The weather was beautiful today and I had a mental list planned of the many things I wanted to accomplish. I make a list like that everyday and never get to most of it as it was today. I have really good intentions but the day gets away from me. That's when I find myself in my studio at 2am working on a piece of that list. By the time I mosey in to bed the sun is rising over the pond and it's almost time for Skip to get up. Sometimes I wonder if I intentionally don't get to my list in the light of day. If I stay up until morning, then I can sleep without the vibrations of Skips snoring. It's not his fault but it's not always a restful sleep. I did accomplish something that wasn't on my list. Face book has many stories of all the unwanted animals in shelters and some horrible stories of how they got there. Sometimes I have to scroll down because it upsets me too much. Then I sit and think about how I can help them. We already have 4 dogs, 3 cats and a farm full too many to list. I looked at my dogs and told them how lucky they were to have such a great place to live and CaseyMae looked up at me and seemed to be asking, "how can I help". So I told her, Casey, you're going to learn how to paint and you're going to do it with your tail since it never stops wagging, why not put it to good use. She wagged at me and I took that to mean yes, I'm game, let's do it. First I tried putting a rubber band around her tail and sticking a brush in between. She wagged a few times and the brush flew across the room. I said to myself, Hmm, her tail looks like a brush why not use it like one, dip it into the paint and let it wag. So I filled some empty Chinese food containers with water colors and waited for my friend Dawna who was nice enough to come and help. She said if Casey was going to paint she would need a beret. I thought ok, no self respecting dog should paint without one. Dawna came with a beret that she felted herself. It was perfect. We went on the back deck and told Casey that this was her job and she needed to paint a nice picture to help the shelter. I dipped her tail in yellow, Dawna held the paper and Casey shot that paint in all directions including on to our clothes. It was fun so who cared, anyway it was water color and I chose non staining colors for just that reason. In between colors Casey would lie on her belly and scoot across the snow cleaning herself of paint. I thought to myself, that looks like fun but I was already tail painting with a dog, that's enough fun for one day. We did a total of 6 colors taking a break for her master piece to dry after the first four. She was proud of her job and she should be, it was a fine piece of work and her very first one. After it dried I got down on my knees and painted her pads with black and she proudly put her paw down and signed her work. I am going to mat it and put it up for sale all proceeds will go to ulster county SPCA. I emailed Cindy Brody to ask if she wanted to sell it since she knows many more people than I do and she's been collecting money for them for a long time. I'll let you know where it will go on sale. There might be another puppy artist in this family. My Sheltie SnavelyMill has quite the tail but unlike a black lab who sheds water, she's sable and white with fur that sucks water like a sponge. We'll see, maybe when the hose thaws out.