3 Lessons of Spring…

We’ve posted 3 Lessons of Spring and one strong suggestion on Instagram in the last few days. I thought you might enjoy them too!

This rather humorous photograph of a planter we have here at the cottage, was about to be planted with a few bedding plants… I decided to snap a photo of her first! She’s inspiring don’t you think?

B21EFFCA-536B-4BAF-A5F1-DC5ED4E7390C ‘The mind is a wonderful thing! It’s where creative ideas begin, where we learn, where emotions form and where we make decisions. Deciding to use ideas, knowledge and emotions for good is the highest form of humanity.’


30C47988-A6F4-40E4-A463-38FEDA229E84Eggs might be the ultimate food form of Potential. This photograph inspired us. ‘Potential, that’s one of the wonderful emotions I feel in Spring… nothing says it better than a basket full of eggs by my front door. Little Johnny Jump Ups aren’t really Spring flowers here, but they seem to rejuvenate themselves right now- and they have the potential to re-seed. now, that’s a lesson too! I hope your Spring brings you an awareness of potential all around you…not to mention the marvelous potential you hold within!’


These bearded irises were passed along to me by my grandmother many years ago- the deep purple is amazing and thrills me every year! This was shared with a lesson I think of every year!

A8A57D14-8713-4E66-BCE4-FDBC60D796B2 ‘Bearded Irises are standing tall in all of their glory…what a lesson they are! Standing up, not afraid to show the world who they are and own their unique beauty. And! Despite an unfortunate name, bearded irises welcome the day with gladness!’


Those 3 Lessons of Spring speak volumes without saying a word…

  • Deciding to use our minds for good, like the planter, it looks like a brilliant idea is sprouting.
  • To see potential in our world and within ourselves…whether it’s at the end of life’s cycle or like an egg- at the beginning!
  • To stand tall, like the regal Iris, despite an unusual name and short bloom time is a lesson to us all… to seize the time we have, bloom where we’re planted and in our own unique way.

Now, here’s a strong suggestion…it’s Time to Spring Clean… we can get sidetracked and buy things we don’t need! So, here it is! Shades of Blue…DDFFEC62-7066-49D5-8847-862AF386BB87

‘Shades of Blue… natural dyes, indigo, prints and stripes, chambray, madras, Oxford cloth and denim. Blue is beautiful year round, especially in Spring and Summer! I’m Shopping My Closet first- then checking the choices with my favorite catalogs- for updates this season!’ It’s a spring closet clean out and a money saver too!

I love Spring…pollen and all..lt inspires me with its beauty and lessons all around! What will you do this Spring? I’d love to hear! I’ll be back soon with good tips, good thoughts and yes, good food!

Love y’all, Camellia

* All photographs are obviously mine. Follow @brendawyatt_ on Instagram for more tips and ideas! I’ve found new friends and seen the astounding things so many are doing! Happy Spring, yall!

Springtime in New York City…

 

In Alabama, it’s late Spring, just a few weeks ago, New York City was in full bloom!

There were chocolates from Jacques Torres, fresh produce and bread from Eli Zabar, cappuccino and wine bottles filled with lavender at Eataly!

A real ‘feast’ for the eyes, everywhere we looked! I’m so thankful for the Divine Promise…’As long as the earth remains there will always be Springtime…’

Love y’all, Camellia

Jacques Torres ChocolatesJacques Torres – these fine chocolates can also be purchased from Amazon/Groceries! http://amzn.to/1sRCrMP

Eli Zabar’s breadsEli Zabar – all about Eli Zabar including recipes from Amazon! http://amzn.to/1sRCAQk

Mario Batali’s Eataly Eataly – find all things Eataly on Amazon! http://amzn.to/1P0ngKL

Roses…

 

The roses are unbelievable this spring!  I never thought I would be able to successfully grow roses. I tried- I knew folks who could- they worked at it, they studied it, they tended to them. All of that changed when Knockout Roses arrived in my garden! My prize heirloom ‘New Dawn’ running roses were the only ones before- one magnificent flush was worth it all. Now? I’m surprised every year that I have roses! I had to show them off and a few from Walter’s veterinarian’s too; with a rosebud by an azalea, an iris and a sunbeam or two, enjoy these stunning rose photos. Then I hope you will take time to read portions of a favorite prayer written by George Matheson…    imageThey need to be pruned down, but I don’t have the heart to discourage them yet…

 

How blessed we are to enjoy so much beauty; delicacy among thorns. Everyone knows how sweet rosebuds are, and no one doubts the loveliness of dewy young blooms- but we ladies of a certain age, must not forget -a rose is at its peak of beauty when in full bloom.

Many years ago, a young Scottish minister learned he would soon go blind. His fiancé told him that she could not bear to marry a blind man; she broke their engagement and his heart. Many believe that this talented minister and writer of hymns considered his blindness and his broken heart to be the proverbial ‘thorn in his side’. As he grew older and more learned in Scripture, Matheson began to see the truth of Apostle Paul’s admonition ‘ in everything give thanks ‘; and the old Christian also wrote this- ‘I am thankful for my thorn, for when I am weak, His Power shows up best’. George Mattheson must have agreed as he wrote this beautiful prayer in the late 1800s…

‘My God, I have never thanked Thee for my thorn. I have thanked Thee a thousand times for my roses, but not once for my thorn…Thou, Divine Love…teach me the glory of my cross, teach me the value of my thorn. Show me that I have climbed to Thee by the path of pain. ..show me that my tears have made my rainbow…’

*emphasis mine- portions from www.SermonIndex.net  Classic Christian Writing

I suppose if we live long enough – things happen-things we wish would change; a hurtful thing -which becomes a ‘thorn’ in our sides.  Apostle Paul and George Matheson learned the secret of contentment- they learned the lesson of the Thorn. This Sunday, let us thank God for our thorns as we thank Him a thousand times for our roses.

Have a blessed Sunday, love y’all, Camellia

 

Fairy Tales…

‘Can come true…it can happen to you.’

We’ve had carpenters and workers here off and on since before Easter- workin’ on the screen porch, we had to replace our front door and have the back deck redone. Meanwhile, Spring had a head start and was just showing out! Everything was in bud or bloomin’ – color everywhere! The Azaleas were showing out in their bright pink dresses, the Dogwoods dollin’ up in all that green and white eyelet, Daffodils had paraded around in their yellow tutus and Fern and Frond were unfurling in every shade of green…honestly it looked like a Fairy Godmother was waving her wand…then I saw a blog post…a photographer  had run up on something… It made me think I needed to check around…

‘If you’re young at heart’…

My goodness! I found what I believe are Fairy doorways! The photographer had found one in a public park and here they were poppin’ up at Camellia’ Cottage! I knew I had heard rustling and hammer tapping after the carpenters had gone… I thought -surely not…and then that song kept running through my mind-

‘for as rich as you are, it’s much better by far-to be young at heart…and here is the best part- you’ll have a head start…’

This morning I found 3 more! And here IS the best part! I did some re-search y’all and I think most of them have been identified! The bright pink among the wood violets has to be Wood Nymphs! You know that yellow one belongs to the Tooth Fairy- look at that shape! I have a sneaking suspicion that violet door is Tinkerbell, what do you think? I’m thinkin’ there’s some Sugar Plum Fairies where those sugar plums are! So…that left the bright blue door and what’s behind the green door?  Well I’ll tell you what I think- none other than The Fairy Godmother is behind that blue one…she would be discreet, taking a daytime nap. So,that leaves the strange green door…I think he sneaked up here from Montgomery ( probably caused all that trouble!)-escaped  from the Shakespeare Theatre…and it’s none other than old Robin Goodfellow! He’s probably worn out from that Midsummer Night’s Dream! I’m sure he’s not leaving the South though…I mean, where else would he want to retire? Go ahead y’all… You never know what you’ll run up on- ‘if you are among- the very young at heart!’

Love y’all, Camellia

‘A Fairy Door in the Woods’ by www.suzie81speaks.com

 

The First Day of Spring…

Outside my window the first day of Spring dawned chilly and bright…

The dogwood is getting dressed for Easter, she’s wearing pale green with white eyelet. Out another window, the azaleas have decided to wear pink lace, the bridal wreath spirea has decided to wear white dotted swiss and me? Well I haven’t decided between red or pink…that pink sure is pretty…

Love y’all, Camellia

Life’s unexpected gifts

This orchid is one of those unexpected gifts. I love orchids and consider them valuable and economical house plants. If you buy one when it is in ‘bud’ the foliage is pretty and the flowers may last a good six weeks as they unfold. Their needs are few considering how much pleasure they bring. 2016-03-10 15.45.24But the one thing I have never been able to do is get an orchid to re-bloom, oh I know some who get theirs to re-bloom and to be honest I’ve just told myself ‘you can’t do that’, ‘don’t fight it, just accept it’. ‘Go ahead and buy orchids, enjoy them, enjoy the foliage for a while and discard’. And that’s what I always did, until I needed a filler in my little tabletop greenhouse. So in this spent orchid went.2015-06-17 20.15.34Do you see it there? It had been there a year, a whole year, when this photograph was taken late last summer! And there it stayed, basically a place keeper in the little greenhouse. Well, in January of this year, I was sitting on the sofa beside this table and for some reason I peered inside and it looked like something was going on…what was that?

Can you see it? (Ignore the plastic redbird, that was meant to be edited out!) But look at the stem! Do you see it, the slight swelling on the stem?2016-01-18 15.32.55Okay, I took the weird orchid out, put it in a container and began to water it ~ thinking this could not be, this should not be happening, I have never, ever had an orchid re-bloom! I believed that the stem would wither and probably go the way of all orchids in my care. But not so, by February….2016-03-03 09.32.33I was totally enchanted, the dance of life- the unexpected gifts! The opening photograph of this orchid is proof that occasionally life will surprise you, prove you wrong, delight you in ways you never expected. Have I mentioned I love Spring? When daffodil bulbs push up so bravely, when buds on camellias swell without a quiver against the cold winter air, when peonies emerge in tightly wound burgundy shoots and soft delicate lamb’s ears and the pale iris leaves come around ever so softly, I am reminded of the old gardeners who shared bulbs, cuttings, perennials that needed thinning out ~ most of those gardeners have long since died ~ but because of them, every single Spring, I believe in the Resurrection all over again! Those things which we think have died and we no longer see are under cover, putting down roots, gathering strength, doing work we know nothing about. Oh we may know the botany of it, but we don’t know the delightful mystery. As we begin this Easter Season may we allow Spring to be our beautiful reminder of Life’s Sweetest Gift, the Resurrection of our Savior.

Love y’all, Camellia

The Trumpets have sounded…

The Trumpets have sounded too early this year, my Ice Follies were in bloom before the frost had gone away in February, the tiny daffodils at the feet of an angel were inspiring and the final flush of gold seemed here and gone before anyone had time to appreciate them for their bright beauty and silent song. Ah! A fickle but much loved lady, who wouldn’t envy Spring for her beauty? I vowed today even before the camellias take their last bow, that the first flush of spring green would not pass me by, ferns, fronds, clover and shamrocks ~ Welcome back old friends and lucky ladies, what would a garden be without your cool clever green? St. Patrick’s Day wouldn’t be the same without you!

Love y’all Camellia