June 29, 2009

Settle For More.

"There is more in us than we know. If we can be made to see it, perhaps, for the rest of our lives, we we be unwilling to settle for less." - Kurt Hahn

Sometimes we tend to rest on our laurels, accepting what we know as being sufficient, or even a bit better than that. However, when that opportunity for growth comes a knocking, fear and uncertainty can put us into a catonic state. Stepping out of our comfort zone is an uncomfortable place to be.

Sometimes it takes a loved one, a friend or a co-worker to see the potential in us that we don't see when we look in the mirror. I think many times, we are content for things to remain as status-quo, and the thought of reaching out on a limb to get that piece of fruit is too much.

However, if we do step out of our box, if we do reach out and go for that piece of fruit, just waiting to be picked, something happens to you, and you will never be the same. You add or grow your confidence level up a notch or maybe three. You feel exuberant, and a smile in your heart grows. You now know you can do it again, and is not that a wonderful feeling?

June 27, 2009


"Be happiness itself" - Buddha

(our fountain for the birds)

Have a great weekend!

June 26, 2009

A poem...

Years ago I worked with a woman by the name of Nancy. I was a young woman, starting out with a large company, and she had years of experience ahead of me. She must have sensed a nervous energy from me, and she graciously took me under her wing and became my Mentor.

There came a time when I found another job position within the company, and would no longer work with Nancy. One day before I left the department, I found an envelope on my desk from her. In it was a poem. It was time for me to sail to another shore, and she was watching me move on. I knew she was happy for me just by the words in this poem I share with you now.

"Believe in Yourself" - Bruce B. Wilmer

"Believe in yourself to the depth of your being. Nourish the talents your spirit is freeing.

Know in your heart when the going gets slow, that your faith in yourself will continue to grow.

Don't forfeit ambition when others may doubt. It's your life to live - you must live it throughout.

Learn from your errors - don't dwell in the past. Never withdraw from a world that is vast.

Believe in yourself: find the best that is you. Let your spirit prevail. Steer a course that is true."

- It was Nancy's wisdom and generosity in giving me this poem. It was many years ago, however, I have never forgotten her, and her good deed.
Thank you Nancy.

June 24, 2009

Creativity is Everywhere...

Do you enjoy walking through garden centers? I do. Well, with a name like Purple Flowers, I should, right?

Even though there is the ever popular standard merchandise, some garden centers have the ability to be creative. I can appreciate their creativity and variety of flowers, plants, garden furniture, planters and water elements.

I feel it is necessary for me to discover new places. It stimulates the creative juices in my head, and makes me think "I can do this or I will try that." If I don't experiment, it becomes like eating the same type of lettuce everyday - boring. However, if I try new and different, voila, new ideas pop into my head, and next thing I know I am looking at salads in a whole new light!

So, the next time you're in need of something new for your garden, remember the lettuce analogy. Creativity is everywhere.

June 22, 2009

Be Positive

"No pessimists ever discovered the secret of the stars, or sailed to an uncharted land, or opened a new heaven to the human spirit."
- Helen Keller

The words above are so true. They have sustained mankind in many trials and tribulations. Having a positive attitude helps us to overcome obstacles and continue on our path to reach our goals. Although there have been times, and are times, when something gets the best of us. It is positive perserverance that takes the helm.

I knew a woman, Michele, who was sight challenged. This did not stop her, as she was extremely accomplished in her lifetime. Because of her positive attitude, she achieved her Master's degree in French Literature, and worked as a Director of Public Affairs at the Seeing Eye: an organization for the placement of guide dogs for the sight challenged population.

Her positive determination taught her to walk tall and raise her face without fear, to the sun, wind and rain. Her optimism was a strong force within her world. And she was able to help people, young and old. I think this is what Helen Keller meant: having a positive human spirit, is the only way to live.

June 19, 2009

All You Need is Sun...

"All You Need Is Love" is a song written by John Lennon and credited to Lennon/McCartney (Wikipedia).

I can't help but to change out the word "love" for "sun" as we are being deluged by weeks of rain during (what is usually) the lovely month of June.

I could also discuss their famous song "Here comes the sun" however, I will wait on that one.

Instead of this:

I would like to see more of this:

And feel the creativness of this:

And the natural beauty of these when they are not soggy and falling over:

(Cleome: Senorita Rosalita from my garden)

(Heliotrope, Cherry Pie, also from my garden)

Wishing you a dry and sunny weekend. Keep singing.

June 16, 2009

Count your Blessings

"We must find time to stop and thank the people who make a difference in our lives."
-Dan Zadra

We all know how fast the speed of life is. As much as we would like to slow it down, it is difficult at times.

However, at this time, I would like to slow down and smell the flowers...

(Asiatic lily from my garden)

and thank all of you in the blogsphere who connect with my blog. Your kind and witty words make me smile, and sometimes teary-eyed. They touch me in a very sentimental way.

When I open my blog, I am like a kid on Christmas morning, just waiting to read a reply. It is such a happy feeling to know someone out there is interested in what I have to write about.
You have made, and continue to make a difference in my life.

I sincerely thank you.

(Mandevillas climbing up our trellis)

June 12, 2009

Delights of the season

Wishing you a happy weekend!

June 10, 2009

Light the way...

"Let nothing dim the light that shines from within"
- Maya Angelou

What do you do to keep the light shining within you?

I... love deeply. keep my inner child alive. appreciate joy. be aware of the beauty that surrounds me. give and share.

Seeing with eyes wide open

I would like to share with you a few photos that I think are notable. I love taking my camera with me, because it removes the thought "oh, there's a goodie, why don't I have my camera"? My camera now sits and waits patiently for me.

Continuing along from the June 7th post about the unique bookshop that sells rare and used books, I crossed the street to look at what I think is a stunning representation of architecture. The building used to be the original town library, where I use to go to as a kid (when my town library was being rebuilt). It has since has been transformed to be the "Museum of Early Trades and Crafts".

The Museum of Early Trades &. Crafts assists people in understanding and appreciate the trades and crafts practiced in New Jersey from its earliest settlement.

The architecture is stately and elegant. That turret is calling my name. I would love to climb it! Actually, the only turret I have ever climbed was Castle Loma, outside of Toronto Canada, but that's another story. Anyway, if you are ever in the vicinity of Madison, NJ (Morris County), please stop by on Main St. and see the quaint and interesting sights. The shops are great too!

The country side of life: I know after some of us experienced that roaring thunder and lightning the other night, one of the last photos you may want to see is that of water. However, I believe waterfalls are restful and soothing to the eyes and ears. Don't worry, I was not driving while taking these photos. Waterfalls have a key to release the tightness in my neck or the unsettled questions in my head or heart. I begin to feel the flow of the water, and it is soul cleansing for me.

These photos were taken by my Hubby as we were taking a ride through quiet backroads.

So, take a look around your corner of the world, and see with eyes wide open. I am always interested in learning about other interesting points of view.

June 9, 2009


Well, my yellow daisies have bloomed - yippee! I love a good daisy. They are simple and fresh and represent all that is good in the world.

Their specific name is Heliopsis Lorraine Sunshine, and are they ever bright! I just love the variegated leaves. They really stand out in the crowd. I hope you enjoy them too!

June 7, 2009

A walk about town

A nearby town has a used book store. In a world where it seems that many of the small book shops have lost out to the big box stores, this one still remains open. It is very humble and plain on the inside. The wood floors squeak, and there is no barista or giant size muffins.

This book store is a general shop which emphasizes good literature and scholarly books in many different fields. The funny and odd thing about its name is that it is not located in Chatham, as the sign reads. It is actually located in the next town over in a town called Madison. What happened there? Someday, I will have to find out.

As you approach the front door, your eyes immediately become fixated on the shelves outside the store, which are crammed with books. The honesty policy is take a good book, give back a good book. No matter how many times I pass by, I always smile to myself when I see these shelves filled to the brim.

As soon as you walk through the door, you immediately see the stuffed shelves and smell old books just waiting to be read. I love that this shop has stayed true to its beginnings. Many things may change, but this bookstore has not. And that is okay by me.

Do you have an interesting shop in your town that is unique?

June 6, 2009

Make a Difference

"Even it it's alittle thing, do something for those who need help, something for which you get no pay but the privilege of doing it." - Albert Schweitzer

There are countless, countless ways to help people. The list is endless.
I try to help anyone I can, however, I like the young people and the elderly people for the following reasons. With the young person, I think you can influence a lesson of 'paying it forward' that may carry through their years. And it's my heart-felt thank-you to the older person.

Giving does not always mean in the monetary sense. It can be as simple as a smile to someone who looks like they desperately need it. In today's times, I've noticed many people not smiling much at all. It is so important to one's soul.

Giving of one's self can be done in a multitude of ways: helping, teaching, sharing, giving - the list is endless. I believe it is a vital duty to the strength of a society.

And in honor of my Father, I am going to share something he said to me in a dream a while back. He spoke just a few words (I knew it was his voice) "keep giving to people".
That was it - plain and simple. I hope you give of yourself. It may seem small to you, but it could mean so much to someone else.

June 4, 2009

Time for the show

Wouldn't this park setting be a great place to sit with a loved one: family or friend, and be entertained by the beautiful flowers? It looks like an orchestra performing, and the chairs are in the audience section.

Take note that the chairs are different sizes, and the larger chair has arm rests. Could that be for the elder, and the smaller chair for the younger person? I would like to think so. And that they both, regardless of age are able to see and inhale the lucious beauty of the flowers.

Do you often take time to stop and see, feel, and breathe in nature? The seasons are miracles, and I believe it is important to take the time and acknowledge their beauty in whatever form they are in. The seasons like our lives, pass very quickly.

June 3, 2009

A tribute to my Father - June 3rd, 2004

"If you want to keep your memories, you first have to live them." - Bob Dylan

It seems like only yesterday my Father and I were discussing current events or the neighbor’s dog. Then it happened. He told us he was going into the hospital for a minor bladder procedure. I think my Father wanted to believe that was all there was to it. Looking back, my entire family lived under this cloud of denial.

My Dad made it through the surgical procedure, and as the Urologist predicted, he came home within a week’s time. With some rest and my Mother’s loving care, he then brushed the dust from his boots, and continued living his retired lifestyle with my Mother. Everyday was another place for him to visit, whether it was the County Library where he so kindly brought the Librarians’ candy, or to the country club to hit a few rounds, and joke with his golf associates. It was obvious to us he was glad to have his family around him, and it was priceless to have him with us.

It wasn’t long before the tumors grew back, and this time with a vengeance. No one could deny the inevitable. My Father’s time was coming to a close. How do you deal with that ocean of truth staring at you?

One day, when I was driving my Father home from a hospital visit, he said to me “I love the quote on that car’s bumper-sticker…when words fail, music speaks.” At that moment, he was reading poetry. He did not have many words to say thereafter. The cancer was draining his body, and he was slowly slipping away. I held his hand whenever possible, and thanked him for being such a great Father, and for giving us a wonderful home life.

Early one morning on June 3, 2004 when he was ready,(his age was 81),he stepped out of his body, and moved onto his new path. I believe the warm light he must have seen and felt was the love of God, and that of his Mother and other loved ones already on the other side.

Although I miss my Father with words I can’t accurately describe, I also understand it was his time to die. There are times when I hear his voice or see his smile while in a sleepy dream, and I know he is “somewhere” around me. It soothes the ache in my heart.

I have come to the realization that our lives consist of many chapters. The sun may shine in some of the chapters, and hide behind clouds in other chapters. All in all, it is part of life’s journey. It is the love for my Father to keep his legacy alive by sharing his stories with others, and letting the world know that a very kind and wonderful man once lived here.

June 2, 2009

Imagining is fun

I love this room, or should I say a section of the room that is visible. The mantle has added molding which adds architectural interest. Articles have strategically been placed atop the mantle, and in an up and down flow. Your eye has to move up, then move down, then repeat. It's a design effect for interest. I try and use it for my garden (although sometimes the plants don't want to cooperate). This shade of green is used in Operating rooms to soothe the eyes. I like it, especially paired with that gorgeous French chair. I don't know the period of it, but I sure have my eyes on it.
I can only use my imagination in deciding what else is in that room. Maybe matching antique gold damask settees that face each other? How delightful would drinking tea be in that room?! A black steinway piano could be positioned on the opposite side of the room. The black piano would serve as great contract to the colored walls, and of course, it would serve as a functional piece of magnificent music and design. There might possible be a Renoir reproduction on one of the walls; the one with the two girls playing piano. They have golden, wispy hair and one can almost hear their music being played, very sweetly. I would hang that near the piano, of course.
Although the fireplace lends itself to a traditional look, I find this room has every opportunity to be furnished in an electic style. Some period furniture, some old and new artwork, definately a piece of sculpture or even two.
It's fun to imagine. I am sure many of you do the same thing, yes?

June 1, 2009

Happy Birthday Party!

"If you want to keep your memories, you first have to live them." - Bob Dylan

My brother Dan's birthday was on May 28. He turned 63. Yesterday, we had a BBQ party to celebrate. I cannot believe I have a brother who is 63 years young, let alone he can't believe he IS 63 in age. Above is a photo of Danny and my Mother (who is 88, and everybit as nice).

We ate delicious food, and had yummy cupcakes for dessert. As always, we had our tradition of hands around the table, wishing Dan a Happy Birthday. It was his turn to wear the crown.

It seems like yesterday when I was a teenager, and Danny (being thirteen years older than me), was giving me sound advice about going to parties and what to do if illegal substances were brought to the table. He was right about everything he said. I listened to him, and would always leave that kind of situation. My friends and I talked to him about many different topics, and he always had a way of making us laugh with his funny sense of humor.

Happy Birthday Danny, you are a really nice guy!