Monthly Archives: December 2014

Day Seven: 12 Days of Christmas Pets

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Artist Julia DeNuzzio did this special  picture for her mother, Sue, for Christmas. The subject is of Matilda, the family’s beloved Bichon who passed away this April. Matilda was the family’s only dog and they had her for 14 years.

“We felt very blessed for having her for as long as we did.” Said Sue. “This is the first Christmas with out her and we really miss her.” That made the painting even more special for the family. “I love the look in her eyes, and the little pink nose is right on.”


Matilda DeNuzio


Julia attends Wake Forest University where she majors in Studio Art and minors in French and Entrepreneurship.




Day Six: 12 Days of Christmas PETS

Scanned DocumentWriter and friend Lynn Reynolds sent in this set of Christmas photos of her cat Tiger.


He liked the Elf on the Shelf, although he apparently felt the shelf was the wrong place for it.


And judging from the maniacal gleam in his eyes, he especially liked the silver snowman Christmas wrapping paper.

Tiger is an old cat (nearly 19) but he still knows how to have fun.

Lynn writes contemporary romantic suspense and mysteries with a chick lit vibe. Her novels include the “chick noir” Thirty-Nine Again, a book that RT Book Review called “a first-class mystery…and first-class read.” Most recently she was featured in Bake LOVE Write edited by Lois Winston. For more on Lynn go to

2014 in review

The real world has prevented me from posting quite as often as I’d like to in 2014, but here, dear reader, are my stats.  Cheers, Rita




The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.



Here’s an excerpt:


The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 30,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 11 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

English: sydney opera house

English: sydney opera house (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Day Five: 12 Days of Christmas Pets

Scanned DocumentMy cousin Shannon Baker commissioned artist Sam Peterson to paint this picture of her dogs Pete and Josie for Christmas a few years ago.

Shannon;s pups

Sam Peterson is a visual artist who explores his relationship with other species using many different mediums. He works on commission, using either photos he takes of the subject, or photos chosen with the client. The works are small, intimate, lively, and thoughtful. His most recent commission was for the recently deceased beagle mix Tangerine, whom he drew in a field of bluebonnets (she’s Texan) that turned into butterflies arching into the sky, representing her now-free spirit.

Learn more about Sam and his art at .

Day Four: 12 Days of Christmas Pets

Scanned DocumentHello kitty… Melo Herpel


Today’s special furry friend is Melo of Accident, Maryland. Melo lives with Grace Herpel. Grace’s aunt Marianna snapped this adorable feline fa la la la la.

Day Three: 12 Days of Christmas Pets

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Today’s Christmas Pet is a “2 fer” and it comes to us via my friend Debby Deweese. Debby and her daughter, Hillary, are the human companions for Shelby and Champion.

Shelby and Champion

Shelby and Champion

Shelby the 10 year old poodle and Champion the 1 year old, three legged chihuahua are new friends for the holidays. Champion can be found on Instagram at champion_the_tiny_dog

A Year of READING Dangerously — #24 In The Night Kitchen


Poor Maurice Sendak… always landing on the Banned List because you insist on depicting humans in their natural form in your fun, imaginative illustrations.  Don’t you know that little kids can’t cope with seeing an illustration of a nude little boy frolicking through a night kitchen?

That’s the only reason I can think that this 1971 Caledcott winner was banned… Nudity.


Day Two: 12 Days of Christmas PETS

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The second offering in our “12 Days of Christmas Pets” comes from artist Jedediah Kahl.




Puppies First Christmas. Copyright Kahl 2014.

Puppies First Christmas.
Copyright Kahl 2014.

Jedediah Kahl is a young illustrator. He earned his AFA degree in Fine Art at the Community College of Baltimore County in 2008 and then transferred to the Pennsylvania College of Art & Design where he earned is BFA is Illustration in May of 2013. Since graduating he has been creating illustrations for several different organizations and companies and operates his own company, Jedediah Kahl Illustration. Some of those organizations and companies include: Cliffs of the Nuese State Park in NC, Saint Joan of Arc Catholic School in Aberdeen, the Maryland Ranger School, Cedar Fort Publishing and Media in Utah and many more.

Jedediah traditionally works by hand with the inclusion of some digital media. Recently his work has incorporated hand drawn black and white ink work with either watercolor or digital color.

Within his company he has published two different books. The first, “You Don’t Understand” is a children’s book meant to teach about sharing and the second, “Edgar Allan Poe’s Tales of the Mind” is an illustrated collection of ten different Edgar Allan Poe stories that explore the workings of peoples minds. He also has a collection of greeting cards and a series of Christmas ornaments.

You can visit his website at:
To contact him you can either submit a submission on his contact page on the website,
e-mail him at or call him at (443) 847-3227.

Day One: 12 Days of Christmas Pets

Updated this post with the 12 Days of Christmas Pets logo (thanks Hannah) and another Photoshopped pic of Honey. Hope you like it.Scanned Document

Merry Christmas every one! This year’s Holiday feature is “12 Days of Christmas Pets” and we’ll be featuring a different animal from now until 12th night (Or  until I run out of adorable images.) Last year’s “12 Days of Christmas Stories” was a big success, and I’m hoping this with help spread some Holiday cheer as well.

I  think I’ll start off this year’s fun with a dog who is near and dear to my heart — indeed she is at my feet as I write this. I bring you my  sweet, spirited, cockapoo, Honey.


RITA Honey's Christmas 3

Honey likes to take walks, bark at inanimate objects and sleep. She is blond with very curly hair. And she is an excellent guard cockapoo (just ask the mailman.)

honey 4 painterly

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