It is storming outside. I awoke to thunder earlier this morning.

I wish they’d clean the gutters because they’re always filled up and water sluices off them onto my patio. It makes such a mess. Not much gets done around here. Same old, same old no matter who owns this property.

I didn’t think rain was in the forecast, so I’m glad I took photos yesterday evening. The pots are all filling out nicely now and flowers are trailing over the sides of the containers.

I think this year may be my favorite patio garden set up. The purples are so calming.

The yellow flowers raise their energetic faces, peeking out here and there among the various shades of purple. Little bursts of sunshine.

White flowers are sprinkled in less often here and there.

I sit outside (not for long; I always find something I need to do or a flower that needs deadheading) and listen to the wind chimes and the water fountain.

I close my eyes and lean back and it doesn’t feel as though I am in the middle of a big city. I am transported back to that little country house where my granny grew a vegetable garden but still made time to fill her flower beds with flowers.

I’ve always wondered if I went back and found that house if the vegetable garden, if it’s still there, would it look so vast?

Or maybe like many things you recall from childhood, it would just be a regular sized space that only appeared large to a child.

I’m not even sure I could locate the old home or it might even have been turned into something else by now. That was a long time ago.

We moved to town when I was around 12. Things didn’t seem as magical in retrospect, though I was glad to be closer to the library. I had about worn out my old bike riding into town most every week to get more books.

I remember the awe I felt when I walked in. It was just a small town library, nothing fancy. But within its depths I could choose books that would transport me around the world. I could lose myself in fictional places where mysteries were solved and tied up neatly at the end.

My love of books and plants has stayed with me. I still love reading and gardening as much if not more now in my sixties.

The world is ever changing. But I can always lose myself in a book or be out in my garden digging and tending to little seedlings that grow into beautiful plants and flowers.

My utopia. Right here in the middle of the city.


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    I awoke this morning to the sound of rain pounding down again. We’re getting some good rain showers in these parts. And I’m ever so thankful for it. As is my patio container garden. Gazing…
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22 Comments

  1. As a child I had the good fortune to live in or near towns that had public libraries built with money from the Carnegie Foundation. They were stately buildings with an impressive set of front steps and a high-ceilinged central room, sometimes with an elaborate dome, and that atmosphere caused me to feel like I was getting to do something really important each time I checked out some books. My parents were a pretty domineering, controlling pair, but for some reason, they gave me a lot of freedom at the library. I remember a wonderful feeling of being by myself while I looked through books and decided what to check out. I don’t recall them ever paying attention to what I chose, which seems so odd considering how they micromanaged most every other aspect of my life! I don’t think that I fully was conscious of the freedom that I had while at the library and then when reading my book choices at home. It really seems like a blessing, now that I think of it, because it was one of the few ways that I got to make choices for myself. I took my children to the library throughout their growing-up years and my husband and I go at least once a month to our current public library. I’m really looking forward to when our library opens up again sometime in June.

    1. You are lucky to have a library,I am from India and staying in a metro city like Mumbai there is no space for big libraries to sit and read..we just probably have a small local shop which gives book on rent which one can read at home, I love love reading and so wish we had a library where I could lose myself into their world.

  2. What a beautiful post. Your other garden posts are just as lovely. Hold onto those childhood precious memories..they sound so beautiful..

  3. Brenda, not sure if anybody ever told you, but if you like watching Vera try Shetland. They were both books written By Ann Cleeves. Not sure how involved she is/was with the shows. Shetlands stories tend to arc over multiple episodes, and has definite Scottish accents and terms. Other series to try are Midsomer Murders, Inspector Lewis, or Unforgotten. All BBC/PBS series, episodes tend to be about 45 minutes long.

  4. Your flowers are beautiful. They are so colorful and bright. You obviously have a green thumb. Enjoy your flowers.
    Marilyn

  5. Hi Brenda I just read your Falling For The Patio , A Bevy Of Yard Birds, and A Day At A Time as well as today’s post. You write with beautiful and honest words . You should do a book with your photos too. Glad to hear Charlie is doing okay and how is Ivy doing too. Your garden is beautiful with all the different colors. Have a great day…Brenda

  6. Just last week I was able to look up my Grand mother’s home address and I was lucky to see pictures of the remodeled inside. Usually if a house is off the market you can’t see the real estate pictures. Her home was built in 1900 and was updated beautifully. It really was a treat to see and brought back many memories.

  7. Oh Brenda! You really should take a road trip and go back to try to find your granny’s home. I love visiting my old home locations from childhood … even tho the surroundings and the homes themselves may be changed or even no longer there, the wonderful memories come flooding back. ❤️ Also try Google Earth to see if u can pinpoint the location.

  8. My grandparents lived in a very old and humble house in Mexico. The soil was this hard, dry caliche type so she had to grow her herbs and flowers in containers. They weren’t pretty containers like yours. She had to use paint cans and coffee cans and whatever my grandfather would bring her. I loved to be out there with her when she watered her plants. I remember all of the green, herbal smells. I was fascinated with the flowers that opened at daylight or at dusk. It wasn’t a beautiful garden, but for some reason it was magical to me.

  9. Oh yeah. Even the SMELL of the library, love it.
    I have driven by previous houses, always fun.
    Have been trying to “play detective “ trying to find one of my grandparents houses where I spent MANY days and have great memories. No luck so far, but haven’t given up yet😊

  10. Your patio garden is beautiful, again. It is always beautiful every year! You work hard on selecting the right flowers and colors. You fertilize, snap off the deadheads faithfully, replant to fill in spaces or to make room for other plants, water when necessary, move them around when they need more sun or less sun; you are a loving caretaker of your flower babies as they grow up. Love it this year… .again!

  11. Brenda, I was raised by my grandmother because my mother died when I was two years old. She lived in a big white country house with a porch. She always had flowers and a vegetable garden. I can remember morning glories growing up on a trellis at one end of the porch, shading the swing. Often I will have dreams about that house. I will dream that I’m moving there and in my mind imagining how I will decorate each room. Then I wake up and suddenly realize that the house was torn down years ago. But it will always remain in my heart and dreams.

  12. I loved going to the library as a kid ! I can still smell that old musty book odor!
    Enjoy your Memorial Day weekend !

  13. Your patio is like an ocean filled with flowers, frees, scents, birds, and butterflies. I had a garden in high school at the old junky flat my family rented. My high school boyfriend and I were at the home of a relative of his “out in the country” one summer’s day and went for a long walk in the tall fields of grass, wild flowers and occasional little glen of trees and shrubs. We found a beautiful but small white lilac bush bordering one of the glens, out in the middle of nowhere, and I fell in love with it. We hiked back to the house, he got a shovel, and we hiked back out to dig up the lilac bush and hauled it back to the car! When we got home he helped me transplant it in my little garden. That was 1968. As of 5 years ago, the last time I was in a car and we happened to pass through the old neighborhood, that beautiful little lilac was still there, although it is large now. I imagine it filling the yard with its wonderful scent wafting out beyond the chain link fence and BEWARE OF DOG sign to the sidewalk where passers-by used to stop and admire it during my senior year in high school.
    I imagine the beauty of its flowers year after year. The neighborhood was run down even when my family lived there – with a lot of other baby-boomer kid heavy families occupying equally shoddy old run down houses and flats – 3 bedrooms 1 bath for 8-14 member families. We survived and thrived. The years have not been kind to the old neighborhood, but I believe the beautiful lilac is still there. I imagine tenants in the old flat as they come and go carefully preserving it year after year, a harbinger of spring and the promise of summer. The beauty of nature belongs to everyone.

    1. Jan, that brings memories back to me of my childhood. We had a lilac bush which was very tall it reached up to my second floor bedroom window. It smelled so sweet. My father wouldn’t let us pick any flowers off of it to bring inside because he said they wouldn’t grow back in that particular spot. I have a couple of lilac bushes in my yard and I pick the flowers off of them all the time to bring inside and I have noticed a few bare spots, so I guess he was right! How nice that was, when you went back to your childhood home the bush was still there !

  14. Brenda, I love your garden and your description of the yellow flowers, I can see their little heads popping above the purple and beaming little rays of happiness.

    I’ve never had a garden, but I have worked in other peoples gardens and enjoyed it tremendously. My yoga studio has a community garden and I pick weeds or vegetables before and after class, it is very calming.

    As for the library, summer reminds me of books and libraries. My siblings and I would walk back and forth to the library laden with books each week and we always joined the summer reading program. I have spent many days and nights, including last night under the covers reading until the wee hours of the morning.

    Have a wonderful weekend Brenda.

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