Monday, December 31, 2012

Welcome 2013 - With quiet times and flowers in the house

Our New Year's Eve is a quiet one. There's just the two of us as my DH reminded me when our youngest and his wife headed for their home today... "We are back to just you and me!" At our stage of life, isn't that the way it should be?

On Saturday while doing last minute shopping for our family celebration, I treated myself to a sleeve of beautiful roses! I couldn't resist the ivory roses tipped with deep red. I pulled out a favorite old jar and a milk glass vase. I just knew each would be perfect for the roses! I didn't remember Jane's wonderful Flowers in the House party until today! The roses were too lovely not to share.

The black granite counter-top was the perfect home for the lovely milk glass vase of roses.

The jar of roses was right at home on my grandma's trunk highlighting the beauty of the white nativity nestled in a bed of sparkling Epsom Salts (Thanks Martha Stewart!) on an old silver tray. The green metal candle holder was a gift from my mama during the Advent Season some 35 year ago. This year it was home to a lovely red candle ... a gift from a very dear friend.

I still haven't managed to take down the Christmas trees. This little silver metallic tree is a tribute to my late parents and their wonderful aluminum tree complete with rotating color wheel.  I am sure that my nephew remembers that tree as fondly as my daughter. She often mentions the Christmases spent at Grandma and Granddaddy's house and the tree always manages to creep into the conversation! Mama would be horrified... she felt it bad luck to have the tree up on New Year's Day. I am traditional enough to think I need black-eyed peas and turnips to bring prosperity and health to the New Year... just can't bear to take down the tree until January 6th! I may not celebrate the 12 Days of Christmas with a partridge in a pear tree, but I do enjoy the trees as long as possible.

Many times I reach the end of the year with bittersweet feelings... but not this year!  I am embracing the newness and possibilities of 2013 with unabashed enthusiasm! REJOICE! Good wishes to you and yours for good health, contentment, and a world of possibilities in 2013... 

Happy, Happy New Year!

Visit Jane's party, Small But Charming. She is ready for adorable Mr. Baby's birthday complete with stunningly beautiful flowers and a buffet of scrumptious food!

P.S. It seems our country's leaders may have reached an agreement to keep us from going over the fiscal cliff... great news! Now if they can just learn to play nicely together in 2013... too much to ask for????

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Flying high!

We had an awesome event in our little town this weekend, the Harmony Jubilee, sponsored by our local art's council. Hot air balloons descended on our community and brought much joy! Just a glimpse of what we saw from our "own backyard!"

There was also a balloon glow on Friday and Saturday nights. Not as many participants last night, but still very pretty!

A great way to spend an Autumn weekend!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Flowers in the House... and ramblings!

Just a few left over zinnias, lantana (?), some purple blooms and seed pods from the "butterfly" bush to gather for a bouquet or two to accompany the jack-o-lanterns and Thanksgiving pumpkins for Jane's Flowers in the House. The volunteer "popcorn tree" (Chinese Tallow tree) beside the back fence is still lush with green leaves, but the white seed pods from which the nickname is derived are abundant. These little pods add just a bit of whimsy to the tenacious zinnias that have outdone themselves this year!

The cooler weather and a bit of blustery winds have made their way into South Georgia. The leaves are beginning to show a bit of color and the dogwood trees have those lovely red seed pods... almost as pretty as the lovely springtime blooms! 

 My mother's family reunion was yesterday. I always attend with mixed emotions. I miss her, her siblings and their spouses. My parents died 31 years ago, but I still feel they should be at this annual gathering. We determined that this past year marriages were celebrated, new babies were born, dear loved ones have passed on and on a joyous note - the oldest surviving cousin is 105 years of age and her sister is 86!  A sweet cousin volunteered to decorate each table making the utilitarian building much more warm and welcoming!

 I walked down the road I live on the other day... these greeted me from a shallow ditch...

These lovely Confederate Roses were blooming in my neighbor's yard. The plant is actually more kin to the cotton plant than a rose bush, but this lovely flower needed to have a pretty name! The blooms start out white, turn pink, and finally red! I am green with envy that I don't have one of these lovely shrubs! Maybe she'll share a cutting and I can nourish my own into splendor!

Just a bit of what's happening in my neck of the woods. Hope yours is safe and full of all the things you love!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Always late?

How is it that I manage to forget the fun things that I always intend to remember to do... especially... Janes' Flowers in the House! Guess that's just my nature and since I am into my 6th decade... is there really a reason to change? No flowers in the house, but the butterflies, zinnias, and dragonflies were most cooperative.

Stop in and enjoy the visit to Jane's real party...better late than never. In October maybe I'll be on time! There's always the possibility of a miracle. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

Monday, Monday... can't trust that day

Monday...Monday, was one of those beautiful, almost Fall, low humidity days in South Georgia. A rarity and a teaser for those of us who endure the heat and humidity to live in our beloved neck of the woods. 

I spent a few minutes roaming the yard with camera in hand. 

Today was my day for insects... the butterfly was filled with nervous energy... tenaciously moving from one bloom to the other. The zinnias that I defamed late in August have rebounded! Supplying us with many spectacular blooms... on rather spindly branches!

The dragon flies were out in force. They much preferred the compost pile to the colorful flowers. Capturing this one's awesome little body parts and jointed legs was a stroke of luck! 

Hope you enjoyed your 
Monday, Monday... 

Right click below for a step into the past!
Monday, Monday - The Mamas and the Papas

Monday, September 10, 2012

Late summer surprises!

Do you have any late summer surprises in your garden? I have found several smiles among the ruins of bloomed out petunias, spent geraniums, and sadly wilting tomato plants.

Even with the very late mid-summer planting, a little gourd is popping up here and there among the vines. I love watching the baby gourd take form from the pollinated bloom. Each little gift surprises at how quickly it grows and matures. 
Two sturdy bottlenecks are defying the high temperatures and braving the insects. Every year I have lofty ideas of grabbing the brushes and paint... turning them into jolly Santas, friendly snowmen, or lovely little birdhouses. Unfortunately, those ideas remain part of my "to do" list!

The biggest surprise was the dipper gourd! After planting this type seed for years, the reward is on the vine! I have been enamored with dipper gourds for a couple of years. I had the privilege of  actually holding a gourd dipper from Africa that was several centuries old. The stories that dipper could tell! It was an amazing experience. My thoughts were whirling trying to imagine the hands that grew the gourd and turned it into a very utilitarian object... quenching the thirst of each person who drank from it.
The daylilies have reappeared! After cutting these back to update flower beds, they have obligingly made a showy late summer appearance. This type daylily, often called "ditch lily," is scorned by many experts. It's never been a bully in my garden and always a very welcomed sight! The double bloom with lovely deep red markings... what's not to love?
Does anyone know the name of these lovely, delicate little flowers? They come from a very small round bulb and the leaves are a very deep green and spiky. A very dear relative gave me the bulbs and I am sure given his vast knowledge of both flora and fauna, he knew and shared the name. Unfortunately, it is one of those do-over questions I would like to ask, but is now too late. However, the daylilies and these little lovelies are beautiful memorials to a beloved man.

Hope each new day brings you lots of smiles and wondrous gifts of nature in your part of the world.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability.  ~Sam Keen

Just a small offering for Jane's Flowers in the House. The heat of August plays havoc with even the hardiest Southern gardens and especially with one that has been neglected over the past few weeks. However, there were a few wayward hydrangeas, beautiful blooms from a butterfly bush, and colorful zinnias.

 The zinnia's are a bit straggly. I could only bear to clip a few. Even in this late stage, they looked so pretty hugging the fence and adding a welcoming touch to the backyard gate.

The early summer gift of a dwarf magnolia tree has also produced surprises with it's lovely blooms in the heat of summer!

Then followed that beautiful season... Summer....

Filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light; and the landscape lay as if new created in all the freshness of childhood.
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Please visit Jane - Flowers in the House

Monday, August 13, 2012

Dog days of summer... and a country swimming hole

       Growing up in South Georgia always meant hot summer days, a neighborhood pickup baseball game with boys and girls, the local library's summer reading club, and at least a weekly visit to Plains, Georgia to the nearest community swimming pool or to our favorite country swimming hole known as "Fussell's Pond."  

      These days the gnats and heat are still around, library's continue to sponsor reading clubs, kids play "organized' sports, and kids swim in backyard pools with few even knowing what a "swimming hole" really is. On a recent day trip to visit our son and daughter-in-love, we passed a unique swimming hole. The spur of the moment "turn around" produced a pretty good photo op.  Even in the early morning hours, the girls were eager for a dip... giving new meaning to the term "contented cows."

     Summer in the South... where we are all just trying to stay cool and fight the humidity...where everyone thinks we're all so friendly... we are, but most of the time we're also fanning gnats. Enjoy your dog days of summer... in or out of your local swimming hole.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Flowers, just not in the house

The plum trees blooming in the hedge-rows on the highway along with sweet honeysuckle on countryside fences make for a picture perfect springtime day. Yesterday, the sky so blue, a bit of a breeze, the sunny day so appealing, it would have been difficult to have spent the afternoon inside. Piddled with some re-potting of plants, floated lazily in the pool, and enjoyed watching (again!) Forrest Gump with my husband on the patio.  
The fence is covered with little white pinwheels 
of Confederate Jasmine 
whose fragrance is so sweet and thick, 
it filled the air around us.

No flowers in the house for this last Monday in April, but seeing these outside my kitchen window ... amazing! 
I know I should have brought some inside, 
but I just couldn't bring myself to disturb the beauty.
Visit flwrjane for Flowers in the House 
the last Monday of each month 
Bet there will be some lovely offerings from all over the world!
The first of the pink daylillies with promises of more to come.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Please check out Susan's wonderful tablescape for Michael Lee West's new book, a teeny bit of trouble, at Between Naps on the Porch.

The bridal couple reminded me of our son's and his fiancee's engagement party cake....

Maybe Teeny's next book cover will feature this one!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Radiant Beauty...

Just could not resist... more amaryllis

There were seven wonderful stems ... all blooming at the base of a favorite crepe myrtle!

Their red with white cousins are beginning to bloom in the beds inside the fence...

A friend posted on facebook today..."Have you ever thought that humans decorate for Christmas, while God, Himself, decorates for Easter? Everyday when I come home there is a new bloom, a new leaf, a new bird. I love Spring!" Diana... Thanks for the reminder!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Flowers in the house....

Springtime bulbs have decided it's warm enough to show their colors... and they are lovely! The pretty purple iris is a favorite. We have enjoyed seeing them from the kitchen window.

The amaryllis are stunning ... whether they are white with red, red with white, or just plain red!

Thanks to a dear neighbor for sharing her bounty of amaryllis bulbs! Our bulbs have been shared with others, moved, and enjoyed for many years. I could not resist picking up three new bulbs the other day... beautiful pink amaryllis. I cannot wait until next spring to see the results.

Thanks, Jane... for letting me share. See you in April!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Springtime in South Georgia

The calendar says mid-March 
but the beauty surrounding us says
 "Spring is here!" 

The dogwoods seem to be blooming a bit early this year along with the pretty purple iris out back. There are a dozen or more blooming with buds popping up with the promise of more.

However, no one is complaining. 
The clear blue sky is the perfect backdrop 
for the budding trees bursting with blossoms.

The backyard swing, a good book, and a glass of sweet ice tea 
make for a delightful respite from work. 
Wish you were here!