Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas goodies and oh no …


Good Monday evening Folks ~ I just heard a firecracker and know there will be plenty more of that especially tomorrow night.

With my Christmas bonus from work, I bought some plants at a good deal, and garden tools and potting soil. I still have money left over, that I’m planning to use toward kitchen and bath faucets.

Sprinklers, 5 bags of potting soil, 2 pots, two roses and a new pole cutter, which I think looks very cheap, sorry to say, and it’s Fiskars, and they are a good name.  HD did NOT have the heavy duty spring my ancient pole cutter had.  I may to go  a hardware store to see if they have one


Pole cutter with tree saw too.


A group of seven, Texas Sage, Tibouchina, azalea, alamanda, thryallis, Flax lily and African Iris.


African Iris




Flax lily bloom ~ tiny and sweet




Alamanda but yesterday


Opened today



It’s amazing now different it looks from the back side.


Starburst clerodendrums


Starburst buds


Mr. Lincoln a deep old rose scent



A wonderful old rose scent and beautiful color, no name.


I’m flowered out, which is a good thing. I look forward to enjoying these.


Here is my oh no. There’s another leak under the house. (There was the possibility that this might happen with some of the old pipe that was left.) I heard a strange noise coming from under the house at the back, turned the water off, didn’t hear it, turned it back on and heard it even more than before, so I hurriedly turned it off again, and remembered to turn the hot water heater off too. I set up a temporary dishwashing station, not the first time I’ve done dishes like this.  Did it years ago when we remodeled the kitchen. Smile  I do have a water connection that I can turn on that doesn’t turn the house water on, so that’s a good thing.  I filled up containers and buckets so that I can flush the toilet and have some water in here. I called my Brother In Law, the poor guy, with the news.  Bless his heart!!  It’s not easy crawling around under the house, at least it’s not real hot right now. Not sure when he’ll be able to do this work, so I’m ‘camping’ out here at Plum Cottage.


I’m trying to stay positive about all of this, on top of having a flea problem too.  Down here it does not get cold enough to do away with them. I’ve never had to use Advantage II, have used Brewer’s yeast for years, no fleas.  Mark leaves the planet and the fleas move in. I’m using diatomaceous earth and vacuuming plus using the Advantage.  That stuff is ‘expensive’, even though I got a good price at pet meds online.

I had a sad dream the other morning right before waking up. I dreamed I was looking out the scullery window and saw something and turned around to tell Mark, and then it dawned on me that he wasn’t here and I started crying, the dream continued with me telling my friend Nanci about it and I cried more. Then I woke up and cried for real. Sheesh!

After coffee, I decided to write in the FNF widow’s blog, something I’d been thinking about, and got it posted and felt better.  You can read it here if you wish.

I hope to get a good sleep tonight, tomorrow is another day, may I rejoice and be glad in it. I choose to not let this stuff get me down.  It’s much better all the way around to be positive instead of negative.

Each day is a gift and I’ve been blessed in many ways in 2013, and am thankful.

Have a wonderful 2014.


Thursday, December 26, 2013

24-25 December blooms and a win

Good morning everyone ~ I hope you all had a peace and love filled Christmas.

Both Christmas Eve day and Christmas day found me outside enjoying beautiful weather working the east side areas of my cottage.  This is my main entry and it needed straightening up with potted plants, remove a wheelbarrow of potting soil, pots, move and rearrange potted plants, etc.  I have to work outside when the weather is nice, regardless of what day it is.  Summer’s heat and humidity will be here before long and there are projects I want to get done before then.  We are having heat and humidity ‘now’, but not like during the summer.

Last Saturday, a friend of mine gave me a wonderful book “Container Gardening”. 


I was at work and as I looked through it I was getting inspired. Then a business came around selling plants, and normally I won’t even look when they come around, but he said it’s free to take a peek.  Mostly indoor plants, but… there was a red Knock-out rose, which nabbed my heart.  I bought it.  Merry Christmas to me. Then I felt guilty for buying it, sheesh! Soon after, I had a sale, and then another, and the commission from both, more than paid for the rose. I know ‘Who’ worked that out.



Oh, yeh, in the trash container in front of the shop where I work, were these three baskets.  My friend asked me if I had seen the two baskets out there, and I said no.  I jumped out of my chair, not too proud to look in the can, and there were not just two but a third one also. I think one of the shop owners whose wife used to make floral arrangements with beautiful silk flowers, threw these out.  One had a bit of paint and another had stain as you can see.  Don’t know yet what I will do with them, but they are good to have in my stash.  Free is good!


This time of year is when our gardens do very well down here in s.e. FL. I took pictures both days and hope they will bring some color and cheer to you.













One of my projects for 2014, is pressure cleaning and painting my little cottage.  It is something we were going to do but did not get to accomplish. You can see the knock out rose sitting in a ‘faux bois’ chair, that friends Nanci and John gave us years ago.


I love this flower arrangement. Smile



Now for my win in a drawing done by Jeri Landers of Hopalong Hollow Gazette.  If you have not visited her wonderful, happy blog yet, please do.  You won’t be disappointed, just click on the link above to take you there. She is a wonderful artist in several mediums.  Her attention to ‘detail’ is amazing.  I’ve been following her for a couple of years now and always enjoy visiting her blog.  She’s a wonderful story teller and has delightful you tube videos also. 

Anyway, she had a drawing for book number three in her series and three people were going to be lucky winners, and I just happened to be one of them.  I had already told her I wanted to buy one as this book about Mamsy has to do with needleworking. She told me to wait before sending a check just in case I was a winner, plus the books hadn’t come in yet and she didn’t want money sent until they arrived. Well, lo and behold, I was one of the three winners. Hip, hip hurray.  I won her first book in another drawing a couple of years ago, then last year when Mark left this planet for his heavenly home, she sent me her second book. They are all delightful.

This book arrived on Monday, and I saved it to open on  Christmas morning.  What an absolute delight!  It is my favorite of all three books. I had a smile on my face, joy in my heart, tears in my eyes, and inspiration was all over the place.  Thank you Jeri.

This is a book for all ages!


What she wrote to me really blessed my heart and inspired me to keep working with needles, threads, buttons, laces, ribbons and beads.


Here’s the trailer she made for this sweet book.


As 2013 comes to a close and 2014 is about to begin,

reflect on your many blessings,

learn from mistakes made,

don’t forget to dream.

Be kind,

loving and forgiving others,

encourage others.


My word for 2014 is ‘conqueror’,

to be victorious.

Not by my might,

but by God’s strength.

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

I don’t want to be afraid, or think I can’t do things just because I lost Mark. I know he’s cheering me on, and sometimes I hear his ‘atta girl’, when I accomplish something.


Enjoy this last week of 2013 and may 2014 be a good year.

Love and hugs ~ FlowerLady


Friday, December 20, 2013

Every good thing


Good morning Friends ~ Here it is our last Friday before Christmas.  I hope you are all mostly prepared for your holiday whatever you do wherever you are.

Today I am doing more baking. Sunday will be a little Christmas dinner and gift exchanged with 5-6 ladies and I am looking forward to that.  I am making a pumpkin/mincemeat pie to take. It is yummy.

Christmas I plan on having by myself.  I really don’t mind it.  Mark and I always enjoyed ‘quiet’ holidays and I am looking forward to resting and having Christmas dinner with Jesus, as He will be right here with me. I bought a small turkey breast and look forward to fixing that and whatever else I make. I did have two invites, but chose to stay here in my little home sweet home.  I will be working the three days after, so it will be a good day to rest and reflect.

Today would have been Mark’s 66th birthday. I will miss fixing him a special dinner. I’ve been doing pretty good emotionally this holiday season.  Yesterday morning I did go out in my long cotton nightgown and walked around my main garden, then sat in the Victorian wire bench that is at the back. It was peaceful, even with traffic out front, and then the tears came.  I thanked God for the life Mark and I had together, and let the tears flow until they ceased.  Tears are healing.

Monday was our widow’s group, Friends Needing Friends, Christmas meeting/luncheon.  It was great! There were 30 of us. There are more ladies but they all couldn’t make it for one reason or another. This group will be two years old in February and it started with just a handful of ladies. We all look forward to our monthly meetings.  See the lady 4th from the right, seated, she just turned 97.  She is spry and always willing to help do whatever when we set up each month.  The founder of the group is Dotti, standing back right side in gray. She started the first FNF group in NJ over 25 years ago, and it is still going and they have over 100 members now.  Dotti works very hard for this group and is a gift to us all. I am so thankful to have come across this group.  It has been a blessing in my life.


The past week or so on the way to or from work I heard a song on the radio and will post it here.  It makes me feel happy and the words are true.

May you feel the love, peace,

joy and strength of God

flowing through and surrounding you

this Christmas season. 

In spite of all the negatives in our lives,

we have much to be thankful for.


Every Good Thing by The Afters


Merry Christmas and have a wonderful 2014.

Love and hugs to all


Sunday, December 15, 2013

December flowers :-)


It’s late Sunday afternoon, it’s been a gray, windy day here today.  We need rain, but so far, not a drop.  It is 79 and humid.

When I first went out this morning I couldn’t believe what I saw. It looked like a dusting of snow.



This is where it came from.


Now for some flowers. 

In s.e. FL it is a great time for gardens.

I hope to get out and get some outdoor projects

and gardens taken care of these next few months while it’s cooler.


Gazania or Blanket Flower ~ These are spreading and doing nicely.


Clerodendrum ugandense ~ Blue Butterfly Bush



Tecoma capensis ~ Cape honeysuckle

Lit by the morning sun.


Reed orchids




Ground orchids


Ruellia Brittoniana~ Mexican petunia


Rondeletia leucophylla ~ Panama Rose or Bush pentas


La Marne rose


Not sure what this rose is.


Or this one.


The next one might be Old blush.




Guess that’s it for now. 

Hope you are all having pleasant days before Christmas.

Love & hugs ~ FlowerLady