July 31, 2009

My younger brother

The above photo is of my younger brother when he was approximately six or seven years years of age. He was missing two front teeth, and combined with a bow tie, I think he looks adorable. At the time of course, I did not think anything of the sort. I mentioned we were siblings, right? We did have our squabbles (like all siblings), however, we were good play buddies.

Spin the clock forward many years, and here we are in Arizona, where he resides. I had on my bolla tie to look the part of a tourist, and a wicked sunburn, of which I no longer partake in. When visiting Arizona, one must purchase at least something turquoise, coral, silver or a combination thereof.

Ross and I grew up together. Let me explain. My parents had my older brother Dan and sister Mariann. My parents had moved when my sister was ten years of age, and my Mother wanted to start a new family again (with the same husband). So they had me, and then my Mother's belief was that I would need a play buddy, and she was oh, so right. If Ross was not born, and with my older brother and sister being ten and twelve years my senior, I would not have had anyone in our immediate family to grow up with. So eighteen months later, Ross was born. Thanks for your foresight, Mom!

Ross continues to live in Arizona,where he has rooted himself. He strongly dislikes the cold weather, snow shovels, gloves and jackets. My brother is a man who enjoys living in the southwest.

He has one of the best laughs I have ever heard. He speaks with a deep voice, however, his laugh reminds me of Ross as a kid - at least to me. It must be all the memories flooding my mind, and it makes me miss him all the more. So Ross, if you are reading this, I love you!

It's that time again...

Have a great weekend, Everyone!

July 29, 2009


One definition of jubilee is "A season or an occasion of joyful celebration."
I believe all of us can think of many occasions where joyful celebrations are at the center of our heartstrings. The list is countless. So, I have decided to begin with you, dear Readers.

What is joyful to you?

July 27, 2009

Laughing and Lunching with the Ladies!

Anna (left) and Donna (right) were colleagues of mine many years ago. After I left the department, there had been a lapse of time before we connected again. All the fun and laughter we shared came back to us when we were lunching at my home a couple of days ago. Some things never change, and sometimes I am glad they don't.

The results of our consistent and exceptional work was acknowledged and awarded many times by senior management (in other departments) for product launches. Although we worked hard, we also made sure we enjoyed a laugh or two...maybe three. We believed laughter should be in the workplace, and we practiced that almost on a daily basis.

We had a Manager who unfortunately, did not believe in laughter: no sunny smile on her face. Her goal it seemed, was to ensure we would not laugh, could not laugh, or smile wide to anyone or about anything. We never figured out why she did not like to see us as a happy group. We certainly were making her look good by our exemplary work. Eventually, we resigned ourselves to the fact that some people do not want to be happy, and therefore, do not appreciate when they see other people smiling.

Nontheless, no matter what actions she may have taken, we managed not to let her break our spirit. We kept our sunny smiles and laughed outloud when things were humorous. I will always remember those good times; they still bring a smile to my face. Laughing is an important component for the soul, and that is just what we did - fed our soul full of laughter. :)

July 23, 2009

Pve did it again!

Patricia van Essche is the Artist that designed two banners for my blog. In May, I published the beautiful one she illustrated of our gardens. It is splendid! Everytime I look at it, I smile. What more can a girl ask for?

The banner shown above is another one that she kindly illustrated. I love this one too, so I am sharing the spotlight with both of them.

Pve is an outstanding Artist with a natural ability to take everyday life, and transform it onto paper that is witty, stylish and chic. I love her work.
Thank you Patricia, for the kindness and grace that you bestow.

July 21, 2009

At a loss for words...me? Yes.

I've been a little short on words these past few days... can't really say why. Perhaps I am just curious to read someone else's words other than my own.

Heuchera a la lemon lime.

July 18, 2009

A summer fling!

Doesn't everyone want a summer fling, in some way, shape or form? Whether it is flying off to Scotland, and staying in a castle for a week (or maybe two)? There are countless fantasies that one could conjure up in a daydream.

Well, I found one of mine! A 1972 BMW 2002, silver blue, manual transmission and saddle leather interior (most likely real leather). I was taking a drive on beautiful country backroads, when I spotted this beauty.

Oh, I know she needs some work, but don't we all? I have loved this particular car since I first saw one many years ago. The only two items it needs to go with it is a German mechanic and a great body shop. Oh, and did I mention a ton of money? I guess I forgot that part. ;)

I needed to take a photo of this rusty beauty, so I pulled over. Unfortunately, I could not capture the front end, which is as cute as the back end, but I was standing in the middle of a curvy road, and needed to be careful, or I will never ever get to drive one. I can just imagine myself driving those long, narrow backroads in my old, but classic car. Envisioning is part of acquiring.

Anyhow, I am smiling because it has been so long since I have seen this car anywhere around. Oh, there are lots of other BMWs, etc. but this car is my beauty. So I smile and say to myself "someday". Besides, I am saving my monopoly money for this:

July 15, 2009

The delights of the season!

Our Baker's rack to welcome friends

Garden girl embraced by purple grass and Cleomes

Tropical Mandavilla reaching for the sun

Hydrangeas peeking out from under their leaves

Flourishing Lavender

"Give the heavens above more than just a passing glance, and when you get the chance to sit it out or dance....dance." Lee Ann Womack
Happy Weekend!


as I was driving, I saw an elderly man fall on a sidewalk. I quickly pulled my car over and ran to help him. By the time I was at his side, he had started to stand up, and I gently took his arm to hold him steady. It was then I realized we were standing in front of a Medical Center.

He told me he was on his way to buy lottery tickets. I gently persuaded him to come inside the medical building with me, for someone to check the bump on his forehead. Then maybe later he could go to the store. The bump was smaller than a ping pong ball, yet I was concerned.

Once in the medical building, we found out he was 92 years of age, and lived nearby with his daughter and family. They were, however, all away for a few days. Once the Doctor saw the bump near a prominent vein on the mans' forehead, he strongly suggested a trip to the the hospital. Despite some resistance, the man agreed to go, but only to the hospital where his nephew was a Doctor. It was not the closest one, but the Doctor agreed that this man should go where his nephew would give him comfort. A telephone call was made, his nephew was on call, and an ambulance was dispatched. To my surprise, when I heard the name of the hospital, I said aloud "I was born there!"

When I found out the mans' nephew was "Dr. T" well, I nearly fell off my chair. Dr. T's Father was our family doctor for years, and had since retired. This made the elderly gentleman and Dr. T's father - brothers. I could not believe all these coincidences were coming out.

I waited for the Ambulance to come, and watched as they helped him into the unit. He felt better knowing his nephew would be waiting for him when he arrived at the hospital. I also thought about our connection. Columbus hospital where I was born, and this mans' brother being our family doctor. I think this incident will remain in my memory bank for a long time.

July 13, 2009


"At the heart of each of us, whatever our imperfections, there exists a silent pulse of perfect rhythm, which is absolutely individual and unique, and yet which connects us to everything else." - George Leonard

There may be times when you feel this 'connection', and there may be other times that you struggle with it. Feeling at one with the universe is a soulful kinship inside oneself, - so spiritual and very beautiful.

July 11, 2009

A summer weekend

Lay on a raft

...or sit in a lounge chair

and blow bubbles!

and always, but always use protective sun screen

Buy a hat! (These hats are mine; I love them) :)

Buy two hats!!

But most of all, take time to smell the flowers!
(Shasty Daisies from our garden)

Happy Summer Weekend!

July 9, 2009

A gem of a friend!

I have a friend by the name of Antoinette. When we first met, her smile lit up the room and I was immediately drawn to her friendly face. I believed we would have a friendship and that is exactly what happened. Our conversations are always good, like a warm cup of tea. Listening...well, listening is very important to any relationship and we hold that key.

Below are some photos that were taken at her youngest daughters' wedding, this past July 3rd. For reference: the bride is Donna and the groom is Doug. Antoinette's husband is Bob, her eldest daughter and Maid of Honor is Gina, Gina's husband is Brian, and let us not forget Marty, the dog. :)
A handsome family they do make.

An exciting time between Mother and daughters!

A beautiful day for a lovely bride and her family!

Antoinette and her beautiful daughter Donna pictured in the glowing sunlight, as they should be!

The happy and proud parents!

The original "four"

The happy Bride and Groom!

Celebrating July 4th with the Newlyweds!

It is an absolute pleasure to share these joyous moments with Antoinette. We are always happy for each other when all is bright. We are also there for each other when dark clouds roll in. She has good judgment and insight of knowing what to say and when to say it.

Her generosity of heart can fill a house, and she gives of herself everyday with her bright smile and twinkling blue eyes. I love her, as do many people.

Antoinette carries the legacy of her Father with her, as I do with my Dad, and we share this wonderful commonality. The photos I have seen of her Dad makes me think I missed out knowing him. However, through Antoinette, I do know him, and that makes me glad. She tells wonderful stories about a great man, and it's always with a smile and a slight tear.

Am I confident we will continue to grow together as we embrace the years to come? You can count on it. Friendship is inmeasureable!

July 7, 2009

A comment

(Knockout Rose from our garden)

I believe living with goodness in your heart, seeing beauty all around you, and living with truth everyday on your moral compass is what can bring you much joy.
Any additional comments?

July 4, 2009

There is always room for dessert!

Emily Luchetti is the Executive Pastry Chef at Farallon Restaurant and The Water Bar in San Franciso, CA. She is also my sister-in-law, and a very nice one!

Whenever I want to make a dessert, whether an everyday one, or for a special occasion, I find myself reaching for one of her books. Emilys' desserts are sublime. She has authored "A Passion for Desserts", "A Passion for Ice Cream", "Classic Stars Desserts" and is currently working on another goodie.

Emily is extremely approachable. Her philosophy is based on practicality, and she firmly believes in using the freshest ingredients possible. The layout of the books are written well, and mouth-watering. Overall, her books are elegant, and simple to follow. I have given them as gifts, and they are very well received!

Stop by and visit Emily here at her website (blog included) and enjoy her sweet delights. You can leave her a message on her blog; she would enjoy hearing from you! You can also tell her I said "hi" :)

July 3, 2009

Happy 4th!

Frederick Hassam - "The Fourth of July" - 1916

-Pat Canova-

Wishing all of you a safe and Happy 4th of July!

July 1, 2009


Sometimes it only takes one flower, or a smile, a wink, or holding a door open, to make another human being feel good. It is that simple.