Saturday, December 21, 2019

Thank you and another little tree

Good Saturday morning Friends ~ Thank you all for your kind comments. I try to visit those who have blogs, or respond via email, but some of you I'm not able to connect with. If any would like to email me, you can find my email addy in my profile. 

SilveryLady Anne ~ your comment really touched my heart. I am so sorry for your loss and I'm glad my post was able to give you a little comfort.  I have days where my heart aches from not having my dear husband with me. Sometimes it's all I can do to get motivated for the day. Jesus has promised to be with us always, and He is my strength when I am weak. Knowing my dear husband is with Jesus fills my heart with peace and joy.

My husband thought of the name 'FlowerLady' as my online name way back when we first got online, around 20 years ago, because of my love for flowers. I like reading that your dear husband called you 'PlantLady'.  

I am planning to post more in my other blog 'The Continuing Journey.' I've been lax in posting there and feel the need/desire to start posting there again. 


Now, here is a tiny tree, about 2 ft. tall that I have in my little computer/crafting space. I like how it has turned out and next year, God willing, I hope to add more to it.


Here is a red rose I picked, not sure what the name is, lost the tag. The smell is wonderful and the bloom like red velvet.

 Shown here is an amaryllis bulb from a friend. I've never seen one like this and had to Google it and it is supposed to have everything it needs to bloom right in it's wax covered bulb. It has grown about 1/2 inch since I got it.

Here we have just 4 more days til Christmas. This year has zipped along FAST. This Christmas, I am planning a quiet day here by myself, with Jesus. Dear Husband and I always enjoyed quiet Christmases. I've had very busy ones since he left this planet, and this year the need to 'be still' and 'quiet' has filled my heart. I've had two invites and I'm thankful for the thoughtfulness in asking me to join in their festivities. 

I've got 10 new books in a basket under the table that the tree is sitting on, for me to look through and enjoy Christmas morning. Eight of the books I bought new on sale total of $19.43, plus shipping, from Christian The other two books I bought from Amazon, not on sale. I will do a post showing and telling about all of them later.

 For Christmas dinner I plan to fix chicken breast with stuffing in the crockpot, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, homemade cranberry sauce with a tad of horseradish sauce added for zip, and for dessert, I don't know. I was going to fix a turkey breast of turkey tenderloin but remembered the chicken breasts in the freezer, which is saving me from spending extra $. Thanksgiving I had my widowed friend Rita over and we had a nice quiet time together. I fixed ham since she's not a turkey lover with the fixings and a homemade pumpkin tiramisu. We were both stuffed. We both wanted to have quiet Christmases this year so we are. Our plan is, going out for lunch/dinner Christmas Eve then to the candlelight Christmas Eve service together.

The following link is to John Piper's website, Desiring God. Advent day 21, The Birth of the Ancient of Days. As we draw closer to Christmas let us ponder all that God has done, what He is doing now and what is yet to come in the future. He is the Giver of all Gifts, especially the Gift of Love, His Love for each and every one of us.

Have a love and peace filled Christmas ~ FlowerLady

Friday, December 20, 2019

After a rough morning...

Hello Folks ~ As the title says, 'after a rough morning'... here is the rest of the story, something good happened, that I am still smiling about. 

Today is my husband's 72nd bday and he is celebrating in heaven, his 7th bday with his awesome Creator. I'm sure they are having a fantastic time.

Down here, life goes on and sometimes 'stuff' happens that can really get our goat. I was so frustrated and tight I thought I'd start bawling. I thought about stopping by church to see if one of the pastors was there to talk to, but, I felt God telling me to give it to Him. That eased the burden. I then stopped by the bank, but they were so busy, I walked back out and headed on home. Since I pass by the Salvation Army thrift store on the way home, I decided to check them out. I was surprised that the parking lot was empty. 

As soon as I walked in the door I spied a Queen Anne wingback chair, then saw the second one. They were $59.99 each. I've been wanting QA wingback chairs. I got out my tape measure to see if they would fit in my little cottage and even though I was sure they would, I decided to ask one of the ladies who worked there if she would hold them for 15 minutes while I ran home and checked the measurements. She said yes, and I hightailed it home. Did my measuring, and headed back. I asked her if I could get a better price. She said she'd see. Then asked me did I want the matching footstool. I really didn't because I was thinking of space as well as budget.  She got out her calculator and did some figuring and said I could have all three pieces for $99.98. The footstool was $24.99 on it's own. She gave me a discount of 25% off. I didn't hesitate. Merry Christmas to me.

We loaded the pieces into my van, which I am so thankful I have, and I happily headed home. They are made by Broyhill and I knew that was a good name. I've been looking for a pair of matching chairs for a few years now. Today was my day, the chairs had a dated tag on them and they just came in yesterday.

When I got home, I had to open driveway gates, and as I was opening them, I spied a heart leaf on the ground. I got my phone out and took a picture before I drove over the area. 

 And here's a great thing, we've had wet dreary weather for a couple of days, it was sprinkling earlier today but it had cleared up some and just after I put the old chairs out, a lady stopped and asked if they were 'basura', (garbage in Spanish) and I said yes. I showed her how the one chair worked as it was a small Lazy Boy recliner, too small for me or guests. Someone had given it to me earlier this summer. I was happy she was taking it and she was happy to be taking it. I told her 'Feliz  Navidad' and she said it back to me with a huge smile on her face.

 Here's the recliner. It really was uncomfortable to me. 

 Here are the old chairs, covered to match. (Hurricane plywood still on this window. Waiting for help with that. Had to bring in the floor lamp because the bulb is stuck in the hanging lamp and I can't get it out, especially hanging up there like it is.)

 Here are the new chairs in place. I've got to raise the paintings, and maybe turn the table around, too pooped to do that now. I ache from lugging chairs. I'm glad I took the footstool too.

I am so thankful to Jesus for this gift today on my dear husband's birthday, not a coincidence.

Miss Tork has made herself comfortable already. The chairs came with arm covers and a pillow for each chair. I am so happy with these. Hubby would like these also.

 I will close this post and go get horizontal.

Happy Christmas week/day,

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

 Just came across this and wanted to share here. 

Happy Christmas week and Christmas day.


Tuesday, December 10, 2019

It's looking like, but not feeling like, Christmas!

Good Tuesday morning friends ~ It is 11:23 a.m. EST, and the temp is 83 and feels like it is 88, humidity is 76%, and the a.c. is on. 

I do believe I've finished with decorating for Christmas, bins are back in the workshop. Now I need to straighten up and vacuum. 

I really enjoy decorating for Christmas, always have. Even if I feel down, somehow just listening to the Christmas music can put me in the mood to get out the bins and begin. Most of the ornaments in my collection are from our 43 years together. When I unwrap them, my heart floods with memories and love for others and from others. My dear husband's mother gave each of her kids ornaments every year, then as married couples we still got them. We bought the holy family, three wise men, and donkey and cow, made of terra cotta clay when we were newlyweds living in Spain while DH was stationed there for the US Navy. When we got home from Spain, he made a wooden stable for them. These little figures are almost 50 years old. We bought them in a little shop in the main town square of our little town.

I've added angels and different peoples to our Nativity scene. In the silver s & p shakers are bits of frankincense in one and myrrh in the other. The little angel in blue hanging on the left was my husband's as a kid.

Here's a close up. The old angel at the back was $1 bought many, many years ago.

The lace angel was made by DH's mother. The stars are old and made of tubular and round beads. The little gauzy angels are really old and a couple have seen better days, but they still like to proclaim Jesus' birth.


Now for some vignettes.

This close-up below is from an old icon, painted on wood, very bad condition. But the way Jesus is lovingly looking at His mother, and has His arm out as if to comfort her really touches my heart, and worth keeping.. This piece is behind the small framed painting, which is next to a piece of granite that has been carved into, to look like a book, the cover saying 'Learn of Me'. The end of the book says 'Bible', and of course, by reading the Bible we will learn of Jesus and all that He has done. We will be encouraged, inspired, convicted, and comforted.

This is a watercolor I painted of our tabby named Ditty, this was done in 1984.

 She is sleeping on an old wrought iron bench top covered in old red velvet. One year we had the stable/nativity set up on a low surface and she curled herself up on top of everyone and laid down in the stable. No picture.

Here is my little tree.

Yesterday I received a pkg from a sweet online blogging friend. In it was the lovely stocking, looks like it is made from a sweater. There is something inside but I am leaving that for Christmas morning. 

I also have an order of books that just came in the mail yesterday waiting for me to look at Christmas morning. They came the other day, a present to myself, 8 books for $19.43, I'll do a post later. I can hardly wait to look through them. They are in the basket behind the stocking

Isn't this lovely, and the faux fur is soft and lush. I love it, and of course I love the hearts.

She also sent this sweet little 'snow bird', pictured below. At least that is what I am calling him. He just makes me smile and my heart feel full. Thank you sweet 'K'.

The snow couple were from an online blogging friend many years ago when we were in an ornie swap. The little heart is my last ornament to my DH, just days before God called him home.  The round ornie is stuffed with dried lavender and I made that many years ago. Also crocheted the star. The round lit snowball is from a dear friend who lives locally.


I made this bead and thread embroidered heart on cream background before my husband became ill, after he left this planet I took and old pair of his jeans and made this ornament for myself. The heart on the left represents me, the one on the right, him.

The lion couple were the last ornaments from DH's parents, and if I figured right that's 27 yrs ago.

 My crochet work, from a pattern found somewhere.

The ornament on the left is antique. The little ballerina is porcelain and made by DH's mother, one of my favorites.

 I believe she was taking porcelain classes, learning to paint and fire and this was a piece she chose to work with for ornaments one year.

Another antique ornament. Which reminds me I've other old ornaments to get out of the attic. I will need help with that. I've been just choosing the smallest ornies for this tree.

Tree topper made by another online friend from another online ornie swap.

This ornament was gifted to me from another widow. Someone had given her one and she liked what it said.

Yesterday, the 9th, made 7 years since God whispered those words to my dear husband. December is a hard month, because his birthday is the 20th, then we have Christmas.

I have to share something with you that I hope will encourage any of you who have lost a loved one. A couple of weeks ago I was outside walking around, and I thanked Jesus for my life in general, for His blessings. As I stood there,  a peace came over me and it hasn't left. I felt amazed.  A couple of days later, my pastor's message on Sunday morning was on peace, God's peace.

This is the first year I've not been filled with overwhelming sadness. What a gift that is. I miss my husband, don't get me wrong, I miss him every day. But, I know that he is with Jesus and I am so thankful for that.

Why this peace has come on me now, I don't know, but I can tell you that it is so welcome. Maybe it has something to do with being a part of 'GriefShare'? We just started our next 13 week session. Each loss is unique and through this program we offer hope, and let people know they are not alone. We share the peace that God gives through His word. We share our own experiences. We cry, laugh and pray together.

In 2 Corinthians 1:3-5 The Passion Translation (TPT) is the following:

"All praises belong to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

For he is the Father of tender mercy and the God of endless comfort.

He always comes alongside us to comfort us in every suffering
so that we can come alongside those who are in any painful trial.

We can bring them this same comfort that God has poured out upon us."

Helping others helps us.


At this time of year, so many are hurting for all kinds of reasons, 

let us be kind, because kindness matters.

May you all be blessed and draw comfort from Jesus. 

Let us be filled with joy and peace, letting God's strength be ours. 

FlowerLady from Plum Cottage


Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Pictures galore and cold came to Plum Cottage

Brrrr, it's cold outside. At 6:04 EST this morning it was 46 and the real feel temp was 41. It has warmed up a couple of degrees in the past half hour. High today expected to be 69. Inside Plum Cottage it is a comfortable 70 without any heat on. I do have on warm, fuzzy socks and a long warm nightgown. 

I may do some Christmas decorating today. Yesterday I was sweating as it was very warm and humid. It was windy yesterday and as the day progressed, you could feel the temp dropping. This morning the wind has calmed and it is now getting lighter out.

Thought I'd share some floral eye candy with you all. but first let me get another cup of 'French Market Coffee & Chicory'. This is delicious and chicory has health benefits as well.  I don't drink this every morning, but felt like having it today. I've yet to find a real favorite coffee. I don't like Maxwell House or Folger's too blah for me. I recently bought Chase and Sanborn, recommended by a friend. It's not bad, but I could stand a little stronger coffee. I can't afford to just go out and buy/try coffees, I look for good deals to try new ones. ;-) ☕

Before I share, I need to get into my art program to edit photos. Be back later. 

It is now several hours later and I may have to share photos in two different posts. It is 12:57 p.m. EST and the temp has reached 62 and real feel is 64.

I think this is a knockout rose bud. 

  Tahitian gardenia ~ sure wish you could smell this huge bloom.

This is a lovely old cast metal urn.

Old wagon wheel.

 This is 'Sophie's Garden' a mandala pattern I found online.

I started the second row of light pink, getting all the way around and then started the next row and didn't have the amount of stitches needed. I recounted a couple of times, re-read the directions again and again, and found my mistake, so have had to rip out stitches, and haven't picked it up since. This was just before Thanksgiving. This row has to be right in order to turn the round piece into a square. I will keep you posted.

As I was putting cooked, crumbled Italian sausage onto pizza the other day, I saw this heart shape.

It was soon covered in cheese and black olives. I cut up each quarter into fourths, eating one quarter at a sitting and freezing the rest. Nice to pull this out of the freezer when I don't feel like cooking.

 This is a ground cover that some consider a weed and eradicate it from their yards. Some let them grow and they look like a light purple carpet. I just mow over them and they keep spreading, which is fine with me.

The next few pics are of a shrub called 'Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow'.

This photo below was taken on a chilly morning a week or so back. This morning I could not see out that window at all.

I love plumbago.

Next is a 'wild petunia' which grows like crazy, very tenacious.

 What a treat this lone gardenia bloom has been.

 I picked it and brought inside. The first photo under a more golden light from a lamp.

This one is under a daylight LED crafting light.

This is a tiny 'grey leaf' shrub bloom.

 This is one of my favorite simple roses, International Herald Tribune, with a really sweet rose scent.

Here is 'Tropical Goldenrod', and the bees love it.

 More 'International Herald Tribune'.

 I loved the shimmer of the morning dew on this knockout rose. When I edited these photos I was pleasantly surprised to see the heart in the center of this rose.

Here is that wild petunia with a bee visitor.

   'Hugs -n-kisses' beautiful hibiscus blooms, no two blooms are a like.

 Another hibiscus.

I'll close with sleeping Miss Tork.  (I just heard a noise on the little screened porch off kitchen, which is my main entry, and what do I see, a black snake. So, I went out the back door, around to the porch door and opened it a bit hoping he will find his way out. I sure wouldn't want him slithering inside here. He's harmless, but he would certainly cause havoc with me and Miss Tork and for himself.)

I crocheted this 'sampler stitch' afghan for us many years ago.  (Have also made it several times and given them away.)
Still have the one window covered with plywood from the hurricane in Sept. ;-) That's the reason for the reflections and the heart shape in the right window in picture. The covered windows should be uncovered soon.

Ok, now that I've overloaded you with all of this, hope it wasn't too much. 

Enjoy your Christmas holiday season. Stop in the middle of all of the hustle and bustle to think about the true meaning of Christmas. See the beauty in God's creation all around, no matter where you are. Thank Him for coming as a babe,  God in the flesh, who would grow up and give His life for the sins of the whole world, so that we may have life eternal with Him, because of His great love for us.