Category Archives: claude monet

Some Blue Monday, RA-Style; Future Plans



It’s raining here . . . and it’s supposed to rain through the day and the night and tomorrow and tomorrow night and finally. maybe, taper off on Wednesday. Not surprisingly, we are under a flash flood watch. One of those times I am glad I live on a hill, Pecan Ridge, to be exact.

Pecan Ridge is also the name of our fledgling video production company. Yes, this is one of the other projects I’ve hinted about recently.

Benny has actually been making very professional-looking commercials for the car dealership for quite a while now, as well as producing videos for use in arts council productions and filming the productions themselves. He’s also done some other events–and he’s good at it. He says I am the creative one of the two of us, but that’s not true. He’s just modest, as well as smart and talented and adorable. Not that I am prejudiced or anything.

Now we are getting ready in the next few months to launch our own business with his (soon to be retired) co-worker, a fellow video enthusiast who has been filming a number of sporting events over the years and has helped Benny with a couple of his projects.

I will be learning Adobe Illustrator and more about the whole process of video editing, as well as doing some videography and shooting still photos at various events. And who knows? You all may benefit from what I learn. I might make a “real” RA fanvid! 😀 We’ll be creating a website for Pecan Ridge Productions later, too.

I will also be working on the children’s book. I have my notes taken and now I need to tackle putting the story in language a young child can grasp and find interesting.  And there’s my novel. Leigh, my beta and muse, and I have been talking about that again. Guy and Lizzie’s story must be told.  Nobody’s saying it’ll be a runaway best seller, but at least whatever I produce, I won’t be ashamed that I “sold out” along the way just to make a buck.

And, of course, I will be blogging. TAE will march onward!

And now, more of RA Blue Monday on this wet and stormy early Monday morn . . .







Final Serving of Sunday SmoRgAsbord: Smiles!


I watched Downton Abbey tonight along with Faboamanto and RAblogger at Twitter. Let’s just say none of us can say we actually enjoyed this episode.  When the Dowager Duchess, played by the superb Maggie Smith,  loses her customary aplomb, it is time to break out the handkerchiefs, boys and girls.

So I thought I would close out the servings of RA SmoRgAsbord with something a bit more upbeat. Smiles, everyone–smiles!


You knew Harry would be in the mix! Nothing can lift one’s spirits quicker than a Kennedy grin.


Long eyelashes and stubble. And that smile. Lucas, I am your slave.

What a sight for sore eyes! John Porter, the tough soldier with the gentle touch and sweet, sweet smile.

What a sight for sore eyes! John Porter, the tough soldier with the gentle touch and sweet, sweet smile.

Mr. Thornton, you may brood beautifully, but those rare smiles are simply heaven-sent.

Mr. Thornton, you may brood beautifully, but those rare smiles are simply heaven-sent.

Ah, Claude, you gave us many sweet smiles, sunny grins and that laughter!

Ah, Claude, you gave us many sweet smiles, sunny grins and that laughter!

Two beautiful smiles between friends--Meg and Guy.

Two beautiful smiles between friends–Meg and Guy.

Armitage Sunday SmoRgAsbord: From Sir Guy to the painter guy . . .

Glamour Guy, looking confident and sexxxxxy.

Glamour Guy, looking confident and sexxxxxy.

I am going to attempt something almost unheard of around here for me: going to sleep before 1 a.m. I may not accomplish my goal, but I am gonna give it that old college try. There are things I really need to do tomorrow.

But before I don my sleep mask and turn on the white noise, let me lay out the table with a selection of delectables for you all to enjoy.  Have a lovely Sunday and enjoy the latest smoRgAsbord!


Porter. Never count him out.

Porter. Never count him out.

Oh, Lucas. Such a beautiful man. And So Not Dead (and So NOT Bateman).

Oh, Lucas. Such a beautiful man. And So Not Dead (and So NOT Bateman).

Sweetie John: earnest, honest, caring, committed.

Sweetie John: earnest, honest, caring, committed.

Need I say more?

Need I say more?

I atill worry about this.

I atill worry about this.


A Bountiful Harvest of RA


‘Tis the season to enjoy such a bounty and count our blessings.  Hope your day, be it holiday or work day, is going well.  And if not–maybe these will make it a little better.

Final Call to Feast for Sunday


For some reason the Sir Mix-A-Lot song Baby Got Back popped into my head, hence the wording on the fan art.

(I believe the original was, “Oh. My. God. Becky, look at her butt.”) Of course, when referring to Mr. A, you would encourage Becky  and anyone else around to look at every inch of him. And listen to that chocolate voice. Then wait for the *thud.*


Having RA appear on an Inspector Lynley episode entitled In Divine Proportion was simply perfect, wasn’t it?


So mysterious, alluring . . .



A huge grin, a goofy giggle, a belly laugh. It’s all good.



Claude Monet may not have been able to afford more than cheap plonk for much of his career, but the talent of the man–and of the actor playing the artist–was rare and wonderful, indeed, the finest vintage. Thank goodness he was one artist who did achieve success and acclaim while still alive to enjoy it.



I couldn’t wait until Friday. Need I say more?


Sunday Smorgasbord: Spicy & Sweet


Oh, those smiles. Sweet, sunny, shy, quietly content, downright flirty-girty, sly and sexy. Wonderful smiles reflected in those amazing azure eyes.   Sugar and spice and everything nice . . . those smiles.

Monday, Monet & caretaking in paradise


A sweet, spicy scent fills the air of the living room.  Cinnamon rolls are baking in the oven for a breakfast al fresco on the balcony. A cloudless blue sky and shimmering waters awaits us on yet another beautiful October morning in Orange Beach.

As we enjoy our scrambled eggs and cinnamon rolls, orange juice and coffee, a pleasant breeze brushes against our faces.  From nine floors below comes the sound of the rolling surf caressing our ears. A few boats, sail and power, move through the Gulf waters.  From the distance comes the sound of ship’s horn, as if a giant is blowing across the top of an equally giant-sized glass soda bottle.

My oldest sister looks down towards the beach. “Those people act like they are looking for something in particular,” she says. I glance down and see a line of folks slowly walking across the sand in what appears to be a rather methodical manner.

My BIL explains they are a group of volunteers who comb the beach on pretty much a daily basis, looking for litter and for any signs of the oily balls that were an unwanted legacy of the BP oil spill.

“That’s why I like living here so much,” our BIL says. “Everything is well looked after, including the beaches.”

After all,  even paradise requires some TLC, right?

My gregarious BIL, who loves to talk with his hands.

The volunteers on their return walk, combing the beach for any litter.

The view from the balcony to the east. Sublime . . .

Now, I find myself imagining Mr. A here, his eyes made an even more incandescent blue as they reflect the hues of the sea and sky, his hair long enough to be invitingly tousled by the breeze.

I know he isn’t a water baby, but I still like envisioning him taking a slow jog through the sand right where the water laps against it. There’s a look of contentment on his face as he enjoys the fresh air and the sunshine.

And that vision led me to contemplate all this natural beauty, so inspiring to the artistic soul of someone like RA and to Claude Monet, the artist Richard brought so vividly to life in The Impressionists.

Color & Light for Tuesday


It’s not Monday but I am in the mood for Monet as portrayed by our lovely Richard in The Impressionists. I know some of you are experiencing a wet, gloomy day so perhaps a bit of our passionate painter and his lovely art would be in order? Happy Tuesday!

“Cliffs Near Dieppe” by Monet

This particular painting has been stolen and recovered twice from the Musee Des Beaux Arts in Nice.

“Irises” in Monet’s garden at Giverny

“Field of Tulips”

Boating party enjoying a spot of fishing at Giverny.

The Accountant & the Artist: The Sunshine of Those Smiles . . .


So many of Richard’s roles have been rather serious ones–requiring a lot of angst, brooding and “faces like thunder.” He’s great at it, of course, but sometimes you need a little lightness. So the roles that allow him to laugh and smile are always welcome, because he does both so heartily, beautifully, endearingly. We get those sunny smiles with sweet Harry Kennedy the accountant in The Vicar of Dibley and as Claude Monet, the artist filled with joie de vivre in The Impressionists. Oh, the sunshine of those smiles . . .

Two for Tuesday: The Artist and the Spy


Lucas, in my Land of the So Not Dead, is now happily out of the spy game and re-discovering the love he had for art. I loaned him art supplies as a form of therapy after the great mission to rectify what was done to him by TPTB. And  for Christmas that year, I gave him supplies of his own. He’s done beautifully ever since then, growing in his skills and exploring his creativity, healing little by little, one day at a time. Monsieur Monet stepped in when I requested it to provide further artistic tutelage. It’s been a happy arrangement.

Those two have since become fast friends as well as teacher and student. Two men of different nationalities, from different times and places, yet able to find common ground.

New Vid: “All I Have to Do Is Dream”


Another simple little slideshow vid featuring some of my fave RA chaRActers and some of the sweet man himself set to Christine Lavin’s lovely blend of “All I Have to Do is Dream” and “The Summer Song.” Hope you enjoy!

Ladywriter and the Unexpected Guests: Part 1


Mr. LW had departed for work and all was quiet chez Ladywriter.

She was still snug in bed after a restless night, fully expecting a calm, peaceful, perhaps even slightly dull day to mark her 52 years on earth.

But that’s not what happened.

She awoke to find herself looking up into a pair of kohl-lined eyes of azure blue.

Even in her short-sightedness, she could recognize those peepers anywhere. He was also leaning down over her, his particular musky, spicy, ultra-masculine scent filling her nostrils.

Not an altogether unpleasant way to wake up.

“Awww. So you are awake, my lady,” the dark knight rumbled.

“Sir—Guy, what are you doing here this early?” LW said drowsily, rubbing her eyes and reaching for her glasses.

He certainly looked as if he might be up to something, she thought. And a tad nervous, too?

Sir Guy tilted his head and flashed those dazzling white teeth—really, was it fair for someone from the bloody Middle Ages to have a toothpaste commercial smile?—and took her hand. “I wanted to be the first ChaRActer to wish you a happy birthday, dear LW.”

He paused, licking his lips as he expelled a breath.

“I—have a surprise for you. Lady Leigh helped me with it.”

What had Leigh come up with?

Ladywriter raked a hand through her hair, wishing for a brush. And some lippie. Oh, well, Sir Guy had seen her plenty of times before in a less than glamorous state.

He still loved her anyway, the big lug. And she, of course, adored him.

“Don’t keep me in suspense, my dearest Dark Knight.”

Sir Guy held up one elegant index finger. “Just one moment.”

Striding over to the computer hutch, he began to punch keys on the desktop.

Suddenly, music poured out of the external speakers.

Ladywriter’s eyes widened when she recognized the tune.  Was the Hot Velvet Henchman going to serenade her?

It seemed that he was. Sir Guy cleared that lovely, long column of white throat and opened his mouth–

Blam! Blam! Blam! It sounded as if someone was trying to batter down the front door.

Sir Guy, a rather ferocious frown crossing his face, cut off the music and stomped one large foot. “God’s tears! Who can that be?”

Ladywriter shrugged. “I certainly wasn’t expecting anyone.” She sighed. “Since not everyone can actually see you, I suppose I’d best answer the door.”

Blam! Blam! Blam!

“Good thing I wore shorts and a tee to bed, I suppose. Otherwise, our visitor would probably knock down the door before I could even get dressed.” Ladywriter grumbled as she padded into the living room.

“Hang on, hang on, I’m coming!”

She took a quick peek through the blinds of the front windows before opening the door and gasped.

“Happy birthday, Ladywriter!” A chorus of male voices greeted her.

Ladywriter clapped her hands in delight, then held open the storm door and waved her visitors inside. “What a surprise! I wasn’t expecting all of you–”

A jumper-clad fellow sporting a sunny smile leaned down to plant a hearty kiss on her cheek. “We couldn’t miss your birthday, dear LW. The missus sends her best.” He held up a round plastic container. “And I brought you a cake!” He waggled his brows. “Lots of layers and lots of chocolate.”

Ladywriter couldn’t resist pinching Harry Kennedy’s cheek. “Sounds delicious. As are you.  You’re a regular dose of sunshine, you know.”

Harry blushed in a most attractive way, his blue eyes twinkling merrily. “Well, there you go . . .”

“Oi, budge over, Harry, give us some room,” laughed another visitor, impressive biceps bulging beneath his olive tee-shirt as he placed the bag he was carrying on the floor. “I want to give LW a nice bear hug for her birthday.”

Soon Ladywriter was enveloped in John Porter’s strong arms. “Happy birthday, luv. My family sends you their love, too,” he murmured in her ear.

“It’s wonderful to see you, John. Just wonderful.”

Ladywriter sighed as she rested her head against that muscular chest. Wrapped in a John Porter embrace was a good place to be. And whilst he might no longer be on active duty, he was still most definitely fit.

“Give the rest of us a chance, will you, Portah?”

Ladywriter stepped back and looked up into a pair of heavenly blue eyes smiling down at her. “Lucas—you are looking so well, too. You all look just—great.

Lucas bent down and kissed her on the cheek, gently stroking her cheek with the pad of his thumb. “So do you.”

“Liar,” said LW with a wry shake of her head. “But I will take the compliment, nonetheless.”

She glanced over Lucas’s shoulder at the lanky figure in the jaunty beret and blue smock standing behind him. It was Lucas’s rather famous art instructor.

“And bonjour to you, Monsieur!”

Monet bowed and took her hand. “So delighted to be here on the occasion of your special day, Madame.” His address might be formal, but there was a teasing glint in those incandescent blue eyes.

Monet held up a basket. “I brought some fruit, crusty bread, cheese and le vin.

Ladywriter laughed. “How very French of you, mon ami.”

Mais oui, Madame.” Monet gave her one of his infectious smiles.

Lucas held up a large shopping bag. “And I’ve got the decorations.”

Ladywriter raised a quizzical brow. “Decorations?”

Harry grinned. “Of course. Ladywriter, this is your birthday bash!!”

“And we are taking care of everything,” Lucas added.

Porter grinned. “And I’ve got the champers and some sort of fancy—what do you call ‘em?—hors d’oeuvres that Layla prepared.”

“Eh-hmmmm.” Someone was clearing his throat. All eyes turned to see Sir Guy standing there, arms folded across his broad chest, eyes narrowed.

“Pray, why did no one apprise me of these plans? I was just preparing to present my lady with her special birthday gift.”

Porter grinned. “Well, if it isn’t the Medieval Menace himself.” He could not quite resist getting a dig in. “Maybe we thought you couldn’t keep a secret.”

The Dark Knight’s nostrils flared as he thrust out his stubbled chin. “That is simply NOT true–”

Harry raised a hand. “Now, now, Sir Guy, the sergeant is just teasing you, of course.  Actually, I believe you were, perhaps– indisposed—with one of your many lady friends whilst we were organizing our plans?”

Sir Guy’s bristling stance relaxed a bit as his mouth curled into a knowing smirk. “Ah, yes. That is a definite possibility.”

Porter snorted.  Guy glared. Ladywriter shot both a warning glance.  “Let’s all try to get along, boys, it is my birthday, after all.”

Harry nodded. “That’s right, lads, let’s all pull together and be extra kind to one another. Now, LW, you just sit back and relax and we shall take care of everything–”

Blam! Blam! Blam!

“Were—we expecting anyone else?” Ladywriter queried.

The ChaRActers all looked at one another, shrugging and shaking their heads.

This time, Harry peeked through the blinds.

“Well, what do you reckon . . .”

(to be continued)

More Monet Magic for Monday


People discuss my art and pretend to understand as if it is necessary to understand, when it’s simply necessary to love.~ Claude Monet

Monet’s family in the garden at Argentuil

Colour is my daylong obsession, joy and torment. ~ Claude Monet

Every day I discover more and more beautiful things, it’s enough to drive one mad. I have such a desire to do everything my head is bursting with it. ~ Claude Monet

John Singer Sargent’s portrait of Claude Monet hard at work on a painting.

The richness I achieve comes from Nature, which is the source of my inspiration.~ Claude Monet

I have no desire other than a close fusion with Nature and I desire no other Fate than to have worked and lived in harmony with her laws. ~ Claude Monet

My life has been nothing but a failure. ~ Claude Monet

I perhaps owe becoming a painter to flowers.~ Claude Monet