December 4, 2016: Hola everyone! Winter has arrived in Milwaukee and there are snow flurries today. Despite several hard freezes remarkably my "spikes" in two of my patio planters have absolutely refused to die. The rosemary and thyme plants I nursed inside the house through last winter spent the summer in their pot outside next to the side stoop off the driveway, where they get plenty of sunshine all day long. I transplanted them into a cozy sheltered spot right next to the stoop in October and they are still green and growing, too! With the delay in getting the drywall patching done in the relatively minor "reconstruction" work I had done in my kitchen, I am way behind my time in getting the house decorated. But yesterday I got my wreath decked out with extra lights and dressed the front door of the house, and my battery-operated traditional candles were put up on the window sills all around the house Friday evening. It becomes a ritual to go around at dusk and turn the tops to the right to turn the candles "on" and at bedtime to go around and turn the tops to the left to turn the candles "off." Today I put some "glittery" throw pillow covers purchased new last month from H&M on three of my sofa pillows to glam things up a bit in the living room and add some sparkle. Later on, after I sufficiently fuel myself up with wine and snacks and probably to distract myself while I listen to the Packers game on the radio, I will huff and puff and pull my artificial tree up from storage in the basement. I will decorate it simply this year. Every year I say that, and every year I end up throwing just about everything except the kitchen sink on the tree. I am very proud of myself this year, though. I did not buy a single new ornament or Christmas doo-dad for the house (throw pillow covers don't count!!!) Happy Holidays to all, with hope and fervent prayers for 2017. I've a feeling we're all going to need a lot of help from Goddess in the coming year. Jan

Sunday, May 6, 2012

A Spring Bouquet

It's been grey, overcast, foggy and cool here for the past four days.  Raining off and on, too.  Today, more rain - lots and lots of it!  It seems there is a cold front stalled over southeast Wisconsin fighting with warm moist air pushing up from the Gulf Coast.  It's 70 in Iowa and in the 40's-50's here, and wet wet wet! 

I should be happy, because that means I cannot be outside doing yard work and should be in this family room, instead, continuing the chore of stripping wallpaper bit by bit.  I actually did do some of that late Friday night.  Goddess!  Some of the walls underneath are in pretty sad shape.  Major repair work will have to take place before I can prime and re-paper, for sure.  Sigh. 

Yesterday blew by so quickly my head is still spinning, but I blogged (not at Maison Newton), caught up on my never-ending email correspondence, and got the grass in the front yard cut.  I pooped out around 7 p.m. and didn't do anything except veg out after that point, and was in bed by 10 p.m.

This morning has been productive.  Grocery shopping, laundry, grass trimming out front and sweep-up all done, and cleaned off the dinette table, too.  The reason I wanted to clear the table was to take some photos of a spring bouquet I cut yesterday. 

I don't remember where I read it, but it was within the last week or so, and it was from a blog that linked up at one of the blogs I visit regularly, for some party or other, but I don't remember which one or the name of the blog or anything.  Geez, Jan!  What I do remember is reading it and going hmmm, that's some good advice.  It was an informative post about how to build a bouquet using mostly "greenery."

That particular blog post stuck with me.  So, yesterday evening, I ran outside with a vase and a pair of scissors and started snipping away.  I wanted to see if I could follow the advice of that blog post and use mostly greens and then accent - highlight, really - with the few flowers I added.

Well, I think it worked. I stuffed the vase full with various greens and just a few flowers -- a few stems of pink bleeding-heart, a branch of white honeysuckle bush, a branch of pink honeysuckle bush, a few stalks of I have no idea what it is - it's a new volunteer that showed up this year in the "wild" area around the big tree below the retaining wall and has teeny little white flowers, and a few branches from a small tree that has take root underneath my kitchen window (really MUST move it before it gets too big) that has the prettiest white flowers on it that sort of remind me of lilacs but aren't lilacs, now mostly past their prime, and those flowers have an almost-overwhelmingly sweet scent.  It's a seedling from a parent tree in my next store neighbor's yard.

I was really struck with the variations in the different shades of green - ranging from reddish-green, to yellowish-green, to limey-green, and the delicacy of the structures of the various branches.  The flowers, few though they are, really stand out against this background of greens!

And so, whoever did that blog post, at whathever blog it was, a BIG SHOUT-OUT AND THANK YOU, because what you wrote really works!  I've got a huge bouquet that looks fabulous sitting in the middle of my dinette table, and the few flowers in it really stand out.

You gave me an entirely new way to look at "greenery."

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