If it’s true that busy hands are happy hands, my hands are rolling in ecstasy.
The skeleton of a Conyne-style box kite is drying on the floor of my office. Drying on trays in the guest room are five kinds of herbs. The dining-room table is covered with flower vases and ikebana practice arrangements in the moribana and nageire styles. In the garage are three large silk-flower arrangements ready to be delivered. Out on the patio is my version of a Picasso face made of rusted iron hinges and bits of machinery.
The regional state fair begins next week, and I signed up for competitions in kite making, flower growing, dried and fresh herbs, vegetables, garden signs, and floral designs. All I do all day long is make things and do the prep work to make more things during the 10-day run of the fair.
The weather is glorious and I make mad forays out into the garden to keep things groomed and growing out there. The triple-digit heat vanished, and I don’t know if that’s a good thing or not. The tomatoes aren’t ripening, and the sunflowers haven’t even set buds yet. The dahlias are dallying, which means I have almost no flowers to work with right now. There’s only a week before the flower competition begins. I got the bug infestation under control, but only God can make flowers bloom, so I’m starting to sweat a little.
In getting my work space prepared, I went through some boxes of my mother’s things, shoved into the garage willy-nilly last August when she died. It was an occasion for gratitude. I read her little scribbled notes, marveling at her valiant attempts to cope with her dying brain. I found the last little bits of quilting she was able to do before the skill of sewing left her. I read the random newspaper articles that she cut out of the paper, wondering why those particular subjects caught her attention. It all made me realize how much healing has taken place in the past year. Handling her things gave me pleasure and I felt joy again. Her idiosyncratic habits made me smile. I’m thankful for my mother and for what I learned during that painful last year of her life. I love you, Mom.
I dug out some photos of my floral work from two years ago to inspire me as I do prep work this week. This piece won “Best of the Day.”
This piece won “Best of Show” among both amateur (my class) and professional work.
This bride’s bouquet took a first.
This is a cake made of flowers.
The "Purple Tiger" rose at the top of this post is faithfully blooming and has taken blue ribbons in the floribunda rose class. And here is my entry in the garden sign category. It resembles how I look after all the work this week.
I'm a poet, gardener, and freelance writer who lives in California by the coast, in a small town surrounded by pastures, woods, and vineyards. Other things I am: recovering LA magazine editor and recovering alcoholic, wife of a tolerant man, mom to two beautiful daughters, mistress of beagles and cats, lover of mysteries and photography, a survivor of suicide, depression, addiction, and sundry minor ailments. I write for a living and write poetry for life.
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“Things turn out best for the people who make the best out of the way things turn out.” (Art Linkletter)
We are continually faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as insoluble problems. (John W. Gardner)
Survival Tip #19
My strength lies solely in my tenacity. (Louis Pasteur)
I'm a recovering Lutheran
"This life therefore is not righteousness, but growth in righteousness, not health, but healing, not being but becoming, not rest but exercise. We are not yet what we shall be, but we are growing toward it, the process is not yet finished, but it is going on, this is not the end, but it is the road." (Martin Luther)
A Philosophy of Life
“It is by studying little things that we attain the great art of having as little misery and as much happiness as possible.” Samuel Johnson
Visitors are beautiful people.
My AA Recovery Story
I got sober in 1990 after a life of drug and alcohol addiction, and I had 15 wonderful years. Then I moved and left my homegroup behind. I didn't replace my sponsor, who had died. I didn't work with newcomers, and I went to only one meeting a week. Ultimately, I didn't stay sober. I experienced that strange mental twist, and I picked up. But I jumped back into the program, and my life has continually gotten better. I'm married to a man with 23 years of sobriety, and we work our program at home. AA is the hub the wheel of my life revolves around. I've been able to explore a creative side of my personality that once lived only under the influence of drugs. I have perfect moments during each of my precious days. We are none of us invulnerable to that strange mental twist that precedes the first drink, and all that stands between us and the drink is our constant thought of others. My prayer these days is: God, do your will in and through me today. If I can be an inspiration to others, then my life is rich. God bless you all.
Rosebud on Ice
If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant; if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome. (Anne Bradstreet)