There’s still plenty of color for us to enjoy out there. I am so happy to see flowers on my front porch and in my yard, and Mimi in the midst of all of them, that I have to try to get photos of Mimi and flowers together all the time.
And after a few dark, cold and rainy days, Mimi reminds us that, “Warm sunshine is everything.”
The photos above were also shared on Instagram in the past week.
I know I shouldn’t get attached to objects, but I’m really going to miss this pumpkin planter. The planter, and the plants that are in it, were a get-well gift from a good friend after my hip surgery last October. You’ve seen it in many photos from the deck, especially with Mimi and the turquoise rocker. It’s added just the right color in the house and outside. It’s impossible to glue back together, so I’ll just have to let it go. I have other pots, and now I have memories.
I love the suggestions people shared on IG and Facebook, like making a mosaic with the pieces, or just gluing it back together and still using it. I was going to put it in the bucket with all the other broken pot pieces, but I think I may glue this back together and see how that turns out.
From the backyard and beyond
Missy Doe wants to know, “When are you going to replant all those tasty greens and vegetables in your garden? They tasted so good!” Maybe next year.
Hi. We are enjoying a warm sunny afternoon, even though some of us are shy.
Feverfew is native to Asia, but because it’s so popular as a traditional medicinal for migraine headaches it’s found all over the world. And when you plant it in your yard, you find it all over your yard, so before you plant it make sure you love it! I do! It makes me happy to look at it. I actually wrote a poem about that:
Oh, I can’t stop looking at all the feverfew
in my garden,
I just keep running from one cluster to another
those tiny perfect daisies
in umbels as if floating without stems
on waves of bright green leaves
the dots of dew flashing, sparkling
in the day’s new sun
just arrived over the horizon
its color still warm and yellow
as if it’s a cookie just taken out of the oven
and I have to look at all the feverfew
from every angle
until I’m done looking
and I discover I’ve forgotten all the problems of yesterday
and all the ills of the world that I feel the need to carry
and I’m laughing
and dripping with dew myself
and visualizing stunning works of art
and amazing poetry and prose
most of which will ever be realized
nor do they need to be
the inspiration only needs to settle into my soul in this early morning in June
and its glow will warm heart
and keep me laughing with joy
through the day
and the next
and the next.
Poem “Feverfew” by Bernadette E. Kazmarski © 2008
On Another Topic
Pet Memorial Sunday, and Now New Things
Pet Memorial Sunday was September 13, and that evening I sat down and composed this post to share the day and my plans as I finished that huge project and moved onto the next. I then promptly fell asleep at my computer and never posted it. Where did September go?! I’m just not sure. I am glad to have been busy and earning money through this month, but I miss posting regularly, and every time I think I’m going to be able to start up again, something else comes up. I think it’s going to be that way for a while, so I’ll just go with it.
Here is what I had to say that Sunday evening:
Today was Pet Memorial Sunday, and all the hard work of the past few weeks, especially the past week, was a success we couldn’t imagine. We made an in-person event for usually about 25 people held under a tent into a mostly-virtual event with one live COVID-safe gathering with somewhat unusual instructions. At some point I will share the videos we produced and the slideshow presentation of a grief workshop, soon the updated version of the tribute video that we shared today, and also a new product that made a sort of debut today. The most gratifying thing was that the people who joined us were all committed to being there, following their part of the script, keeping everyone safe, and very thankful that we decided to do what we could this year when they’ve felt so isolated in their grief. And Deb can continue to share the materials we transferred to video presentation for families who use her services, so she and I also achieved one of the goals we’d had for her everyday business.
My cats will be happy I’m not spending all day at my computer, and we’ll all be happy to get to bed earlier! And I’ll be happy to get back to making new things (wait till you see the new stuff) and posting
Loving Again After Loss
I’m always happy to speak on this topic. It’s focused on why we choose to live with animals, especially after a loss. Deb watched me over a period of years lose a number of cats, then gain a number of cats, then lose again, and decided I would probably have something valuable to say about loving and losing and loving again, and I always draw from my own experiences:
In 2011 I spoke about losing all my senior cats in one year, and then losing Lucy, but that she brought me Mimi and her children.
In 2012 I spoke about losing my two oldest kitties, Cookie and Kelly, in one year and though I’d just lost Kelly a month before I knew it had changed my relationship with cats forever.
In 2013 I spoke about taking in Lakota and Emeraude knowing my relationship with them would be brief, and losing Lakota after six weeks but loving him nonetheless ( I didn’t realize I hadn’t shared this here, but had had it published in Pittsburgh PetConnections in September 2013. I will probably share this article again this coming Sunday as its own feature).
In 2014 I mentioned that our relationship with pets is not all about us, but about both of us, we and our pet and what each of us feels and gives and takes to and from each other, and pointing out that fosters, Emeraude, Kennedy and Basil, then named Smokie, had each been abandoned and even grievously injured by humans, and yet let go of that pain and turned around to love and trust another human who was a complete stranger.
In 2015 I spoke about animals being healers, and how they can soothe our grief without us even knowing it.
In 2016 I related the stories of people I’ve known and the decisions they made. That presentation seemed to fit the best and it’s the presentation I’ve given each year after that.
Why do we take animals into our lives?
Because we need them, and also because they need us, and we can’t fear to love for fear of loss.
Perhaps I’ll see you there. If not, my thoughts will be with my own losses, and all those I’ve read about in the past year.
And the photo we used for this year’s invitation is one of mine, from October this year. Butterflies, because they change from one form to the next but continue to exist, are often seen as the spirits of our loved ones visiting us, and purple symbolizes many things including mourning, remembrance and the fight against animal cruelty.
Gifts featuring cats you know! Visit Portraits of Animals
I took this photo one June morning in 2009, less than two weeks before I lost Namir, who along with Cookie spent time out in the yard with me every morning in those years. I remember turning around and seeing these prints on that flagstone as the three of us walked along the path, and hurrying to get the photo before the prints began to dry in the sun. The memory was so strong and I immediately began to form the final title of the image even before I knew what I’d do with it. I remembered it daily, knowing that Namir’s heart couldn’t hold out much longer. It was one of the first designs I visualized when I decided I really would go ahead and design the Animal Sympathy Cards.
All images and text used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission, although links to your site are more than welcome and are shared. Please ask if you are interested in using and image or story in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of an image or a product including it, check my animal and nature website Portraits of Animals to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.
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Weekly schedule of features:
Sunday: Essays, Pet Loss, Poetry, The Artist’s Life Monday: Adoptable Cats, TNR & Shelters Tuesday: Rescue Stories Wednesday: Commissioned Portrait or Featured Artwork Thursday: New Merchandise Friday: Book Review, Health and Welfare, Advocacy Saturday: Your Backyard Wildlife Habitat, Living Green With Pets, Creating With Cats And sometimes, I just throw my hands in the air and have fun!
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