Sunday, December 22, 2019

And....So It Is Christmas...........

A lovely, almost Christmas, welcome to all you lovely lovelies. It's not long now, till Christmas Day comes aknocking softly on your front door, and mine; and settles into our homes, bringing with it a sense of expectation, love, joy...........and perhaps.....peace.

How are you all?? Excited?? Exhausted?? Pensive?? Sorrowful?? Joyful??  Eager with anticipation?? Why, if  I was to step onto that porch of yours and peek through your decorated windows, what would I see?? Perhaps some of you, with a vintage apron wrapped around your waist, busily preparing gastronomical delights.....gingerbread houses...cookies decorated as santas, reindeer or other such concoctions. Others of you perhaps dressing the turkey and mixing ingredients for the Christmas cake?? Perhaps some of you have collapsed exhausted onto the sofa under the branches of the twinkling Christmas tree?? I can see some of you buried under pretty paper and ribbons and trims, carefully wrapping presents. Oh, all the pretty paper.....I must say, so beautiful!  Oh.....and then there are some of you who are busily stitching the very last stitches onto that last beautiful handmade gift. Aah....Christmas, the season quite like no other.

If indeed, you were to peek through my windows what would you see??

Why, you would see a Christmas tree and sweet vignettes telling the story of Christmas. We happened upon a different Christmas tree last year. One that is so different from the norm that it has sent some of those who know of my 'slight' obsession with having the 'perfect' Christmas tree, into apoplectic shock. But...I am a changed woman. I have gone from a rather mad woman who for year upon year, clambered up and down a blasted ladder all weekend, decorating the perfect tree, to a rather calm and almost serene woman who now decorates the tree in an hour!! I know!! Who would've thunk it!! I have seen the light and have stepped over to the other side, into the redemptive land of quick and easy decorating of Christmas trees. I must say I love my new self. I once wrote about "The Sharman Christmas Tree Chronicles' here.....if indeed I have piqued your interest and you want to amuse yourself for a little while. =)

I have decorated the tree much the same as last year, just because I love all the pretties, and have loved revisiting each pretty as I adorned the tree. Though, there are few more pretty birds that flew in and found a perch of their own. Kudos to those of you gals who decorate with a different theme every year. I bow down before you. =)

'Tis Sunday evening here. I am sitting in the parlour, joyfully hand quilting my pretty quilt, engulfed by Christmas shimmering sparkles. It is beautiful here. It is peaceful here. I feel a quiet, deep joy. I feel blessed.  I feel Jesus' love. He whispers to my soul that I am loved. To me this is the spirit of Christmas.

Another year will soon draw to a close. As I sit here and think of you, I would love to say thank you to each one of you who has visited my little place throughout the year. Thank you for the gift of your visits, patiently reading my 'stuff and nonsense', and for blessing me with your sweet comments each time. Again, you all truly make my heart sing! May your Christmas be filled with wonderful wonderment as you celebrate with your family and friends. May your Christmas shimmer and sparkle as your joy and love touches and brightens others' lives. There are some of you, I know, who will find Christmas difficult for your own unique reasons. Sometimes Christmas is well.....just darn hard. There are tears in my eyes, just thinking of you and your circumstances. To you I am sending an armful of hugs wrapped up in much love As I sit here I am reflecting upon the real spirit of the joyousness of Christmas......Jesus'  'Birth'day, the miracle of Christmas. To me, this is the most precious gift that could ever be given to me♥

Until next year...............

Linking with Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Goodbye Spring, Hello Summer

A lovely welcome to all you lovely lovelies  It's been a month of Sundays (quite literally) since I last  beamed happy snaps of flowers to you up there in the land on snow and sleet and all things pertaining to the chilliest of seasons. Though, if I am  to be truthful, here in Tasmania summer hasn't really made an appearance as yet. Oh, the calendar has swooshed from September, October, November.....over to December, the first month of summer, but to be honest Ol' Man Sun has been missing in action more often than not this last little while. It seems to me that when he does appear he is playing catch and chase with winds that could quite possibly uproot my humble abode from it's foundations. Yes indeedy, it is decidedly chilly here. But.......being the eternal optimist that I am I do live in hope that days of warmth and sunshine will soon come aknocking on my bright pink, front door and I can swap my woolly aran jumpers for summer dresses. Though, while Tassie is shivering with icy temperatures, the rest of Australia is fainting and melting from extreme temperatures. A lot of Australia is experiencing dreadful wildfires with many, many homes being destroyed and people's lives thrown into very sad.

The weather down here might be a little 'how's your mother' but the garden has sashayed to the dance of Mother Nature regardless of  the befuddlement of the seasons. As always, spring was a delight to all the senses with the daffodils, irises, granny bonnets, lilacs, forget-me-nots, bluebells, clematis...........all strutting their stuff in their allotted time, but now that Spring has passed the flowers of summer are beginning to parade.....foxgloves, love-in-the-mist, sweet peas, roses, and soon the glorious hydrangeas, gladdies, cosmos, anemones, zinnias and dahlias. Aah....yes the summer flowers always triumph.

Oh dear, I have got lost in the deliciousness of vase after vase of flowers, I forgot to mention that I have finished my little, flower-filled, quilt top. Yes indeedy....'tis true. All 120 little hexden flowers have been appliqued onto 120 little floralicious squares and each gorgeous square is playing ever so nicely with the others. This quilt is a  joy to my eyes. Every square is dancing with an explosion of floral pattern and colour. In theory a quilt with a 'cast of thousands' of floral fabrics shouldn't work, but somehow it does. Besides I have never been a gal who follows the quilting rules that are set in concrete, and I don't suppose I will start now.

For the backing I found a pretty fabric with flowers dancing all over. There wasn't a great selection of fabrics that I thought would play nicely with my quilt but I am happy with what I was half price so I am beside myself with great joy. =)

May I say the backing fabric complements a vase or two of flowers perfectly as well. I am always up for a photo shoot overspilling with floralicous, so sorry. =)

It is a lovely Sunday morning down here. Why, by all appearances it looks as if Ol' Man Sun is going to cast his happy beams on my humble abode and the winds have swirled away to annoy folk in another location. Could it possibly be that summer might take up residence at my happy place, for a little while??? With this thought uppermost in my muddly mind, this afternoon I will put my little quilt in the quilting hoop and begin the begin.......some enjoyment of a little hand quilting. But for now there is a small matter of a little tea drinking in a pretty teacup, whilst I sit in the swing seat overlooking the pond. May you all enjoy a lovely day sprinkled with smiles and beauty. Wish oh wish I could tap on each one of your doors and gift you with a fragrance-filled bunch of flowers.....but this post oozing with happy floraliciousness will just have to do.

Until the next time........

Linking this week to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

Flowers appear on the earth; the season of singing birds has come...." Song of Solomon

Hello all you lovely lovelies  How lovely of you to visit my flowery little place where our little plot of land is covered with pretty flowers and the sweet birdies are rejoicing in song. Here in Tassie flower shows and festivals are enticing the throngs to celebrate all things flowers. There are many private homes who have flung open their garden gates welcoming the crowds to stroll around the manicured lawns; oohing and aahing over the floral displays under the shade of ancient trees. If you listen carefully you can hear whispers of the stories of the gardens that rest under the shelter of the trees' canopy.

Yesterday, my good husband and I strolled around such a garden. We enjoyed a beautiful day wandering around the garden and historic house, Entally Estate; drinking in all the beauty that a venerable garden such as this, can gift. It was a magical day; wandering around the stalls, drinking in the beauty of the garden, enjoying scones and tea and taking a few potted pretties home with us. As for those potted pretties we took home.....a few hydrangea beauties were in the mix. I know, I know, it isn't as if I don't have oodles of my favourite flower, but there is always room in my garden for one or two more. I oohed and aahed over many a pretty flower.....bearded irises, foxgloves, roses, peonies....oh the peonies! Their dinner-plate size, diaphanous, petticoat-like petals drew me into the many shimmering folds. Yes indeed, a garden with many jewels to enchant the eye.

Wandering around this garden I was struck by what a difference a couple of hundred years makes to a garden. Ancient, majestic trees stretching and twisting their limbs every which way, gnarled and bent, delighting all who look up to marvel at their splendour. Old-world blooms flowering freely behind borders of immaculately manicured hedges. As I strolled up and down the hedge-lined paths I took a mental note of the essence of this cottage garden. It is a bountiful garden and though the flowers bloom in a happy jumble there is a regulated informality.  Nothing like my disobedient garden back home where of late the weeds have appeared jostling for precious space. Not a weed to be seen here though. ancient garden, with many secrets hidden between the petals. I wondered about the gardeners of years past, who as guardians ambled along these grounds. In my mind's eye I could see many a gardener lovingly tending the plants, pulling at those cantankerous weeds, and as they pruned and dead-headed the blooms, smiling at the beauty enveloping them, while the birds chorused above. Oh, the bliss to be the caretaker of such a garden. I discovered too, the conservatory through which I wandered was the oldest conservatory in Australia.

Here at my humble li'l old abode the garden is showing off splendidly, too. The wisteria is in full bloom and the dense panicles of the lilacs are now parading their beauty. The fragrance of the garden, with these two trees vying for most fragrant plant, is intoxicating. I of course, had to, had to play florists, yet again. At this time of year I am spoiled for choice of which flowers to pick for a bouquet. I know there are some of you who don't like to pick flowers from the garden, but I have to say, here, in this little piece of paradise there are oodles and oodles of each species of botanical delight. I simply cannot leave every flower in the garden. I have this uncontrollable desire to snip a 'few' and make each bloom the star of a bouquet or two, thus beautifying each room in my humble abode. The fragrance of the garden's bounty gently drifts from room to room. 'Tis truly paradise, this heady mix of fragrances. Besides, the more you pick flowers, the more flowers the plant produces. 'Tis true.......I tell you no lie!

As I stood under the shade of the wisteria, plonking flowers into porcelain pretties, I was enchanted by the bewitching aromas that floated around me. Truly, the mixture of the heady scents of each flower was something that no perfumer could ever conjure up. If only I could magically produce all the scents into one perfume bottle, why, I think it would be every perfumer's dream. 

I haven't spent all my time this last little while, floating, lost in the exhilarating and paradisiacal world of perfumed flowers. A few more hexies have been stitched. Scores of little hexdens have been cut and stitched together to form pretty fabric flowers. Sixty of these sweet little squares are now finished. ......sixty more to go. =) I haven't begun to join the squares together yet. I am thinking I might wait until all the squares have been finished (but then....I may not)......then I will begin to play.

From this little patch of perfumed paradise where the flowers are smiling and the little birdies are singing I want to wish you a day filled with wonderfulness. Take time to enjoy something you love to do. May you snatch many moments to sprinkle beauty to your day. 'Tis Sunday here in this flowery little place and by the looks of it, the sun will be casting it's beams down upon me.....well, I hope it does. I am going to join that little band of lovelies all around the world and enjoy a little Slow Sunday Stitching, later this afternoon. Yes indeedy, me thinks a little hand stitching of some pretty hexies whilst sitting in the swinging seat by the pond, sounds like a most excellent idea.

Until the next time.............

Linking up this week to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching