Misc. Updates

Monday, June 8, 2020 0 No tags Permalink

It is feeling much more like summer these days. I did finish the monarch garden, with the exception of edging as I am still waiting for that to ship. With COVID-19, everything is taking forever to ship. The governor opened the State of Michigan today, and everyone is walking around like there never was a virus. I’m kind of surprised that there are still shipping delays at this point. Mom is also working really hard on her garden and it’s looking great. We haven’t had much rain, so we are having to water nearly every day. I’ve also been biking regularly, and have put in 125 miles so far.

This is my latest gouache painting and reference photo from an old Sunset Magazine. Again, I wouldn’t say I’m showing improvement, but I am enjoying the process so that is something.

This old abandoned house has been catching my eye. I expect it will be torn down this summer. It was built in 1911. All of the windows are gone, and it’s owned by the Land Bank. J. Charles Lee, superintendent of the Battle Creek Box Company, resided in the home up until his death in 1931. Mr. and Mrs. John Swainston were listed as owning the home in 1937, Mr. and Mrs, David Stebleton in 1939, and Mr. and Mrs. Victor Soules were listed as living in the home in 1942. The home was owned by the Fox/Black family (Jessie Fox (mother), Viola (daughter) – died 1990, Gerald (1973) and later Lillian Black) from 1946 until it was lost to the county treasurer in 2019. It looks like Lillian had been living on Highland Blvd from 2016 – 2018, when she passed away. It is likely this house, 466 Capital Avenue NE, has been empty since 2016.

Paintings and Garden Updates

Monday, June 1, 2020 0 No tags Permalink

Like everyone else, this week I have been struggling with the state of our nation, racism, and the horrific death of George Floyd. When I watched the video, I was instantly reminded of the video of the beheading of Nick Berg. I felt physically sick. The only thing to break the COVID-19 news cycle since March, and instead of being the uplifting SpaceX manned dragon capsule launch it was the horror of another police brutality event.

I tried to get some painting done this weekend. In fact, I finished these two small studies, referenced from old Sunset Magazine photos. I’m not thrilled with either one. I will count them both as more practice, as certainly my thoughts are that I will improve with lots of practice over this year. Maybe painting is the only good thing that will come from 2020? I find such a peace in it. And I really do love working with gouache.

In other news, this year we are putting in a new garden around the vegetable garden. It’s a monarch way station. Here are the first two sides papered off. So far I have them both planted and mulched. I am waiting for my edging to come in so hopefully I can get that done this next weekend, then paper off the third side and see about planting that as well.

Ah, June at last. The weekend was exceptionally cold, dipping to 43 this morning. But it is supposed to warm up now. This morning the sky is bright blue. The lilac outside the shelter is blooming. I’ve been biking some here and there and hope the weather will allow for more now that it is June. I’m still having great difficulty concentrating on reading, so I’m not sure I will have an official summer reads program but will update with the books I am reading. Is anyone even out there any more?

Ocqueoc Painting & Bird Updates

Tuesday, May 26, 2020 0 No tags Permalink

I continue on with my gouache odyssey with this latest painting. The reference image is a photo I took of the field from my Grandparents’ place back to the woods, taken when Mom and Kirsten and I were last up north. I am pleased with how it turned out. I wish I had more time to paint.

I have also been spending some time with bird photography. Above is the female oriole, and below is a cheeky robin. We had our first hummingbird on May 21, quite late this year. Next update should be the garden expansion. We are putting in a monarch butterfly way station.

The Westerner Hotel

Monday, May 18, 2020 0 No tags Permalink

The WESTERNER HOTEL
161 Colorado Place (U.S. 66) Arcadia, California
Phone: Douglas 7-3501
Luxurious Rooms and Suites. Beautiful filtered and heated swimming pool. Family Santa Anita Race Track across the street.
1/4 mile to Golf Courses
3 miles East of Pasadena
15 miles East of Los Angeles

This place no longer stands, unfortunately. Carol Libby and Karen Hou have a post on it here along with some earlier linen cards from the old place.

New Paintings & Misc. Updates

Tuesday, May 12, 2020 0 No tags Permalink

The weather has been odd this May. The past few days have been incredibly cold, 20 degrees below average with freeze warnings. I have yet to plant anything at all. They are predicting a week from now it will be 84 degrees. So much for spring, right? In happier news, the orioles have returned. We have at least two couples and the males seem a bit territorial. The hummingbird feeder has been up the same amount of time, but no hummingbirds spotted yet. Everything is still shut down until the end of the month due to COVID-19.

This latest painting is a very small study in casein. A friend on Instagram had posted the photo of her cat and suggested it was worthy of a painting. It seemed to me to be a good opportunity to try out a new medium.

I painted this gouache from a photo I took last year of our garden for Mom for Mother’s Day.

National Postcard Week 2020

Monday, May 4, 2020 0 No tags Permalink

It’s National Postcard Week 2020, and once again I designed and will be sending cards. The smallest package I could order was 50, and once I added up all my addresses that turns out to be the perfect amount.

This year’s theme is Maxy and quarantine. This has been an interesting year for sure. We are now required to wear masks when we go out in public. The shelter has been shut down since March 17th.

I believe this motel could be the one Mom, Dad and I stayed in when I was young and we went to Niagara Falls, Canada for the first time. I only remember it had something to do with lucky or clover.

Clover Leaf Motel
Highway 20 & 3A at Queen E. Way
3514 Lundy’s Lane
Niagara Falls, Canada
43 completely modern and air-conditioned units. T.V. in every room. Wall-to-wall carpeting. Private tiled showers and tubs. Family units, swimming pool. 3 miles to the Falls. Telephone (416) 354-1849.

Spring Birds

Tuesday, April 21, 2020 0 No tags Permalink

The spring birds are here, doing their thing. Above is a yellow-rumped warbler at the suet feeder in our backyard. I’ve not seen one of these before.

The bluebirds are already nesting at the shelter, with eggs in the nestbox.

So are the tree swallows. They are really pretty birds, and they are lovely in their flight patterns. They’re not shy of dive-bombing you if you get too close to the box, though.

Temperatures have been consistently colder than normal last week and this week, and predicted into next week as well. Today’s high should be 62, and we will top out around 42 instead. It looks like we will be tracking closer to normal the beginning of May. Things are still in lockdown for COVID-19, but we’re unsure when that will end. There is pressure on Governor Whitmer to open things back up here in Michigan. Not sure what will happen with the greenhouses at this point. Everything feels rather up in the air.

Lee-Way Drive In

Thursday, October 24, 2019 0 No tags Permalink

Lee-Way Drive In – St. Petersburg, Florida

Lee-Way Drive In

Lee-Way Drive In
Mouth Watering Hamburgers, Fried Chicken, Shrimp (Oh, Shrimp), Short Orders
Malts — Shakes — Curb Service
17814 Gulf Blvd. – Redington Shores
St. Petersburg, Florida
Phone: [none printed on card]

Natural Color Reproduction – Curteichcolor Art-Creation Reg. U.S. Pat. Off.
Created by Foldes, St. Petersburg, Fla.
6C-K1169

While this card is unused and undated, the Curteichcolor dating site has this print date listed as 1956. From the card, it looks like a counter and limited seating, a small place. But wouldn’t you like to try the shrimp? Yum!

From what I could dig up online, the Lee Way became Le Pompano some time around 1974 (owned by Michel and Clarine Denis), The Pepper Mill in between, and The Lobster Pot from 1979 to at least 2013.

From the Tampa Bay Times, June 9, 1992:

After the Lobster Pot, it looks like in 2015 the place was run as the Cocina Aqui Southwest Restaurant and Tequila Bar, and opened as Beach Brewz in 2018 (check out their website here).

According to Google Street View, here it is today as Beach Brewz:

Summer Reads 2019

Wednesday, April 17, 2019 0 No tags Permalink

summer reads 2019

Although we had snow on Monday, we are now heading towards the end of April and it’s never too early to start the list for our Summer Reads 2019. If you’ve read something outstanding in the past few months, drop me a line and let me know!

Like reading? Check out previous summer reads: