yourself get so busy that you miss those little but important extras in life
the beauty of a day...
the smile of a friend...
the serenity of a
quiet moment alone.
For it is often life's smallest pleasures and gentlest
joys that make the biggest and most lasting difference."
Trouble is, I seem to flit from room to room, and never really complete an entire project, before getting sidetracked with something else.
Such was the case the other evening.
I started off organizing my office cupboard, and discovered a box of photographs that I hadn't looked at in a long time.
Grandchildren from birth onward, through school days, and lazy afternoons spent at the park, now young adults moving busily along with their own lives.
All those celebrations of birthdays, and Christmases, and planting times in the garden, with their little shovels and rakes.
I allowed myself to become completely absorbed in a time-warp.
Happy times, that hold so many sweet memories.
Where do the years go.
Throughout the cold winter months the First Sergeant has diligently taken
care of the wild birds needs.
Faithfully nurturing their tiny bodies with his special mixture of suet
concoctions, fruits, and seeds everyday.
In return we are rewarded with endless hours of entertainment, and their
colorful and ever-present choruses of song.
The nesting season is now upon us, our feathered friends now busily fluffing their nests in anticipation of a new generation of songsters.
Bird houses have been repaired, and newly crafted, and bird baths freshly
The circle continues.
“Sometimes goldfinches one by one will drop
From low hung branches;
little space they stop;
But sip, and twitter, and their feathers
Then off at once, as in a wanton freak:
perhaps, to show their black, and golden wings,
Pausing upon their
Were I in such a place, I sure should
That nought less sweet, might call my thoughts
the turn to cooler weather, I know that spring is upon us, when the Redbud trees
start giving out their beautiful pink buds.
It is hard to express
adequately the miracle of a tree that had branches so bare all through winter
suddenly go from stark brown to magenta.
But there she is again, emerging
from her own winter of storms, freeze, winds, drought and still standing, still
surviving, still blooming, still giving.
It's been awhile since shadows have appeared.
The ground has been frozen, and grey skies prevailed for most of the Winter months.
The sun shining brightly gives hope of
Spring day's ahead, and affords us a little well-deserved warmth on our
Another blast of Arctic weather came calling across middle Tennessee, with ice storms, and snow, school once again
cancelled, and driving conditions deemed treacherous.
This winter has turned into
one of the coldest on record.
such as these call for stick-to-your-ribs kind of meals. Meat and potatoes
One of my favorite English dishes is just that, Shepherd's Pie, a
working man's staple.
of ground beef, onions, carrots, and peas cooked in a beef gravy and tomato
sauce, with herbs and spices; then topped off with mashed potatoes and browned
in the oven until the potatoes are nice and crusty.
I buy the Colman Shepherd's Pie mix, available through Publix grocery stores, on
the English import isle.
If it's not on
hand, then the gravy part is made with oxo's or beef bouillon cubes and tomato paste, Italian seasoning, and
Pie was the first meal I cooked for The First Sergeant as a newly wed , it
remains one of his favorites to this day.
Serve with a slice of pickled beetroot or a few pickled onions on the side, and a nice crusty loaf of bread.
I found myself running an unexpected errand today to the big city of
It's a bustling, noisy city, full of all that cities have to
offer, and the ever present feel of Country Music.
The antebellum-style mansion of President
Andrew Jackson lies within view along my route, the fields are green with new
growth, and the surrounding farms are home to flocks of new Spring lambs. Is
there anything sweeter, than a field of Spring lambs prancing about their
The spring is coming by a many signs; The
trays are up, the hedges broken down That fenced the haystack, and the
remnant shines Like some old antique fragment weathered brown. And where
suns peep, in every sheltered place, The little early buttercups unfold A
glittering star or two - till many trace The edges of the blackthorn clumps
in gold. And then a little lamb bolts up behind The hill, and wags his
tail to meet the yoe; And then another, sheltered from the wind, Lies all
his length as dead - and lets me go Close by, and never stirs, but basking
lies, With legs stretched out as though he could not rise.
"Come along inside ~ We'll see if tea and buns will make the world a better place."
~ Wind in the Willows
To do the useful thing, to say the courageous thing, to contemplate the beautiful thing: that is enough for one man's life.
~ T.S. Eliot
"If you don't know where you are going, any road will get you there"
Contentment is not the fulfillment of what we want,
but the realization of how much we already have.
Where we love is home - home that our feet may leave, but not our hearts.
~Oliver Wendell Holmes
A London Telegraph featured blog
everyone else is taken."
~ Oscar Wilde
A British Weekly Featured Blog.
"What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters
compared to what lies within us."
' There is no trouble so great or grave that cannot be much dimished by a cup of tea.'
Now winter nights enlarge
This number of their hours;
And clouds their storms discharge
Upon the airy towers.
Let now the chimneys blaze
And cups o'erflow with wine,
Let well-tuned words amaze
With harmony divine...
"Tell you what I like the best --
'Long about knee-deep in June,
'Bout the time strawberries melts
On the vine, -- some afternoon
Like to jes' git out and rest,
And not work at nothin' else!"
~ James Witcomb Riley : Knee Deep in June
“Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as ever you can.”
~ John Wesley
Question not, but live and Labour Till yon goal be won, Helping every feeble neighbour, Seeking help from none; Life is mostly froth and bubble, Two things stand like stone, Kindness in another's trouble, Courage in your own.
"What a ripping little house this is !
Everything so handy ! "
~ Wind in the Willows.
" If you would prefer NO music, Please scroll down to the bottom of the blog, to PLAYLIST and click the large two bar button"
The Shed..."In the potting shed, our hearts, the pleasures of home, and the glories of the garden merge. Its practical character eases our garden labors. Its romantic nature enriches our lives. Here is peace, and beauty, and a sense of purpose."
~Linda Joan Smith :The Potting Shed
Stories don't always end where
their authors intended.
But there is joy in following them,
wherever they take us.
Sweet friends who lend me their ear
Thank you for your lovely comments x
If I should die, think only this of me: That there's some corner of a foreign field That is for ever England.
~ Rupert Brooke
Scones and Clotted Cream
Homesteading in Winter
"There is nothing in the world, More beautiful than the forest Clothed to its very hollows in snow. It is the still ecstasy of nature, Wherein every spray, Every blade of grass, Every spire of reed, Every intricacy of twig, is clad with radiance." - William Sharp
Our England is a garden, and such gardens are not made
By singing: -- "Oh, how beautiful!" and sitting in the shade.
I'm Late, I'm Late for a very important date,
No time to say hello, goodbye, I'm late, I'm late, I'm late ...
"We're all mad here"
~ The Cheshire Cat
from Alice in Wonderland
I rule. No really, I do.
I like pigs
Dogs look up to us Cats look down on us Pigs treat us as equals.....
A British expat transplanted into the lush Tennessee countryside.
Wife, mother, grandma.
The other character in this plot, being Oliver the cat, gingerness and aloof.
I'm a lover of old. Time-worn, antiques, quilts, primitives, heirloom pieces, potting sheds, English literature, poetry, Battenburg lace, blue willow, cottages, white ironstone dishes, English transferware, worn-out picket fences, teapots, old bird houses, moss-covered clay pots, gardening, all creatures great and small.
"And they loaded up their trucks and they moved to Tennessee....hills there are, swimming holes, country stars".