Sunday, February 25, 2024
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Open House, and Catching Up

I seem to have had the need to catch up pretty regularly here these past few months! Two months with my car in repairs dropped a big rock in the middle of my schedule—I had no idea my car would be that long when I dropped it off at the beginning of October, but it needed major repairs to the frame and body work to pass inspection and be safe to drive.

I’m so glad I work at home and many basic necessities are within walking distance. I’m also grateful to Denise, who has the stray/feral colony on my street, for the use of her car when I really needed it, and I knew it was also there if I had an emergency in the middle of the night, which is when they always happen with cats, and I’m also glad that wasn’t necessary! But just the time to plan around borrowing a car for getting art supplies or materials for merchandise and custom orders, meeting with commercial customers, picking up printed materials, just taking care of business and helping the local caretakers as much as I could, was like an activity in itself, and some days I spent more time trying to organize transportation than I did getting work done. Because the extra car expense was unexpected, I was also grateful for a few extra design assignments I had from one of my customers, and this also took more time than usual.

The one thing I didn’t do was get out to craft and vendor shows and events, which at this time of the year is a big part of my schedule and a big part of my income. Balanced with being less able to get materials and with less time to make stuff, I missed out on a major and fun part of being a creative person.

Holiday Open House Studio Sale

December 16 and 17, 2017
Noon to 5:00 p.m.
or by appointment if you can’t make it during those hours

To help make up for this I’ve been planning an open house here at the homestead. Back in the 90s when I worked my day job and freelanced, there were far fewer opportunities for selling crafts and merchandise. Each year from 1995 on I had at least one open house event, usually in early December, where people could pick up their finished portraits and visit. I also invited other art customers who’d commissioned portraits or purchased artwork, and friends, and had the cards and other things I’d made on display. Sometimes I had one between Christmas and New Years too, for those who had been too busy before the holidays. I’d planned to continue and expand this event after I began working at home in 2000, but with my brother’s accident and my mother’s cancer diagnosis that year I was still driving around like a crazed bee and would have missed Christmas if I hadn’t wanted to cook a meal, and I never got back to it.

But this year I’m especially looking forward to it, a real way to celebrate getting things back to normal and sharing my work with friends. I realize for those who are not local this is no great benefit, but I’ll also have a sale on things afterward and then, most importantly, get back to work so you get to see more photos and more new creations, especially since finishing off the studio reorganization, also on hold with no car, is part of preparing for this open house. Also, shopping for a new car makes this open house a hopeful event as well.


After Dinner Nap keepsake

And it’s all 25% off*!

I’ll have my artwork and photography up on the walls and some in bins, lots of prints of artwork and photos, small framed items, and all the handmade gift items I have on hand.

Because I build shipping and handling and/or the cost of attending an event into the cost of my products, you are saving the me the trouble by coming to my house!

I will also have for sale…

Pittsburgh CAT Calendar cover.
Pittsburgh CAT Calendar cover.

Rescue, Foster, Rehome, Repeat 2018: Pittsburgh C.A.T. 2018 Calendar

The calendar is not part of the 25% discount because it’s a benefit—and another benefit of buying it here or pre-buying and picking it up here is that the $5.00 estimated shipping will be donated to Pittsburgh C.A.T. in addition to the donation they already get from the calendar, helping even more with the medical costs of rescuing all the cats. So you get to help even more! Click here to read more about it and purchase. I will also be featuring some of the photos and stories from this calendar in the next few days.

I’ll have some snacks and light refreshments, and I’d love an RSVP if you can so I can plan.

And you get to meet my feline family! They have been bored with me lately and will be ready for company. We look forward to seeing you!


For those of you with some awareness of the level of boxes of stuff I’m still sorting from my parents, from my brother, and from my business, wish me luck in getting it all cleaned up, or I may be serving hors d’oeuvre on fabric-draped storage boxes.


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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© 2022 | | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski

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!




From health and welfare to rescue and adoption stories, advocacy and art, factual articles and fictional stories, "The Creative Cat" offers both visual and verbal education and entertainment about cats for people who love cats, pets and animals of all species.

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