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Garden Bliss & Blunder, Issue #018
December 07, 2022

Winter Wonderings

Fall is behind us here in Canada zone 5

… one day we have snow

rain the next

and sunshine and milder days follow.


Sweaters, toques, gloves and scarves.

It’s winter woolly time.

But One Last Rose Hangs On...

...just barely but

letting those who pass

smell its intoxicating fragrance

until the frost hardens it;

preserving it for a cold winter.

I managed to capture another on canvas -

as its petals were tipped with frost.

..and yet,

the Heuchera and Rose leaves

are just as beautiful;

their edges painted by nature.

Outdoor Arrangements...

And now that the frost has lulled the garden,

it might be a great time to

create some other outdoor beauty

with boughs, ribbons, stars and sparkling balls.

Here are some ideas that might work for you.

A can of spray paint, some Hydrangea heads and greenery

Or a lot of greenery and lots of sparkly balls

for a big space

....for a smaller porch or deck, choose a colour

that compliments the house

Use what you have or find from last year

along with some new greens

And don't forget inside !

I LOVE the Holidays !!

I LOVE the holidays… and for me, it is Christmas.

It's the spirit, the quiet and peacefulness that comes with the first snow

… a blanket that covers what is left of the dull colours of fall,

the past, the hurts, the pain or suffering

and for a little while, makes us believe…

in something, or everything.

Most of all, it is about family… by birth or by choice.

It is also a time when we think of others

… either by giving gifts, making things,

or supporting a charity that speaks to us…

Shop "Local"

The big box stores are doing just fine..

.. support the little shops

and craft shows that have that one-of-a-kind gift

made with love by budding or experienced artisan.

As for me and my friend Claire Sullivan,

we stuck our necks out, putting our art in a local show and sale…

we sold a few paintings,

but the best was meeting the nicest,

most talented folks we may never have met otherwise.

This is the magnificent space

where we were fortunate enough to show our art

- The Mount Community Centre

with its stunning chapel…

a favourite setting for movies andTV series

like Murdock Mysteries…

I love this sign…

and even though I am not always busy,

it makes me laugh just to see it in my studio.

Winter is the time to create,

to rest, to dream, to read,

to write, make music, art, fun

and most of all to find some peace.

But let's not be too busy for friends and family

and the things that bring joy to us

and others who may not be able to find

it for themselves.

For us, it's about Christmas...

But this month, for me and mine,

it is about our

Nativity Scene.

It started with a very traditional one I found

in a small shop in Italy many years ago

and over the years we keep adding to it…

requiring a larger, longer table.

We have sheep, lambs, foxes, a zebra, dogs,

cows, deer, moose, beaver, bear, alpaca,

camels, a loon, a turtle,

Miss Piggy, and friends…

… anyone can come to the manger my daughter reminded many years ago.

This year, we added a penguin, some funky, saucy sheep,

an Alpaca and a skunk.

But what we really need, is a wee furry donkey….

we are still looking....

Light the candles and remember why you are celebrating

and what this season means to you and your family.

And if you cannot be together,

how wonderful is the magical internet

giving us videos and chats…

then, decorate the tree.

TREES: Real or Fake??

Real Trees...

Like everything else. our decisions are based on what we need, is most practical and what is important to us.

There are no clear answers for this choice but here are some things to consider.

REAL TREES: are grown on Christmas tree farms as a crop taking 10 years to reach 6 feet

They are cut and replaced with another.

They are homes for wildlife and birds and absorb carbon while growing.

Consider where your tree comes from…

... carbon footprint increases with road miles and these are often sold in plastic mesh for protection. Consider how you dispose of your tree…

... landfill = methane gas = 10x more potent than CO2

....or leave standing in your yard… then cut for compost, wood chips or yard waste in spring

Our local zoo takes them for their animals to munch on or play with.

Fake Trees...

Most are made overseas and travel a long way

Made of plastic, metal, using fossil fuels to produce

Mixed materials = not easily recyclable

6 foot tree has a carbon footprint = 10x that of real But If you have one, keep using it….

If you are considering buying one, choose one to last 10 to 20 years

No matter which, decorate it with love.

(from an article by Veronica Peerless-Gardens Illustrated)

“This is the solstice,

the still point of the sun,

its cusp and midnight,

the year’s threshold and unlocking,

where the past lets go of

and becomes the future;

the place of caught breath.”

Margaret Atwood

And then holiday movies, popcorn and champagne….

with lots of couch

and jammie time…

while waiting for Santa

Lucy assures Santa, it IS all about her

Until next time,

take care of yourself,

those you love


find a way

to help those

you may not love

or understand.

My Little Bird book - a great gift

When I sell a copy of my book

(The Little Bird Who Fell From the Sky)

for a child who attends a school,

I donate one to their school library.

If you wish to purchase one with another for a school,

please send a note to:

They are now in schools in Ontario, Labrador, New Brunswick,

Latvia, Alberta, Nova Scotia, Quebec, BC,

Arizona, California, Florida, the UK,

Massachusetts, Tennessee, Missouri,

France, and Nicaragua

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