Sunday, October 30, 2011

the littlest pumpkin carver

our jack o lanterns all in a row.
creating quite a fright and
casting a glow on the street where cats and bats roam in the night.
jorden and becky recently moved to the cutest neighborhood in placerville, where vines grow on storybook cottages and spanish tile rooftops and adobe walls soak in gentle afternoon sun. little lights along the windows and cats out for strolls, yards full of flowers and gardens and birds.


we spent a cozy evening at their new house, and baby oliver got to reach inside a pumpkin for the first time in his sweet little life. like usual, he was fearlessly curious and observant, busy and focused and taking it all in like a little scientist.
here are some pictures from that night.
cousin alowyn was visiting and she loves pretty things and to do hair. she is quite a conversationalist too.
the dogs lazily stood watch over the whole thing and later posed with our jack o lanterns on the porch.










since then we've dressed up, spooked out, and spooked out some more. i hope you are all enjoying a delightful all hallow's eve full of tricks, treats, disguises, and spirits. i'll be at the bookstore dressed up as pippi and handing out candy to the endless parade of small town trick-or-treaters!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

underfoot the divine soil, overhead the sun...

when the seasons change i read walt whitman and am happy to be alive.
 a reminder to go out into the world, the real world of earth and flower and fire. to feel it under your feet, on your skin, to loafe and invite your soul and be in the wild mystery.



darin and i went up into the mountains. golden yellow aspens and green pines welcomed us, a forest of explosive color and magic. it was like the daylight blew wind into our souls, fresh and cool, down into our legs and sparkling in our eyes. that is what happens.



we stopped at tragedy springs. it was totally different from when i was there as a kid; i always remembered an ice cold well or water pump and some cute little visitor center. now it is just a cluster of abandoned buildings and a gravesite. 
death=life, tragedy=regeneration. 
a maiden's grave becomes a blooming sage, a feathery fern.

All goes onward and outward, nothing collapses,
And the die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier.



they were blasting rock at carson pass, so we stopped to hike a while. it got quiet and an owl flew calling overhead and a tiny pond mirrored the sky. i could see the peaks of round top and thunder mountain as i wandered out, wishing i could get lost awhile.



 my favorite bakery in all the world. any time we head over the mountains we stop to see the beautiful proprietess that all the boys love and taste her wickedly delectable goods. we had coffee and pie; mine marionberry, his lemon sour cream. nothing like a great slice of pie in a cozy room with a fireplace, pumpkins, wooden bar and twinkly lights.






then for more walking, creeks, burls, stones, meadows. 
layers of color rich as umber, rust and blood.

I am enamour'd of growing out-doors...






off i go...I tramp a perpetual journey, (come listen all!)

i'm cheesy, but struck by how nice it is to have a crush on your own husband, it's embarrassing!



What is commonest, cheapest, nearest, easiest, is Me,
Me going in for my chances, spending for vast returns,
Adorning myself to bestow myself on the first that will take me,
Not asking the sky to come down to my good will,
Scattering it freely forever.



Stop this day and night with me and you shall possess the origin of all poems.....
The feeling of health, the full-noon trill, the song of me rising from bed and meeting the sun.


all lines from Song of Myself.

dress: $10 on etsy, came with matching vest
little brown vest: borrowed from em
slouchy hat: thrifted 50 cents
sandals: thrifted 1.50
boots: had forever, cheap knock off mocs

Friday, October 21, 2011

The Long and Mysterious Lives of Cream Puff Beatty (alias Boris Cole)



Don't worry! He's still with us. Still yelling for his supper and climbing up our shoulders. Just a lot more frail and bony than years past.

BUT...I have a great story to tell about the old infamous scoundrel.
A lovely local woman named Patsy Cole sometimes reads my blog. For better frame of reference she is the creative soul who threw this gorgeous wedding with all its vintage and earthy details back in May.
Anyway, Patsy saw this post back in September and immediately made a startling connection.




Over ten years ago, her family had lost their beloved cat Boris when they moved to Placerville from a place further out in the country. They figured he hated "town life" and had run away, and they sorely grieved his loss. He had been king of their roost and their three daughters loved him very much.
When Patsy saw my post, she wondered if our "C.P" might indeed be their cat Boris?! My parents' house, where he showed up, was less than 1/2 mile from the house they had moved into. 


We arranged for Patsy and her youngest daughter Cecelia to come meet him in the flesh. I warned him that he is veerrrry old, bony, and withering. But naturally, if he was indeed their long lost cat, they at least wanted to see him one last time.

Meanwhile, Patsy's oldest daughter emailed me old pictures of her "Boris," check them out:

My heart jumped. Especially the bottom one, the kohl eyeliner round his eyes, the stripes, the shape of his nose. It looked like him to me! The mouth looked a little funky, and in the top one his color was darker, but I remembered him being darker years ago anyway. And the thing with his mouth could be easily explained: he probably had a developing problem with his gums and teeth. Months on the run would have exacerbated the problem and by the time he showed up at my folks' house, he had rotten teeth and the vet had to remove them all except one. He has always been our snaggle tooth :) and has to eat only wet food. All those years ago, we wondered how old he was and the vet told us "this cat has major age." A quote that has gone down in history in our family. Everyone knows that Cream Puff is ageless and eternal.


Well these beautiful ladies may have just solved the mystery.
Patsy's husband Dave found Boris at the tennis courts at the local high school back in 1988 and he was just under a year old. That puts him at about 11 or 12 years old by the time he ran away from their new house in town in early 2000. After much discussion with my mom and siblings we figured out that Cream Puff probably showed up in late 2000 or early 2001. That makes him about 24 right now!



Here he is with Darin waaaay back in 2001. Darin always loved the guy.

As with my momma. Mom and Darin were CP's two best friends. Around that time his breath was so bad as he recovered from the rotten teeth, he was very demanding of attention and also, he drooled. The drool would land on things, make your shirt smell bad, and we liked to joke that it sizzled and burned a hole through anything it touched.

So Darin and I became his proud and loving adoptive caretakers.

He has lived with us in many different places. 
From Sebastopol to our first house in Placerville on Goyan Street, to our house out in the country in Pleasant Valley. He must have got running wild out of his system, because he has always stayed right by our sides.


Fattening up for the winter.

It was really fun talking to Patsy and Cecelia about the life that he has had since he came to us. I told them that he has been a favorite of all our friends who come visit, that he loves people and being in the center of the action, preferably on a warm lap.

he has no qualms about insisting upon friendship with all our visitors!


  Loves being in photo shoots:





and although he has gotten grumpy toward little kids and other cats and has left many a scar in his day, he is really just generally a lovable old guy with a lot of pizzazz, the best meow on earth, and a huge handsome strong heart.

It was hard to tell for sure 100% if our CP is their Boris, but delving into the mystery was fun and touching. So I am just going to think so.
We wondered where he went while he was alone out in the world. They wanted to know how he was when he first showed up (bedraggled and hungry but loving) and all about the vet trips and the other cats we have had along with him. They are total cat people so it was fun talking about all the nitty gritty details of our cats lives and deaths and  habits and adventures.

We are going to keep in touch.
The name Boris fits and has immediately become his new nickname. 
And meanwhile CP has some new (old?!) family in his old age, 
and seems happy to be having his 15 minutes of fame.
Around these parts, he's a star!