Friday, July 31, 2020

From my Heart

Dear BIPOC and White Friends too,
I want to apologize to the BIPOC community for not speaking up, for remaining silent when my introvert person hides away. I have told myself during this time of pandemic it is safer for me, an older woman, to stay safely at home and thus not show up and stand beside you in protest of your treatment. My heart has been with you, but I have hidden away. I want you to know I love you, stand with you, and my words here must do my speaking.

In school I was taught white history; so I don’t know your history and haven’t asked.

In my wider family in the past I have heard racial comments and not spoken up and stood with you.

When I have stood beside you in the post office line I have thought I would like to know you, but not said a word to you.

When I shop I didn’t realize that for you the stores I am shopping in are designed for white people and that you might be uncomfortable being there, but going there because places you would feel comfortable are disappearing.

Most often I read books by white women, because that is where I feel most comfortable. I haven’t explored books available by BIPOC people.

I am remiss in so many little and big ways, please forgive me.

My dear white friends, do you even know what BIPOC stands for? I didn’t until this week, but then I didn’t bother to know. BIPOC is Black Indigenous People of Color. That means people with skin color darker than your own whiteness.

In traveling in other parts of the world I learned all people are the same, but I didn’t tell you I learned that. All people have a heart, they bleed like you and they cry like you. Their laughter delights me and their suffering saddens my heart.

We are one human race. We must learn to live together in harmony, love, and peace. With internet we have become one world and in that it is more than ever important to show kindness to each other.  Let us stop isolating and condemning each other. Let’s be open to embrace one another and listen, carry on that conversation, and learn from each other. Our lives would be much richer for doing so. What we believe to be true may only be your truth as you know it at the time, but in listening and learning you and I can continue to grow, learn, and become a better you and me.

All pictures are mine in travels to other parts of the world.
The first is a family on the beach in Thailand.
The second was artwork in France.
The third was a musician playing in the park in Barcelona.
And the fourth, which totally delights me, is dancing in the street
in Carcassone, France.

Please think on these words, which were inspired by my reading of Me and White Supremacy.
I am continuing to read and learn. More thoughts may come in the future.

Happy weekend, dear friends!

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Happy Birthday, Beatrix Potter!

Do you love Peter Rabbit and Beatrix Potter too?
Today was another birthday for Beatrix Potter.
Yes, she created Peter to send to a friend and people
like it so well she was encouraged to publish it.
Thus began an amazing career.
 This was Beatrix's home when she married Mr. Hellis.
 Sheep ancestors.
 Her garden walking up to her cottage where she had her studio.

 I loved visiting Mr. McGregor's garden.
I could just imagine Peter hiding there, maybe in the watering can.
 It was springtime when I visited.
The apple trees were blooming in the sheep pasture.
 What has always impressed me about Beatrix, beside her art, was
that she bought up farms in the area so that developers couldn't come in
and destroy the beauty of the countryside.
When she died her property was passed onto the country and put in trust.
Walking in the village nearby I found cake
and just had to share with you.
Let's lift our cup of tea and have a slice of cake
to celebrate Beatrix Potter's birthday.

Monday, July 27, 2020

Word for the Day - 2020


from Wikipedia: Ancestor is "any person from whom one is descended.
 In law the person from whom an estate has been inherited."
 This word, ancestor, has been brought to mind several times this past week.
In beginning to read Me and White Supremacy by Layla F. Saad,
she says the book is about combating racism, changing the world, and
becoming a good ancestor.

Then in church yesterday our speaker talked about what
ancestors went before us and setting an example for the future generations.

Well, thinking on this word I realized I need to pay attention to being
that good ancestor, a representative for good, and memories that my ancestors
would be proud to say she was my "ancestor".
This was my mom above.
Many didn't know her, but she is my ancestor.
I am proud to be related to her and tell others about what a special lady she was.
For the fun of it, this is me on my wedding day.
Each day I am learning a little more about being a good ancestor.
Setting an example that my grandson would be proud of. 

But more than just my grandson,
I desire to be a good representation of a woman living 
each and every day to make the world a better place.

Happy Monday, dear friends!

Friday, July 24, 2020

Touched my Heart

This week I took the week off just to not push myself,
do some meditation, and step back a bit from life.
Several words touched my heart as I meditated on life right now.

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart 
and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.”

"When worrying about what could go wrong, focus on what if it goes right."
I took a walk alone just to spend time with myself.
Leach Botanical Gardens was open and very few were there.
It was a beautiful warm day and I walked among the trees.
Happy weekend, dear friends!
Enjoy some silence and meditation today.

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Flowers and Tea

 If you have visited me long enough you might notice when I have teatime
there is 99% chance there are flowers too.
In the basket above you might say there is no tea in the picture,
but it still represents teatime for me.
You see that is a tea pickers basket for drying the tea.
I brought home 3 of the smaller ones from Taiwan several years ago.
I love using them to collect flowers in the garden,
especially when the flowers will be in a bouquet for teatime.
Watch for it! These flowers do go in a teatime bouquet.
 Seasonal bouquets are the best, right out of my garden.
 Even this very simple bouquet of calla lilies is laying in my tea basket.
 Yes, this was a springtime tea in the garden house.
 A summer bouquet in a teacup.
 And here it is, my teatime this week with the flowers in the first picture.
All of the flowers are from my garden.
This week I was celebrating a new teacup.
I am particularly drawn to green and white right now,
so when I saw this vintage Coleport teacup, made in England,
I couldn't resist.
The simple white teapot is one of my favorite morning ritual teapots.
It is a gift from a friend and I love it.

Flower and tea, what could be a better combination.
Two things that make my heart sing.

Monday, July 20, 2020

Word for the Day - 2020

    from Wiktionary:

    whimsy (usually uncountable, plural whimsies) A quaint and fanciful idea; a whim; playfully odd behaviour. An impulsive, illogical or capricious character.

    If you have followed along on my blog for a long time

    you might have figured out I like whimsy.

    I like to imagine fairies dancing in my garden,

    bunnies sipping tea,

    or flowers smiling up at me.

    Playfulness just makes me happy

    and after all right now we need a bit of whimsy in our lives.

    So for today let's play a bit, let our imaginations run wild,

    sing to our hearts content, and dance our hearts out.

    Happy Monday, dear friends!

    The picture is from my garden, a door to welcome the fairies.

Saturday, July 18, 2020

Summertime Tea

Not being able to go to a tearoom my heart was dreaming of having tea nearby.
In fact, right in my own garden house.
It is the perfect get away and so close we can walk.
So this week my "live-in gardener" and I had tea right there.
I love mixing it up, so there was no matching of plates or cups.
I made the food and my "live-in gardener" enjoyed eating it.
We had Coronation Chicken (with mango chutney) sandwiches,
Cucumber sandwiches with dill and cream cheese,
Red pepper and cream cheese on toast and broiled,
Trout and nastursium sandwiches on polenta bread.
For our sweet we had lemon bars.
Tea was Tulsi for my "live-in gardener" and English Breakfast chilled for me.

I am behind the camera, so you can't see me,
but here is my "live-in gardener" enjoying teatime in the garden house.

Do you have a safe place to hide away and enjoy?
What are you doing to make your day special during this time of isolation?

On a side note, today would have been TeaFestPDX (Portland's Tea Festival).
I have been heavily involved in the organization since it began 4 years ago.
Instead for the past month or two we have hosted online tea classes,
then came together on zoom today to have a salute to tea in honor of our festival.
So I am lifting my cup and honoring TeaFestPDX today by
sharing teatime from my own backyard.

Happy weekend, dear friends!
I hope you are having a terrific weekend!

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

A Return to the Garden

Yesterday the Lan Su Chinese Gardens opened for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic.
It was open to members only with reservations and a mask.
Just a few were welcomed each hour and we were given 1 hour to enjoy
by following the arrows through the garden.
It was such a treat to be there for awhile.
My oasis away from home.
There were more fish in the pond and dragonflies flitting about than I have ever seen there.

The flowers so beautiful!
The peacefulness of hardly anyone around delighted my heart.

Even the little grasshopper on the rose sang to my soul.

Waterlilies were in full bloom.
I almost felt like I could reach out and hold the dragonflies in my hand.
Walking through a jungle of delight my heart was happy.

The fragrances greeted us as we entered and again as we left.
So thankful for this place of beauty in the center of Portland.
It is indeed an oasis missed.

Monday, July 13, 2020

Word for the Day - 2020

When I think of wisdom pictures of paths come to mind.
Do we have the wisdom to know the path to take?
The wisdom to make choices?

From wikipedia:

Wisdom, sapience, or sagacity is the ability to think and act using knowledge, experience, understanding, common sense and insight.[1] Wisdom is associated with attributes such as unbiased judgment, compassion, experiential self-knowledge, self-transcendence and non-attachment,[2] and virtues such as ethics and benevolence.[3][4]

Is the path narrow or wide?
Do we walk the path alone or together with others?
Do we carry the load or share with another?

The Serenity Prayer is a prayer written by the American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr[1][2] (1892–1971). It is commonly quoted as:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
courage to change the things I can,
and wisdom to know the difference.[1]

Niebuhr's prayer originally asked for courage first, and specifically for changing things that must be changed, not things that simply can be changed.

I know I have quoted the Serenity Prayer before, but it still comes to mind often these days.

I have a fascination with paths and find I photograph them whenever I am walking one.
The image indeed reminds me of wisdom, choices, courage, and diligence
to keep moving forward the best we can.

May your week be blessed with wisdom to make courageous choices for yourself.

Friday, July 10, 2020


Recently a friend invited me to come to her yard and pick berries.
In the past I have picked marionberries there, but this time it was
loganberries and raspberries.
Now Oregon does grow wonderful berries
and I love, love having them in my freezer.
So off I went!

The berry vines were loaded and more than my friend could use.
In no time we had a bucket of loganberries and another of raspberries.
Definitely a pie was in order.
"We must have pie. Stress cannot exist in the presence of a pie."  ~David Mamet

Indeed I must agree with that quote.

Earlier this week I was reading about "soul food" and what food comforted you growing up.
Thinking on this I came to the conclusion it was pie for me.
Any kind of pie would do, but fruit pies were at the top of the list.
Yesterday I went on a hike with my 7 year old grandson and told him about
reading about "soul food".
I asked if I could teach him how to make a pie and he agreed.
So one day we will plan a day to make a pie.

The berry pie was a combination of loganberry, raspberry, and a hand full of blueberries.
Needless to say, it was quite delicious and quite gone now.

Do you love pie?
What kind is your favorite?

There is another pie filling in the freezer for winter.
I love having summer sun in my freezer during the bleak winter months.
Then the raspberries are frozen too, but for another reason.
I love raspberries in my morning yogurt.
Already I look forward to a hand full of raspberries tomorrow.

Happy weekend dear friends!
Hope pie is a part of your weekend.