The little furry buggers are just deep, deep wells you throw all your emotions into.
I'm a big believer in "the way we spend our days is the way we spend our lives." It drives me absolutely batty when someone says they like to do something and in all the years I've known them I've only seen them do it once or twice. Oh , IN YOUR HEAD you like to do this or that.
"I love to garden"
"Reading books is a favorite activity"
"I'm a photographer"
There always seems to be an excuse why they aren't doing it AT THIS TIME.
"My work is crazy"
"I'm too busy with kids"
"My life is just so busy right now"
Years ago, people began to drop out of my Book Club when they started having kids -- "I don't have time to read anymore," REALLY? How can that be?
You don't have time to do photography? Is it because you're on Facebook 2 hours a day? hmmm.
Enough ranting. You get my point. Animals have always been MY priority. That's why I love to paint them. No I don't regularly volunteer at an animal shelter, because I want to spend every second I can with my kids. Do I have a hundred animals at home? I wish, but it isn't practical for me (at this time). But do I do benefit walks to raise money? Yes. Do I give a ton of money to help out? No, I don't have a ton of money (or even half a ton). But I do my part as best I can.
The best thing I can do is to share my gifts. So I donate artwork whenever I can. Every month to someone. Here are the animal places I've donated prints, paintings, and cards to over the last few years: Richmond Animal League, SPCA, National Mill Dog Rescue, Fetch, Colorado Beagle Rescue, Help Alf (giraffe rescue), Global Conservation Force, Fetch A Cure, Palm Oil Action Team Rhino, Rabbit Wrangle, etc etc. [Other causes: schools, child abuse, art education, church, my neighborhood, Hospice, Alzheimer's Association,etc etc] . I'm not trying to brag or anything here, don't get me wrong, I'm just saying it's important to walk the walk. (Maybe you tell I've been around too many bull shitters lately).
I would take care of every animal in the world if I could. In fact, I often prefer their company to humans. So I paint animals. I try to show what I see in them. I consider one of the best experiences of my life growing up with a Golden Retriever from the time I was 5 until I was 21. So lucky. I am so grateful for my dog now, who makes me laugh every day, has listened to all of my moaning and groaning, has lain in bed with me hour after hour when I'm sick, licks my tears when I'm sad. I am not exaggerating when I say that HIS unconditional love gave me enough courage to leave a bad situation a few years ago to improve my life.
SO....all that being said, I HAVE to do something for the poor animals in Australia. I cannot listen to the radio or watch anything on TV where I see them suffering. This week I painted, as quickly as I could, a Koala Mama and her baby, and another piece of a Silly Kangaroo. I've had them scanned to make prints as well. 40% of all of the proceeds from the originals and the prints will go to Australian animal rescue groups. I did a little bit of research, and here is who I intend to send money to. Please send money independent of me if you can. These animals have no reason to suffer in any way, and to find that some of these fires were set on purpose makes me sort of sick to my stomach.
Please help if you can:
WORLD WILDLIFE FUND: donate.wwf.org.au
WIRES (NSW Wildlife Information, Rescue and Education Service Inc. ) wires.org.au/blog/emergency-donations-to-help-wildlife