Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Projects and blooms


Hello Folks ~ It is Wednesday afternoon, 4:35 p.m. EST. Thought I’d get a post in before supper.

It’s been lovely here in s.e. FL. It’s why the ‘snow birds’ flock here every winter, although this year not as many of them have come down, as the winter has not been as harsh as some years. They head back home around Easter before the heat and humidity start in earnest.

This morning I had some errands to run, stop by the post office to mail some things, and Home Depot is right next door and that was my next stop. I wanted to see about mini blinds, one for the kitchen door and one for the south bedroom window. Boy, did I get sticker shock in there today. Blinds were ‘expensive’ and I thought they were ‘cheap’ the last time we bought any. I was getting depressed, and then I spied the ‘cheapies’. I was thrilled. I bought two. The one for the kitchen door isn’t as long as I wanted, but they didn’t make them 68”, only 64” in length. Maybe with the more expensive brand I could have gotten them, but heck, it’s only me here, and my house isn’t going to be in some magazine.

I wanted them on this door because I felt vulnerable at night. Even though our gates are locked, someone could still sneak in here if they wanted to. the door is facing the driveway. So these blinds will keep the ‘boogies’ from seeing in.  I am happy with them.

Here they are up.


Down and open




Another thing I had sticker shock on is the cost of paint!!! We do have one gallon of white for the living room, so I won’t have to get that.  But, I’m thinking of the bedroom after I do some work in there. I did bring home some color samples to tape to the wall, they were ‘free’. At least our house is tiny, so it should take more than a gallon or two at the most to paint the bedroom.

I then went out to the garden dept., of course, I wanted to see if they had any herb seeds, and they did, and I got three packets of flower seeds too. Plus a bag of seed starting mix and a bag of potting soil. Oh yea, and one pineapple sage plant. They attract hummingbirds and make a nice hot tea too. I took cuttings from the top and stuck them in water to root.

Here are the seeds.


While there a couple was talking about the potting soil and there were bags of garden soil there too. She went to look at another brand, and I said to him, if you want potting soil, you don’t want to get the garden soil. I made a mistake and bought that for potting and didn’t realize it until I got home. The lady comes back and she says, Rainey is that you? I looked at her, and recognized her as she said ‘I’m Ida’. We used to set up next to each other at the local flea market. This is probably at least 25 years ago. She and her husband grow a lot of their own fruits and veggies. I was impressed with what they were telling me. Their garden is 10’x30’. They live in a mobile home park and the owners are ok with their doing this, which is great. She’s going to come over for a visit and bring me an oregano that has big fat velvety leaves that I’ve been looking for. I’m thrilled. I think I was led there today for this rekindling of a friendship.

Yesterday I decided to putter in the workshop as I’m trying to find the keys for the caravan. I didn’t find them there and I’ve exhausted places to look in here. I was depressed not finding them, but feel I will eventually. I’ve also asked God to help me find them, because after all, he knows exactly where they are.  I’m trying too hard right now, and need to relax.

Mark has three wonderful work benches in the workshop that are made from old cutting block tables. They were piled high as he was working on several things at once back there. He had cleared them off not that long before he took ill, but they filled up quickly once projects were started. This work shop is a dream come true. We built it ourselves, with permits, from the ground up, except for the concrete which was poured by a company. Mark loved this space and I do too. I cried while working in here.

See the two cupboards in the back, they were built-ins that were in homes in an area that was being torn down because of the airport. These were out curbside for free. The one on the left, is just like the one I have in the scullery.  The windows at the back of this photo face my main garden.





There’s still much to do in here, I made some forward progress though so I’m not going to stress about it. I can’t do it all at once anyway. There are only so many hours in a day and it’s just little ol’ me. I got bummed out because I don’t know exactly where some things go, and there’s stuff that I’m going to get rid of too. He told me to get rid of the ‘junk’ around here and told me to make the workshop mine before he died, but to me it will always be his, I’ll just use it and the tools, once I learn how. I’ve been told that there are gobs of videos on you tube to learn how to do things.

Which reminds me. When I went to put up the mini blinds, I found out that the door was metal, then I thought oh for Pete’s sake, I don’t know if I can use these bits on metal or not, so did a quick search and figured out I could, so I did and was thrilled with my success. Smile

Now, here are some blooms.

Bon Silene roses.


Mm. Laurette Messimy


Louis Philippe roses, first blooms after I pruned this way back.



Old Blush roses



Reflections in the living room window, early morning. I had not raised the blinds yet. You can see my lovely stained glass piece from Karen, Carl and Joel.


I dreamed about Mark right before I woke up this morning. He was here, it was like he had just been away, and he sat down in his chair and said, ‘It feels good to sit in my chair.’ I was happy too because of that. His computer is right beside his chair and I told him, ‘The receipts are in order from the last 4 months of 2012’. and that was the end of the dream. I felt happy, even though he isn’t here. He had been bed ridden the last month, so for him to be sitting in his chair was wonderful. It was our dream and hope, but that wasn’t God’s plan. God took him home. (I think I had the dream partly because I am thinking about the bookwork and taxes. He has a program that he made up his own system for bookkeeping and it is very detailed, with formulas that figure things out every time you add a new figure.)

My love for him is even stronger every day as I putter in the workshop, look at his tools, think of the projects we worked on together. We used to say we were Jack and Jill of all trades, as we did a lot of different things through the years.

I’m reading a collection of Clive Custler books that he bought cheap and didn’t get to read, maybe one or two. I burst out laughing at times because of the way the author writes that sounds like Mark and I and our crazy way of thinking about things. I get the sense of humor and I miss him so much.

Each day is a gift, and I am learning to live a different life.  I am learning to figure things out for myself, to make decisions by myself about things that we used to make decisions about together. I have to stop and think and pray and God is blessing me in ways I don’t even realize yet.

Take nothing for granted, live each day as best you can, be thankful in all things, good or bad, learn from mistakes, and don’t be afraid to try new things.

FlowerLady Lorraine


~Gardener on Sherlock Street said...

The blinds work well for what you need. So nice that you found an old friend at the store. I see garden swapping in your future. You are really figuring out a lot as you work on projects. The whole bit thing would have escaped me until I ruined a wood bit on metal. I like all your flowers but the reflection photo is really nice with those tropical leaves.

Marti said...

Your blinds look good. I need to do something similar with my back door, but mainly to block some glare. I get sticker shock every time I buy anything these days.

Your story of meeting your old friend made me smile. I have had the feeling that I need to rekindle some friendships lately.

Your shop looks like it is well used and that is the best kind. Those work benches sure can build up a load of stuff fast, can't they?

Sandy said...

Things are looking very nice around your sweet place, Lorraine. I was thinking about you the other day and hoping you were eating well. I know you enjoyed cooking for you and Mark so much and I hope you still enjoy it. I do believe that meeting with your old friend was a divine appointment. I hope you let us know how your friendship progresses. That's so sweet.
Love & Prayers,

Anonymous said...

You have very nice pictures! I am so sorry about your husband. It seems women are the ones who carry on longer on this earth, as far as I can see with my older neighbors! I don't think it is easy for Women to have this chore, carrying on alone, but maybe if husbands were left, they would be more sad and lonely.

I buy the cheapest blinds at home depot too! Once I bought more expensive, and they broke just as quickly! Your back door looks so nice. I have a door just like that, as I bought it to be so, so that my dog could look out to the back yard at the squirrels :)

I had to smile at your workshop, the before and after.....but really I do see how well you did tidy up after looking the second time!

My son's Coast Guard Cutter is stopping at Florida this week, then heading into the Carribean...I don't think he will like your colder morning! Hope it warms up.

Anonymous said...

Lorraine - such a wonderful post.

I love the new blinds . . . and I love Mark's workshop!

From one woman to another - you make me proud. Your self-sufficiency is admirable.



Sunray Gardens said...

Pretty blooms. You are really making a dent in the workshop. I know how you feel about the privacy issue. I don't want people being able to look in either.
Cher Sunray Gardens

Bernie H said...

Wow Lorraine that workshop is a magnificent space, and it's simply filled to the brim. You did a remarkable job in tidying up already, but I can see it's going to be a big job. A little bit at a time will get the whole thing done eventually. I'm sure you will work out where everything should go.

It's great that you managed to get some reasonably priced blinds. Shutting those would help provide a sense of privacy and safety.

I think your trip to the Home Depot store was meant to be. I hope you and your friend enjoy the start of your renewed friendship. How very timely.

Well enjoy potting up those seeds, and figuring out how to do all those jobs. I think Mark would be very proud of you.

Nancy J said...

A workshop like that is every man's dream, and now Mark has left it to you. Enjoy, take it slowly,treasure each piece you keep, say farewell to those not needed, they will be another's treasure one day,And,as always, lovely photos and words, uplifting to each one who reads your thoughtful "musings".Take care, one day at a time, for me and for you. Greetings from Jean.

Lynn said...

Hi Lorraine. You sound good. Your new blinds look fantastic ~ good job figuring out how to hang them. The computer is a boon to finding all kinds of information. Glad you thought to use it.

At first I had to do a double take on the workshop. Second glance showed me you managed to move quite a bit of stuff. It will soon find your special touch of order. A too neat shop is storage. A messy shop shows it’s working. I’m sure the key to the caravan will turn up when you least expect it. Your pruned roses certainly rebounded to their former glory.

Perhaps all your snowbirds came to Alabama. Our roads and shops are filled to capacity. Thank goodness for back roads and shortcuts when I go to town. It’s good to read you have rekindled a friendship of long standing. I had lunch today with such a friend of over thirty years. Take good care and let us know your color choices for your bedroom. All is well.

Linda said...

That is going to be a wonderful work space for you. You really are inspiring me to do try and do things myself that I might have asked my sil to do. Your dream sounds like it was a comfort to you. I dream about my loved ones that are gone once in a while. I always wonder why at that particular time. I just read a book written by a father who's dd died and he and his wife went to live with his sil and the grandkids to help. It was interesting to read their story. Hugs.

denimflyz said...

Wonderful post FL. I love the blinds in the door. I am the same way, I do not like "boogie's" looking in as my bedroom is street height and that is a privacy issue.
I love the workshop. A wonderful space, and you will get it straightened up. I can see a studio space also and I am sure Mark would approve.
Please take care, and I will try to email you. Its been very hectic here, as I am now looking at homes and that is truly mind-numbing to say the least.
Love and Hugs

Rebecca said...

I thought the caravan was my favorite space - but that was before I met Mark's workshop :)

I "hear" the tears, but I also see you unfolding -- much like the beautiful flowers you show here unfold from their early buds...

I'm so glad you are recording the progress. It encourages me and fuels my faith and hope. ♥R

Sandra said...

You sure got a lot accomplished :) I think the blinds work just fine, you can't even notice that they're not as long as you wanted them, and I'm sure you feel better with them there :)

What a great workshop, my husband would be thrilled with an area like that to work in.

I do hope you and your old friend pick up where you left off.

Big hugs and love,

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

Your roses are gorgeous. Roses are my very favourite flower,and pink is a near favourite colour.Red is always my first choice.

Sissy said...

Dear Lorraine,
What a comfort, to be happy, just dreaming of Mark. You know that bookkeeping will be a challenge, but I believe you can do anything.
Ironically, we've lived in this home 7 years and I've never felt vulnerable, but tonite, the dog was barking at the back door, which is glass and uncovered and I felt so weird. Our yard is large and open and now I want blinds, too!
Good for you to figure out that drill and those bits!

sharon said...

the blinds look great.Yes every person comes by the thread God's up to us to make the most of it and either share the love (give of ourselves) and live up to our potential,ie give back or learn from those who cant or don't....Someone can make a new key...that really was Mark...not just your dream of take comfort in that visit..the workshop?.the after looks alot like the before...haha but keep wokkig on it...and get rid of the stuff that you really will not realistically use now that you dont end up being nominated for the show "hoarders" haha

Andrea said...

Hello Lorraine, it's good your roses are greeting you merrily. Your workshop is so full of a lot of things. I guess i can have a lot i need from there!

Heather said...

The worst part of anything is cleaning up... such a chore, but you certainly did make a dent! Lovely flower pics and you did a fantastic job with your blinds. I love the big window in the workshop... you should make it a special place for yourself where you can putter around like Mark did, you definitely know he will be by your side there! Cheers~

Anonymous said...

Some people think me a little wacko but when I have a dream like you had, I believe I had a visit, and it's their way of reassuring me that they are happy and that they are watching me.

I also believe we get led to places where we run into people God wants us to meet. God has such a sense of humor and no sense of time as we know it, either, but I have known Him to put me in a crappy job, working for horrible, unGodly people, just so I will become friends with one person that works there. Heh.

I think your blinds look just great. When I need new blinds I get the cheapies at kmart. Or I find them at garage sales. People just don't put things curbside very often here. I sure wish they did, you have gotten some wonderful stuff that way.

And yeah. Paint's expensive. Don't buy Valspar, they're mixing primer in it now. More about that when you see my next post. Hugs, Ilene XOXOXOXO

Balisha said...

What strength and knowledge you are gaining. So proud of you and how you are handling things that would intimidate some.As usual your blooms are beautiful.

One Woman's Journey - a journal being written from Woodhaven - her cottage in the woods. said...

I love this post
Need to find something
for my doors also.
Love the shop
and all of those wonderful items.
Oh, your flowers are wonderful
nothing here
just dirt and bare trees
But I dream...
I think you are amazing.

It's Just Dottie said...

Your life sounds so much like mine. Taking small steps into a very large world one step at a time.
Hugs, Dottie

Darcie said...

Catching up on blog reading and just want to wrap you in a warm hug. You have never been far from my thoughts!

sweetbay said...

Your journey is a beautiful if difficult one.