Monday, November 28, 2022

A Gift for You - A Flower and A Poem


Patience visited me
And it reminded me
That good things take time to come to fruition
And grow slowly with stability
Peace visited me
And it reminded me
That I may remain calm through the storms of life
Regardless of the chaos surrounding me
Hope visited me
And it reminded me
That better times lay ahead
And it would always be there to guide and uplift me
Humility visited me
And it reminded me
That I may achieve it
Not by trying to shrink myself and make myself less
But by focusing on serving the world and uplifting those around me
Kindness visited me
And it reminded me
To be more gentle, forgiving and compassionate toward myself
And those surrounding me
Confidence visited me
And it reminded me
To not conceal or suppress my gifts and talents
In order to make others feel more comfortable
But to embrace what makes me me
Focus visited me
And it reminded me
That other people’s insecurities and judgements about me
Are not my problem
And I should redirect my attention
From others back to me
Freedom visited me
And it reminded me
That no one has control over my mindset, thoughts and wellbeing
But me
And love visited me
And it reminded me
That I need not search for it in others
As it lies within me.
Words by Tahlia Hunter

When I saw these words this morning I knew I needed to share. So many beautiful words to think about and embrace. As we come to the end of the year in one more month I am remembering my word for this year (BE). With a year of just reminding myself to stay put I am feeling the stirrings of something new. All the words above spoke to me and I hope they will speak to you also.
Sending much love as we begin the advent season.

Friday, November 25, 2022

Golden Gate Park Conservatory of Flowers

 One final post from my visit to San Francisco.

We walked along the avenue from the Japanese Gardens to the Conservatory of Flowers, passing the Ferris wheel and many trees.

As we walked along the John F. Kennedy drive we finally arrived at the desired goal.

On our return trip to find our parked car we took a shuttle, which was free and received a delightful mini tour of the park.

I love the Japanese Gardens in the park, but this is also at the top of my list. The gardens outside are amazing, but wait until you see indoors.

It is like stepping into a tropical forest and I felt like I was transported to another place.

Each sight was just stunning and my camera was quite a busy girl.
Yep, she is a girl, my side kick when traveling.

The humidity was so intense in this area I had to remove my steaming glasses.

I couldn't help but imagine having afternoon tea while sitting here in this beautiful place.

A jungle of delights, along with a few bird songs.

Do you seek out gardens and flowers when traveling?
Gardens and teatimes are most often at the top of our list.
If you ever find yourself in San Francisco this location is a must stop and
savor the moments surrounded by beautiful flora and fauna.
Happy Weekend, dear friends!
Hoping if you celebrated Thanksgiving it was extra special.
We are celebrating a day late just so all our little family could be together.
And then overnight, Christmas is coming!

Monday, November 21, 2022

A Gift for You - A Flower and A Poem

When I go walking in my neighborhood I walk by a deserted university campus very near my home. In the garden are winter camellias in bloom. They just make me smile. Looking forward to a day next year when the campus again has students roaming the grounds. For now neighbors enjoy walking there and noticing flowers, berries, gorgeous trees, and picking up pinecones and seed pods. I do believe this year I will have a wooden bowl of pinecones and seed pods to decorate my home.

 Lingering in Happiness

After rain after many days without rain,

it stays cool, private and cleansed, under the trees,

and the dampness there, married now to gravity,

falls branch to branch, leaf to leaf, down to the ground

where it will disappear---but not, of course, vanish

except to our eyes. The roots of the oaks will have their share,

and the white threads of the grasses, and the cushion of moss; 

a few drops, round as pearls, will enter the mole's tunnel;

and soon so many small stones, buried for a thousand years,

will feel themselves being touched.

~Mary Oliver

Why I Wake Early

I just thought Mary Oliver would have some special word to say today as we approach Thanksgiving. I really loved these words and images. Can you imagine touching a stone buried for a thousand years?  

In the same family as the flower above, but a different variety is blooming in my own garden. It is camellia sininsis, better known as a tea plant. Can you see the similarities and differences between the two flowers?

Have a most delightful week preparing for the season of joy, family, and warm things to sip.

Friday, November 18, 2022

Portland Japanese Garden and Art

Most often I share the Lan Su Chinese Garden with you because I have a membership at that garden and love to visit for tea and a quiet walk. It is easy for me to get there and find parking. But once a year they offer a reciprocal free visit to the Portland Japanese Garden and this year it was in November. So recently my "live-in gardener" and I decided to visit on a weekday early morning. We thought it wouldn't be busy, but was I ever wrong. There must have been a hundred photographers out to photograph a cool, fall morning in the garden. It was the perfect autumn morning for just that, taking pictures!

We were greeted by the beautiful ceramic piece in the first picture and I said "I don't remember that in the garden". Well we were soon to learn that Jun Kaneko's art pieces were on show. What a perfect fit in the garden. I loved them all. The exhibit was Garden of Resonance, sculptures to blend into the garden with different, mesmerizing ceramic shapes. The one that greeted me just felt like it belonged there permanently. It was described as simulating Delphware, allowing the blue to run down that structure like a garment woven of water.

On this second structure he experimented with a technique he learned in the Netherlands, where the colors were allowed to run. This is a Dango with Kanedo's signature dots.

But what the photographer's were here to take a picture of was this tree. The sign said, "The Tree" and they were lined up to snap away. Now I did not line up, but took this one snap from the side. Yes, it was beautiful, but to tell you the truth I thought many of the trees were beautiful that day.

The light was magnificent.

Even the view through the teahouse window was stunning.

There were people everywhere snapping pictures.

A glimpse inside of more ceramic art by Jun Kaneko.
To learn more about Jun Kanedo and see his versatility in art go to:

The Japanese Garden in itself is a "work of art". It was originally founded 60 years ago to connect cultures and nurture the role art plays in a garden. I do believe they have achieved that quite beautifully.

 Hoping you have opportunity to be outdoors and enjoy a beautiful autumn day wherever you live.

Happy Weekend, dear friends!

Bundle up and go outdoors.

Monday, November 14, 2022

A Gift for You - A Flower and A Poem

Just a few days ago I visited the Lan Su Chinese Gardens for their displays of chrysanthemums.

Isn't the tiger made of flowers amazing?

There was also fall/autumn colors.

Can you tell me why some people call this time of year fall and why some say autumn? I have never figured that out.

At the Teahouse

Inside it's warm.

Infused with choices

I order Chrysanthemum Flower;

you, Jade Cloud.

Outside, mist drizzles softly

into the ornate cup of the garden,

steeps slowly into the green tea 

of the pond.

Here, nothing is strained.

Together we sip, leisurely as clouds

from pools of leaves and petals

floating in gaiwan bowls--

lids, like our conversation, held back a bit

so as to filter what's superfluous

from our lips.

Behind us,

the two women

pouring out to one another

refill after refill,

water under the covered bridge

about their most recent breakups,

each of us cradling the warm

but fragile touch of porcelain

in our hands.

Beside them,

the little altar

with its sweet smell 

of burned-out incense

lying in a heap of ashes

at the feet of Kuan Yin.

by Daniel Skach-Mills

And we will end where we began, only from the rear of the tiger.

Have an amazing week, dear friends!