Monday, July 20, 2009

Rowdy the Dog

 Rowdy has been at Stray Rescue for a few months now.  When I first met him, I was sure he wouldn't be there the next week.  With his happy-go-lucky disposition, fun-loving personality, and gorgeous brindled coat (so soft!) I thought someone would snatch him up immediately.  Unfortunately, that's not the case--he's not even being fostered.  So, I decided that I would take him to the Stray Rescue Adoption Event at the Whole Foods in Brentwood to see if we could do something about it.  I picked Rowdy up at 10:45 that morning so he could burn off some energy in Forest Park.  Spending most of the day in a 4'x6' apartment can sure lead to a lot of build up.  Rowdy had such a great time romping through an open field.  I put him on a retractable leash so he would have as much freedom as possible, and he took advantage of it.  He explored, he ran, he rolled, he chewed on a stick.  I hoped it would be enough exercise to help him be on his best behavior for the event, and he certainly delivered.  Actually, Rowdy exceeded my expectations.  He was such a good boy!  He immediately became friends with a 6 month old boxer mix named Gidget.  She was also brindled, and people kept mistaking them for relatives.  Rowdy was able to sit on command by the end of the event, he only pulled on his leash when he was excited to meet a new person ("My turn for attention, please!" I pictured him saying), and he didn't bark once.  No one filled out any applications to adopt Rowdy, but he got lots of love, and a man said he would take another look at him on the Stray Rescue website.  Here's Rowdy's page if you're interested.  I'm happy that at least he was able to get out of the shelter for a few hours.  

There were some other very irresistible dogs at the event.  Here's Rowdy's new friend, Gidget.   She and a sibling (maybe two?) were transferred to Stray Rescue from the Gasconade shelter, and she had bad mange.  The mange is gone now, and she's cute as can be. She's not on the SR website yet, but if you're interested in her let me know and I can put you in touch with her foster mom. 

Here are Sullivan and Ozark, brothers rescued together near Cuba, MO.  
Someone found them in pretty bad shape and took them to a nearby vet office. Unfortunately, the vet kept them both outside with little food or water hoping they would go away, and they were near death when Stray Rescue got them.  I'm so glad they were saved!  These two were definitely the popular pups at the adoption event.  At around 4 months old the brothers melted the hearts of men and women alike.  Who can resist a beagle/dachshund mix?  I know Ozark got a couple applications--hopefully Sullivan did, too!  They're not on the website yet, either, but let me know if you want info.

And this is Sabor.  After his rescue Sabor was adopted pretty quickly, but then had to be returned because his new mom couldn't afford him.  Poor guy.  He's three years old and sweet as can be.  I had to include the picture I nabbed when he was licking his nose.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Good-bye, Weekend! Hello, Monday (and Tuesday)!

Argh!  I forgot to bring my camera with me to Let Them Eat Art!  Some photographer, right?  I will just have to illustrate the evening for you with my colorful words.  Imagine you are me for a moment: You have bombed in the last three craft events you have done--so much so that you have not had to make any new inventory in the past month.  There is rain in the forecast, and the sky certainly does look ominous.  Secretly, you start to wonder why you gave up your shift waiting tables for the night.  Now throw all that out the window and you get my night at Let Them Eat Art!  The sun was shining (even when it rained for less than 5 minutes during the start of the event), women were walking around dressed up like Marie Antoinette, my sales were good, and I DID see a flame-throwing ice cream truck!  My parents surprised me and showed up halfway through the event, too.  Thanks, Mom and Dad--I really had to use the bathroom!  I couldn't resist trading with the lovely April Tate of Miss Lemon (and St. Louis Craft Mafia president) at the end of the night.  A coaster set and a couple note cards for these hair accessories made of '80s earrings and this to-die-for necklace!  I've worn the necklace every day since the event.  I strut a little more when I wear it.  You should absolutely check out her other goodies.  

Saturday isn't even worth talking about, as I shot a wedding that day and had one of the whiniest brides ever.  I won't mention the company I work for or the name of the bride.  Don't want to get anyone in trouble!

On Sunday I had the pleasure of taking some family portraits for a friend I've known for four years now.  That's right, I'm talking about Dave Lodewyck and his delightful family.  The whole clan was in town and called upon moi to freeze them in time.  Dave's mom will make you feel like you are the only other person in the room, and not a minute went by that someone didn't make me laugh.  Here's one of my favorite pics from the day. Oh, and aren't Dave and his AMAZING girlfriend, Mary, just adorable?
You may think my day had already peaked at 10:30 a.m. while I was in the Lodewyck presence, but wait, there's more!  Some of you may know that Joe has been cooking his little heart out every Sunday to make our week's meals (Thank you, Joe, as I hate cooking!), but this particular Sunday he outdid himself with a scrumptious foccacia bread.  He made the dough from scratch, but the key here was that he blended a POTATO in with the dough to keep it creamy, then topped it with spices and slices of tomatoes.  The bottom cooked crispy, and the top stayed doughy. I swear to you this bread tasted like mozzarella cheese pizza topped with tomatoes and spices.  Neither of us could get over how great it tasted, and Joe admits it's probably the best thing he's ever made.  The picture doesn't do it justice.  We just finished off the bread today, and I think we both cried a little when it was all gone.

Sherman certainly enjoyed the rest of his day, too.

Monday was a lovely day, too!  I started my day off with some photography in my fellow St. Louis Craft Mafia member Allison Walker Rabbitt of Squaresville's garden.  No, awesome garden.  First of all, when I arrived at her house she told me to ignore the smell, that she was simply making pesticide out of dish soap and peppers because bugs are eating one of her plants.  I'm already impressed.  Multiply my impression by 100 and you know how I felt when I walked into her garden.  By the way, she blogs about her garden and how you, too, can have one just as great here.  I'll try to remember even just a fraction of what all she has growing there: sunflowers that are nearly 10 feet tall, watermelon, corn, squash, peppers, dill (so fragrant!), hydrangea, money plant pods, zinnias...the list goes on--that's just what I can remember off the top of my head!  Not only does Allison have a garden that would put my dinky porch garden to shame, but she is one of the nicest people I've ever met.  Another one that makes you feel like you're special.  We had high hopes of finding a praying mantis to photograph--I REALLY want to start photographing bugs.  While her garden is usually the hippest place for these little guys to be spotted hanging out, alas, they must have known I was coming and decided to bolt for the day.  Maybe some gold finches?  

No...BUT I was able to capture a couple bees.  Boy, do I have a new found respect for people who photograph that insect.  Those suckers just don't stay still.  I'm going to post one of the bee pictures--please don't laugh.  I also took a very mediocre picture of a painted lady butterfly.  I feel like if I post the picture it will hurt my rep as a decent photographer. Maybe if I put a cool effect on it you won't think it's so terrible.

All the shots I did in the garden were macro. Here are some of my favorites.

After Allison's, I headed to a meeting with Cindy Vickers of Loosen the Leash.  This is a really great program in the St. Louis area that pairs up incarcerated juveniles with rescued shelter dogs.  The boys train the dogs for three months, making the dogs highly adoptable and changing the boys' lives for the better.  It's had great success.  I recently approached Cindy to see if I could do a photo documentary on the program, in which I will study it for at least a year in the hopes of printing a show, self publishing a book, and most importantly bringing more publicity to the Loosen the Leash.  Cindy gave me an enthusiastic YES! and I'll hopefully start photographing next week after the board approves.  Stay tuned for posts on that!  I'm so excited!  Speaking of dogs, last night was a lovely night for walking dogs at Stray Rescue.  It took a little longer because we were one person short, but Joe and I gave each of the dogs a nice long walk to drain that built up energy.  Two really great dogs have been adopted in the last week.  Enjoy your forever homes, Judas and Cletus!

And now Tuesday (for those of you who have lasted through this long post):  Today Joe took off work for Bastille Day.  No, he's not French, but he has so many vacation days built up at work that he is able to take off random days for the hell of it.  Don't think we didn't wish each other a happy Bastille Day, though.  We spent the day doing laundry and running errands (bought some kick ass Pyrex bowls made by the Unite Steel Workers--haaaaay!).  We spent nearly $80 on various nuts, trail mix, and power bars to bring with us to Iceland for the days we are away all day on tours, like The Golden Circle, bird watching, and whale watching!  We came home and finally, after months of waiting for season 7 to come out, got back into watching Degrassi: The Next Generation.  If you haven't checked out this amazing Canadian teen drama, you must.  It goes there!  Joe and I have been fans for nearly four years now.  We've already watched three episodes today.  It definitely felt like something in my life was missing while we weren't watching it.  
This evening we cracked open the cantaloupe we bought at Whole Foods today, and I took pictures of the viola, fig tree, and basil on our porch.  The melon is super tasty, and as you can see, the figs are almost ready to pick for eating.  The viola here is there very first bloom of the bunch, and the basil still has some grwoing to do.

Alright!  You have just survived my longest post ever! Congratulations on making it this far!  Phew!  More to come later this week!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Let Them Eat Art! 2009

If you're looking for something to do tonight in the St. Louis area, come to the Maplewood Bastille Day celebration Let Them Eat Art!  This is a self-guided live art and entertainment event, including 3 St. Louis Craft Mafia tents--one of which I'll be vending at.  In addition to our crafty selves, you'll be able to check out belly dancing, dream interpretation, top spinning, face painting, live music, a fire-shooting ice cream truck (I gotta see this), and, of course, food and drinks.  Festivities run from 6 p.m.-11p.m.  It's Mardi Gras meets Christmas Tree Walk!  Hope to see you there!