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Deadline to enter is December 12.
P.S. Congratulations to Annette who won our Christmas card giveaway!
(Other people would just stop going to that restaurant. )
So even though she gave the pizza place a hard time, she had a soft spot for the owner, Greg. He’d laugh with my Dad when Dad would pick up our food order.
“Is the bread in the bag?” he called back to his staff before giving the order to Dad. “Wouldn’t want to make her upset,” he’d say with a grin as he handed the order over.
He found it funny, and after a while, it was rare if the bread was left out.
Before Mom passed away, she had ordered a special, gourmet cheese as a gift for Greg. But she passed away before she could give it to him. When the box arrived, my dad felt a bit sullen. But he drove up to the pizza restaurant, this time with no order waiting to be picked up, to drop off the cheese.
When he walked in, Greg greeted him and checked the board instinctively for the order. Dad explained it wasn’t there- that mom had passed away suddenly.
Greg didn’t know what to say as the smile disappeared from his face.
“She bought this for you,” dad offered.
In his outstretched hand, he offered the gourmet cheese.
A tear ran down Greg’s cheek.
"My paintings are 90 percent of the time pictures of cats done in acrylic, gouache, collage and colored pencil," she says. "I also do dogs and various other animals I learn about." She has a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Art Institute of Chicago in painting and bookbinding.
"While studying art in college, I painted vaguely figurative work, more 'fine art,' but the paintings I hung up at home were the cat pictures I made for myself," she says. "I then kind of let myself off the hook with attempting to make serious gallery work and decided I'm only going to paint what I love even though it may be 'cute.' That allowed me to produce so much more work and it is so much more fun. I like my art to have a sense of humor, too." When she's not creating art, Julia works as a veterinary assistant for a house call veterinarian. "I truly enjoy comforting them and getting them on the path to health," she says. "It is what makes me able to wake up in the morning."
"When something bad/tragic/sad happens at work, I make little paintings of those animals. I like to think my paintings help the animals spirits pass over to the other side. Especially when the death is sudden, I worry those little souls are lost and I consider it a ritual to thank them and value them and get them moving on their journey," she says. " Often the people just leave their animal with us to euthanize and I feel it is my duty to make their last moments on earth peaceful and I tell them they are so loved, and that they can leave this pain-filled earth and go be free. And I apologize for the harm they might have received at the hands of humans."
Working with Angels Paws to Help Animals
Julia's favorite animal rescue organization is the Kenosha, Wisconsin-based Angels Paws. Angels Paws is a home-based foster rescue dedicated to helping shelter animals that would otherwise be euthanized. Though based in Wisconsin, Angels Paws rescues animals from Chicago Animal Care and Control. "The animals at Chicago Animal Care and Control are the first to be put to sleep," she says. "That's why I believe Angels Paws is doing a wonderful, wonderful thing by picking up cats, dogs and rabbits to adopt out."
Julia also cares for a group of feral cats that she's spayed and neutered through trap and release. "Angels Paws have helped me re-home my feral cats, too. I'm happy to say two years later -- everyone is fixed."Julia lives in Chicago, Illinois, with her boyfriend and many cats. Her vast gallery collection of her artwork can also be found on schmoomunitions.com.
How do you live without a mother?
How do you live without the sound of her voice?
The one who you once took for granted- what do you do when she is gone?
You can go through her things
Finger the sweater that used to keep her warm
Use the coffee mug that she refilled every day.
Who do you go to for advice?
Who do you go to when you need to hear her words?
How do you find her in your every day life?
Is she the monarch that sways in the breeze?
Is she the bird that calls as the morning sun rises?
Is she part of the ancient trees and wisdom of the forest?
I search for her everyday
On the cold, dark drive home
On the trip to the store
Finding gifts she would like for Christmas – and then realizing she isn’t there to enjoy them
How do you go on living without a mother?
The one who fought to keep you alive
Who sacrificed so much
How do you ever repay her?
I think you can find her in love
When you nurture a plant on your windowsill
Keeping the porch light on for those who are lost
Appreciating all of the good things
That she made possible for you
Even when she left you behind.~