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My sister and I are in North Carolina now, and even though my dear dog Fiona passed away six months before we moved, I can't bear to remove her picture from my "About Me" section, because I'm still all about utterly adoring this sweet creature. She will always be with me, and I will always remember the look of her trusting, loving eyes and the feel of her soft fur.

This is one of my favorite portraits I've done of my girl. It's called, appropriately, "Fiona the Good" and is a collage including my drawing of her.

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~The New Digs~

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Compared to what I had in California, this property is pretty plain, but it has great bones. It's a little over six acres with plenty of beautiful views, including this one of the pond. Thanks goodness the trees are leafing out now, as it was pretty stark February and March. There are several very large oaks as well as a pecan and a tulip tree and others whose identity I'm not sure of. Every day it feels more like home. Can't wait to get a garden in, but unfortunately, there are several things higher on the priority list. But that's OK. All will come in time.

Look who adopted us! His name may be Clyde. He may "belong" to the horse barn across the street. Word is that he was one of many rescue cats who had homes there. Word also is the previous owners of this house adopted him, but if they did they clearly left him behind. Be all that as it may, he's clearly adopted me. And he's more than welcome.

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Here you see survivors and their new friends. There are two geraniums as well as an ivy and a spiky plant in each pot. And, one of the geraniums in each pot came with me from California as a newly, barely sprouting cutting. We drove cross-country in January, and each night I took the cuttings into the hotel room with us. As much as I tried to lessen their trauma, it was hard on them, and I wasn't convinced they would both survive, but they did. When visiting a local nursery I saw geraniums potted up like this, so bought two large pots, two small geraniums, and ivy (which I split), and two spiky plants. They're on the side deck and are so happy there. Yay!

Here's the very beginning of what will become my next glorious rose garden. Before leaving California, I ordered ten bare root roses from David Austin roses, knowing they wouldn't ship until I'd been in North Carolina for a few weeks. Sure enough, they arrived in mid-February and my daughter and grand-daughters helped me plant them in these temporary pots. Hopefully I should be able to fence in the garden area and build the raised beds this summer. The they'll have pride of place in the new spot of beauty.


As I drive around I see so many beautiful dogwoods. Most are white. A few are pink, and a very few have branches of both colors. I'm determined to plant several next year. It's difficult to wait, but I want to be sure to put them in the best place, and that will take knowing the property better than I do now. But stay tuned. Next year, late winter and early spring, I'll have clouds of white. And, yes, maybe a little pink.

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I suppose breakage is inevitable with a move, but it was so disappointing to open the box with my ceramic fairy garden houses and figures to find more than a few had been broken. To console myself, I decided to install one right away. Fortunately, there were planter boxes on the back deck, so I had a perfect place to establish this one. The plant selection is probably not ideal, but it was what was readily available in late winter. The dragon is quite at home, and I get lost in the scene when I take the time to sit and enjoy it.

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My studio-to-be, and 'to be' says it all! My sister and I moved from two separate housholds into one. And with no place to put most of her stuff, here it is. We'll be building a second house on the property for her, but who knows how long it will take? Meanwhile, I've tried to keep my most-used art supplies accessible and will happily make do!

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