Sunday, October 1, 2023



Hello friends! It's October already! I know I am not the only one to sense how just a change of the calendar can make you feel like a new start. But the days themselves have changed as well. Cooler mornings, shorter days, and that brilliant fall harvest moon! I hope you make a point of getting out into the darkness and looking up at that shining orb before it is gone for the month.

It also feels like a little celebration to me when the brown transferware gets its day in the sun again. I appreciate it all year long of course, but autumn always feels like its rightful place in the world. And I do use different pieces in fall than in spring and summer for some reason.

As usual, the summer days just slipped away, but not without my taking notice of each bunny, bird, and butterfly that crossed my path when I managed my pre-dawn jaunts to avoid the intense heat of the high desert even in a waning season. There can be so much joy in all small things.

In my part of town, a semi-rural community, each day brings a subtle but notable difference. A few more yellow cottonwood leaves here and there, the corn fields growing more golden every morning, the flocks of Canadian Geese flying over in greater numbers on my evening walks. It's time to start gathering acorns and pinecones and Sycamore leaves. 

On the official last day of summer, a mild evening brought a slight cool breeze. Distant clouds filled with color as the sun found its way to the western horizon. The fields had been freshly mown, and a piled row of alfalfa at the edge tempted me to sit for a few moments to observe an unusual number of swallows that swirled over the heads of geese nestled feeding in the grass.

I was mesmerized as the flock moved overhead, and sat many long moments as the birds flew high and then low, far and then near again, circling and whirling. Their great number made me feel as though something significant was happening in the gathering dusk. 

A pleasing breeze played at my hair, and I felt at one with the whole moving scene until I began to notice the crowds overhead were thinning and slowly disappearing south beyond my sight. I felt such nostalgia as I discerned what turned out to be true: the birds had been feeding and gathering for their final flight of the year to their winter destination somewhere beyond where I would go. I called quietly out loud to the last of the departing swarm, "Goodbye! Goodbye!," while strangely, deeply moved to witness such a moment in time just by chance.

The swallows are gone from my daily walks. I would have noticed eventually if it ever reached my thoughts in my daily meditations in the field. But I do appreciate, once again, how important it is to leave room, make room, for the momentous in each day, whenever it may choose to arrive.

My best wishes to you in this new season.



Thursday, June 8, 2023

Happy June Days

Hello friends! I hope this finds you enjoying these early days of a new summer. I have already had a nice cool morning walk in the open fields near my house today. I'm finding it hard to do much indoors these days. 

I am also having a time of it getting back into the blogging groove and relearning much of it. I had a bit of comedy of errors messing around with editing old posts this morning. My advise: just don't do it! Haha.

It's finally picnic time again, and we enjoyed an impromptu gathering in the yard on Memorial Day, and another big family gathering same weekend with friends, aunts, uncles, and cousins.

I made a quick rice and black beans salad with chopped fresh veggies from my new best friend Trader Joe. I tried their potato salad too, thinking it might be a bit chancy, but I loved that too! And now I also have what's left of a cherry pie in the fridge.

Fresh cherries were on the menu too. Nothing cheerier!

I've also done quite a bit of summer reading and sitting on the front stoop watching the birds and the weather go by. I highly recommend it!

Here's to all the small summer pleasures! 

Thanks for popping by again!
 See you again on the blog soon.



Friday, May 26, 2023

Roses and Other Garden Friends

Like people, roses are a varied and complex species. I have a friend in California whose bushes number in the hundreds! 

But I only have a few varieties of tea roses and three David Austin bushes. Two are Litchfield Angel, which you see here. I think they must be pretty hardy, and they are certainly prolific. I love the informal "loose" look of the blooms. (And, of course, the creamy white color!)

This particular variety has a droopy stem. They almost look better to me in a vase than on the bush! But for a brief spring moment the bush itself can look quite spectacular in full bloom. Mine are just getting started.

Just a few scattered roses can look so lush when gathered together.

When I think that I am saving just a few from the weather, I can end up with an abundant display.

This bunch has essentially arranged itself.

We do have a big knock out rose and a couple of root stock roses that have reverted to wild. They aren't great in a vase, but they enliven a desert garden.

In fact, there's a lot in my ad hoc garden that has chosen itself. Some of what thrives here is adjacent to the lawn and sprinkler system. (Thank heavens!)

And I'm so glad for the old dependables in the landscape like the English Ivy, and the sturdy desert shrubs.

A little Sweet William is popping up in a  big pot after three or four years here. It must really like the spot it's in.

This might be "Snow In Summer." It was a small plant gifted to me one year, and it really wants to live, as it gets trampled a lot near the bird feeders.

I like the sage colored leaves with the white flowers.

The brushy shrub with red blooms is a Salvia variety that hummers, bees, and butterflies love.

The yellow bush is a drought resistant Potentilla, which butterflies also love.

We've had a recent bout of rainy weather to perk everything up before our long hot summer ahead. Seems for now that my plants are almost as happy to be here as I am to have them!

It seems all my posts are outdoorsy ones lately, but that's probably because I can hardly stay inside these days! Pretty soon it will be too hot.

So glad for your visit today too! Have a nice holiday weekend. Thanks for popping in!



Friday, May 19, 2023

Dusting Off The Patio

Well, hello again friends! What a delight to see that a few of you have found me back already! So sweet of you to give me the kindness of knowing that you are visiting. It's been a bit of an exercise getting everything working on the blog again. 

But today I am just getting started dusting off the east patio for the season.

I habitually just leave things out here to chance over the winter (I am so sorry to tell you). But first things first. 

The coverlet and pillows need to be washed and tidied. 

I had a cotton bed throw on the settee, but just grabbed this big cotton drop cloth.

Last year I removed these faded pillow covers and sewed them back on to clean them up. 

Starting over with just a very few potted plants out here. As much as I love a pretty patio, I am not much of a yard putterer.

Lots to do! . . . someday, . . . maybe, . . . soon. But I will need to have something neat and pretty to look at.

In the mornings, the sun coming up is cozy and warm and cheering. There are really just a few bird sounds, but the swaying branches against the sky are peaceful and soothing. 

This little oxalis gal is taking a breather out here. She needs some TLC.

I think we're in business!

I'll take you for a wee stroll before I sign off for a while. And then I think I have some sitting to do! 

Valerian blooms all summer.

And the sweet peas will be coming on soon. They barely climb, but spread out wide. Roses are all in bud, and grass is greening up. Soon it will be HOT.

So that's me for now. Hope you are also finding joy in what spring has to offer. So glad you came by for a visit!



Wednesday, May 10, 2023


Hello Friends! Welcome back! It has been just over a year since I last shared something here on the blog. It doesn't seem that it has been so long to me.

So many of you have been kind enough to message me to let me know that you missed me posting here. You have my deep thanks for your appreciation and encouragement. Starting up again feels much like it did in the very beginning, but my world and the online community have both vastly changed since those days many years ago. 

I have continued doing the easier thing by posting on Facebook and Instagram during the interim where some of you have also joined me, but those forums are much less intimate and much more limited in scope and creativity. There is a different and more challenging energy to blogging, and probably now, a much smaller audience. But "For everything there is a season...", and I have always tried to embrace art and life as it comes. After a long time I feel like I might have something to say again. We'll see.

It has been a joyous spring. I seem to have not noticed before just how fresh first green is, and what brilliance it has before it gets all ragged and weather-beaten as the season progresses. I'm usually more focused on enjoying the warmth again.

 I think I pruned my viburnum too much after it bloomed last year. The bush is a bit straggly, but the blooms had gotten smaller than I like and cutting it back improved on that. I didn't bring in a bouquet at all last year, so it is very nice to have a vase on the table to enjoy this time.

I suppose it was this bush that inspired me to finally take a few pictures to share. I am not much of a desert gardener, and so its blooms feel like a small miracle to me. And I like the contrast of the white metal garden furniture against the green.


I'm also so happy about the garden gate ivy that recovered after it suffered a loss last year. It died off in big patches from lack of watering. I wasn't sure it would come back. It must be just the hardiest thing! I'm so glad to have another chance! Nature is not always so forgiving in our climate here in the southwest.

The Larkspur is taking off in its vintage cement pot.  That is Russian Sage in the back that is growing in the wrong spot. (Not enough sun.)

A group of some of my favorite vintage watering cans with Virginia Creeper climbing the adobe walls as a backdrop. The vine is a volunteer like most of what thrives back here. (My watering can collection has no trouble growing though!) (That's a bit of Chamisa peeking through on the right.)

This is my morning walk along the irrigation canal next to the open farm fields where I walk several times a week. The ditch (or acequia, as it is locally known) gives the wonderful illusion of naturally flowing water. It's another pleasing sign of spring when it is opened and fills from the Rio Grande River not too far off. Albuquerque is not a very green place unless you are situated in the valley as we are.

One evening I was shocked and thrilled  to find this flooded field being irrigated. It looks like a Michigan lake! Sections of the fields are banked up at the edges to hold the water. I had already traveled around most of the dry open space only to encounter this vision in one quarter of the field as the sun was going down. An expanse of water is such a gift around here.

I also want to share this photo my DIL took with her phone and sent me from Wisconsin during the recent sightings of the Northern Lights farther south than usual. The lights were even seen in some parts of New Mexico (just not by me). She hadn't noticed that the big dipper was plainly visible in the night sky in her beautiful shot.

So that's me after so long a time. I have spent a good deal of it taking in and gathering up: reading, resting, thinking, seeing, watching, visiting, feeling, being. Taking "time for every matter under the heaven," as the verse goes. Time for stars in a midnight sky, for flowing water, new green, and for the inspiration that a scraggly little bush can bring to a ready mind.


P.S. These are so good!