Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Oh, Christmas Tree(s) in the House!

Each year the decorations here seem to be fewer and fewer. The garland and bows are missing from the front of the house... however, I did manage a wreath on the front door! Mr. and Mrs. Snowman aka Jer and Nandie, thanks to our granddaughter many years ago, are out. The Christmas china is still in the cabinet as are the napkins and the tea towels. A few candles have appeared around the house. The Nativity is in its place of honor. The mantle is dusted, but pretty much the same as always. Thank goodness, the motivation was here for the big tree, the little tree, and the silver tree. Each has a story... 

The big tree is done in memory of my dear friend who passed away 10 years ago and loved Christmas more than anyone I have ever known. The last Christmas card she sent from her family to ours graces the branches as does Angel Gayle near the top of the tree. 

The small tree sitting snugly in a galvanized pail on the hearth is very rustic featuring several hand carved wooden ornaments purchased by our son when he was a little guy. We may have the only tree in town with a cross and a Star of David.  The late C. M. Copeland, a gifted local artist, rendered many beautiful wooden animals over the years. I know, at some point, I will have to hand these over to him and our precious daughter-in-love... maybe next year...

Metallic silver all aglow from within by LED lights that change from white to pink to red to blue. This little one in the dining room shines in memory of my parents and their wonderful aluminum tree with the rotating color wheel. 

Christmas trees are always an opportunity to revisit Christmas past, enjoy the present, and look forward to new memories in years ahead. Our trees have changed over the years. Ornaments are added and lost and all very special in their own way.  The little sequined Mary Engelbreit teapot ornament is one of the last gifts from my sweet "chosen sister" Cindy, who left us much too soon. The little cork reindeer were a gift from son and d-i-l...I am sure no wine was wasted in the pursuit of making these cuties!  

Once the trees are up, I am reluctant to take them down. Mama used to call January 6th "Old Christmas Day"... I am not sure why, but since that is Epiphany, it is a good excuse to enjoy the glow a bit longer! 

Join Jane over at Small But Charming for Christmas in Da House festivities. 

Hope your holidays are filled with love...

May your days be merry and bright! 

Click below for one of my favorite Christmas songs (There are some pretty pictures to go along with the tune!) about my part of the world!

Christmas in Dixie by Alabama featuring Kenny Chesney

P. S. In full disclosure... they are all artificial. Many years ago when our son was a toddler and suffered from severe bouts of asthmatic bronchitis, we were cautioned by our wonderful family doctor about having a "live" tree in our home. The possibility of mold, mildew, and pollen causing an allergic reaction were just too great to take the chance. The tradition continues... better safe than sorry!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Summer in the South ~ Air You Can Wear

HOT, HOT, HOT ~ Air you can wear!

Weather is all something we can relate to... 
love it or hate it... we have no control!

Temps were above the 100 degree mark for several days last week.... 
now we are more than 10 degrees lower and NO humidity!
Outside activities are doable and pleasant!

Just a glimpse at my summer...

Cape San Blas, Florida on the Gulf of Mexico 

Summer means happy times and good sunshine.
It means going to the beach, going to Disneyland, having fun.     Brian Wilson

Click here for bit of beach music...
"Do It Again" by the Beach Boys 1968
written by Brian Wilson and Mike Love

How about yours?
Hope all is well in your neck of the woods!

I appreciate your visits and so enjoy reading your comments!


Monday, June 16, 2014

Flowers in the Summer House

Ooops! Almost missed the party! I've gotten behind in my blog-reading and just saw Jane's invite for Flowers in the House. Every year I vow to plant more "cutable" flowers.. every year I miss the boat. Seems I always have the same old, same old. But I do have one new addition to my offering... homegrown Queen Anne's Lace. Last year during our trip to the Cherohala Skyway in Tennessee-North Carolina, I "acquired" some seed heads from the lush growth at one of the skyviews. The seeds were strown in hopes of at least one sprout... and that is what I got. One lonely, but lovely plant bearing about 10 buds/blooms so far!

I almost resisted cutting even one... but gave in to the temptation of enjoying these pretties inside. Add some burgundy-pink dahlias and here we are!

The gardenia and hydrangea loved their very cold weather hibernation. They have produced like crazy! The air is thick with the sweet fragrance of gardenias making my evening walk more pleasant. 

My weekly habit is to cut 3 hydrangea flowers for the counter where we have our meals. I clip the ends daily and add fresh water to the Mason jar... adds much joy to the kitchen. 

One more little posey.. a periwinkle pot filled with dianthus, dusty miller, confederate jasmine, guara, lemon balm, and basil... the perfect touch for my desk!

I always enjoy reading posts about my blog-friends and their pets. I admit... I am envious of these cute creatures that share your world. Unfortunately, no pets at our house, but an abundance of these little critters. So no cute, cuddly ones just these handsome reptiles that help cut down on the bug population. Oh, if they would just eat gnats!

Thanks for the party, Jane. Hope everyone has a great week. Thanks for coming by... stay cool! We are in for mid-nineties today!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Summer Fun!

Summer has definitely arrived here! Temps are up in the 90+ degree range and children's laughter can be heard all over the neighborhood from early morning to dusk. Last week included the laughter of little ones, the talent of preteens, and an army of volunteers who gave tirelessly to over a hundred children. Our local theatre and art's council co-sponsor an Art Camp each year. I was a volunteer leader. We have danced, created art, played games, and put together an original performance this week adapted from the children's book, The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister. On Saturday, we shared our hard work with the community!

162 campers ages 4-14
55 volunteers from teenage to retired
An Awesome Performance!

Octopus Dance

Being retired allows the freedom to participate in many activities that full-time employment did not allow. I fully admit... by Saturday... I was pooped; however, it was a good kind of tired! The enthusiasm and vitality of my group were contagious! 

Hoping that you are enjoying your lazy, hazy days of summer! 

If you aren't familiar with The Rainbow Fish, visit here for a YouTube read aloud of this beautiful book.

Monday, May 26, 2014


A hero is someone
Who has given his or her life
To something bigger than oneself.
Joseph Campbell

Memorial Day

I hope that you have had a wonderful Memorial Day taking time to reflect on the meaning of this special day. We often take our freedoms for granted, but today gives us pause to reflect on the valiant men and women who sacrificed all for those freedoms. 

One young woman, Michele Marcum, shared her thoughts on what this day means. Michele lost her brother nine years ago. Read her moving account here at TAP'S Blog. 

A favorite quote from her post:
"Being a true Patriot means that we actively seek ways to honor the fallen by teaching the living."
What more can we do? To forget is unforgivable!

Hoping your "unofficial start to summer" is off to a great beginning. Good wishes for a pleasant week! 


Linking up with Mosaic Monday
Little Red House

Monday, May 19, 2014

Life's a Beach...with flowers!

A change of scenery is always good. A change of scenery with our boy, his sweet wife, and her dear parents... just the best! Spent several days last week on the Gulf of Mexico in great company. While the weather was iffy and the breezes on the cool side, it was a very special time of fun, good food, beautiful views, and relaxation. 

Now, it's back to the real world, we spent the morning washing windows, inside and out. Life goes on! A brief trip to the hydrangea bush for some lovelies for Jane's party was most rewarding. This little bush is putting on quite a show... over 4 dozen hydrangea blossoms in various states of bloom! 

Hydrangeas have found a home again on the kitchen window sill! 

If you are interested, last week's post also featured flowers... on the patio. A real hodge-podge of flowers from my yard and the side of the road! 
Here's a peek...

Life is good ... even if I'm not at the beach. 

Hurrying over the Jane's to see all the pretty petals at her Flowers in the House party! 

Also joining Mosaic Monday at The Little Red House.

Hope you have a splendid week... wherever you are!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

This and That...

 A tin flower that we could not resist bringing home with us surrounded by some of the pretties now in bloom.

 Flowers for a small celebration for two of "my girls" from our former child development center days. As the closing of the center approached last June, staff made plans to move on to new career paths. We got together to celebrate the graduation of one from Mercer University with her Bachelor's Degree in Early Childhood/Special Education. The other is completing her training in neuromuscular therapy and was nominated to represent her technical college in the state GOAL competition... she was first runner up... representing nearly 200,000 students! 

Blue and pink hydrangea bushes are bursting into bloom! 

Lots of opportunity to play with light and shadows. The retirement magnolia has over a dozen buds. The newly planted hostas are sending up flowers. The confederate jasmine is making a comeback after way too much cold weather. The roses are blooming along the split rail fence.

There's much to see and enjoy in our little neck of the woods these days. I am appreciating all this loveliness a lot more after the cold weather and rain seemed to drag on forever. Hope you are seeing new life in your neighborhood, too. Planned on joining Mosaic Monday to see what's happening all around, but due to severe weather problems no MM this week!

Hope you have a wonderful week!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

i carry your heart...


The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. She never existed before. The woman existed, but the mother never. A mother is something absolutely new. And so in you the child, your mother lives on and through your family continues to at this time, look after yourself and your family as you would your mother, for through you all, she will truly never die. 
Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh

I didn't intend to do a Mother's Day post... I have written about my mama last year here and here on Mama's birthday, too. Then today while looking for family pictures to send a cousin, I found this one and the quote...


By today's standards, she would not be extraordinary, while 62 years ago a woman her age (41 1/2 when I was born) would have more likely been a grandmother rather than mama to a six year old and six month old. She was asked on many occasions by well meaning folks about her "grandchildren," always graciously saying we were her blessings with no generation between. She taught by example. I hope that in the ways that count, I am following her lead. 

e.e. cummings said it perfectly... "i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)." She is always in my heart...she lives on through me, my brother, and her grandchildren. 

Happy Mother's Day! Hope you have a wonderful week...Susan

Monday, May 5, 2014


One of the most delightful things about a garden
is the anticipation it provides.
W. E. Johns

Winter was a long drawn out affair this year. Cold weather in South Georgia is suppose to be an occasional thing...maybe a few near freezing mornings with a couple below freezing... most days should have lows of 40ish with highs near 60 or so, but not so this year! April, the first full month of Spring, should have been warm with a bit of cool weather just before Easter, but not so this year! 

However, all the unfamiliar cool and rainy springtime days were made bearable by my garden discovery...
two (yippee two!) peony buds! I purchased, via ebay, a variety of peony plants last spring. The kind seller shared information, but not much encouragement that peonies would flourish this far south. 

Well, even if these are the only two of the season...they were sensational and so worth the wait! Perhaps the unusually cold winter made them feel more at home? Whatever...I could not be happier with the outcome. They were so worth the wait!

Hope your week is filled with all things that bring you contentment and joy!

Linking to Mosaic Monday. Please visit and see what's happening on this lovely Monday in May!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Flowers in the House ~ Thank you, Springtime!

Finally... the cold seems to have gone! Some cool, rainy days, but no freezing temps...YIPPEE! I really am not gloating... for anyone who is still experiencing unseasonably cold weather, your springtime will come. I am just happy to be back where we are suppose to be here in the South. Yesterday and today, we have had severe thundershowers and now we are under tornado watches... unsettling, but typical weather here! We do know how to react to this type weather... snow and ice, just freak us out!

The azaleas in the front beds are in full bloom. The dogwood is waning. The cold March weather was not kind to my dogwood this year. Fortunately, my neighbors and others about town are maintaining their beauty. These little bouquets make kitchen chores so much more pleasant! Each blue bottle holds one stem from the azalea...little pink pom poms!

One climbing rose, a couple of stems of Indian Hawthorne, and lemon basil were all gathered from around the yard. The lemon basil has rebounded with a vengeance! The barren pot is now covered with lovely fresh basil. 

The azaleas are pretty, pink perfection!

Lovely purple iris surrounded by more Indian Hawthorne, and a sprig from a blooming tree on the fence row (No idea what kind!). Three irises are blooming in the back flowerbed. I could only cut one...they were just too pretty outside!

I am so excited to see the perennials coming back. There are about ten or so peonies of the 30 I planted last year. Since I am on the lowest edge of their growing zone, I am happy with that. Did I say that one of the plants has two lovely buds? I have seen so many beautiful FITH offerings with peonies, I just had to give them a try. Keeping my fingers crossed for a few pretty blossoms this year. The hydrangeas are filling in nicely and the ginormous gardenia bush is lush and green. Looking forward to May flowers!

Thanks, Jane for another chance to dress up the house a bit with Flowers in the House! Follow the link below and visit Jane and the other participants. 

Good wishes for a pleasant week!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

March ~ Scavenger Hunt

After trying for several months to meet Made with Love's Scavenger Hunt challenge, I have (somewhat!) succeeded! Seems that my intentions are good and then "life" just gets in the way.

9 A.M. - My favorite household appliance

Berries - Podocarpus shrub

Lit Up - 16 Candles on the 
G-daughter's birthday cake

Grate - a bit of a stretch on this one!

Working - Son pressure washing his home

Brickwork - and a handsome lizard

Cutlery - Mama's silverware - Lady Esther 1935

Flowers - too pretty to just choose one! 
Thanks for the collage.

Ticket stub - Local high school musical - Grease

Crisp - A lovely crisp, blue sky

Colorful door - The bright, springtime carrot 
on the back door!

M is for ~ Memories

Loving memories of our dear friend, Cindy, who lost her battle with cancer in mid-March. 

Please visit Made with Love's Scavenger Hunt for March. Make some new friends and see some awesome photos from around the world. 

Thanks for stopping by!