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Today marks the one-year anniversary of me buying my favorite red Maje dress. Also today I awoke to a text message from my mentor about lanterns. Here’s something you might not know about me: I’m really really into parties, especially parties at my mentor’s house, but I don’t just enjoy attending them, I fully relish the whole experience of going behind the scenes and helping set the stage for these events. I might have thought I bit off more than I could chew today when I saw the lanterns in the Chrysalis. There were so many of them, their electric wires coiled like snakes. But getting them hung ended up actually being fun, and once the party was underway and it got dark out and everyone was taking pictures with the beautiful lanterns, I was so happy to have participated in that adventure.

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Cats Too

In which I have the honor of painting this beautiful cat – and also get to remind y’all that I paint cats too, in addition to dogs, and that I’d be happy to paint other animals as well.

What else? I finished an audiobook that captivated me, about New York in 1885, went to the Y, and made the most amazing thing for dinner: pasta with roast corn and fresh tomatoes and asparagus, all the summer things that I love so much. This absolutely is my favorite season!

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Writing and Walking

My day was comprised mainly of writing and walking. I’ve reached the 1960s part of the story again. To go with it, I painted this dress today, although Betty would have never gotten to wear something so elegant.

I’ve also hung all kinds of animal-themed art in the gallery, starting to get ready for Holly’s birthday party, and fully launching the Dog Days of Summer project.

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From the Deep

No idea exactly why I felt compelled to draw a mermaid today. Maybe it’s because we’re in Cancer season, and it’s a water sign, or maybe it has something to do with my Galveston ghost story. In any case, I like the drawing and I had quite a good day today, from my breakfast meeting with my mentor to discuss a secret project, to my workout with audiobooks, my communication with the special collector about shipping the red Boston to London, buying mini corn dogs for my dog’s birthday party, and finally breaking out of my routine and going out this evening to an event that was not visual arts related: I went to Grown-up Storytime at Rudyard’s in Montrose and it was very well attended and very funny, and, aside from the friend who invited me and a friend of his I might have met once before, there were absolutely no familiar faces in the room. This doesn’t happen much at the things I usually go to, and it was nice to have a fresh reminder that I live in a very big city and there are many many people here I haven’t met. Since tonight’s Capricorn moon is quite powerful in terms of intention setting, I resolve to venture out again soon and to expand my circle.

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Summer Nights

Just a quick sketch capturing some of my favorite things about right now: summer nights, crepe myrtles, the stray frog we occasionally meet on our evening walks, the yin yoga class at the Y that makes me feel like I’m made of melting chocolate, the powerful full moon in Capricorn, and so much more. I’ve had a bit of a slow day today (though I did yoga and elliptical, writing, and cooking), allowing myself to just be in the moment and process how I feel right now, which is pretty good.

The red Boston is hanging in the gallery and I can’t stop looking at her. Her humans loved the picture I posted on my blog. A reader is texting me about her experience reading Dogs with Bagels. I’m about to hang a whole bunch of animal-themed art in the gallery, and I’m sleepy pretty early this evening, which feels good. All in all, it’s been a great day and so far quite a lovely summer.

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A Red Boston!

This is the commission that planted the whole Dog Days of Summer idea in my head – a red Boston! She belongs to someone very special, and there are so many reasons for me to be very excited about this painting.

Also, my Bastille Day party was today and it was a very lovely time. I need to brag a little bit as a small business owner: Things have been going very well this summer, the business feels more like a living organism, a self-sustainable one actually. I think I might be able to really do this, make a good living out of selling art. I always believed it was possible, and yet it feels a little bit surreal now that it’s happening.

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Duck Float

This morning I saw a little girl float on a big yellow duck float in the pool. It was the cutest thing! It was such a relief to have a sunny day, the tropical storm having avoided Houston. I went to the gym, bought champagne for my Bastille Day party, napped, walked the dog, and went out in the evening to see John, Bobby, and Nancy. Tomorrow I’ll wake up early to make quiches. I’m pretty excited!

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Sometimes We Nap

Sometimes Holly and I nap in the afternoon and today it was quite a wonderful idea. My daily exercise routine has been getting me good and tired so I needed the extra rest. I don’t always manage to fall asleep when I want to, especially in the middle of the day, but today I did. I dreamt even, and I woke up refreshed, ready to function. It’s true that I skipped writing, but overall it was a good day, and I felt lighter in favorite white jumpsuit than I have in a long time. I think the exercise is starting to pay off!

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It’s a Bookmark!

So I already told y’all that John found my missing Chanel paperclip in his archives where I’d been roughhousing with the dogs when I lost it. Today he texted to ask where one can buy such a thing, and I ended up doing a little bit of research, in both English and French. It turns out the paperclip is actually a bookmark, which suits me a lot better because books.

Other than that, I went to the Y. I’m getting to like the elliptical, and I am actually losing a little bit of weight, though the exercise gets me good and tired.

There’s a tropical storm in the Gulf, but it will probably hit Louisiana and all we’ll get here is rain. I can handle that. I found myself selfishly thinking that I don’t want the disruption of a storm just now when I’ve developed such a nice routine.

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Blast from the Past

They say things from the past are likely to come up during Retrograde, and I found myself nostalgic for some old friends today, namely the characters of Dogs with Bagels, my first novel. I even reread the first chapter. Funny, I’d always thought it was a bit of a liability, narrated in L’s voice, as it might make readers think the whole story was about her, told from her perspective, when in fact the book does that cool postmodern switch between her first-person account and the third-person one featuring Maria. Rereading it now, all these years later, I thought the voice felt fresh and real and absolutely did what I wanted it to do. In fact, I found it pretty smooth, and took some comfort in the thought that I got it to be that way through many painstaking revisions – which hopefully means that with a lot of patience the ghost story can turn out just as good. And as some point, if I need a break from revising it, I’ll start working on Dogs with Bagels 3. I haven’t really thought of what adventures the characters would get up to in the third book, but I know it’ll still be easy for me to slip into that world.

Also, I’m becoming obsessed with the idea of making audiobooks because well, I’m obsessed with audiobooks. I need to do some serious research on this…