Friday, May 26, 2017

WHERE HAS MS CHICK BEEN?!

Poor TC....she is just a little bit worn for wear.

TC has been on semi-retirement; even going on a brief cruise, she just can't get traveling out of her feathers.  She is on her way to visit another artist friend in Canada.  And, even though she is on this trip; her travels will be ending soon.

Constant travel can be a bit weary on the soul; and taxing on the body and feathers.

From all of her travels, TC has become very fragile; and now has a fracture running through her entire little body.  She has seen numerous specialist; and has been told there is nothing that can be done for her.

Senor Azule (who we all know from previous posts) has a very strong crush (ahem; excuse me - admiration) and is very protective of her.  He has insisted that she retire and that he will carry on the Traveling Chicken torch in her honor.  "If anything should ever happen to you mi amor", I overheard him tell her, "I would fall to pieces!"  But the gypsy in her; could not stand another moment of confinement; and the two of them fled into the night without even letting me know - except for a brief note.  The only thing she had scratched was "don't worry, we all know that life is fragile"; and an address of their destination.

I am sure that TC will be sharing her bucket list with us; and is hoping we can all help her out with completing it.

For now, know that her travels will be limited; and that Senor Azule will be taking the helm.

We love you TC.




Monday, May 15, 2017

A Grand Adventure with Julie Kirkland in Colorado!

Señor Azule, Ms. Chick, Mama Chick and her brood were feeling the need for a tropical vacation; and decided that a trip to Cancun would be just the thing to warm their cold feet and beaks. One day, as they were taking a dip in the Gulf of Mexico, they made the acquaintance of Margarita the Whale. Margarita was making her daily round trip swim from Cuba (she worked out each day to maintain her girlish figure). As they shared stories of their travels, Margarita mentioned that she often swam from the Gulf of Mexico and up the Rio Grande to visit the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. “A river from Colorado to the Gulf!” exclaimed Señor Azul. The chickens, having never seen the Rocky Mountains, all agreed that they would love to travel there someday. Margarita, being as adventurous as the chickens themselves, offered to take them on the trip that morning. So the chickens hopped on her back and away they went!

As she swam, Margarita explained that the Rio Grande is formed by the joining of several streams in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado, just east of the Continental Divide. From there, it flows through the San Luis Valley, then south into the Middle Rio Grande Valley in New Mexico, passing through the Rio Grande Gorge near Taos. The river then continues south through the desert cities of Albuquerque, and Las Cruces to El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua. The Rio Grande ends in a small, sandy delta at the Gulf of Mexico. Along the way, the river forms part of the Mexico-United States border. Its total length is almost 2000 miles. Needless to say, the chicks often grew restless and Mama Chicken would swim alongside Margarita to allow the chicks to burn off some energy.

Once they reached Colorado and The Rockies, Ms. Chick was astounded by the red rock formations and the height of the mountains. Margarita explained that, hundreds of years ago, the mountains were once entirely covered by oceans. She described many of the fossils that had been found proving this and also told them that dinosaurs had once roamed there as well. She even stopped to show them many of the dinosaur tracks embedded in the rocks.

Before heading off to the next artist in Canada; the little troupe decided to have one more trip to the warm sunny beaches of Cancun. While the trip into the Rockies had taken quite awhile (Margarita had been swimming upstream) the return trip went quickly since they simply shot the white water rapids back. Lying on the beach later that day, they all toasted their adventure with a pitcher of margaritas (their friend’s namesake) and agreed that perhaps they should venture below the equator someday.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

A Traveling Chicken in North Carolina

The Traveling Chicken and friends visited with us for a few days. They seemed to be exhausted from their travels, and just wanted to sun with our crew here at Holland Creek Farm. We got out the water misters and they had a swell time playing in the water.  They really enjoyed the weather; and sunned themselves afterwards.

They took a ride with us for an excursion about town, unfortunately the camera wasn't working. Some of the friends posed for Judy while she drew them and then painted their portraits.  She used those to make a textile picture that turned out pretty cool and will eventually go on a handmade bag that will appropriately be called
"The Traveling Chicken bag".

We hate to see the friends leave and Fred, Faith and all our other friends will miss them.
Safe journeying.





Judy Holland

The Traveling Chicken comes to North Carolina

The Traveling Chicken troupe has arrived at my house. They were greeted by our welcoming committee, Fred the Turkey and Faith the Chicken. Hopefully we will have some fun escapades to share of their visit to North Carolina.






Tuesday, April 25, 2017

A Bit of a Ruckus with Paul Quie in Stillwater Minnesota USA

Well the chicken arrived in time for Easter and they all found a new favorite friend in my house, here in Minnesota:

(manipulated photo exposure)

They were so happy to meet their new adopted mom, they all danced around; as I was busy with a couple of their friends:

(digital drawing)

In a strange sort of way, they reminded me of laurel and Hardy.

However, one of these traveling companions got in an argument with my cow.  I am not sure to the details of how it all began; but it was quiet a ruckus - a misunderstanding I am quiet sure.  Cows are roosters are usually great friends; even in China:


But, before you knew it, that cow was mooing up a storm; and said it was time for those feathery friends to go.  

Alas, I will miss them; as they are on their way to their next adventure.



Friday, March 17, 2017

A Bit of Flying Fun

After their exciting (and excitable!) visit to La Ville Oger, here in Morbihan (Brittany, France) Team Chicken needed a bit of light-hearted fun.

"Our left legs are still all creaky and stiff from hours in the Post Lady's van" they complained.

We had been packing up all our goods and chattels because we're selling almost everything and going traveling for a few years. Milly the Motorhome is waiting patiently outside, ready to roll when we say the word. but ... it meant that life was a little restricted during Team Chicken's visit and there was not much room for running around, getting exercise, and generally getting in trim for their long flight back too the States. There are way too many boxes and paintings and stuff littered around the floor space.

Mr Dog the Pilot had a brilliant idea. He doesn't get  much of a chance to show off his piloting skills, so  he suggested he give everyone rides on the front of his plane, one by one. Because they had to use all their leg muscles to stay balanced while he flew around, those cramped left legs would soon loosen up.

"Flying Fun" is available for sale HERE


Did I mention that this is a very noisy visit that Team Chicken are enjoying? Yeah, well, it never seems to stop!

The racket that little yellow airplane made as it whizzed through tunnels of boxes, narrowly missing getting the wings caught on the handles of bags holding books, and doing the loop-da-loop at break-neck speed between the huge, ancient beams on the ceiling ... was simply incredible! Not to mention the squeals of delight and screeches of terror which seemed to alternate as each member of Team Chicken enjoyed their turn and begged for more, scuffling and niggling in the queue.

"Me next!"
"No! You've just had a turn!"
"Didn't"
"Did. Saw you."
"Hey! Don't elbow me!"

I must say, Mr Dog is actually quite the pilot! He never lost control once, kept his passengers well balanced, and clung tightly to their legs during the upside-down bit of the loop-da-loops so they wouldn't fall off.  There was a huge round of applause for him when he finally called in tired and shoo-ed the fun-loving chickens out of their expectant queue.

Finally, there was quiet in the house and an exhausted Team Chicken had a good sleep before they caught their flight back home to Pandalana.

What an absolute delight it had been to host such a feisty and fun-loving crew.

Lynda Cookson
Her artwork can be found here: http://WildSummers.com
and here: http://paintingsonimpulse.blogspot.fr/
Josselin - France



Wednesday, March 8, 2017

A Rush of Tweeting and Yellow Fluff

"What is that incredible scratching and high-pitched sound which is coming nearer and nearer?" asked Senor Azul during their photoshoot, his eyes bulging from their sockets with fear. Team Chicken's visit was turning out to be a very noisy visit indeed. "I saw a flash of yellow! Very fast moving yellow!" he yelled.

"You're travel weary and just seeing the reflections from the Daffodils" his compatriots informed him. "Now sit still and stop rustling the flowers!"


Was it the yellow from these Daffodils he could see?

And then all hell broke loose.

In a strong whoosh! of a breeze, just like the recent weather we've been having, hundreds of fluffy yellow balls with orange bits landed on the photoshoot table, accompanied by the loudest tweeting noise you have ever, in your whole life, heard! Our photoshoot was being invaded by little yellow alien fluff balls!

The chaos of yellow and orange turned out to be loads of Easter chicks who had been packed away in a box for a few years, being moved that way from Ireland to France, and not having been unpacked since the move. And they were angry!


Easter chicks yelling their anger at Team Chicken

Team Chicken went quickly into action, squawking and flapping their wings and chasing yellow Easter chicks back into their box with the force of a sou' easter gale. However, a few of the brave chicks held their ground, refusing to budge until they were allowed to be part of the photoshoot.

"We have to be seen and get our voices heard out there in the Big Wide World. It's a disgrace that we have been packed away for so long, missing at least three Easter seasons!" their leader cheeped loudly. "And we'd like our leaders to accompany Team Chicken back to the States so that we can continue to reach more people."


Here's Team Chicken negotiating with the Easter Chick leaders

And so it happened that way. The photoshoot was wrapped up with the chicks keeping fairly quiet and behaving well, and their leaders joined Team Chicken in their box, now winging its way back to Pandalana in the States.

What a relief. That invasion could have turned out badly ... but how could it! It's totally impossible for Easter chicks to be nasty in any way whatsoever. They're cute and fluffy and smell of chocolate Easter Eggs.

Team Chicken should be given full credit for the diplomacy and wisdom they have learned on their travels around the world.

Lynda Cookson
Her artwork can be found here: http://WildSummers.com
and here: http://paintingsonimpulse.blogspot.fr/
Josselin - France


Thursday, March 2, 2017

Post Lady Mystified by Clucking Parcel

Responding to a sharp rapping on the window last week, we saw a very worried face appear on the other side of the glass. It was Post Lady Chantal gingerly holding a big brown-paper-wrapped parcel at arms length. "I think I heard this parcel clucking!" she stage whispered. "Quick, you take it." And she sped off, her spinning tyres flinging the mud from our recent heavy hail and rains back at us. We ducked and luckily it missed both us and the clucking parcel.

I knew exactly who was to blame for setting the Post Lady's nerves on edge ... and I was right. The clucking turned quickly to muttering as I opened the box to find The Traveling Chicken Team. "She packed our parcel at an angle for hours." Complained Senor Azul. "All our left legs are aching from being tilted for so long!"

Soothing sniffs came from a sympathetic nostril and Team Chicken were soon relaxed and posing, ready for their photographs to be taken. They're quite the prima donnas it would seem and know which side is their best side for photographs.


The sniffing nostrils belong to Bridie the German Shepherd ... and she loves chicken!

Luckily, on that day, she'd had a good breakfast and decided that the loving and caring Big Bear Bridie was the dog she wanted to be. She sniffed and nudged and blinked her big brown eyes, calming Team Chicken as they relaxed beneath the lilies and daffodils. (A little toweling off of the Chickens was needed after one rather enthusiastic sniff though).

The photo shoot went well .... or did it? Find out in the next blog how Team Chicken were invaded!


Lynda Cookson
Her artwork can be found here: http://WildSummers.com
and here: http://paintingsonimpulse.blogspot.fr/
Josselin - France

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Sunbathing Chickens

This morning I awoke to calm and quiet. A little too calm and too quiet. Going to make my early morning cup of coffee ( I don't function too well without it!), the traveling crew were nowhere to be seen.

I put on my best deerstalker hat and went searching. Nobody on the back patio. No one in the bottom garden. As I crept round the side of the house, there they were sunning themselves on the sunlounger. They had taken a sneaky early morning swim. As Senor Azul explained:

"We awoke as the cock crowed and as everyone else was still asleep, went for a dip to cool off after the warm night."


After breakfasting on the balcony, the crew got ready to leave. After a teary goodbye, they climbed aboard and went off to the next leg of their journey in Brittany.


Farewell my colourful friends.

Keep Away from the Edge
7x10
acrylic on canvas panel

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Traveling Chickens land in South of France by Marion Hedger

Guess who flew in today to visit me, Marion Hedger in the South of France? Senor Azul and friends. They arrived in a specially chartered jet all the way from America. I was so happy to see them but I was horrified to learn there had been a mishap on the journey and the pilot broke his arm as the plane skidded in to land. The skid also resulted in some propeller damage.



The pilot immediately went into intensive care and the plane to the mechanics workshop.

While the pilot was getting some tender loving care, the chickens went out to stretch their legs in the garden. They were so happy playing around in the sunshine with squawking coming from all around.

I found Senor Azul in the lemon tree choosing the ripest lemon for his gin and tonic.



Having chosen his lemon he hopped down and joined the other on top of the Moa statue. It was a long way down so I encourage them down with some tasting bird food.


After lunch, the recovered pilot returned in his fixed plane.

There were cheers all round and to celebrate they went for a spin in the plane around the garden weaving in and out of the trees. They went around the house a few times to investigate the back patio area.

All of a sudden I heard a loud squawking and rushed around to find out what it was all about. Baby chick had taken a liking to the fish and was thinking about joining them for a swim in the pond. Well... Senor Azul was behaving like a Mother hen while Alphonse was standing there all aloof.



I saved the day by taking them all indoors and settling them down with Martha and baby Maud.


Adventure to be continued...


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Wednesday, January 25, 2017

The Traveling Chickens visit Joplin, Missouri - USA

The Traveling Chickens have finally come to visit me in Joplin, MO!

They were so excited to finally get here; as they had a bit of a rest over the holidays and had cabin fever!  They said they LOVE flying!

Joplin is in the southwestern corner of Missouri.

The gang had heard all about Missouri before arriving and couldn't wait to have their portrait painted. Joplin is known for a wonderful artist community:

http://www.joplinrac.org

While they were here they all got to visit the ArtForms Gallery in Pittsburg Kansas!  It was so much fun showing them off and showing off all the wonderful artists works there!






Joplin has many parks and I was having a bit of cabin fever as well; so we packed a basket and headed out to enjoy a bit of unseasonable warm weather.  Of course Big Bertha and Wobble had to come along; as they were already best friends with all of the Traveling Chickens and could not stop asking questions about all of their travels.

We loved having them visit and will be missed; but they have promised Big Bertha and Wobble they will keep in touch.