Friday, July 09, 2021

Around Home on a Friday


That was a fast week! After being away it's good to get back into a routine. The intense heat is gone, and the weather is very pleasant. Unfortunately, the wildfires are increasing and we might be in for a smoky summer. 

I've been admiring the vivid chartreuse vine against the cobalt blue container. It's a new plant that I'm trying this summer and it won't be the last. What a shot of vibrant colour to set off the usual pinks and blues of my pots. The sweet peas in the back pot have many sunburned leaves and I thought I might lose them, but the new growth is fine. No blooms there yet, although the ones planted elsewhere are just beginning.

I made a batch of blackberry shrub - a syrup concentrate that one adds to plain water (or club soda, I suppose). It's very refreshing and when I enjoy it on the patio, surrounded by blooming roses and hydrangeas, it's like a mini-holiday. 

Marian Parsons of Miss Mustard Seed fame has an e-course on Jeanne Oliver's site. I signed up for it knowing that we'd be gone for the start, but it's all recorded and self-paced. It's about painting with a limited palette, just three shades. I made these colour wheels using just three paints for each one. It's kind of addictive and I did another one yesterday. These are plain watercolour and my next one will include gouache. It's been fun to try something new. I'm itching to try some landscapes. 

Lavender bushes line the driveway and tend to overgrow there. I cut it back one sunny day and tied bundles together with string. They will dry and I'll use them in sachets for the linen closet. The bees are crazy for lavender and I found myself apologizing to them for cutting it. I did leave plenty for them to use. 

My reading stack, picked up from the library this week. I've finished
Hamnet and Judith - such a sorrowful tale, and am about half-way through The Letters of Vincent Van Gogh. What a tortured soul he was, so lonely and eccentric, yet so very gifted. He expressed emotions such a range of emotions: "Life is after all enchanting" to "I can see no possibility of again having hope or courage."

This morning I've made a pot of soup using up leftover vegetables, and I plan to go for a walk before cleaning bathrooms and tidying up. We're meeting with friends this evening, and tomorrow is second-vaccine day. We'll see how the weekend plays out after that. 

A lovely summer weekend (or a winter one) is what I hope for each of you. Do you have plans?


  1. Your flowers are gorgeous.

  2. Ahhhh your heat is gone! Not so here. -smile- Fires up your way... -sigh-

    Gorgeous flowers, and that drink looks delicious.

    Lovely to be trying an art! And thank you for picturing your latest stack of books. I always check such out. In case I'd like to read some of them. Not the sad ones though. I'm a wimp about sadness in reading. All plots have to have some, but too much, I just can't abide. -smile-

    Best of luck with your 2nd 'Jab'! I had my 2nd (Pfizer), Monday. My husband had to postpone his, till he is over an eye infection. I had a sore arm for a bit, and kind of feeling out-of-sorts. But that passed. I had little with my 1st too, and he had even less than I did.

    We live a quiet life, so our life did not change all that much. But we would like to be able to go out to eat some, during summer. Come winter, we don't. So we'd like to do this, summer and fall. And I'd like him to be able to go to a hardware store at times, which he loves to do. Little things.... And I am pessimistic that come cold weather, China Covid will be back again. -sigh-

    Enjoy your weekend!

  3. How lovely to have so much lavender. I had to start again this year as mine died off during the Winter.

  4. That vine is beautiful against the blue pot. Your lavender is such a pretty deep color. The shrub sounds refreshing. No plans here except a morning walk on the beach and then the farmers market.

  5. It looks like you are finding many nice ways to fill your retirement days, Lorrie. Love the cobalt blue/chartreuse pairing.
    The shrub looks so refreshing and pretty.
    Enjoy your weekend. We'll be catching up on some yard work.

  6. Thank you for visiting my blog and your wonderful comment about the Warren picture - it seems it was probably painted in Canada then. Painting with a limited pallet is a freedom of sorts - my former neighbour and mentor, the late John Knapp Fisher (one of Wales' finest artists) used so little colour and yet his works are intense, haunting and vivid. I do miss painting from time to time, perhaps one day I will start again -I saw some of my work in a gallery recently and that made me smile and consider... but there is only so much time to create. Words are my matter now.

  7. the lavender looks great. It must smell lovely in the driveway. It doesn’t grow as big here.

  8. Do you make your own Blackberry concentrate? It sounds lovely! Your lavender is a nice dark colour and I know what you mean about the bees loving it. I find it hard to pick any with the number of bees that are buzzing about.

  9. A spot of Chartreuse in the garden does brighten up the other colors. Shrub is new to me. Sounds like a summer delight to try

  10. I do like a good Isabel Allende book. Hope it is a good one.
    The first picture is such a pretty pot of plants. That reminds me I usually put a sweet potato vine in a pot somewhere and didn't do that this year. Very nice.
    The blackberry shrub sounds delicious. I haven't made a shrub in quite awhile. It is refreshing.
    Love the lavender. I have a feeling one of my lavenders is past it's prime, but now must go look at the one in the shade and snip some of it.

  11. Sounds like you are making the most of summer! I'm glad that the weather is improving, I read about it in the newspaper and it sounded scary.

  12. I too have lots of pots in various shades of blue - a colour which enhances so many of our flowers and shows them off to perfection.
    Best to tackle the lavender before it becomes scrubby - sometimes I think that I am being far too ruthless but having seen the way they chop them right down in the lavender fields I am now more daring.

  13. Such a beautiful post, every word brought me right to your reality, beautiful!

  14. i love the colours on your today’s post. I will bake and cook and freeze for next week, as I will be going away with my son.

  15. I do love the sweet potato vine and it is especially pretty against your cobalt blue pot. Your reading list looks so interesting. I am currently reading "The Yellow House." It is a story of Van Gogh and Gauguin and their weeks in Provence. I am glad your weather has improved and I hope the wildfires will get under control. Lorrie, this was a lovely post.

  16. I want a blackberry shrub syrup. Must go look it up!

  17. I always like the sound of your shrub drink, it sounds so refreshing. Interesting to see your version of Hamnet is called Hamnet and Judith! Have a good weekend. B x

  18. Your lavender looks wonderful, it must really like your garden. It took me years to grow it here (too much humidity) but even now it is established, it looks very average. I heard there is more hot weather coming over there - you will need your delicious blackberry drink. I have read the letters of Van Gogh, which are so revealing and you feel you know him so much better than the 'myths' which everyone seems to 'know'.

  19. Your flowers looks so beautiful, and that lavender I can smell it from here. So glad the heat has gone away. Happy reading.

  20. I love those flavoured drinks...subtle and so refreshing. Hamnet and Judith was so well written, albeit sad. Your book stack looks impressive, I do like the variety of books that you have chosen. That lavender looks so pretty too Lorrie.

  21. Dear Lorrie,
    Your Lavender looks especially thick and beautiful. In fact all of your flowering pots look amazing. What is your secret?

    1. You are very kind, Gina. I don't have any secrets - just regular watering and neglect otherwise!

  22. Anonymous5:29 PM

    |our flowers are beautiful. Enjoy your books.

  23. I'm enjoying lots of lavender and it's a job to keep it trimed back, but so nice that it keeps going! You are inspiring!

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