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September 2013



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How to Preserve the Perfect Weekend!

Baltimore Bend Winery

OK, this only works if you're an artist...or maybe a photographer. But we had a wonderful, relaxed, peaceful, delightful weekend, and I recorded almost every bit of it in my journal--in notes and quick sketches in ink and watercolor (all but that wine bottle, i took my time with that one!)  These records of my days are precious to me--I think if I had to evacuate, my journals are the first things I'd take, after the cats!  (That's assuming Joseph can get out on his own, of course.  Otherwise, kateslover comes first!)

Yesterday we took a long drive through the country and fetched up eventually at the Baltimore Bend Winery outside Waverly, Missouri--in orchard country. I was hungry by then, so we bought a chunk of sharp Missouri cheddar and a bottle of wine and repaired to their deck--after a wonderful wine-tasting, of course!   We even broke out one of the luscious freestone peaches we'd gotten from Schreiman's Orchard, a family-owned business providing wonderful fresh fruit (plus jellies, jams, bread, and even home-smoked bacon) for 80 years.  

I love places like that--I've been going to Schreiman's off and on for 30 years or more.  There are a lot fewer roadside stands along 24 Highway than I remember, but there are still more apples raised in the area than anyplace else in the Midwest south of Michigan.  A half million bushels are shipped from the Waverly/Lexington area every year!  Fruits love the rich loess bluffs by the Missouri River, and the scenery is pretty spectacular, too...it's worth the drive whether we buy any fruit or not...but who can resist?

Turns out grapes like this area too...it produces some excellent wines.  We'd had Baltimore Bend's Joli Vin before, from the Mercantile here in Excelsior Springs, and even after tasting a selection of others, it's still our favorite.  We brought the bottle above home to savor, later!

On Saturday we went to the library, then out to Rocky Hollow lake. What an incredible, glorious day!  Cool, clear, sunny, quiet...I was in heaven!  Got to watch a great blue heron-my favorite bird, like a pterodactyl, at once ungainly and graceful and dignified!--across the lake for close to an hour.  (Good thing we had the binoculars with us!)  

A lovely way to fill the first page in a new journal!

Rocky Hollow

I blogged more about our Saturday adventures on the international group blog, Sketching in Nature--click HERE if you'd like to read more.


Have I mentioned lately that seeing your journal entries makes me profoundly happy, even when I don't comment on them? Because it's true. It really is a wonderful way to keep things forever that would ordinarily be so fleeting, and the art you create is so much more than a mere photograph would be. It has always felt like a love song you're singing to life, even when it goes rough.
No wonder I love you, sweet thing, though we don't chat often! You are a terrific friend, you know that? I feel fortunate to count you as one of mine...

And thank you!
It's so cheering to read about your perfect weekend!
Believe me, it was cheering to experience it, too! *G*
Seconding the happiness brought by pictures, though you don't know me personally. :)

And you may already know this, but in China, the blue heron is a symbol of long life and enjoying it, and of creativity and is the official bird (for lack of a better word) of painters, calligraphers and artists.
Oh, I didn't know it was the official bird of people like us! No wonder I love them so...and thank you, Shuju!


archanglrobriel put it perfectly about this "love song you're singing to life even when it goes rough." Thank you, archanglrobriel. And thank you, Kate, for sharing your songs.
Rob has the soul of a poet...and you're welcome, Annie!
amazing, as i would expect! it is lovely to take a break through your eyes and hands, kate. and of course, i'm in love with the heron.

i was bitterly regretful that i don't normally carry a camera with me. about a month ago, the local marsh/rookery had over a hundred egrets and herons wading in it in the afternoon light. it was fabulous to see! it had to have been their family reunion, or something, because the next day (when i had the camera with me) the marsh was nearly deserted.

i love those long-leggety birds.
Oh my lord! That would have been fantastic, just to see...I seem to leave my camera home at the worst times, too!


What a wonderful journal entry - a beautiful weekend, so perfectly captured that I feels as though I'd been there. I never tire of seeing your gorgeous watercolors.
Thank you so much, Casey! It was just a wonderful, peaceful time...glad I have a record of it.


I am also a fan of visiting wineries, GBH's and of course, a huge fan of your work. I would really like to do the journaling sketch books if I ever get proficient enough to make them look like something. What a great way to remember all the those little moments we experience in our life that typically get lost and forgotten about along the way. I can see sitting around as an elderly person looking through these books, and remembering what an interesting and enjoyable life I have had!

Re: GBH's

Keep your eyes open, I may be doing a journaling class before long! We can explore together!