Thursday, May 16, 2019

The Buttercups are Blooming

Hello, Sweet Friends, I hope that spring is bringing a smile to your face
 as we try to forget the cares of this troubled world
for a few precious moments each day.

The only certainty we can claim, is that life is always
moving forward, so we must try
to keep our eyes on the horizon and push forward in
the most positive and compassionate way possible.

Already, the first cutting of hay is wrapped and ready
in the fields, with summer just around the bend.

Time flies, so we must capture those beautiful, joyful moments to fill
our hearts, whenever and wherever we can.

I hope that Mother's Day was a day like that for you.

Sometimes, these special days can bring bittersweet emotions.

The lilac is blooming and filling the air with its intoxicating scent.
This lilac is very old and a survivor of children, pets, ponies and deer,
so I have a certain respect and appreciation for its persistence.

I planted two more by the deck a couple of years ago,
but they are slow-growing and taking their sweet time.

I suppose I shall be very old by the time they are blooming,
and so I will appreciate my own persistence by then, too.

I was spoiled with flowers and baskets for Mother's Day,
and gift cards for whatever else my heart desires.

This large, ceramic pot and miniature Japanese maple
was a Mother's Day 'heart's desire' one year.

The front of the house faces north and is perpetually shady.
I have ferns, ivy, arch angel and vinca on this end.
The hanging basket by the front door is a fuchsia.

The other side has a hydrangea hedge along the fence 
with bleeding heart. The green bells are a wildflower
called 'fringe cup'. I encourage it wherever it wants to grow,
but the bind-weed winding around the bleeding heart has got to go. 
I am forever discouraging it in my gardens, but it is a quick 
grower and sometimes escapes my watchful eye.  

Herb Robert is another wildflower that I encourage.
It loves shade and has lacy leaves that turn bright red in autumn.

It is also known as 'Stinky Bob', because it has
a pungent scent that repels nibblers.

I've turned one of my tables into an impromptu
potting area until I can find a place for my potting bench.

The canopy displaced the potting bench, 
but so worth the inconvenience. 

I haven't put out the pillows and throws yet, 
because the weather is still too unsettled, 
but candles and lanterns are being put to good use, already. 

This one has a little remote to turn it off and on. 
Another sweet gift for Mother's Day. 

I'm potting galvanized tubs with 
petunias, sweet alyssum, and creeping Jenny.

The coral impatiens are for the east and north window boxes 
and the shade of the canopy. 

It is raining this week, so I have been interrupted. 

I am catching up on housework, laundry, and shopping. 

'Catching up' is really not the right expression, is it?
Can you ever really 'catch up'? 

I turn around and the laundry basket is full again, 
the pantry is empty, and I need to start all over on the household chores

We won't even mention the weeding......

So, I just try to enjoy little moments in my day
to really notice what is all around me.

Evidence that there is more to life than constant duty. 
That tiny miracles are happening
at every single moment. 

I notice the dandelion growing in the crack of the pavement
and the nest of baby birds in the tree of the parking lot 
where the elderly couple walk hand and hand,
as I load  groceries into my vehicle. 

I notice the blooming trees along the road as I drive to my grandchildren's house.
Their little faces and tiny hands are the best part of these days. 

And the amazing sunset reflected in a tiny pond
or silhouetting the Olympic Mountains 
as we take the long, sentimental drive home
after a precious day spent with family.  

These things are the quiet parenthesis, 
the gentle backdrop to 
 the story of my days. 

Even difficult days have these quiet, miraculous markers. 

I remember the golden cradle of the setting, crescent moon through 
the winter trees as I made my way, pre-dawn to the hospital 
during my Mother's last weeks. 
I had no idea then, that time was so short......
and I have blocked out most of the trauma, 
but the memory of that beautiful moon somehow soothes my soul. 

Later that year, I was leaving the care home where my dear Father spent 
his last years afflicted with Alzheimer's. 
After my Mother died, I would make the long drive 
to visit him without her, and he no longer remembered who I was. 
This particular day it hit me hard, and I had tears 
in my eyes as I walked out the door. It was then that 
I noticed the most beautiful rainbow arced across the sky. 

That rainbow remained in the sky the whole drive home. 
Just for me.
It was a sign of hope. 

 I could still see the beauty in this world, 
and this ability was my grateful inheritance. 


  1. I love where you are. The porch is so pretty. The views, just wonderful. All the blooms -- well, blooming! And those buttercups are something I don't see often. I love them!

  2. Karen, I think that I would forever stay home if I were you surrounded by such beauty and quiet. Thank you for sharing glimpses of your day with us. I love ordinary days ~ chores and all!

  3. Lovely pictures of your heavenly place...Just adorable!Hugs,dear Karen!

  4. It was nice to see all the different kinds of flowers growing around your home, Karen. I like the steps to the front of your door, so charming. That hanging lantern is so pretty and unique. You always make such pretty flower arrangements in your galvanized tubs. The picture of the sunset over the pond is so lovely. I think the rainbow was, indeed, meant for you after losing your mom and dad. My favorite part of this post is that you notice all the beautiful things around you each day, and have a great appreciation for it all.


  5. Karen, I love all your photos and the stories that you weave around them. I can't help but see hope in the world (and we do need a lot!) when I read one of your posts. Just beautiful..Happy Weekend, my friend..xxoJudy

    1. Thanks for your visit, Karen. I am really worrying that the little wrens won't be back. But, they played the same games last year so I'm hoping they will be. We are having lots of rain so the pollen is settling which is good news. Just can't get out into the garden to do what is terribly needed..Happy Tuesday..Judy

  6. You do have a lot to keep you busy but you need to take advantage of being outdoors on these lovely spring days, like you said there are always those rainy days that we can get things done inside :) Looks like you received some really lovely mother's day gifts. It is always the best way to look for the good in each day, it is all too easy to fall into despair if you don't watch it. So glad God gifted you with that rainbow when you needed it!

  7. Hi Karen, I always enjoy taking a stroll through your property. It is so beautiful! The memories of our parents nearing the end of their lives can be so difficult but I have no doubt that God sent you that rainbow. Take care, Kelly.

  8. So lovely, Karen! We are surrounded by God's beauty everyday! I have often taken comfort from it, too! I recently had an hour's layover in Seattle and loved seeing the Washington beauty from the air...I hope to visit one day!

  9. Just beautiful, Karen. I agree about finding a bit of beauty and peace in each and every day--sometimes easier said than done. Your gardens and areas surrounding your home are just beautiful and I know that you fully appreciate that beauty! You needed that rainbow-it was a God thing- xo Diana

  10. A visit to your lovely home, Karen, is a respite from the troubles and sadness of this world. Your beautiful home and garden and sweet vignettes always make me light in spirit and cause me to smile♥

  11. Absolutely beautiful!! I love to visit your blog. It gives me peace and a chance to see beauty. There is so much problems out there. Thank you!!

  12. Gorgeous pictures Karen, it is so nice the weather is warming up.

    Hugs diane

  13. What a sweet post, Karen. It started cheerfully, with lovely photos and wise words... and ended touching the deepest feelings we have, our love towards our family. The rainbow you saw was a blessing.
    Wishing you joyful summer moments and sending you big hugs! xx

  14. You are precious soul my dear friend Karen since you are blessed with warm kindred heart :)

    Lord has given you chance to live in such a glorious area filled with natural beauty and beautiful weather.

    your love with life ,nature and family always makes my day enlightened and cheerful !

    i am so happy for you that you got so many pretty and precious gifts on mother's day :)))

    you cultivated a wonderful life out of your love and compassion and now time to harvest the peace and joy my friend!

    your memories of full moon made my eyes teary !

    either i have such painful memories regarding my parent's last years and i know how my whole (inner) way of life has changed after them
    still i try to uplift my soul with family i have ,i smile and i embrace because they are my tree of life grown from my roots
    though i miss my own roots terribly !

    stay blessed with faith and strength you have my friend!

  15. Hello Karen, oh you have such a pretty deck and I love all of those pretty flowers you are planting. I know it will be really beautiful out there during the summer months for you to enjoy. I love looking at the photos of the mountain. Take care and thanks for the lovely visit.
    Hugs Julie

  16. HI Karen...
    your Flowers are beautiful...and your memories are as well♥️
    I always enjoy your pictures and your stories...
    I have a new Grandson!! Miss V is a big sister...and loving it!!
    linda :o)

  17. Hello Dearest Friend 😊
    I don't know how I missed this post - but loved catching up on your beautiful mother's day gifts. And I just love your back deck and your beautiful home. It sure looks like you're getting all set for the summer season ahead.

    But i especially loved your beautiful poetic words about your parents. You know I relate all too well. I think as women we are about as strong as they come. The way we bear things and yet continue to take care of our families, homes and everything else. Yet, to keep the joy in it all as well. Preserving the memories no matter how bittersweet.

    Big hugs to you Karen. Blessings to you 💜 xoxo

  18. A lovely post to look at and read, thank you.
    I think your garden and your beautiful mix of flowers are gorgeous.

    All the best Jan

  19. The pink flowers are cute. They look like a lantern. Happy Sunday to you and your dog.

  20. Wise words and fantastic photos, dear Karen. Your garden is looking lovely and I love that photo with the snowy mountain in the background. And for housework? You can never ever catch up, there is always something more to be done :-)

  21. "These things are the quiet parenthesis, the gentle backdrop to the story of my days."
    I am endlessly grateful to my parents and my grandfather who in very different ways taught me to see and treasure natural beauty. It is a gift I hope I instilled in my children and grand children.

  22. I love to visit your blog! It feels my soul with beauty! I have never seen Japanese Maple, it is so beautiful! Love all your plants. I have been overwhelmed with all to do in our place. We took off for two weeks and came back to chaos. My son lives with us but he doesn't do much. His excuse is he is studying for the bar. Thank you for sharing all beautiful things!

  23. Hello Karen, it's been lovely reading through this post. The lilac is gorgeous indeed.
    Your sweet garden is charming and it must be so nice taking a walk through it. Gardens are good for the soul aren't they. They are such beautiful thoughts you've shared about your dear parents and those photos of the sunset and rainbow. I too have Herb Robert rambling all through my little garden... the tiny pink flowers are always uplifting to see. Hugs from Sue


Thank you for stopping by! Your comments are important to me and are very much appreciated. xx Karen

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