About Blog Title...

As a child, it was one of my greatest delights to visit my grandparents in the spring when the whip-poor-wills began to call. Grandma and Grandpa lived in a remote valley of the Ozark Mountains where there were trees a plenty, and, seemingly, a whip-poor-will, or two, in each one.
My grandmother insisted that a whip-poor-will's call was not "whip-poor-will," but instead, "chip-butter-white-oak." I would listen really hard trying to hear it exactly as she said it was, but all I could hear was "whip-poor-will, whip-poor-will,..." But, I never let on to her.
I remember my grandpa watching and listening, with an amused look on his face, to one of these listening sessions. Shortly after that he began to call me, just for fun, "Chip Butter." It is a name I am proud to wear for I still love to hear that long, lonesome call on a warm summer's eve. And, sometimes, when I listen really, really hard, it seems I can hear quite clearly, "chip-butter-white-oak, chip-butter-white-oak..."

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Big Hat...

There has been a lot of activity around the hummingbird feeders lately.  These little birds don't fly around, these days, in a crazy frenzy as they did when I snapped the picture below earlier in the summer.  Now, they quickly perch and drink as though their very lives depend on it.  And, I guess it does, for the time to migrate is right on their sweet little tails, and they know it.  Migration is, without a doubt, a serious undertaking.    

Earlier this summer...

Really, they could stay a bit longer for they are leaving a lot behind.  The hummingbird garden, which they have loved,  has never had more blooms than right now.  But, no, they need to go while there's time.  They will remember this place, and they will be back next spring.


It has been a hot and very humid week here.  Miss Chip has done lots of mowing.  Why she even mowed the trail over the hill, including a couple of extra loops over to the woods where the muscadines will soon be ripening.  She has had to wear her big hat every day, so it has certainly been a bad hair week, for sure!

Our favorite photo of the week...

Down by the Creek...

And, next might be this one of a sassafras tree, which is already starting to color up for fall. 

Sassafras tea, anyone?

Monday, August 13, 2018

A Week in August ( this and that from my camera card)...

Passion Flower (from alongside the trail we walk)...

And another...

"coo-ah, coo, coo, coo" ...

Beware the turtle...

Little Island  (with just a touch of fall color, already)…

Montana (in the foreground) and some of the girls...

Several years ago when I dubbed this photo, "This Is Not Montana," this cow was named.  She would, from that day forth, be called Montana. 
The young heifer above looks so much like her, thus we have another "Montana."  (Golly, that looks cold...and it was!)


HOW LONG does it take me to sculpt a head?

 Well, this is what Ralph and Mary Gonzales in their book 
Sculpting the Original Doll
The BluFrogg Method
have to say about that.

"Two days to two years, but usually, at very least, two weeks.  It takes two days to form the head shape, and block the features, and make the details.  I have to flow with the nature and stages of the clay.  On the first day, I do the head shape, block the features, establish the secondary features, and get an idea of who I'm sculpting.  I cover the head with a plastic bag, and fasten it with clothespins.  The second day, I refine, smooth, and consider the tertiary features.  It's these that give the head so much of its expression and character.  Then I have to decide if the head has reached my level of acceptance. 

I said acceptance, not perfection.  Perfection is as nebulous as infinity.  For us humans, there is no such thing.  It is beyond us.  Perfection doesn't belong to us.  That is what we are trying to achieve, of course, but the value of the exercise is in the attempt.  We know full well we can't, but if we were able to make perfect sculptures, perfect dolls, what would there be left for us?"

This work had been put aside for awhile, but is now back on the table.  Now, I am wondering, "How long will it take?"  Hopefully, not two years!  

Monday, August 6, 2018

The Hayloft...

The Hayloft

Through all the pleasant meadow-side
The grass grew shoulder-high,
Till the shining scythes went far and wide
And cut it down to dry.

These green and sweetly smelling crops
They led in wagons home;
And they piled them here in mountain-tops
For mountaineers to roam.

Here is Mount Clear, Mount Rusty-Nail,
Mount Eagle and Mount High; --
The mice that in these mountains swell
No happier are than I!

O what a joy to clamber there,
O what a place for play,
With the sweet, the dim, the dusty air,
The happy hills of hay!

~Robert Louis Stevenson

Well, there is no hayloft here, but there are still "green and sweetly smelling crops."  I do remember my grandparents' hayloft with "mountains-tops" of hay, but we were never allowed to play there.