, then there is a whole world of shoe communication that he does not understand. So I’ve written a husband’s definitive (short) guide to women’s shoe types and what they mean. Here it is.

Pumps. A woman wears these with a suit. They have a heel and enclose most of the foot. (Though there are open-toed and sling-back versions, which have nuances of meaning. But that is beyond the scope of this quick reference guide.) When I wear them it means, I can pump my own gas, but if you want to do it that would be great because I don’t like smelling like gasoline.

Sandals. Strappy shoes that expose the toes. There are two main types.
   One, the heeled party type. These mean I plan to have fun and am not opposed to drinking something with bubbles.
   Two, the flat type. These mean Take Me To the Beach. Now.

Mules. Something you side your foot into. As in, I’m as tired as a pack-worn mule and can’t be bothered with fasteners. You should probably pour me a double strength espresso with a twist of lemon.
            N.B. If they are Birkenstocks, it means I’m over forty and I’ve gone through a granola phase.
 This should be nipped in the bud if it threatens to come back. Seriously, do you remember the tofu phase?

Kitten heels. Playful shoes with a tiny, thin heel. They mean I’m feeling girly and playful as a kitten. (Think Audrey Hepburn in How to Steal a Million.) They also mean, after the kids are in bed, I would totally be open to playing hide and seek with Nerf dart guns in the dark.

Sneakers. I can pump iron. I can run like the wind. Okay, maybe not. But I can
beat myself shadow boxing. And just so you know, it means we’re eating healthy tonight.

Stilettos. The name obviously comes from a type of spy knife. Think tall, thin high heel that could be used to stab someone. You think this means “sexy.” You are wrong. This shoe means I-am-feeling-so-confident-that-I-don’t-care-that-these-these-things-are-going-to-give-me-back-spasms-later-today. These shoes mean you will need to find a bottle of Aleve and a tube of muscle pain cream.

Slippers with wool socks. I need a nap, an intravenous drip of a caffeinated beverage, and/or a break from the children. Afterwards, a long, hot bubble bath.
Hopefully, this clears everything up.

Ladies, did I miss any?