Monday, March 30, 2015

The Snowballs Are Blooming

Colonial settlers brought Snowball Viburnum to our country from Europe in the 1600s.  

When we first planted this beautiful flowering tree it was just a little bush.  But, as you see it has grown into a tree.  They say these trees can grow from 12 to 20 feet tall.  

These trees do need full sun to part-shade and do best with protection from the afternoon sun.  We were told the tree needs pruning after flowering to keep it in shape,  but it has grown so tall pruning would be hard to do.

Snowball Viburnum
Growing in our back side yard.

Southern Living Magazine calls this small tree,  "Spring's most elegant flowering shrub."  As you can see, the tree is full of beautiful hydrangea-like blooms.  These large flowers continue blooming from April and on into May.  The flowers start out lime-green and then as they grow larger they become white.

The below photo was taken through the window; 
therefore, the photo is not real clear.

View looking out the back window from the family room


As you can see these flowers do look exactly like hydrangeas.
They make a beautiful flower arrangement that lasts for several days.

I took a walk out in the back yard and cut a few of these beautiful white flowers to brighten up the kitchen table.   As you can see these are very large flowers measuring 6 to 8 inches wide.  They look so beautifully elegant in a large bouquet with multiple colored flowers.

I see different opinions on the hardiness zones for the Snowball Viburnum.  One source says these plants survive nicely in zones 3-8.  And another says 6-9, and then another 4-8.  We are in zone 8.

Spring is filled with the magic we see each year with the beautiful flowering plants and the trees beginning to be covered again in beautiful green leaves ... The whole process is totally amazing and should be called one of the Wonders of the World!!

On this first day after Palm Sunday,  I do wish you a most wonderful beginning of Easter week,  and hope your week is filled with many blessings wherever you may be.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

A Little Puzzle Fun!

This last Christmas season our daughter Debi was visiting from South Florida with our twin grandchildren Ethan and Elly.

I happened to be in Hobby Lobby before Christmas and spotted a Nativity Scene 18 X 24 size puzzle.  For some reason, after not working on a puzzle for years and years,  this was a "must have" purchase for me.  

I thought it would be fun to set up a card table with a pretty red Christmasy table cloth,  with the puzzle pieces out and ready for any of the grandchildren who happened to be visiting and might like to work on the puzzle.

 Nativity Scene Puzzle

Well!  Of all things, none of the grandchildren seemed at all interested in sitting down to work on the puzzle.

Then, one evening after we finished all the duties of the day, my daughter and I both decided to sit together and "work on the puzzle."

What fun we had!  We sat and talked and talked and visited and had the best time!  She is a whiz at everything she does and this puzzle was no different ... We were finished in no time.

Puzzle Glue

Last week I finally got around to finding "puzzle glue" and an 
18 X 24 "frame"  at Hobby Lobby,  to finish our project.  

Puzzle Glue with Foam Paint Brush
Follow directions for painting on the bottle.  -  It is super easy!

We had such fun working on this puzzle together,  we decided to get some puzzle glue to paint over the puzzle,  and then frame the finished puzzle.  We thought it would make a pretty memory-filled wall-hanging and a future Christmas decoration.  

If you are looking for a fun project to share with family members,  hopefully this post has given you some inspiration.

I hope it has been a very nice, happy and blessed Tuesday wherever you may be.

Friday, March 20, 2015

First Day of Spring at Hidden Hollow

Hidden Hollow is the name our children gave our home many years ago.  

Today is the first day of Spring and Mother Nature is right on schedule as I looked around and saw almost all of the Azaleas are blooming in and around the yard along with many other flowers. 

As always I had to go and get my camera and try to capture some of the awesome beauty the good Lord has given us to enjoy.

Springtime in Tallahassee is a very celebrated event.  Next weekend Tallahassee will celebrate the 48th Annual Springtime Tallahassee Parade, which is a GRAND parade.  There will also be entertainment throughout the city plus arts, crafts and lots and lots of food vendors in the downtown streets.

A view of the azaleas blooming as we walk down the front sidewalk.

 Early morning view of the front yard taken from the front porch.

 Another view of the side front yard.

 A view from the front sidewalk looking through the arch into the front circular driveway.
Many years ago we planted lots and lots of Azaleas in the loop of the driveway.

I was sitting enjoying my coffee this morning and looking out the kitchen window.  Of course I had to go and get my camera and try to capture some of the pretty Azaleas I could see from the window.

My sweet husband found these colorful chairs during his last visit to Home Depot.  We put them here with the intention of taking them down to the pond so the grandsons would have some additional chairs to sit in while fishing ... but, as you can see we have not taken them down to the pond yet.  I thought they looked so colorful setting amongst the Azaleas.

This is my sweet little yard statue that reminds me so much of our little grandson Lawson when he was a baby.  He had an adorable little angel face just like this little statue.  It is hard to believe he will be turning 10 years old next month.   We will have a "big" birthday celebration to be sure.

This is one of my favorite Azaleas ... a Pink Ruffle.  When it blooms the whole entire bush turns pink.

And my next favorite Azalea is the Formosa Azalea.  I love this beautiful pink/purple color.  You can see the pollen all over the leaves ...  This time of year the pollen is everywhere!

A view of the yard looking toward the house.

 And a view of the driveway as we are leaving.

And some more Azaleas in the side yard.

I walked out front with the camera and saw the little white roses blooming across the front fence.

And, the Cherokee Roses are also blooming as seen in the photo below.
It seems like Mother Nature waved her magic wand and everything is blooming at once.

And a close-up of the pretty Cherokee Rose.

Some more very colorful Azaleas blooming in the side yard.

Just down the street from us we pass a large pasture and could not 
miss that this beautiful Wild Plum Tree was blooming also.

Back in the yard we see that the Native Azaleas, or some call them 
the Wild Azaleas are also blooming.

    A close-up of the Formosa Azaleas flower buds.  Again, you can see the pollen all over the leaves.

Another photo of the very pretty Pink Ruffle Azalea.

Pretty Pink Ruffle Azaleas with Formosa Azaleas in the background.

And, last but not least, a photo of the back yard.  The Azaleas and the yellow Lady Bankshire Roses are blooming just off of the patio.   If you look closely you can see the pond way down the hill.

It has been a beautiful week here in Tallahassee as we are all enjoying this amazing Springtime.  

I hope you have a beautiful and blessed weekend wherever you may be.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Tulips To Brighten The Weekend

Our local Publix grocery store had the most colorful selection of tulips on display as I was grocery shopping yesterday.  It would have been nice to have a bouquet of each color.  I could not resist selecting my most favorite color of them all to bring home to brighten our weekend.

It is so much fun to get my camera and try to capture some 
of the beauty of the amazing gifts the good Lord has given us to enjoy.

The kitchen table seemed to be a good spot to enjoy these "smiles from heaven."

When I first placed the tulips in water they were drooping over, as seen in the first photo, 
 but as evening approached they stood up straight and tall;  possibly because of lighting.

The natural lighting is so much better out on the front porch so I took the tulips
 outside to snap a couple more photos,  hopefully to show the intensity of this beautiful color.

Isn't the good Lord such an artist!
Truly amazing artwork!
We couldn't do this no matter how hard we tried.

We are enjoying much warmer temperatures here in the South with a little rain as a gift to the beginning Springtime flowers.  

The trees are beginning to wake up and have tiny little green leaves starting to grow on their branches.  Mother Nature is doing such a good job as Spring begins to unfold.

Wishing you a beautiful and blessed weekend wherever you may be.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Wishing You A Beautiful Thursday

Wishing you a beautiful Thursday and sending you some "smiles from heaven."

I hope it has been a nice "beginning of Daylight Savings Time" week for you as we all have had more daylight to enjoy all the beauty around us.

Wishing you special days and much happiness wherever you may be.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Spring Is Coming

As the weather warms slightly and the sun shines brighter the Japanese Magnolias all around town are beginning to wake up from their long winter nap.  They are putting on the most beautiful floral display and reminding all of us that Spring will officially be here in just 13 days.

If you would like to see more Japanese Magnolia photos you can click on:

This weekend is that special weekend when we begin Daylight Savings Time.  
Officially the time changes at 2:00 AM Sunday March 8.

Wishing you a bright and beautiful weekend wherever you may be.

Lichgate A Dream Preserved

1401 High Road
Tallahassee, Florida
There is a charmingly secluded location that could very easily be missed if you did not have an exact address,  and if someone had not told you previously about the exact location.  We were scheduled to have our February Garden Club meeting in this old preserved home that in 2006 was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

After our Garden Club meeting, even though it was an extremely cold day outside, our guide took all of us around the property and told us some very interesting facts about this very quaint Historical location:

Laura Jepsen, a Shakespearean scholar and professor at Florida State University here in Tallahassee from 1946 until 1978,  had a wish to find a beautiful location and build a little dream cottage.  She loved the 16th century and Shakespeare.  She was searching for a spot where she could be transported back in time to this period she loved.

Her search was over the minute she drove past a three-acre cow pasture with the biggest Oak tree she had ever seen.  This was the spot she had been looking for ... A place to build her dream home.

This was a place where she could leave the outside, modern world where she worked and volunteered and return back to a period of time she loved.

This amazingly beautiful Oak tree is what convinced Miss Jepsen to purchase the property.  

During her lifetime Miss Jepsen lived a simple life.  She was not interested in material wealth.   She never married.  She walked to work at Florida State University where she taught literature, humanities and creative writing.  

We were also told that many local couples have chosen to be married under this old sprawling Oak tree, which is a perfect symbol for  growth and abundance for their future.

You can see a person walking toward the tree in the below photo.  The person in the photo gives some perspective as to the size of this tree.  As we toured this beautiful location, our guide told us this tree is probably about 500 years old.  

As you can see in the below photo Miss Jepsen's cottage was small and very charming.  Some would say it is an English-style Tutor cottage that may remind one of something from a fairytale.

We were told that nothing was trivial in Miss Jepsen's life.  They say the simplest decisions she made were full of meaning. She chose the white-pine flooring for the inside of the cottage from an old house in Vermont, built in 1762. 

A stone path leading around the property.

 Some pretty floral bushes at the front entrance of Lichgate.

Pretty flowers in the garden.

And a Japanese Magnolia tree just beginning to bloom on the side of the property.

The cottage is constructed from tidewater red cypress, cedar, and redwood.  The granite used for her fireplace and foundation came from a Georgia quarry.  Miss Jepsen chose this stone because it is among the oldest rocks on the planet,  and for her,  a symbol of long-lasting durability.

The inside of the little cottage was very simple.  As you walk up the stairs, you step inside to the main living area.  There is  a very large fireplace on the left wall which is the main focal point of the entire room.  Then on the extreme right is a bathroom, a tiny kitchen and stairs leading up to what looked like a loft or a bedroom.

Miss Jepsen lived here in this secluded spot until her death in the year 1955.   The property is privately owned and is open to the public from early morning until sunset.  It is available for weddings, parties, small meetings and showers.

I'm so glad you came along with us as we enjoyed walking through someone's dream come true!

Wishing you a wonderful weekend wherever you may be.