Thursday, November 17, 2016

Starting ..











Noelle's boys



Don't worry..I know it's not Christmas..but it seems to be right around the corner and I don't know how in the world that happend.
I have to say..the older we get..I think..the faster  the days go by.

American Thanksgiving..is the 24th of November..a day short of one month from Christmas..I admire that they do so much in one month!
And I hope everyone has a Happy one.


You know I love painting and am useless from my mind..
or flowers or landscapes...it is as if I cannot translate 3d into flat..

..I must go back to "Drawing  with the left side of the brain",there is an acetate sheet to help you to do that..I am always so impatient to progress that I regress...but give me something I can try and copy and I love it..I just read in the book ..A Little Life..that I am a copyist..
BTW..the book is sometimes very hard to read..not for it's length,702 pages..but for the suffering some have to endure.
It is graphic..and sad.
It does however show us that some people are incredibly loving and kind and nice.
It's just that sometimes..one is so marked..there is no turning back.

..the painting to the left is an old Christmas card I copied..you just look at the card..and draw it on a watercolor paper and then paint to your liking..the middle one is really a pink and blue birthday card w/ a chicken or two..I changed the clothes and colors and left out the chicken..the one to the right was also inspired on an old card I kept..
This is what I love doing because..I am sometimes happy enough with the results..flowers..kill me:(

Yet I LOVE them.

Not all my Christmas cards are hand painted..just a few..

because I love some bought cards too..I was just feeling inspired..I have to start early enough in the fall..because we are 12..there are stockings to fill..(8)and gifts to wrap..and I hate wrapping a multitude of gifts..I love wrapping individual ones w/ special attentions given..mass wrapping is..ok let's get this over with..
That's the spirit!:)

The 3 top Christmas cards were painted with..different paints different companies..
I would be hard pressed to tell you which was what..sorry!

But I did want to tell you about 2 little sets I bought ..
that I like***..
The sets have all the cute appeal you could want w/ the black shiny metal case w/ thumb holder underneath..(VG quality)..
All the paints are wrapped in clear then paper wrappers..all numbered and they come w/ a card to paint the colors w/ varying transparency..
I am not an expert at doing this..but am trying to do this w/ every set that comes to live with me..
I bought The Tropicals..and The Classics.
I painted the reindeer w/ the Tropicals..
my first try..  as a copyist of course.
for some reason the reindeer looks paler here..and I will add glimmering snow and place it on a card backround..
I asked Jacques.."Do you find these colors chalky and dull?" Or vibrant?
He said vibrant..
..granted they are not JUICY like M Grahams or Daniel Smith or Sennelier..but I love them.
My daughter's friend's adorable little boys..painted with the Tropicals also..Ipad photo..I am not well suited for phone pics or Ipad ones..she posted this photo on FB..and I tried to COPY the photo.
It appeared to be taken on a wharf..the day was dull..and 2 ducks were swimming by..

Fun fun little kits for travel..or home.
Try finding a pratical beautiful case like this..plus the plastic half pans..and paint for the price.
I don't want to sound cheap..
but all my pearls are not real.

**** These are not for first class  watercolorist aficionados..just saying;) Artists that swear by certain makes..I guess they would call them student grade.. I am  a student so they work for me and my small pleasures..I did buy 2 sets of more artist grade paints but I have yet to open them.

When I bought my Fiat..lol.. the car connaisseurs came out of the woodwork..and said..OH NO!!
I said OH YES.
6 years later..I still love it..well you can't love a car..so I still like it.

My Grumbachers are the chalkiest paints I have and many artists swear by them.

But these little Prima sets suit me wonderfully..and I do have more expensive ones.

PS no one told me to write this:)No one paid me..not sponsored..but the day I got these I wrote an Amazon review after opening 3 colors and trying.





Don't know if you can make out a bit of the name Bill on the table..my brother carved that when he was a child:)maybe it does not show in this area..
Caroline carved her work of art on one of our couches..all I could say was :"Wait 'till your father gets home"..
~ That was my line.

So if you are not getting cards ready..etc..you can..



You can start making bird treats:)...



And getting some of the ornaments organized♥



Footnote..

Leonard Cohen passed away last week:(

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3n7WmzfYy00

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NGorjBVag0I&feature=share

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6o6zMPLcXZ8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YrLk4vdY28Q

And Flanders' Fields..

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2016/11/11/leonard-cohen-in-flanders-fields-remembrance-day-2016_n_12908096.html


All the above are so worth listening to..take the time..sit back..and ..perhaps   be ready to be moved.

71 comments:

  1. Oh my Monique, what a busy bee you are and having so much fun doing it. Busy month and I just found out I'm having Thanksgiving at my house. I hadn't planned on it. Tried to talk them into going out to eat or buying it somewhere, but no, they want the traditional fare. Love your cards and will have to look at links. With two weenies in my lap and no glasses to see, I can nearly type.

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    1. LOL Donna.. I think last year you went out? Or not? I remember you having a little something go wrong?Maybe you said NEXT year we are going out..:)I often have things go wrong:)

      I bet it will be delicious and fun..your Littles..and a future Little:)

      Can you start making stuff...ing..;) now?

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    2. Good memory Monique. I had it, but had never used the oven, cooktop etc. That and I just don't enjoy cooking for two days anymore. The only ones attending will be moi, middle daughter and her two littles and new boyfriend. It is hard to cook a Thanksgiving meal for so few. Yes, I can start a little early, but I am going to buy some of the stuff pre-made, and I think my daughter will figure it out.

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    3. Good idea! Less stress! Would they notice if it was a chicken?:)

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    4. The turkey is what middle daughter is bringing.

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  2. You inspire me. I am looking forward to after the holidays, January. It will be chilling outside and I hope to get my watercolors unpacked and start painting again.

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    1. I hope you do:) Did you bring them to the new home? Bet you are searching the internet..the great thing is..one of them..is that you can jump on the future house of your dreams since you are renting:) I wish for you a great spot that you will love.

      And shre your watercolors:)

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  3. Love that reindeer and the boys! And i love watercolors!!! You are so talented and I'm envious, can hardly draw a straight line. Kind of funny with "Bill" on the table. Reminds me of our older son when he was young and "sawed" a dining room chair with the saw from his toy tool set. Happy painting and creating!!!

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  4. Good Morning Monique...
    I am so glad i got to see this post today...your cards are so delightful, I ♥️ them so much...so VERY talented, indeed!
    I have done the front door, (as you saw) and I have a beautiful front step urn, that Erika gifted to me!
    Oh how I wish I could paint! I tried with Vivian...she was better than me! hahaha!
    Just off to the cottage for 2 sleeps...gonna be 19 tomorrow! Yippee!
    Have a great day Monique...
    Cheers!
    Linda :o)

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    1. You too..Linda..you are so crafty..I am sure if you got a little set and tried to copy something you see..you could do it:)
      I am certain:)

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  5. I'm in love♥with the watercolors! So many pretty colors! You will have some lucky birds soon!!
    Hugs, Jody

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    1. The bird seed girl is from years ago..I'm not quite there yet:)
      Thanks Jody!

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  6. Well, Amazon just got another order. I am WILD about those tropicals and I think I'll order the vibrants too because -- well, why not! I love all your cards. And I, too, am a copyist. On my own photos I use the graphite technique on the back but when I'm trying to copy something else it is freehand like you do, looking at the source and then changing it, much as you did by adding and subtracting. (I'm thinking I might have or have had that card where you took the chickens out!) Sometimes I buy cards to learn things and help me practice.

    I also like to buy cards, too -- and get them every year on sale after the holiday. And this year I ordered about 50 of the photo cards for mostly family and really close friends who are far away and that we don't get to see often.

    How do you hold your birdseed ornaments together. I'd love to try some of those for Lizzie's bird friends.

    I'm working on my Christmas card watercolor class post now -- just have to upload the finished product pix! Tis the season!

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    1. I hope you like them.."jujj"them first..by wetting..they get juicier..the card was from Trader Joe's last year and I was instantly smitten..as you were I am sure:)

      Here is a link to my birdseed post..go to the end..the recipe is there:)

      If you want to read a bit more about the Prima watercolors..you can start here:)

      http://www.parkablogs.com/content/review-prima-marketing-watercolor-confections-tropicals

      I get such a kick out of trying things:)
      I guess you do too!
      Looking forward to your post on the watercolor cards!!

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  7. Thank you for mentioning Leonard Cohen...Thank you for sharing your new sets and your paintings. Of course I want them too, now, just after I settled in with my "refurbished" set, all mixed and matched with the half pans. I love the little wrappers with the pretty handwriting, like each one is a treasured gift. I think the different palettes must be inspriring, and as I said before, I think it doesn't matter whether it student grade or not, what matters is how we feel when we are using them..I think you are a natural for the delicacy and the flow of watercolor.
    When my town has its "Early Bird Sale" I'm going to buy a little boxed sampler of 6 Daniel Smith tubes. I checked in the art shop today and they are still there.
    I had a car once that I lthink I loved, a teal Honda Civic...
    How fun to be looking forward to Christmas. The volunteer firemen hung our town decorations today.
    And yes, what you said about loving, kind people...
    Now I'll go to your Leonard Cohen links...How I love deep in my heart certain songs of his!!!!!

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  8. I had to stop posting links to Leonard Cohen's songs..

    There are so many that I love..and so many musicians/artists have sung his words..♥

    We have town firemen too♥
    We did read today..that he passed in his sleep ..peacefully at home..but after a fall.

    You will not regret Daniel Smith paints..and W. Graham's are pretty terrific also..

    but the Primas..are even enjoyed by accomplished artists on IG.

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  9. Monique, copyist or not, you are very talented. Your paintings are what you see. I think they are wonderful, especially the ones of the little boys. Truth be told, copying is how we learn.

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    1. Thanks for the encouragement Laurie..Maybe you are right!

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  10. These watercolors are so so lovely, Monique. I missed my visits to your beautiful space, always something wise and wonderful waiting here.
    Amalia
    xo

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    1. Thank you so much Amalia..what kind words..I've not had any notices that you have a new post..I must go see..

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  11. Love your paintings Monique. Still a cold lingers, still reeeling from the election here but will be with Lillian for part of the day. Once she gets over the shock that it is not mommy she will give me her smile. Busy with thanksgiving prep. You Canadians are so smart to celebrate in October, it gives you time to catch your breath between holidays. Bon weekend my talented friend.

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    1. You have had a year of great ups..and some difficulties..By 2017..I hope all is well..
      Oh you're not the only one reeling..
      I think many many agree with you.
      Having Lillian for part of the day..makes everything alright♥

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    2. Yes it does Monique. Thanks for understanding. I think a fair amount of us will have real envy of Canadians as you still have Justin Trudeau and his family.

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  12. Love love love your bird treats!!!
    Yum yum

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  13. Love your cards, anyone who gets a hand painted one has to appreciate how special they are. You are unfortunately right about how fast time goes by. We are traveling to south Florida to spend Thanksgiving with our son, then I have to get our tree up and decorated. So much to do and so little time.

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    1. I know..it flies by Karen..have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your son..and Happy Thanksgiving to you:)

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  14. I am moved Monique. Leonard Cohen. What a voice. I am not sure that such talent exists today, or maybe I am just getting old! (Probably the latter!) Where do I begin. Your art, so beautiful. I recognise the centre one. I was the lucky recipient of a card from you with that one on but with the chickens. So beautiful. All your work is. Your photography. Your cooking. Your paintings. Your words. Your paint sets look like pretty little jewels. You are a treasure my dear friend but what's most important of all, you are nice, nice, nice. Love you to bits. I try to be, and fail miserably sometimes, but you just are. Oops, I must have had some cinnamon under my nails because now some of my keys are decorated with it! Have a beautiful day. xoxo PS - Love the ornaments!

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    1. PPS Time does fly! They say when you are having fun. I Must have had a REALLY FUN life! ☺

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    2. You make me laugh in a nice way Marie..

      I have read your enties for years..if anyone is kind and good..OMG it's you..(gosh..I said gosh..:))
      And talent? You could sell some and still be left with an abundance of it.
      Yours truly..

      Goodie ONE shoe.

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  15. Your painted cards are beautiful, Monique! Can't quite make out the carving on the table - LOL. We still have evidence of a drawing on our stone fireplace wall :) The two boys ♥. Your paint sets are charming. I love how the paints are wrapped and categorized by Tropical, Classic, etc. I wish we had more of a break between our two big holidays. It does get stressful with so much to do packed into the span of one month. Gobble Gobble/Fa La La...talk about time flying :) I have started working on our card with the elements, papers, etc. It's time consuming but fun. Thank you for pointing me in the right direction :)>

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    1. Oh Susan..I tried typing a response w/ my Nexus..you should see that spell correction.I was mortified..thank goodness I saw it!

      The boys wrote on your fireplace?:):):)
      I loved that too re the paints..candies.
      True w/ the Gobble Gobble /Falalala..
      I know you will have wonderful TG..so much to be so grateful for!
      I hope I get to see a card:)

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    2. After I read my comment, I too thought, what are you talking about? :) It was Lindsay who wrote on the fireplace, the two boy was supposed to mean I ♥ the painting of Noelle's two boys. You will see the card :-)

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    3. Another thing I forgot to mention, I spied the cute updated photo of Noah and the adorable pic of Lucas and Mas kissing Oli on the cheeks. So cute, all of them!!

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    4. Thanks Susan..and now I know about the fireplace:)
      Imagine if we were face to face..we would not get a word in edgewise:)

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  16. Your cards are lovely. Always a pleasure to view your sweet paintings. Love the names of the collections, fun and easy to remember. Love the gingerbread bird treat. I suppose we could make them out of any mold. Here's hoping your Thanksgiving is wonderful. I suppose my husband and I are going out for dinner, it's just the two of us. I do love cooking a nice dinner and having the leftovers.

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    1. We had ours..ours is in October..

      I know you will have a wondeful TG..and I know wherever you pick..willbe quite unforgettable:)

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  17. Never too early to start Christmas. My house is already decorated to a degree. Only because it will be on a Christmas House Tour on Dec. 3rd. That means I have to be ready. Love your cards! Anyone would be happy to get one Monique.

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    1. I hope you will show us how you prepare for it..great idea..we have home and garden tours..no Christmas ones..

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  18. I love those top three cards - that tiny Christmas tree - oh so pretty. I'm really getting ready for the holiday - mentally, not physically :) But I did bake this week and am sending goodies to a 94 year old lady in Chicago who was kind enough to help me with her heirloom cookie recipe - coming soon! Have a lovely weekend. We're in full-on Thanksgiving preparation! Busy times - but lovely too. Thanks!

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    1. I bet you are in full swing with your newly expanded yet again family..
      Looking forward to your post..wondering if it will be a videođź‘Ť
      Thanks Tricia.

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  19. Monique, you know you are the first one that pointed out to me that water color paints can be different. Mostly using oils, I realize that the various brands have different properties and shades, but didn't even consider that fact about water colors. Much to learn here. I love that reindeer and don't think you are copying. You are recomposing and creating with your own flair! Thanks for the inspiration xo

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    1. You always inspire me..not only with your art but with your gracious nature.
      They do have different qualities..transparency..juiciness,vibrancy..chalky..some with honey..some artisan made on IG..Greenleaf sell out before they are listed on Etsy almost.
      Your latest work is beautiful Gail..thinking of you.

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    2. Thanks Monique xox -- I am following Greenleaf on IG, will have to try them :) Speaking of IG, I was unpleasantly surprised recently at the discovery that someone that I was following and admiring on IG took one of my photos off my blog and posted it on IG without attribution. I guess since she cropped it a bit she thought she was making it her own!

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    3. Your photos are wonderful and they are yours and yours alone to share unless you give permission.At least I have been told that.
      you must have been taken by surprise..did you mention anything?

      The Greenleaf products sell the instant or before they are listed..quite unbelievable.

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  20. Love that reindeer! If I ever get a chance to paint, I will refer to your info. In the meantime, my decoupage plates keep me busy. AND I do paint on them too!

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    1. It's so nice having a hobby we love..or a business like yours:)Keeps the mind and hands busy:)Have a good weekend!

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  21. Chez moi aussi, Noël commence le 15 novembre ! ;-) J'aime d'ailleurs plus ces quelques semaines à la fête de Noël en elle-même ... Bravo pour tes "préparatifs graphiques" ! Ces petites aquarelles sont tellement jolies ...
    Bisous et bon dimanche
    Hélène

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  22. Merci Hélène..moi aussi j'aime beaucoup cette saison de préparatifs!Je sais que tu fais tout avec beaucoup de coeur!

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  23. I always love your paintings, Monique. Who cares if you copy? I pretty much copy every recipe I post, it's a sincere form of flattery, after all. :) The Christmas tree is my favorite of those three. Adorable.`
    No...haven't done one thing for Christmas! Thought about it though. My daughter arriving today for Thanksgiving and then she has a booth at an art show in Miami. And oh dear, she's bringing her cat. The cat and I are NOT good friends, but tolerate each other because we both love Tracy. LOL.

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    1. Oh that's funny Barbara..I am allergic..to cats ..and certain dogs..I wheeze..so although I find cats really phottogenic;) breathing is more important to me..
      I would take an elephant to have my daughter home..slight exaggeration:)

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  24. I try not to think (too much) about Christmas until after Thanksgiving. How could it be that time of year already - weren't we just complaining about the heat.
    Just saw your last post - lemon scented Vicks? That is just so wrong!
    Happy painting - you do such a beautiful job and I know that you get so much pleasure from it. xoxo

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    1. Our Thanksgiving is long gone...so we start to get excited about Christmas about now.
      I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving..I know you are so grateful for even the smallest things!

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  25. I thought I already left a comment, I know I was here :-) I always love seeing your paintings. Once Thanksgiving dishes are put away, we start decorating for Christmas. Love it!

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    1. I too love Christmas..bet the little Xavier will have a few gifts:)
      Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours Debbie.

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  26. I beg to differ, I don't think you are a student - you are top notch professional with tons of talent. You would make a great teacher!! *hint* *hint* ;)

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    1. Happy Tanksgiving Bev!:) I have been enjoying YOUR work and your hubby's on IG:)

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  27. Monique, I just wanted to wish you and your family a very Happy Thanksgiving! Have a great weekend!
    Hugs, Jody ♥

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  28. All look beautiful ! I love Christmas so much!! Hugs!

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  29. LOL...I'm totally in the Christmas mood already! :) Love your paintings.

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  30. It is strange the difference between the US and Canadian Thanksgiving. I laughed today telling my husband I am now American as I put up my tree today. Back home it would wait until December. I adore Christmas, the baking, getting the house ready. It is all lovely. I quite like your cards and am marveling you consider yourself a student-I think you are rather good. This week I leave for Japan. aghh so much to do.

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  31. Have I told you how much I love your blog?
    You have a way of making the reader feel warm and fuzzy and comfortable.
    Keep up the good work with the paintings.
    And the wonderful photos!!
    xoxo
    diane @ thoughts&shots

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    1. Diane..I just went to visit you and your beautiful fall header..you've not lost your touch for photography:)
      THinking of you.

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