Saturday, October 30, 2010

This 'n That

This little witch and her cat are one of my favorite Halloween decorations. She's actually fairly large; 16" in diameter. I think I might paint her hair a lovely shade of red, though. She's far too young to have grey hair!
This is a spice cake with cream cheese frosting that my husband made for my birthday, which was several days ago. How sweet was that? And what a wise man; he used just a few candles. If he had used the number that matches my age, the house probably would have caught fire!

A cup of tea in a Halloween mug was the perfect complement to a slice of the cake...which I was so eager to eat that I didn't take a picture of it. Ah well, just trust me when I say it was delicious!

Monday, October 25, 2010

The Cattwell Family

This was actually posted on October 29, 11:16 p.m. This is Inky, Midnight, and Meowra Cattwell, of the famous Cattwell family from Halloween Hollow. Every October, they graciously consent to live on top of the living room armoire. But, as you can tell from the looks on their faces, they don't like having their picture taken! I'd like to tell you more about them as they have a really fascinating history, but so far they haven't been too keen on having their story told. Maybe someday...

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Sunday Sunsets

Taken in November, 2009, from Hwy. 18 near Running Springs.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

An October Moon

I was unable to get a picture of this month's full moon last night as it was overcast. But this is an October Moon if ever there was one! I have a collection of these moon faces (a Harvest Moon, a blue moon, an opalescent moon, etc.), which are made by Kirks Folly. They're sold on QVC and

and they're a good size, usually measuring between 4" and 6" across. Kirks Folly also makes beautiful jewelry with moon faces. All of their moons are hand made from glass and are just magical! If you love La Luna as I do, check out the websites. They also make other kinds of great jewelry and stuff for the home, like goblets (I'm trying to get a decent picture of my 'Season of the Witch' one to post on here) and windchimes.

Of course, my favorite part of this moon's decorations is the little black cat wearing her witch hat!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Faeries Friday - Rowan

Rowan is one of the many Faeries who live in my studio. She was a gift from my husband, and I named her Rowan because the leaves on her bodice and tights sort of remind me of the leaves of a Rowan tree.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Almost Here...

Only ten days away! And this makes me both happy and sad.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Pantries and Rambles

This little Acorn Woodpecker is sitting in front of her pantry. See all the holes behind her? She excavated those, and many more, so she can shove acorns into them. I took this photo back in the spring. Today, when I was carrying out dry blankets to the feral cats' houses, I noticed every storage hole in her pantry has an acorn in it, and she's all set for winter.

I didn't take any pictures today because a gentle rain has been pattering down all day. We also had some thunder and lightening. The air smells delicious, full of the scents that mean Autumn to me. Rain, wet earth and leaves, wood burning in fireplaces, the cold, sharp perfume of the creek and pines...they all combine in the chilly, wet air to produce a marvelous fragrance. Breathing this kind of air is a powerful tonic.

After I finished with the cats' beds, I went for a walk through the woods. (The picture below was taken earlier this month, and the one of the wet cedar was taken through a window).

I walked through the wet leaves and trees, snug and dry in my wellies and rain coat. The dogs refused to come with me, preferring to stay in by the fire, but I had the pitter-pat of the rain and the quiet voice of the creek to keep me company, along with the occasional remark from a bird and the friendly brush of a cedar frond across my cheek.
The cedars are my favorite tree in the forest. The tip of every frond has its own tiny jewel when it rains. They're especially magical when it rains, then freezes. As the breeze moves through them, the branches shimmer with millions of tiny sun-sparked diamonds. Look too long and I think you might find yourself under a Faerie enchantment.

After a good ramble, and some interesting conversations with the birds, my stomach informed me it was time for tea so I returned to my warm little cottage. My husband was home today, and he had fires burning cheerily in every fireplace. He even had a mug of tea and a plate of scones, slathered with some of the apple butter from our own pantry, waiting for me...bliss.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Sunday Sunsets

Taken this past July at Lake Gregory, Crestline.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Rain, Blessed Rain

Gorgeous thunderheads on Sunday had banded together by Sunday night...and draped themselves gently over our rain starved mountains, entwining themselves around the trees, adding soft layer upon soft layer of cloud on the trees' branches, leaves and needles...
until they could hold no more and begin to let tiny pieces of cloud in the form of water drops fall to the parched earth below. Very early in the morning hours of Monday more clouds came to join the ones already here, and they enthusiastically set about the task of washing everything clean, giving all living things a good drink, and refreshing a land that has not seen real rain since last May.

It rained most of Monday and Tuesday, and temperatures dropped to nearly freezing. Outside, the feral kitties curled up in their little houses that my husband made for them (insulated, double wall construction, waterproof), each with plenty of regular blankets plus a special small blanket on the top that acts like a heating pad, but without any cords. They work by reflecting the cat's body heat back to the cat. I've put my hand inside a house just after a kitty has left and it's surprisingly warm. They look like this (they also come in black and grey) they measure 18" by 22" and the item number is 9B - 13563
and I get them at

Inside, all was cozy, too. My husband made a pot of beef stew for himself...
and the cats and dogs (they each get a few spoonfuls of gravy). I made a pot of vegetarian rip-your-lips-off-hot chili for myself. Yes, I am the only vegetarian in a houseful of carnivores. I've given up on trying to convert my husband. And the animals...well, they were created to be carnivores and I think it would be bad for their health to feed them a vegetarian diet.

And, of course, George was hogging the hearth!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Our Newest Family Member

This is Miss Rita Mae Moonsparkle. She's five months old and hates having her picture taken. I managed to slide the cardboard in behind her while she was asleep; there's no way I could have lowered the blinds without waking her, and the glare from the window would have ruined the photo. She took off like a shot right after I got this photo.

She came to be our newest kitty daughter in this manner: Several weeks ago, I heard someone calling "Hello? Hello?" Thinking someone was lost, my husband went out to see what was going on. A teenager was holding a scared little black and white kitten and asked my husband if he wanted her. She explained that the people next door to where she lives had moved away and abandoned the poor little kitten. Her mom wouldn't let her keep her, so she was trying to find the kitten a home. Well, she did!

She is not at all intimated by our much bigger, much older cats. George, who out weighs her by 18 pounds, swaggered up to her the first day we let her out to meet her new siblings, under our close supervision, and gave her his best "I'm gonna chew you up and spit you out" glare and growl. She wasn't scared by him at all. She calmly looked at him like she was saying, "Yeah? Well, take your best shot, buddy, because that's ALL you're gonna get!" George backed up, sat down and considered this little toughie, then suddenly remembered he had pressing business with a bowl of cat food. Our dogs, Bonnie and Fiona, adore her and she adores them right back. In fact, she gets along with everyone, which is very unusual for a new family member. It usually takes several weeks of fussing before everyone settles down.

I was hoping to name her Francesca or Isabella, but she wasn't responding to either of them. After two days of this, my husband was getting ready to go to the bookstore to see if some books I had ordered were in. I called to him, "See if the new book by Rita Mae Brown is out yet, please?" He replied, "Brown who?" I said, "Rita Mae." As soon as I said that, Miss-no-name-as-yet popped out from under the couch and walked over to me. She sat down by my feet and I said, "Rita Mae?" She jumped up into my lap, meowing and purring. She doesn't seem to care about 'Moonsparkle' one way or another, but I just liked the way it sounded with 'Mae.' Every time we say "Rita Mae" she either comes to us or meows at us so, even though I'm not really all that fond of the name, Rita Mae she is!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Faeries Friday - Citrine, The Queen of Autumn

Kind of scary looking, isn't she? But very beautiful!

Happy October, everyone!
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