I can pretty well see the end of the pre-Christmas studio work now, having moved the last large commission along earlier today. All that's left (unless I've forgotten something, always a possibility) is a few small fun projects for family and friends. And, assuming we make it through Dec. 21st without going up in a puff of smoke, the world will continue to turn whether I get those ones done or not. And if we don't make it past December 21st, thanks for your support and good luck!
Snow keeps falling on a regular basis (more forecast for tonight and tomorrow) and there was enough of a build-up that Jim had to wrestle The Red Hulk out of the garage and deal with the sidewalk and driveway. We have a corner lot so there is a *lot* of sidewalk, plus a double driveway, which adds up to a somewhat strenuous workout for Jim by the time he is done. Don't think we'll need to worry about subsoil moisture come spring.
Daily walks are no longer a given for Toby, who can't tolerate anything below about -12 C / 10 F, but he's been out a couple of times in the past week. Here he is with his new Chilly dogs "sweater" underneath his outer coat. As you can see, the sweater covers quite a few bits that the coat doesn't. I don't know if Toby was blinking or squinting in the bright light--it's been really overcast here for weeks so he's not used to the bright sun and glare off the fresh snow.
Saturday my friend Donna came with me to a riding and mare/foal demonstration day at Copper T Warmblood stables, east of the city. This shot shows the riders at the beginning of their quadrille presnetation. I give them full marks for hardiness as this ring, while lovely, is not heated, so a certain amount of fortitude is involved. I'm sure once they get going they warm up fairly quickly. It was a fun afternoon seeing the horses and riders, and visiting with friends also in attendance.
I had to make a brief foray to the grocery store just after lunch, and decided to take the camera with me as I frequently see ravens around the store parking lots. No sign of a raven the whole way out and back, but right across the street from my house was this fine fellow as I arrived home. He was in the street collecting up some sort of food substance from the road. When he saw me coming he flew up into our big elm tree and spent quite a long time enjoying his snack, clacking his beak, and making various vocalizations. He was pretty relaxed and low key, which makes me think he is likely one of the "new generation" of ravens that have hatched in the city and are much less nervous and wary than the ones that have grown up in the country and migrated to the city.