Celebrations March 18, 2016

18 March, 2016 Celebrate The Small Things

Once upon a time, a lovely lady and writer and blogger named VikLit had the idea to start a blog hop commemorating the little things that make our lives (or weeks or days or moments) something to celebrate.  After some years, she turned it over to 
Lexa Cain and her two delightful co-hosts L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge and Tonja Drecker @ Kidbits,

I am celebrating the close of another week, the prospect of a (nearly) spring weekend, and the opportunity to get a little reading and writing done.

Spring is an important celebration, and it was heralded by 0the sudden appearance of a line of daffodils, just about ready to bloom, near the door to my garage.  They pushed up through last year’s leaves and moss and there they are, like gold-tipped spears.

Of course, Friday’s appearance is a wonderful thing to celebrate.  It is not that I grudge my day job, I simply like the time to step back and catch my breath.  Sleeping in on a Saturday morning is a prospect to celebrate.

It is nearly time to break out my quilts, one made by a very dear friend, the others heirlooms of various ‘importance’.  I have a very old one, made in 1843, of blue-dyed and white cotton muslin, celebrating the marriage of two people, their names embroidered in red cross stitch on the corner.

Incidentally, if you have an old quilt, don’t store it folded with the backer out.  The quilter friend told me that that strains the backing.  Always store quilts with the patterned side out.

Now you have something to celebrate!  (The way to store quilts that won’t strain them.) and I can lose myself in the memory of the scent of laundry drying on a clothesline.

And  the arrival of Spring!

What are you celebrating?

Celebrations, May 8, 2015, Fragrant Flowers and Two Books.

Welcome to the Celebrating the Small Things blog hop, started by VikLit and now run by Lexa Cain, our fearless new leader and her two wonderful co-hosts L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge and Katie @ TheCyborgMom.

I found my first post, written in February of 2013.  I remember I’d never been in a ‘blog hop’, and everyone would be certain to know what a newbie I was.  No doubt I’d post something stupid and annoy someone.

Not so.  This wonderful hop has made me smile, has let me enjoy the thoughts and insights of so many truly delightful people.  I can’t imagine not being a part of it, and it is a mark of the kindly nature of the blogosphere in general and this group in particular, that my off-again on-again participation has been tolerated and even smiled at. 

Fragrant Viburnum

So…what am I celebrating?  The fragrant Viburnum bush outside my front window is in full bloom.  The breeze sifting down from this hilltop is rich with its scent.

I have a circle of antique irises, bought years ago from an old estate near the ocean, and they’re coming back for the spring, as well.

Fresh sheets on the bed, a very nice book to finish reading, and then to review:  Afraid of Everything, by Karen Jones Gowen.  I bought it last year, began reading it, got busy with Christmas, family, other issues, and rediscovered it, to my delight, this past week.  It is an enjoyable story, profound and almost dreamlike.  It reminds me, a little, of The Five People You Will Meet In Heaven, though this story is a little more profound, to me.  The heroine had been afraid of everything, increasingly a captive of her own fear.  It is a story of liberation and of understanding, and Gowen writes beautifully.

It’s available in various stores  Amazon’s worldwide link is RIGHT HERE.

Killer Exposure

My final celebration is that I just learned that I won a copy of Lara Lacomb’s book Killer Exposure.
Lara, who also blogs, often on this thread, writes an excellent romantic suspense story.  Her experience in science gives things a ring of truth, and those of us who enjoy her blog are familiar with her humor and skill.

Amazon’s worldwide link for the kindle edition is right hereI won a paperback copy, another thing to celebrate.

I was not asked to write about these or link to these.  It’s just nice to look forward to two good books.

What are you celebrating? 

Celebrations – April 3, 2015

Welcome to the April 3 edition of the Celebrating the Small Things blog hop, started by VikLit and now run by Lexa Cain, our fearless new leader and her two wonderful co-hosts L.G. Keltner @ Writing Off The Edge
Katie @ TheCyborgMom

I am celebrating several things, in ascending order:

  1. This has been a busy week and I accomplished a great deal (for myself)
  2. Winter is broken and yesterday I saw the first shoots of daffodils.  I know we have crocuses coming up at the front of the house, purple and yellow.
  3. Writing is coming along well, I’m finishing my first finished draft of VENGEANCE, which is the second book in my Paris 1834 series, and…
  4. Today is the beginning of the days leading to Easter, a day I love.  It is, as well, the first day of Passover.  

 I’m home alone this weekend with a real yen to cook and (I gasp at this admission from a confirmed ‘pantser’) to actually do a chapter outline of this story and the next in the series, as well as my other, Egyptian work in progress.  I’ve done this in a desultory fashion (hm…  A word I can use in my going-along-with-the-A to Z-blog-fest-when-I-have-the-time.  No, wait.  D, for me, is Decorated Capital.  Ah, well.

Joy, good weather and blessings to all of you.  Have a wonderful weekend!


Celebrations – March 21, 2014

Time to celebrate the things that go unnoticed!  

VikLit had the idea for this Friday blog that celebrates the small things that often go unnoticed.  I often read the posts and reflect that I had never noticed the things  baing mentioned.  Once I see what they are, I find myself celebrating, too.

Join us!  Details are at the end of this post.

Today is the first full day of spring.  We all remember spring, don’t we?  Especially after such a dreadful winter as this has been?

The season of sprouting flowers, of flotillas of Canada geese and songbirds returning home…  I heard birds outside my window after the silence of winter, and I smiled.

Down south (in the US) the magnolias and azaleas are beginning to bloom.  I remember strolling beneath Spanish moss-festooned branches and filling my sight with magenta azaleas.

I am also celebrating morning tea.  Usually slightly sweetened and well-milked.  I drink two or three cups each morning.  It’s especially good when I remember to drink it while it is hot.

What else?  the cold is easing up, but I can still enjoy a fire.  There is something about watching flames that speaks of comfort and celebration.  It does help if you are not cursed with the ability to put out any fire you encounter, even if it is begun with gasoline and dry pitch pine.  I have several acquaintances with that ability.

And another celebration – all of you .  It is good to read what is posted and see smiles through your eyes.

Color-Starved by Winter – ah, Spring!

I love most seasons, though I admit that the seasons that hold February and August sometimes wear my patience a little thin.  Nevertheless, each season has its own beauty, from the splendor of Autumn to the silvery pastels of winter.  Scents, sights, sounds-all combine to fill the passing seasons with their own special pleasures.

My favorite?  Autumn, I think, though it’s near thing.

Spring, though, where you watch breathlessly as the first crocus pushes its way up through the curls of dry oak leaves, comes close.

By springtime I am ready to turn my shoulder on the silvery pastels and clean-washed skies of winter (and the ‘snirt’ – snow with dirt that edges roadways) and seek color and fragrance.

That is when I head to the local greenhouses.   I went this morning.

One place was a riot of Impatiens and begonias, sitting in hanging baskets or pots ready to be put on front doorsteps.  I admit to a weakness for pansies.  A bowl of them is on my front step right now – velvety amethyst and midnight blue petals.

People walked along the rows of plants, looking for purple torenia (I love those) or gazing dreamily at flowering almond shrubs.  I like the flats of ground cover (and delighted I was to discover that periwinkle – Vinca – is now growing in my yard).

Reds always catch my attention – the many colors of red or reddish that you see in geraniums, begonias or red salvia (which I don’t care for).  I did select poppies in coral and tender red to put in an ornamental garden with a stone bench, a wind chime, two stepping stones, black mulch and white river rocks as a border.  (My sister gets credit for the design.)

One of the workers at the greenhouse smiled when she saw that I was purchasing Summersweet, which blooms in July and August and attracts hummingbirds.  “Very wise of you!  People are so tired of winter and they want color, and so they get what’s in bloom and in a month have a boring garden!”

Hm.  I hadn’t thought of it that way.

I bought bunny tail grass (guess what it looks like) and then spent the rest of the time sighing over heliotrope, sniffing roses, dithering over rich wine-colored pansies (did I mention that pansies, violets, violas and Johnny-jump-ups are my favorite?)

I spent some time in Hawaii as a child, among plumerias, birds of paradise and the other lovely flowers.  Back in the mainland US, we were all exclaiming over buttercups, daisies and irises.

The big challenge now is to plant the things.  I don’t know how many flats of geraniums have given up the ghost while I fiddled around doing other things.

Not this time, though!

Sunday Thoughts

Daffodil Hill in Litchfield, Connecticut

At last, some time to catch my breath.  I have been out of things with this A to Z challenge – too many things came together at once and it was all I could do for the past week to get my posts out. 

Now I can go back, visit other blogs, enjoy things – there is so much variety – one woman I follow has crocheted flowers (here’s her blog: http://lotsofcrochetstitches.blogspot.com/ )  Really creative – and I may end up making a bouquet of crocheted flowers to display.

It is early spring, the weeping willow sapling is leafing out (the first green haze of willows is one of my ‘markers’ for the advent of spring), the sky is blue – and my feet are freezing.  Just because it is spring, I don’t have to give up on having a nice fire in my wood-burning stove.

…and there’s a nice, hot cuppa waiting.

Ah…  Sundays…!  I hope yours are good!