Thursday, August 23, 2012

Present Yourself a Bouquet of Flowers.......

 With the heat and all the rain/wind storms we have had, I am amazed that enough blossoms have survived in the garden to make an arrangement. I actually have a lot of blooms. Due to the nature of our weather I have spent very little time outside to enjoy them.  And, with Isaac threatening to roll in soon if he decides to come our way, I went out and gathered some to enjoy inside. This may be the first post I have done with pictures showing only one thing.  Can I show the same thing ten times and get away with it. Well, let's try........

My favorite type of bouquet has always been a bunch of different kind of flowers and not chosen necessarily by color.

In this arrangement you can see two kinds of roses, white and salmon color periwinkles, mexican bachelor buttons, red salvia, variegated jasmine (foliage only) and blue pea vine.

It seems that flowers and romance have always traveled arm and arm. Flowers are the jewels that we can all afford.

Flowers have accented life's special occasions probably from as far back as the Garden of Eden.  Certain flowers came to be used for certain occasions. People began talking with flowers.

Flowers weave a tapestry through our lives. "They overwhelm the present, they evoke the past, they take us on sentimental journeys. They heighten good times and offer comfort in sadder ones, punctuating and enhancing every celebration they attend".
It would be difficult for me to say which is my favorite flower.  I can name a couple that I really miss because of my location. I remember mom's lilacs.  I loved the fragrance of lilacs. And, another that is a favorite but I seldom see because they don't grow here is Queen Anne's Lace. Come to think of it, a bouquet of sprigy, wild flowers might just be my favorite kind.

We don't need to translate them into latin to enjoy them.  It is a pleasure to be able to pick them.

If you don't have any to go out and pick, treat yourself by going out and buying some. Grocery store flowers can be inexpensive and beautiful!
You don't have to make a work of art when you arrange them. Just make it always be an enjoyment.

Let every flower hold two messages: one from history and folklore and one from your personal and private memories.
This was added on 8/26 and this is what I have now and love it. The look in the vase is not that good but I could add all new flowers and leave this here and it would be better than ever.


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

A favorite vignette.......

........My houses (several over the years) have always been decorated in vignettes. I've had many people look and comment on how it is divided into small areas where they can stand a long time and enjoy the many things in front of them. The word vignette was first applied to "something that can be written on a vine-leaf". It is still used to describe small decorative designs placed at the beginning or end of  book pages, often leaf drawings. But, mostly what we think of for the word now is, a grouping of several things. In decorating, it must be done well or it becomes just a conglomeration of stuff and an eye sore.  I do believe one can get away with having more things in a room if it is done in a good decorative vignette style. I have probably crossed the line with the amount of things in a small house, but a lot of people still seem to enjoy looking. What you choose to put together and how it's placed makes all the difference. Not to forget that each vignette in a room needs to blend into a creative, eye-pleasing whole.

Today, I am showing the vignette on my guest bedroom dresser top.  I have included this in about three posts before but never emphasized the individual things. I want to feature this old suitcase and the things that are in it.

You can see it here in its vignette setting.

Samsonite on both the brass plate and the handle.

I am not a collector of old suitcases. But, the day I saw this one in another dealers booth in the antique store that I had a booth in, I snatched it up in a hurry. It is an old leather Samsonite in very good condition. And, has style that the ones I had been seeing didn't have.  This was during the time when many people were buying them to use for decorative purposes. I was surprised to see it priced at $11.00. 

The whole inside is lined in the nice checked cloth, including this divider piece.  The darkness in the lower right is a shadow not soil.  It is near impossible for me to get good pictures in this tiny dark room.

The divider is kept in place with two leather pieces with snaps.

I have chosen a few old soft pieces to display inside, along with a few things you might have found on a dresser top long ago.

There is a handmade throw here on the left side, a baby dress, gloves, a handmade ladies nightgown and in the right back, a crocheted purse. And I almost forgot the crocheted tie-on collar.

I love the bodice of the old gown. The skirt part is made of plain cotton fabric. 

Sorry for a  fuzzy picture, but you get a glimpse of one pair of gloves with its embroidered design and the brass glove holder.

                                        An old dresser mirror lying on the crocheted throw.

And last, the little folded baby dress. Do you notice the pearl in the "V" of the yoke?  I was fluffing and getting ready to take the first picture and noticed the pearl move. Sometime I have dropped it there without realizing it.  It looks so much like it "belongs" that I just left it for the picture.  I bought the little dress in an antique store for my only grand-daughter (I have five grandsons) to wear to my first tea party to give and her first one to attend. Lucy, my youngest grandchild is in her second year of college!
This week marks the first year anniversary of my blog. I have probably averaged two posts per week. How so many bloggers are able to do a post a day is beyond me! When I first started I hardly knew what a blog was much less what to do with one!  I have enjoyed it and hope you do too. I haven't tried to "grow" it as most bloggers do with links, etc. I do have enough people viewing however to make it seem worthwhile.  If you have tips, suggestions or questions to make it more interesting/better, I would like to hear from you.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Sharing a few things........

I looked out my kitchen window and saw a butterfly - sitting still. It has been a long time since I have found one that would be still long enough to get a picture. So, I grabbed my camera and headed outside.

He moved just as I got set to snap but didn't go far and I got a fairly good picture of this swallowtail. 

                                  He fluttered around and landed again on the bottlebrush tree.
"Beautiful and graceful, varied and enchanting, small but approachable, butterflies lead you to the sunny side of life"  I never get tired of seeing butterflies. Here, I mostly see this type of swallowtail and also the yellow and black one and monarchs. But, the monarchs are not as plentiful as they once were

I showed this when I first planted it up. It is doing very well. Several different succulents and a few other plants.

I just moved it into the screened porch where I will see it more.

I planted two pots of this coleus not long ago from cuttings from a friend. I just stick the unrooted cuttings in the soil and they don't even wilt down and start growing in no time! They bring a tad of color to the front up close to the house.

I was driving near my house and spotted a new store - Better Than New Pre-owned.  I saw it in time to swing in and check it out.  It is the kind of place that I will probably go in every once in awhile to see if they have added some new goodies. I got this little vase which had been marked down to half price.  It is from England - Winkle & company.

Today I was checking my bank account on line and noticed the sale which should have been just over $18. for this, and another item I selected, was debited for just under $70.  It didn't take me long to get on the phone to the store and get that corrected!  She had put the last four digits of my bank card as the total sale.  Boy, it does pay to check, doesn't it.

You noticed my jar of cupcake liners in the above picture and again this is something that I have shown before.  I was never quite happy with its look until recently when I found the two sizes of green papers. Adding them made all the difference to me - now it looks like it belongs in my kitchen.

A silly little thing here. It might be a little hard to know exactly what it is. You are seeing a spool of ribbon on a glass pedestal.  Last night I reorganized my ribbons which are kept in a big box.  They had gotten in a mess with colors mixed and some unwound and tangled.  A light went on in my head and I decided to put a rubber band around them to keep them from unwinding - works perfectly.  If you store a lot of ribbons you might want to try this.  I separate the colors and put them in large plastic bags before putting them in the box.  That sure helps to locate what I need much quicker.

Another even sillier thing. This cording was in the box of ribbons all unwound like this and tangled up with ribbon.  I didn't feel like staying up as late as it would have taken to get this rewound neatly, so left it on the loveseat where I was sitting.  Early this morning at the dawn of day and at first glance it looked like a bird had come and built a sloppy nest!  I liked the looks of it and almost left it there!  I know, very silly.

Now, this is what has pleased me most to get done this week.  I made this burlap wreath. It didn't look a bit good on my Burgundy/red door so I painted the door black.  Actually, I had planned to paint the door anyhow but getting the wreath made caused me to get busy and do it.

You can find the prepackaged burlap 5" ribbon (1 1/2 packages)  at Michaels and the red more narrow burlap ribbon at Joanns.  You need a 16" or 18" (mine is 18") wire wreath form.  I got some directions at   You will need to find her March 17, 2012 post.


"Go on, hitch a ride on the back of a butterfly.  There's no better way to fly."
Let it take you to the sunnyside of life!

Friday, August 10, 2012

In The Spotlight......

.....I took a quick walk around the yard this morning and right away noticed how the early sun was spotlighting certain small areas. It was as if dreamy and magical spots were being lit up in a hand-selected special way.

The pictures don't show it as distinctly as I saw it - wish you had been walking with me. This middle clerodendrum blossom was the chosen spot in this area. The tree on the right is dead.

Here, in the middle of this big patch of shade ferns, a large bromeliad was the only thing getting sun and was definitely being featured.

A few steps over Justin, named after my first grandson, was enjoying being "the one" above all else!  I bought this when grandson Justin wasn't much taller than figurine Justin. As soon as I saw him for sale his nonchalant stance and expression made me think of little Justin. Little Justin is way taller now with two children of his own.  The empty pot you see here had been the home of a pretty, purple hollyhock and I am hoping it will reappear this winter or early spring.  Do they reseed? I have forgotten.

This is an oversized seashell on a pedestal. I have a lot of cleanup to do here!  I've got runaway ferns and too many other things have popped up in the oriental jasmine ground cover causing this big patch not to be the neat place I like.

A sprinkling of sun rays on the peacock.

I have dozens of periwinkles in the front yard, along one side and here in the back of the house. I have white, lavender, peach and two shades of pink. They appear on their own and contribute color and interest with no effort from me. This one was the feature of the day.

I so love rose buds, even the ones that have no color showing.  They are signs of something good on the way. It is nice to watch things progress and mature.

My pepper crop - one plant and two peppers! It is being warmed by the sun, happily soaking it in.

While getting this together I kind of related the way the sun lights things up in the garden to our "garden of life". My garden includes a lot of standing water right now, empty pots, ferns taking over, not to mention the weeds, and a dead tree that needs to be removed. But, without expecting perfection it still has a lot of beauty. We are all living in an imperfect world with its disappointments, empty spots, intruders, and things we would like to have chopped down and hauled away.  But every day we all have special bursts of "sunlight" and some days full "sun" which allows for gathering golden moments that light up our days and we can thrive, be productive and have glorious lives.  
Here is wishing you great  "Son"shine, light-filled days ahead!