Sunday, April 28, 2013

A short break ~ couldn’t stay away :-) ~ long & photos

Good morning Friends ~ Thank you all for your comments, thoughts and prayers. The short break was just what I needed.  Sometimes, we just have to step back from things to get our bearings. My life has been changed drastically and is taking some getting used to. Not something I would have chosen, but it is what it is and here I am by the Grace of God.  He is sustaining me as nothing else can or will.

I am thankful for all of you. It is amazing the outpouring of love and support from all of you who I’ve never met physically, just here through the internet. Sharon Lovejoy’s post yesterday was just lovely about her old home, you can read it here, Old Loves.  What she said in her P.S. really spoke to my heart and it was about how as bloggers we are like neighbors sharing our lives, loves and thoughts.  I thank you all for being part of my blogging neighborhood.  Thank you Sharon for your thoughtful and gentle ways of sharing your life and thoughts with so many.

Today is a new day, may I rejoice and be glad in it.  I am looking forward to going to a spring plant sale at our local botanical garden later.  I hope to find some inexpensive goodies to bring home that are hardy, colorful and scented. I’ll let you know later.  I haven’t been to this event in years.  DH and I went many, many years ago, then I went once a few years back.  I even was able to print out a $5 off coupon on the entry fee, so that was thrilling. I’ve still got photos to edit and post about my visit to this lovely botanical garden on my birthday, a little over a month ago.  It was peaceful and inspiring. Anyway, I’m looking forward to my little jaunt out later.  They had the sale yesterday too.  I plan to go early, hoping it won’t be too crowded then.

Raccoons have been wreaking havoc with the screened roof on the screened room off the back of our little cottage. Ripping out the rubber tubing from the grooves, so that now I have a pretty big gap along one section of framework, and other areas are about to give way too.  If DH was here, he would fix it, but alas, this is not his earthly home anymore.  It’s not that big of a space, but it’s high and an artistic shape, so I looked up someone who does screen replacing in this area, on the BBB website. I plan to get in contact with one business who has been doing this for over 30 years for a free estimate. Keep this little project in your prayers, that it won’t be too expensive, that they do a good job, etc. It’s the daily, every day things that make me miss Mark so much. He could fix just about anything.  He loved to make things work, recycle and repurpose, to build and create.

I was sent to another widow lady’s blog the other day and she is such a gentle person.  A widow since October and her posts are encouraging to me and I am thankful for her being a shining light of hope and encouragement. Her blog is Let’s Chat.

All widows need love, encouragement, help, a gentle touch. We have lost so much, no words are adequate enough to describe the new person that we now are without our other half. So, if you know any widows send a note, hold their hand, talk with them about their dear husbands, let them know you care.  Help them with little or big things in any way you can.

That’s one of the reasons I couldn’t stay on a long break, you all are good for me, heart and soul and I thank you.

Yesterday morning I sat out in the ‘caravan’ with my cup of coffee, looking around at the tiny, unfinished space and said to my self, “I can do this.”  And I will, it’s only a matter of time. DH would want me to continue with this little project.  We enjoyed this immensely, taking something that was a wreck and making it a happy little space.

I will work on the inside of our little cottage too, working on projects there a little at a time. For some unearthly reason, I’ve been feeling like everything had to be finished up quickly now. Who said so?  We were moseying along at our own pace, what’s my hurry?  I want to savor and enjoy the processes, thanking God for Mark and his many talents, and that we worked so well as a team, and that I have this little haven to call home.

One of the inside projects is making a little office space in my bedroom to move DH’s computer too, so that it’s out of the living room, and I can do our bookwork in there.  I wrangled the little computer desk that he made for the workshop, out of plywood and  old iron legs, out from there onto the workshop’s stoop, so that I can paint it before bringing it inside.  It is going to have a 25 inch x 40 inch old enameled table top as the top, giving me a wider workspace and I look forward to that.  I think he is happy with my using this and what I am doing with it.  He even made it have a slide out piece for the keyboard.

Here it is before being painted.


First, I have to clear out the space where this is going to go and do some wall work also. It’s all a learning process for me.

I have been enjoying my gardens and love all of the textures, colors, shapes and scents.

This is a yarrow which makes a nice ground cover down here in s.e. FL. I was given seeds by a sweet gardening friend, Susan.  I bent down and smelled these flowers and they smell like honey.  Plant is about one foot high.  I love the feathery leaves and the dainty flowers.  I have several little clumps of this spreading around in the main garden.


Below is Confederate Jasmine that I just love and wait expectantly for the blooms every spring.  The scent is wonderful.


One of my very favorite scents, gardenias. Aaaahhh. I thank God every time I take in their wonderful scent.  It is one of my earliest memories of Florida and my grandmother’s house.  She had a huge bush loaded with the blooms.


This is some sort of jasmine I think.  I don’t know where I got it but the flowers are sweet and the scent is too.  This is looking up through the lattice over the seating area at the back of the main garden.


This is a Vanda orchid that grows easily without much care.


My humble ~ jumble main garden.


I weedwacked the paths this past week, which made a difference.


Here is “HF” which stands for Happy Frog.


Friday evening on the way home from work, I found this 3 drawer storage unit, not broken, just faded and needed a good bath.  I was wanting more storage for creative bits and pieces I have stacking up here and there, and I found this in DH’s old childhood neighborhood. 


On the way to work yesterday morning, I found these staghorn ferns curbside.  I suppose they got rid of them because they were yellowing.  When I got home, I gave them a drink of water, and will give them some plant food later on. They are in a simple metal band basket, so I can use some chain to hang these somewhere, or else set them on a pedestal of sorts.  I need to see what I’ve got to use around here.

You can see a small staghorn I’ve had for a few years now, hanging in the Queen Crepe tree, with the two found ones beneath.




Caladiums from Meems either last year or the year before.



It’s early afternoon and here are my goodies from the spring plant sale.  I got there 8:45 and it didn’t open until 9, but I was the first in line at my gate. Smile  Wow, it was amazing, and in beautiful surroundings too.  I didn’t stop and gaze at every booth and once I spent my money, I left so as not to feel bad if I saw something else. I went with a certain amount of $ from my Christmas bonus, and came back with $2.  I am happy with what I bought and hope they all do well for me.

Here’s what I bought ~ 3 roses, two I don’t remember the names of but can get them from the nursery which is real local. The big bush is Paul McCartney, very fragrant and a lovely rose. All three roses are nicely scented which is what I want in a rose.

Most of these below are growing in the butterfly garden there at the botanical gardens, which really looked beautiful today.  I need to go back to take more photos.  I love that place. I think I’ll become a member.

1 ~ variegated guara with pink blooms

2  ~ holly hocks that grow here in FL. either red or pink.

1 ~ ‘Tingo blue’ Salvia macrophylla

1 ~ Rose Leaf Sage ~ fuchsia tubed flowers on a very showy long spike.

2 ~ ‘Purpletop’ Verbena

1 ~ Agastache

1 ~ Yellow butterfly bush ~ Buddleia Honeycomb

Here’s todays’ haul. Not everything is in bloom at the moment.




Variegated guara with pink blooms



Two unknown roses, scented.



That’s it for now. I’ve given you enough after being absent for almost a week.

Count your blessings.

Love and hugs ~ FlowerLady

Monday, April 22, 2013

My win in a give–away


A few minutes ago a sweet pkg. came in the mail. I won a give – away that Skeeter had on the blog, In The Garden.  She and fellow blogger and gardener Tina, both post on this blog. One lives in TN the other in GA and it is always a treat to see what is going on in their gardens. 

I forgot all about having entered this give – away, so it was a pleasant surprise to have one.  I loved the first prize, there were two prizes, and hoped I would get it and I did!  Skeeter’s sweet cat Cheetah decided she was going to pull the names out of the hat.  You can read and see the photos here.

Look at the pretty packaging tape.


And look inside the box, oh how pretty and spring looking.


This is my sweet prize. My eyes are filling with tears as I write, it’s been a rough couple of days. I have blue eyes and DH brown, so this was really a cool feature of this piece. They look happy.  She has a flower up next to her eye, and his hand is on her shoulder.


Look at this lovely bag that the prize and some other sweet little gifts were in. A spool of garden tie material, with a little cutter blade on it, really something handy to have.  Pretty little gripper garden gloves, watering sticks for indoor plants, a nice butterfly stake and a little dragonfly suncatcher. Then look at that tree frog.  What a hoot!  You can help but smile when you see him.



Thank you Skeeter and I wish you another lovely 5 years of blogging.


As I said above, it’s been a rough couple of days.  Today the tears started flowing in Home Depot.  It was one of our favorite places to shop for materials for projects. It’s not the same now that he’s gone, not the same at all.  I can handle the garden dept. but being in the building materials, etc. just tears me up. Yesterday morning I woke up all weepy and that was the start of an emotional day. Every day is different.

Last week was my second meeting with a wonderful bunch of widow ladies, the group is called Friends Needing Friends. We met at a new location, at a golf club and had a wonderful buffet afterwards. Since I am a new widow, under 6 months, I received a sweet little teddy bear, for a little comfort in my sorrow.  I put him with my sweet other bears, he is the yellow one holding the little pillow I’ve had sitting with these guys.  They happily made room for the newest member to their family.


Every day there is something, even if it’s just something tiny, that we can give thanks for.  It may not be easy to do, but it does make one feel better doing so.

With that I will close.  I may take a little break from posting, as I’m really feeling drained and just need to take things slow and easy.  Thank you all for your love and continued support.  You and your comments mean a lot to me.

Love and hugs ~ FlowerLady

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Plum Cottage blooms, etc. ~ April

Good morning Folks,

I do hope you all have a nice weekend and that you remember to count your blessings. Let your loved ones know you love them.

These next three photos are after weedwacking and mowing.  This was done the next morning after tree trimming and driveway work the day before.  Weed wacking always wears me out.  I have an electric wacker, and DH always told me to take breaks, and yesterday I realized when I was done that I really need to take more than just one break. I always feel weak, and my left arm shakes. It’s just that when you get going, you can’t seem to quit. I enjoy mowing, have since I was a girl.

In the foreground little square in patio, you can see the newly leafed out Queen Crepe. We’ve had this almost 6 years I think. It was about 6’ tall at the time we bought it, if that.  Got it for our anniversary in September. I look forward to it blooming every year.


This is the ‘secret garden’.


St. Francis garden


Unknown orchid


Confederate Jasmine.  I ‘really’ look forward to this blooming every spring.  The scent is wonderful and the little flowers lovely.


Garlic vine growing up over my shed.


Unknown hibiscus


Spicy Jatropha


Dwarf White Orchid tree ~ lightly scented blooms




Caravan and clothesline garden


Spiderworts.  Morning are the best time for these and I just love going out and seeing them all over.  The bees love them too.  This is the main garden, workshop in the back.



St. Francis garden with spiderwort in bloom


Vandas ~ These grow all by themselves with no help from me.  I just break them off with some roots attached and stick them here and there and everywhere.


Have a wonderful weekend.


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

When I’m 64 …


Will you still need me,

Will you still feed me,

When I’m 64.


The answer is yes.


I still needed you

I still fed you

When you were 64.


Now, at 64 and your widow, 

I miss you my dear husband Mark, very much, every single day.


This morning I felt energized after hearing a tune by Tom Petty (below), and had already decided that I wanted to get out and trim the driveway of overhang and stuff spreading out into it.  So, out I went. gathered my tools and got going.  I even did the huge schefflera at the corner. And when I did that I was thrilled.  I used the little tree say that DH had bought me a few years back and when the largest section fell to the ground I punched my arm into the air and said ‘yes, I did it.’ 





Grief has a way of making you feel so down and helpless. You have lost the other half of yourself, you don’t see how you can go on without them beside you.  But, as a believer in Jesus/God, I know I can go on and am going on with His love and strength.  My dear husband is with me too, I just can’t see him, or feel him, or hug and kiss him, but he is still a very large part of my life. God brought us together, and we are only temporarily separated. I still wear my wedding ring, I still feel married. I love Mark more and more with each passing day.

God is drawing me closer to Him in my grief, and my love for Him is growing stronger and I am thankful for all of His many blessings.

I am a believer in God who loves and enjoys rock-n-roll, the blues, and more. We loved lots of different kinds of music. Music spoke to our hearts and souls. This morning when I came across “I Won’t Back Down” by Tom Petty, I was reminded me of Mark and I am so glad he always stood for truth, and spoke what he felt and thought.

The guitar music in these tunes reminds me of Mark’s playing his guitar.

He played the drums and bass guitar when we first met,  then played acoustic while we lived in Spain and got an electric guitar after we came back home to the states. He also played harmonica. Through the years we had our own jam sessions right here in our little cottage with guitar, harmonica, and I played a Melodia piano, a tiny keyboard that you blow into, and a little on harmonica too, plus another keyboard, I also sang. I miss those times, but the wonderful, fun memories are locked in my heart. We will make sweet music again one day in the ‘huge jam session in the sky’.

Here are some more tunes if you care to listen, if not just pass them by.

I Shot the Sheriff by Eric Clapton.

A real favorite of DH.

I heard this song soon after Mark left this planet and it touched my heart deeply, tears were streaming as I was driving down the road. It is called ‘Even If’~ by Kutless, a Christian group.

Here is a favorite of ours, which I will close this music portion with.

‘Somewhere in heaven’ by Carlos Santana.



is Forever

Us 15Jan

Never take a day or your love for granted.