Sunday Dinner: Becoming

~

“For me, becoming isn’t about arriving somewhere

or achieving a certain aim.

I see it instead as forward motion,

a means of evolving,

a way to reach continuously

toward a better self.

The journey doesn’t end.”

.

Michelle Obama

~

~

“She said the music made her wonder,

Does it alter us more to be heard, or to hear?”

.

Madeleine Thien

~

~

“You may live in the world as it is,

but you can still work to create the world

as it should be.”

.

Michelle Obama

~

~

“But in the midst of all that uncertainty

and lack of clarity, there lies a wild beauty.

A hope. Possibility.

The promise of something bigger than us

happening just beneath the surface

that we can’t see.”

.

Mandy Hale

~

~

“Over and over again we
become lost and un-lost
We become and un-become.
This is meant to be.
Without our knowing and
unknowing we would have no
splendid, epic stories to tell.”

.

Susan Bocinec Terry

~

~

“Or maybe they weren’t changing.

Maybe they were just now becoming

what they had always wanted to be.”

.

Eilis O’Neal

~

~

“My fears teach me courage.

My weaknesses coach me to strength.

My scars remind me

not to make the same mistakes.

I can become who I long to be

by loving who I am now.”

.

Toni Sorenson

~

~

“We are all in the process of becoming.”

.

Harmony Dust

~

~

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2019

~

~

“Give focus

only to which you want to see expand,

anything else is nonsense.”
.

Nikki Rowe

*

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Fabulous Friday: Time Marching On

~

I am delighted with how many of last summer’s marginal perennials survived winter to bloom again this spring.  It satisfies my thrifty nature to enjoy another season’s blooms from a plant sold as an ‘annual.’  Actually, quite a few of our ‘annuals’ are perennial a zone or two to our south.

With a little thought and effort, and a bit of grace, we can shelter them over winter and enjoy them again.

~

Last year’s Lantana blooms for another season in one of our patio pots, alongside a favorite Clematis vine.

~

I leafed through a book on container gardening this week which offered the sage advice to empty all of one’s pots before the first frost, composting the contents and storing the pots indoors.  I’m sure many gardeners swear by a clean pot and fresh compost each spring, planted up with brand new plants from the nursery.  If I had nothing to do with my time and loose change but garden, I might enjoy that approach, too.

~

Dianthus and Saxifraga thrive in their pots near the back door, growing larger and giving more flowers every year.

~

But I am hooked on the ‘Four Season Pot’ approach, and try to keep something interesting growing in most of my pots year round.  Some may be growing in the garage, but quite a few weather the season outside with small trees or shrubs, bulbs, violets, perennials, and herbs.

I change out some of the upper layer of compost in some a few times a year, fertilize generously, and re-do the entire pot rarely.  Our climate is mild enough that the plants generally live through the winter, and the pots don’t crack in the cold!

~

‘Annual’ Verbena returns this spring from its roots, quickly filling its pot before I’ve had time to even plant most of my new starts from the nursery.

~

And as we near the middle of May new plants are blooming even as earlier beauties fade.  Our heat this week has taken the Iris sooner than I’d hoped.  In fact, the heat has put a serious crimp in my plans to move pots back outside, and to re-plant many of our pots with summer herbs and perennials!

It has been too hot and the sun too intense to spend much time outside in the middle of the day.  I’ve had to ration my morning and afternoon hours among several different ‘to-do’ lists.

~

~

But time marches on, as native perennials grow at lightening speed, demanding a firm hand on the clippers or string trimmer to cut them back.  Irises need trimming as their flowers fade, perennials need pinching back to make them bush out, and I have rows of sprouting Caladiums wanting to sink their roots into a permanent home.

Having a few marginal perennials return and fill their pots once again pleases me so much, as those pots burst into flower with little from me beyond an approving smile.

~

~

The first Lantana bloomed this week, and all of our Clematis have covered themselves in flowers.  What more could I reasonably hope for?  Watching perennials emerge and bloom feels like greeting old friends after a while apart.  I’m surprised all over again by their beauty and character.

~

~

It will be June before we know it; solstice lurks on the horizon.  I appreciate the longer evenings to wander in the garden, water a bit, and do a few more gardening tasks.

The sweet fragrance of blooming Ligustrum thickens the evening breeze, even as bats fly low over the garden catching their dinner.  There are huge buds on the Magnolia trees, ready to open one day soon, releasing their nostalgic perfume.

~

Oakleaf Hydrangea blooms with the foxglove.

~

Time seems to evaporate when I’m engaged with the garden; and yet time governs its unfolding, the rise and fall of every creature and leaf.

Timelessness permeates the relentless waves of change, eternity lives in root and rhizome.  Each flower opens in its own unique color and form, synchronized to the deeper rhythms that govern us all.

~

Yellow flag Iris pseudacorus blooms this week.

~

Woodland Gnome 2019

Fabulous Friday:  Happiness is contagious; let’s infect one another!

~

~

“Time doesn’t seem to pass here:
it just is.”
.
J.R.R. Tolkien

Sunday Dinner: Renewal

~

“What’s wonderful about life is you always have to start over.
No many how many meals you’ve eaten,
words you’ve spoken, breaths, you’ve taken,
you always have to start over.”
.
Marty Rubin

~

~

“Miracles… seem to me to rest
not so much upon… healing power
coming suddenly near us from afar
but upon our perceptions being made finer,
so that, for a moment,
our eyes can see and our ears can hear
what is there around us always.”
.
Willa Cather

~

~

“It is always quietly thrilling
to find yourself looking at a world
you know well
but have never seen
from such an angle before.”
.
Bill Bryson

~

~

“Whether we know it or not,
our lives are acts of imagination
and the world is continually re-imagined
through us.”
.
Michael Meade

~

~

“Everything you can imagine is real.”
.
Pablo Picasso

~

~

“I realized, it is not the time that heals,
but what we do within that time
that creates positive change.”
.
Diane Dettmann

~

~

“We do not need magic to change the world,
we carry all the power we need
inside ourselves already:
we have the power to imagine better.”
.
J.K. Rowling

~

~

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2019

~

~

 

“There is the strange power we have
of changing facts
by the force of the imagination.”
.
Virginia Woolf

~

~

“As I leave the garden
I take with me a renewed view,
And a quiet soul.”
.
Jessica Coupe

~

Sunday Dinner: Ever Turning

~

“There’s magic, positive magic,
in such phrases as: “I may be wrong.
I frequently am. Let’s examine the facts.”
.
Dale Carnegie

~

~

“Everyone thinks of changing the world,
but no one thinks of changing himself.”
.
Leo Tolstoy

~

~

“Once time is lost, it can never be earned by any means”
“Time never stops for anybody
and never shows kindness to anyone”
.
Sunday Adelaja

~

~

“You couldn’t erase the past.
You couldn’t even change it.
But sometimes life offered you
the opportunity to put it right.”
.
Ann Brashares
~
~
“There are times when the world is rearranging itself,
and at times like that,
the right words can change the world.”
.
Orson Scott Card
~
~
“The strangeness of Time.
Not in its passing, which can seem infinite,
like a tunnel whose end you can’t see,
whose beginning you’ve forgotten,
but in the sudden realization that something finite,
has passed, and is irretrievable.”
.
Joyce Carol Oates

~

~

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2018

~

~

“I change the world,
the world changes me.”
.
Libba Bray
*

 

 

Sunday Dinner: Evolution

~

“Life belongs to the living,
and he who lives must be prepared for changes.”
.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

~

~

“Keep your best wishes,
close to your heart and watch what happens”
.
Tony DeLiso

~

~

“All men make mistakes,
but a good man yields when he knows his course is wrong,
and repairs the evil.
The only crime is pride.”
.
Sophocles

~

~

“Change is the end result of all true learning.”
.
Leo F. Buscaglia

~

~

“The only way to make sense out of change
is to plunge into it,
move with it,
and join the dance.”
.
Alan W. Watts

~

~

“When you come out of the storm,
you won’t be the same person who walked in.
That’s what this storm’s all about.”
.
Haruki Murakami

~

~

“I give you this to take with you:
Nothing remains as it was.
If you know this, you can
begin again,
with pure joy in the uprooting.”
.
Judith Minty

~

~

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2018

~

~

“When she transformed into a butterfly,
the caterpillars spoke not of her beauty,
but of her weirdness.
They wanted her to change back into what she always had been.
But she had wings.”
.
Dean Jackson
~

Sunday Dinner: Curious

~

“Curiosity is, in great and generous minds,
the first passion and the last.”
.
Samuel Johnson

~

~

“Enjoy every step you take.
If you’re curious, there is always something new
to be discovered in the backdrop
of your daily life.”
.
Roy T. Bennett

~

~

“I set out to discover the why of it,
and to transform my pleasure
into knowledge.”
.
Charles Baudelaire

~

~

“The important thing is not to stop questioning.
Curiosity has its own reason for existence.
One cannot help but be in awe
when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity, of life,
of the marvelous structure of reality.
It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend
a little of this mystery each day.
.
Albert Einstein
~
~
“Study hard what interests you the most
in the most undisciplined, irreverent
and original manner possible.”
.
Richard Feynman

~

~

“Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet.
Try to make sense of what you see
and wonder about what makes the universe exist.
Be curious.
And however difficult life may seem,
there is always something you can do and succeed at.
It matters that you don’t just give up.”
.
Stephen Hawking

~

~

Woodland Gnome 2018

~

~

“The mind is not a vessel to be filled,
but a fire to be kindled.”
.
Plutarch

~

Weekly Photo Challenge: Rise/Set

~

With my back to the sunset, I watch the moon rise.

~

~

The nearly full moon, a blue moon in March; Easter moon rises into the twilit sky. 

~

~

Buds swell on still bare trees; skeletons waiting to rejuvenate themselves in springtime’s warmth.

~

~

We loop again through our dance around the sun:  Equinox, solstice, equinox, solstice. 

Turning, turning, always returning….

~

~

 Woodland Gnome 2018

~

~

For the Daily Post’s
Weekly Photo Challenge:  Rise/Set

~

“The deep roots
never doubt spring will come.”
.
Marty Rubin

Sunday Dinner: Expansion

Redbud, Cercis canadensis

~

“Your hand opens and closes, opens and closes.
If it were always a fist or always stretched open,
you would be paralyzed.
Your deepest presence is in every
small contracting and expanding,
the two as beautifully balanced and coordinated
as birds’ wings.”
.
Rumi

~

~

“We become aware of the void as we fill it.”
.
Antonio Porchia

~

Clematis

~

“Sometimes we know in our bones
what we really need to do, but we’re afraid to do it.
Taking a chance and stepping beyond
the safety of the world we’ve always known
is the only way to grow,
and without risk there is no reward.”
.
Wil Wheaton

~

~

 

“Life can take so many twists and turns.
You can’t ever count yourself out.
Even if you’re really afraid at some point,
you can’t think that there’s no room for you to grow
and do something good with your life.”
.
Portia de Rossi

~

~

 

“If we don’t change, we don’t grow.
If we don’t grow, we aren’t really living.”
.
Anatole France

~

~

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2018
~
~
“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.
All does not yet gleam in glory,
but all is being purified.”
.
Martin Luther
~
~
“Physicists have yet to find anything
capable of exceeding our known speed of light.
The Tao cannot be named,
and so I say there is one thing
that out-paces all things: we call it “thought.”
I can fill a room a with light
before I’m anywhere near the switch.”

.
Laurie Perez
~

Lilac, Syringa vulgaris

 

Early March Stories

~

“Once you start recognizing the truth of your story,
finish the story.
It happened but you’re still here,
you’re still capable, powerful,
you’re not your circumstance.
It happened and you made it through.
You’re still fully equipped with every single tool you need
to fulfill your purpose.”

.
Steve Maraboli
~

~

“Do you wait for things to happen,
or do you make them happen yourself?
I believe in writing your own story.”
.
Charlotte Eriksson

~

~

“Most of us have only one story to tell.
I don’t mean that only one thing happens to us in our lives:
there are countless events, which we turn into countless stories.
But there’s only one that matters,
only one finally worth telling.”
.
Julian Barnes

~

~

“The significance –
and ultimately the quality –
of the work we do
is determined by our understanding
of the story in which we are taking part.”
.
Wendell Berry

~

~

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2018
*
For the Daily Post’s
Weekly Photo Challenge:  Story

~

~

“Embrace the path your loved one’s story has taken,
and be part of the culture shift
that acknowledges dying
as part of living.”
.
Carrie Chavez Hansen
~

Sunday Dinner: Retrospective

January 2017, Jones Millpond

~
“That’s what pictures are for, after all:
to stand in place of the things that weren’t left behind,
to bear witness to people and places and things
that might otherwise go unnoticed.”
.
John Darnielle
~

February 2017 Powhatan Creek

~
“In retrospect,
we can only be thankful
to all the mistakes that we made
and to all the lessons
that we learned from them!”
.
Avijeet Das
~

March 2017 James River at Black Point

~
“The Naga laughed softly, ‘There’s a thin line
that separates courage
from stupidity.  And that line
is only visible in retrospect, my friend.
If I’m successful,  people will call me brave.
If I fail, I will be called foolish.
Let me do what I think is right.
I’ll leave the verdict to the future.”
.
Amish Tripathi
~

April 2017 York River

~
“It is a simple
but sometimes forgotten truth
that the greatest enemy
to present joy and high hopes
is the cultivation
of retrospective bitterness.”
.
Robert Menzies
~

May 2017 Jones Millpond

~
“Remembrance of things past
is not necessarily
the remembrance of things as they were.”
.
Marcel Proust
~

June 2017

~
“Memory believes before knowing remembers.
Believes longer than recollects,
longer than knowing even wonders.”
.
William Faulkner
~

August 2017 Powhatan Creek

~
“Remember your connection with the cosmos.
Remember your connection with the infinity
and that remembrance
will give you the freedom.”
.
Amit Ray
~

September 2017, a waterway on Jamestown Island

~
Photos by Woodland Gnome 2017

Wishing you happiness, prosperity, good health and good gardening in 2018!

~

October 2017 The ‘D’ River empties into the Pacific Ocean

~
“Photography is never real,
it’s merely one of many ways
of telling the truth.”
.
John Thai
~

November 2017

~
“Ever poised on that cusp
between past and future,
we tie memories to souvenirs
like string to trees along life’s path,
marking the trail
in case we lose ourselves
around a bend of tomorrow’s road.”
.
Susan Lendroth
~

December 2017

 

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