Purple passion

I have a passion for purple, especially purple flowers.  When my daughter-in-law decided purple was the color she wanted in her bouquets and floral decorations, I was excited as I have lots of purple flowers in my gardens.  I even planted extra purple flowering perennials just in case I didn’t have enough…

 

Too bad many of them didn’t bloom in time for the wedding thanks to the wet and cool spring Mother Nature gifted us with this year.  To improvise,  I borrowed purple blossoms from my clients’ garden to supplement the ones I did have in bloom to make bouquets and flower arrangements.

For the past week (now almost two weeks after the wedding)  my passion for purple has been blooming in profusion in my gardens!

 

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Proud momma bear

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Nothing makes a momma bear prouder than compliments about her children.  This past weekend as my eldest son got married, I was honored and humbled by the number of people that commented on how handsome, polite, respectful,  charming and well-rounded all three of my sons are.

I have always believed that a mother’s most important job is raising her children, so it was very rewarding to hear that others recognize that I (we, as I must give credit to my husband too) have done a decent job.

This momma bear could not be prouder!

 

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pictures from Pixabay

 

 

 

It’s official, I now have a daughter (in law)

My son’s wedding was this past weekend, so I have now inherited a daughter (in law).  As a mother of three sons, a daughter is very welcome in our household.

The wedding was a beautiful event that even Mother Nature saw fit to participate in. Everything, including the weather, was perfect.  Here are a few photos of my preparations for the rehearsal party BBQ and wedding pictures in our backyard…

 

 

 

I was in charge of the bouquets, boutonnieres, corsages and floral decorations at the venue…

 

 

A neighbour (thanks Libby!) dropped off a spectacular “bouquet” of purple rhododendron cupcakes. Eating them almost felt wrong, but the flower girl was willing to eat the first one, making it easier for the rest of us to dismantle the display…

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bouquet of purple hydrangea cupcakes!

 

 

With all the cool, wet weather we have had up until this weekend, many of the “shades of purple” and white themed plants in my garden were not yet in bloom in time for the bouquets, but they are today…

 

 

The day before the wedding I cut as many purple and white flowers as I could find in my and a few of my clients’ gardens (with their permission) in preparation for making 5 bouquets, 5 boutonnieres, 3 corsages and 1 crown.  The floral decorations for the venue were planted a month ago, but the center plants (predominantly ornamental grasses) had not grown as much as I had hoped either.  Water tubes purchased from a local florist allowed me to improvise by adding fresh cut purple irises, lilacs and alliums for the desired height in the arrangements.

I was desperately seeking large purple blooms for the main flowers in the bride’s bouquet because my pale purple roses and deep purple clematis were not yet in bloom.  Although I was not working in clients’ gardens last week (too busy in my own!)  I stopped by one of them to check on it.  Lo and behold there was a beautiful deep purple rhododendron in glorious full bloom.  It felt like a sign from above since although last season this client promised me I could use some of these blooms in the bouquets, she has since passed away.   I know she was smiling down proudly as everyone admired her rhododendrons at the wedding.

This morning as I cleaned up the mess I made in my basement while making the floral arrangements, I put some tiny leftover blooms in a vase on my table.  A beautiful reminder of a beautiful weekend…

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leftovers

The ultimate price

The headlines read: “two dead, one injured in Ottawa’s Byward Market shootings”

The 43-year-old man that was shot and killed paid the ultimate price believing he was helping his friend.  When his friend was shot and wounded after an argument with the gunman, the victim and several other witnesses chased the shooter.  Why would he do this?  No one will ever know what he hoped to accomplish.   As the details of the tragedy continue to unravel,  the media is quick to point out the victim’s failings.  Nothing, however, has been said about the suspect.

Although the victim had a shady (drug related) past, I only knew him as the beloved brother of my grandson’s mom.  Why is that?  Because he and his family were trying hard to put that shady past behind them.  He had turned his life around so we (my family) knew him as a loving son, husband, father, brother, uncle, and brother-in-law that would do just about anything for anyone in need.

What the media fails to mention is that no one, nowhere, deserves to be gunned down in cold blood, unless of course they have just shot and killed someone themselves.  The fact that some people resort to the use of a gun to settle their arguments sickens, and in this case deeply saddens me.

For the sake of the victim’s shocked, grieving family, I hope the investigation wraps up soon and reveals that the victim’s alcohol induced actions were confrontational and foolish, but valiant and well intended.

Dear John, I found your rock

Dear John,

As promised, I found you a rock for your garden, a pinkish colored rock with specks of black mica to sparkle in the sun…

 

John was a dear neighbor that passed away from cancer recently.  Last summer I helped he and his wife reconfigure and enlarge the garden in their front yard.  We left room for a large rock, but it could not be just any rock.  You see, John was a geologist and loved rocks.  He had a specific one in mind, and although we looked for one last fall, we could not find the perfect rock.   I have a (much smaller) rock in my front garden  (across the street from his) that he admired, so was on the lookout for something similar for their garden.

When John passed away I consulted with our neighbors to see if they liked the idea of purchasing a rock for John’s garden in lieu of flowers at the funeral service.  Knowing of John’s love for rocks and nature in general, everyone was on board and willing to help, so I continued my search for the perfect rock.

Recently I talked a client (thanks Michael Blackie of  NeXT restaurant) into removing this beautiful (just happened to be the pink and black version I was searching for) rock from a garden site he wants me to modify.  After hearing of my search for John’s rock, this client donated the rock (free) to the cause.

Another neighbor volunteered (thanks Sean Fagan of Shamrock Home Upgrades) to remove and deliver the rock to its new home as I did not have the equipment to do so.  The grandson of yet another neighbor received a bonus ride on the tractor…

 

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I am so grateful to live in this wonderful neighborhood that is full of kind, caring and compassionate people like John.  Every time I see his rock sparkle in the sun I will be reminded of his cheerful grin and sunny disposition.

Pressure washer hose attachment

Recently I purchased (online) an attachment for my hose that is advertised to be like a pressure washer…

 

 

At first try, I thought it was not much stronger than the regular nozzle on my hose, but when I played around with the bolt on the side of the stick, I got it to work better, but not quite as powerful as promised. It does reach high (for windows etc) and is more forceful than my regular hose nozzle.  Not quite as powerful as a pressure washer, but quite good for small jobs around the yard…

ORDER one for yourself and try it out!  Let me know what you think of it.

Stage two of home renovations

Stage two of our Home renovations is now complete!  Our main floor powder room has been transformed from drab, boring and outdated into a beautiful, stylish and modern room.  Everything was removed; out with the old (vanity, toilet, medicine cabinet/mirror, light, flooring, and paint)…

 

with some repairs and preparation (including rerouting the plumbing because it would not fit behind the new vanity)  with plum colored walls painted a neutral taupe shade…

 

Next, came the new flooring, the same taupe and gray pattern we used in the hallway…

 

and finally, in with the new features…

 

The only thing that returned to the room is a picture on the wall.  I think I will pick the deep purple color of the trilliums in the picture as my accent color for towels, soap dish, garbage can etc…

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