Day 2 of 30 in 30-Peaceful morning

Day 2- Peaceful morning….  I saw this cow on my way home from dropping my daughter off at school one day. I loved how peaceful she looked with the sunrise coming up. Isn’t it pretty how the sunlight touches her?

peaceful morning-2-sm



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Day 1 of 30 in 30

I decided to kick off the challenge with one I have been working on for a little while….This is a local scene in a neighboring town, named Moosup, during the summer. I was driving through town, and saw these two beautiful homes in their glory. One had beautiful purple flowers all in bloom, hanging from the porch rafters, and the other was proudly dressed in patriotic colors. They complimented each other beautifully, and I knew I had to paint them. I added a pretty little flower stand, as I am imagining the lady of the house trying to fund her flower habit. There are worse habits to have!

I named this “Moosup’s beauty row”, as I feel that’s what it is!

Moosup's beauty row-sm.jpg

This is a gallery wrapped canvas, meaning it does not need a frame, and is available in my etsy shoppe.

To see other art in the challenge, please click here

To visit my etsy shoppe please click here


An urban legend within our family

Not everyone has an urban legend in their family.  But my family does.  The first time I heard about it was when I was a brownie, in about 2nd grade.  I came home and excitedly told my parents at supper, all about the witch of Hell Hollow.  How people have vandalized her grave, and then got into accidents after.  How she haunts the woods near her grave.  Imagine my shock when my parents calmly told me that she was my Aunt.  Yes, you read that correctly, Maude Reynolds is my Great Aunt.  In fact my great Grandmother, the one that gave me my silver that I use for holidays, was her sister in law.  I wish I had thought to ask my Grandmother more about her when she was alive, but honestly our family never paid much attention to all the talk about Maude.

The reason we never paid much attention to it is because it was a family member.  A young girl that passed away from Diphtheria.  To us it was a sad story about a young girl that died tragically young.  Not a witch that haunted those that disrespectfully treated her grave.  Maude was born to Mercy and Charles Reynolds and was one of 8 children.  My great Grandfather was her brother, another Charles.  Maude was about 7 or 8 when she choked on an apple, and passed away.  It was believed that she had diphtheria, which causes your throat to swell, and can cause choking.  She was buried in a spot chosen by her grieving mother, so she could see the grave from her kitchen window.

Maude’s sister Lydia, married a man that took care of the grave faithfully till he passed away.  I remember going by the grave when I was young, and seeing a little white fence, and some flowers blooming.  Instead of respecting a gravesite, people took this innocent fence and flowers as a challenge, to desecrate and ruin a sacred site. I even went to school with a girl that proudly told me she had urinated on Maude’s grave.  Shameful.    Uncle Jesse faithfully tended to the grave with love for years until his passing.  The grave now sits neglected, with just a few stones to mark it.  I still hear tales of kids visiting the grave, and hope that eventually people will let her rest in peace.  For how would you feel if this was your family member?  I know how I feel.  Disappointed.  That people have no respect for someone that tragically perished young.  Our family has a different take on the legend,  a heart broken mother looking out her window to her daughters grave.  And a man that took care of the grave for years.  Maybe if people hear the other side of the story, a more relatable side, they will let her rest in peace.  In the meantime, my family enjoys our lilacs from the Reynolds Homestead and the love that Uncle Jesse showed by devotedly taking care of her for years.  Because to us the urban legend is the care that Uncle Jesse showed for years, rather than the disrespect of others.


This photo is Maude’s parents, with a little girl.  The photo has faded so much, its hard to tell who the little girl is.  But I enjoy the photo as its a photo of my great, great grandparents, in front of what may have been their home on Hell Hollow.

Making new Traditions at a Sanno Spa

Grieving and healing

On Black Friday last year, I had a pretty horrific day.  My mother was removed from life support and passed away. After lots of research on grief, I found one suggestion that has helped me immensely.  Make new traditions.   I have done this with all the holidays this past year, and I wanted to do the same on the first anniversary of her death.

So on Black friday this year I wanted to do something nice.  Something wonderful to help fade the memory of that awful day.  I came up with the idea of a spa day with the remaining women in my life, and family.  My daughter just turned 16, and has been asking to go to a spa, so it seemed like the perfect time.

The Spa that I picked is one that I have visited before with a girlfriend.  Its Sanno Spa, in Old Saybrook.   The peacefulness of the spa and beautiful landscape paintings throughout, relax me.  I told my family my plan, and they all agreed to go.  Who would not want to visit a beautiful spa and spend the day with loved ones?  It sounded like a great idea, and it certainly was.

The concrete walk leading to the spa entrance had large stately columns, decorated with colorful red bows and garlands of evergreens.  It was a festive and bright welcome for us.

Photo Nov 24, 10 35 15 AM.jpg

After signing in, we all went to our treatments, for most of us either a massage or facial.  After these wonderful treatments, we enjoyed a delicious lunch at Fresh Salt, and had a toast in honor of my mother.  Eating lunch in our bathrobes, takes some getting used to, but no one gave us a second look, as we  were not the only ones enjoying being pampered on this day.  Our server even gave us blankets to put on our laps to keep us warm.  This spa certainly thinks of everything.

After lunch, we had a few more treatments of manicures, or pedicures, and some lovely time at the pool or hot tub.

Photo Nov 24, 4 18 50 PM

The sun was setting and we took a few moments to enjoy the pretty harbor and buildings with Holiday decorations.  We changed back into our clothes, settled our bill, and returned to reality.

Photo Nov 24, 4 07 31 PM.jpg

On our way out we were once again treated to the sight of the harbor building silhouetted with lights against the darkening sky.  Yet another treat for our special day.

Photo Nov 24, 4 50 37 PM

We enjoyed our pampering, our delicious lunch, but most of all enjoyed our time together.  It was my daughter, sister in law, mother in law, niece and future daughter in law that joined me today.  And helped me to get through an anniversary of a terribly awful day.  What better way to get over a day like that, but to start a new tradition, with the rest of the wonderful women in my family.  I am a grateful woman tonite, and a lucky one.

Day 19- S & P Oyster House

Day 19 of the painting challenge…

Day 19 of the 30 in 30.   This is a painting inspired by a pic I took after a delicious dinner at this restaurant. Parking isn’t easy here, so we had parked across the river. So it was a nice evening walk to our vehicle, and once we arrived at our truck, we were rewarded with this pretty sight. I loved the American flag overlooking the twinkling lights and gentle river.
So of course I was inspired to paint it.

S & P oyster house-sm



This painting is 10″ wide by 14″ high.  If you are interested, please visit my etsy shoppe.

Etsy shoppe


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Day 17- Patriotic Front

Day 17 of the painting challenge…


Day 17 of the 30 in 30.   This was inspired from a pic I took of a local house in my town.  I just happened to see it, and enjoyed the patriotic display.  So I snapped a photo to paint it later. If you know me, I love to paint our flag.

That’s one of the nice things about phones, having a camera conveniently available.  I have over 10,000 pics on my phone.  Yes, you read that correctly.  I am now in the process of trying to figure out how to organize them.

Patriotic front-sm


This painting is 8″ wide by 10″ high with a ribbon for hanging.  If you are interested, please visit my etsy shoppe.

Etsy shoppe


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Day 15 Shippee Homestead

Day 15 of the painting challenge…

Day 15 of the 30 in 30.   This is a commission I have been working on of a local home.  This is the final one of three that I have done for this collector.  She has been very generous and has been purchasing them for her family members.  So thoughtful of her!

This painting has lots of details. Grandpa’s initials and milk can, Dad’s truck, Mom’s roses, and so many other moments only visible to the recipient.  That’s what can be magical about art…. the memories it can evoke.

Thank you to Jane for entrusting me to capture your memories.

shippee homestead panoramic-sm


If you would like to see the art in the challenge, please click on link:

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