Tuesday, July 27, 2021



I have to be very careful sometimes when I start writing words.

  My daughter is a faithful reader of my blog posts,

 and she has, more than once, called me to say,

 "You scared me when I first started reading". 

 Like she thought I was going off the deep end or seeing things in a bleak fashion.  

That is never my intent, I am normally a very happy, seeing the bowl half full type of person,

 but sometimes the melodrama kicks in,

 I fancy myself a writer

 and the words just come out.

  I can read a book and think why didn't I think of that phrase

 or why didn't I explain a situation just like that? 

 It is always easy to see things in someone else's mirror 

but sometimes harder to see them in your own.

  But, then I write words like those you just read,

 and I feel foolish and embarrassed reading them back. 

 Like I am trying to be more than I am.

 That has always been my problem and it is a hard one to break.

As long as I can remember, 

I have always wanted to be a decorator/designer. 

 I don't mean someone who changes pillow covers and sets a pretty table, 

I mean one who went to school, put in the hard work, and earned the piece of paper that states,

 "You are Qualified".  

I was never what you would call a good student.  

I easily picked up typing, shorthand, spelling, reading, times tables (but only through 10) 

but I only learned the basics of history, math, English or anything that took a big effort.

  I kind of tackled school the same way I do gardening. 

 Do it once and then think it will take care of itself forever after.  

School, itself, was not my focus.

  I took interest in subjects that I liked but didn't want to put the effort into anything that I didn't 

or what didn't come easy right away. 

 Friends and fun took center stage during those years for me. 

 I ended up after high school, going to business school, and I had some good secretarial jobs after that. 

 I enjoyed it but after getting married and having children, 

I didn't want to do that kind of work anymore,

 I just wanted to stay home and enjoy my family. 

 I was fortunate that the Captain always had a good job

 and that made it possible for me to do that. 

 I did do some house cleaning for a couple of ladies, while the kids were in school,

 but since I always enjoyed cleaning the house, those didn't seem like jobs,

 just extensions of what I liked to do.

  They let me change their furniture arrangements, 

arrange flowers for their tables 

and the money I earned went for anything that would improve the decorations in my home. 

 So, I guess I fulfilled my wishes in a way. 

 I dabble in decorating, whether right or wrong,

 without having to be put to the test.

I mentioned flower arranging 

and that would have been another big bright spot in my world 

had I taken hold of the reins and made a decision to learn how to do it.

  Looking back, it was always easier to sit and dream and wish 

than to actually do anything that would lead to something substantial. 

 The same with photography. 

 I did take a photography class at one time,

 but rather than really learn how to use a camera,

 I was only interested in taking the picture.

  To this day, 

I don't know what many of the adjustments are 

or how to use them.

I think it is a natural part of human growth 

to see life in a different perspective the older you get.

  I am more than happy with the way my life is.

  I don't have a lot of money, and no matter how anyone may think or feel, money is key,

 but I am comfortable. 

 I don't need  much else, but it is fun to be able to buy a 'little something' when you want to.

  We have traveled some and feel content to be 'home' now

 and we have a wonderful family, where things are always changing for the good, 

and these things are all what make a satisfying life. 

 But, still, I find myself looking back sometimes 

on 'what might have been' and thinking how great it could have been

 but not regretting it, at all, as to how it is now. 

 Does that make sense? 

 That is what I mean when I say that I have to be careful in the words that I write. 

 In my head it always makes sense,

 but does it in yours?

All this retrospect came forth for the small price of $4.99.

  We had Discovery Plus added to our lineup of good TV shows. 

 Surely, by now, you know how important TV is to me!  

There are a whole lot of shows that are of interest to us,

 but the Magnolia Network is the best. 

 Chip and Joanna Gaines of Fixer Upper fame have started this network

 and they have chosen different characters from different walks of life

 in the same way that they have always tackled every one of their projects, 

 with so much thought, natural ability, expertise and class. 

 One of my favorites, out of many, is a show called "Growing Floret". 

 A story of a very talented and determined young woman in Washington state 

who is a flower farmer 

and how she, her husband and crew, have made her dream come true. 

 I ordered her current book,

 "A Year In Flowers", 

and it is filled with nothing but

 true beauty and good advice.

The photography, 

done by Erin's husband, Chris, is just glorious. 

 This couple is certainly fulfilling their destiny 

through hard work, fortitude, learning as they go, and the will to achieve her dreams

 of changing the world, 

one flower at a time...

...and what a beautiful way to live life!


And, now for the very best that is:

Once upon a time...

There was the
 sweetest, littlest, tow-headed grandson
 a grandmother ever had...

...and as that sweet little boy grew,
 he found the sweetest little girl...

(good job, Tweetie Bird)

...and as they grew together,
  more years and accomplishments
 went by...

 ...and last week 
Jake proposed to Jacenda
 on Alcatraz Island
 in the San Francisco Bay,
 and now we have the grand daughter
 we have been waiting for.
 Congratulations, Jake and Jacenda. 
 We are so proud of you both
 and all the hard work that you have accomplished
 in your short lives. 
 We love you both
 to the moon and back...and 
Happily Ever After.

I hope you are enjoying

 a wonderful summer

 doing all the things you love to do.


The best
 Christmas In July

Sharing today with:

Love Your Creativity at Life and Linda

Tuesday, July 20, 2021



"Tomorrow we shall go to the seaside! 
 I very much want to see the big waves coming in,
 and the tiny crabs, and the sand castles".

The Velveteen Rabbit 

Last week,
 I wrote that we were 
suffering through a horrible heat wave.  
This week it is not so bad. 
 Whether we are just getting used to it or not,
 I don't know. 
 Eighty degrees used to seem so hot, 
now it seems practically frigid. 
 Maybe it is just that my "fool the eye and the mind" plan 
is working, so in order not to jinx it,
 I will carry it on this week.

The photos I am showing today are from awhile ago.
  I have played with them a bit,
 because that is what I like to do 
and, also, to make them look newer 
to your eyes.

It has been awhile 
since we have been to the beach,
 but the scattering of small shells around
 does bring a feeling of it
 to the mountains.

Just looking at a long ago memory
 can bring back the sound of waves crashing in the distance, 
and then, softly, touching the shore.

If it seems like I am 'fishing' 
for something to write about, I am. 
 I had a whole other post written
 but something I ordered,
 something which makes
 the whole story make sense,
 didn't arrive in time 
so, hopefully, 
you will read about it next week.

I did plan on this part though
 and it is important for me
 to share it today...
I wouldn't be surprised 
if you knew it was coming:

What goes around, comes around. 
 We are again going backwards
 closely to square one
 as far as the Corona virus is concerned. 

 The simple fact is:
 the more the virus becomes exposed,
 the more it mutates. 
 The only way, now, 
that it can mutate
 is through unvaccinated individuals. 

 I am thinking back to the beginning. 
 This virus came out of nowhere
 and took us all by surprise. 
 It quickly turned into something 
that we would never imagine
 in our wildest dreams. 
 What wouldn't we do 
to have something at our fingertips 
that could keep it at bay 
and keep people from getting 
so sick and dying?
We were told
that we were all in this together, 
and I assumed 
that we all would give anything
 to have the ability to stop it.
 Now we have a vaccine.
 We made a quick trip
 to Santa Cruz last Friday 
and sat in traffic for too many hours.  
To pass the time, 
we listened to talk radio
 and I was truly appalled
 at the amount of callers
 who were under so much misinformation
 about the vaccine. 
 It was mind blowing. 
 I don't know where they are 
getting their facts
 but it is downright scary. 

 There is much talk of incentives 
being thrown around
 to convince people to get the vaccine. 
 Could that be any more selfish? 
 How about trading your loved one's 
possible life
 for a ticket to a ball game? 
 Think about it!  
You are trying so hard 
to not let the government control you 
(or so you think) 
that you are forgetting how much jeopardy
 you are putting your 
neighbors, communities and families in, 
not to mention ones who are unable,
 for health reasons, 
to get the vaccine.
 The time for babysitting is over! 

 Wise up,
 get your shots, 
and quit complaining about wearing masks.
 It may sound very simplistic
 but it will be so good 
when we can all trust each other again. 
 That will be getting back to normal 
which used to be what 
everyone said they wanted. 
We now have the means. 

 Make it happen.


Sharing today with:

Tuesday, July 13, 2021



To put it bluntly and mildly...
and the sight of red is making me see red,
 and all the color needs to be put away 
along with the holiday it stood for!   
I walk from the sitting room to the kitchen 
with blinders on.
  Even the sight of the red walls in the dining room,
 which I normally love, 
is a bit too much these days.

The only much needed reprieve 
from it all is in the evening 
when we go out onto the front porch, 
and while we watch and rock by the light of the moon, 
the old school phlox, 
with their lacy white blooms and soft scent,
 send us into a different frame of mind. 
 It is then that a light bulb moment
 occurs over our heads
 and we start a plan 
to "fool the eye and the mind" 
by bringing the garden inside the Cottage.

We start with the sitting room. 
 We spend the majority of our waking hours in this room,
 so it seems the logical place to begin this experiment.  Beginning with the green wreath. 
 I am not the biggest fan 
of the color green for inside decor
 but in the garden it is key 
and this wreath reminds me of a cool spot
 beside a creek bank where ferns thrive
 and the sunlight is dappled. 
 A printed canvas with garden related subjects,
 a few springs of ivy, a little tin cottage
 and an architectural element
 bring the idea onto the mantel shelf.

I've gathered together some blue pillows for the sofa
 and a green faux boxwood sphere
 rests on an urn, on the wagon, along side a candle 
that hints of sweet and summery scents.

Here, on the game table, 
sits a tall branch from a bush in the garden. 
 Of course, the thought of adding
 a few faux stems came to mind
 but that would defeat the simplicity we are going for. 
 All nothing significant, for sure,
 just the basic start to any garden.
  All of the beauty and color that would come next 
will be left out, for now,
 in this fantasy garden. 

I have had this print for a very long time. 
 It has always reminded me of 
my sister and myself, down at our grandparent's ranch.
  Everything about it is reminiscent 
of a place that we played at 
or a strawberry patch we picked at
 or the chickens we fed and gathered eggs from. 
 I would like to think 
that I looked that special 
in my sun hat and summer dress but, in reality,
 I think overalls were the dress of the day.
  I remember my sister, though, 
looking just like the little girl in the painting.  
That was what our summers were like. 
 We were always outside,
 the sun was shining and we played bare foot
 in the creek and the dirt. 
We turned brown as berries, as Grandma used to say, 
 and never complained 
that we were too hot! 
 Truly, those were the good old days 
and where would we be now
 without all the memories?

Thank you for coming inside to the garden 
and hope you are finding your own ways 
of keeping cool this summer. 
 This "fool the eye and the mind" plan of mine
 is a good thought,
 but I can assure you that
 all the faux in the world
 will not change reality!


Right now,
 this looks like the "good old days".

Sharing today with:

Tuesday, July 6, 2021



Welcome, July........

The rockets red glare - 

and bombs bursting in air -

 are as close as the nearest view of lavender in the garden.

  Just before the 4th of July 

there was an editorial in our home-town newspaper stating: 

 "So much fun happening in the form of 

a public breakfast, craft vendors, street fair and a parade,"

 all entertaining on our

 little town's main street, 

which is about three blocks long. 

 "Fun and festivities all day long.

  We are free to mingle,

 give hugs and congregate." 

 Oh, happy day!  

No masks required - if you are vaccinated!

In the same issue,

 just below the fold, 

in a corner reserved for

 Covid-19 daily details,

 it states new cases rise by 13. 

 No thank you, very much!!  

While the garden is coming into its 

 wild and wooley stage 

we decided our best choice

 to celebrate the day 

would be to throw

 a spectacular garden party.


Those in attendance were:

...flights of fancy...

...on gossamer wings...

...sun bathers...

...porch sitters...

...the birds...

...and the bees...


...sharing sweet gifts from

 the Cottage garden.

With the exception of the 3 B's 

(birds, bees and butterflies)
and one lone dragonfly

 who joined Bitty Morsel and Miss Gertie,

 pulling a wagon load of joy to America, 

the rest of the party goers came inside

 and took notice of 

bit more Cottage decorating.

A great time was had by all

 and we totally knew 

who had been vaccinated...

with or without a mask!

And as the sun set,

I hope all of our fellow Americans 

enjoyed a Happy and Safe 4th 

whichever way

 you chose to celebrate. 

 I would also like to thank

 Linda (here) 

for including my last week's post

 as one of her features

 in her Love Your Creativity link party.

 Thank you, Linda,

 I am honored to be included. 


Sharing today with:

Love Your Creativity at Life and Linda

Keep In Touch at Let's Add Sprinkles