Monday, May 9, 2016

With sunshine and flowers
















We had a beautiful weekend, including a lovely Mother's Day with the Bear's parents, who have returned from New Zealand for the summer. On Saturday, we attended two guitar recitals, spaced several hours apart, which meant driving back and forth to the university twice. It ate up the day, pretty much, but it was worth it. These kids are so talented! Not just my own, of course. I'm amazed at what they learn in a semester. The LB's class learned "Stairway to Heaven" this spring (a classic song for anyone learning the guitar, no?) and I was absolutely blown away. They're both getting really good. And they love it, which is the most important thing anyway. I'm very proud of my guitarists.

Sunday was another lovely day, sunny and a bit cool, with a surprising little thunderstorm right after lunch, but mostly very good weather for working in the yard. We got a lot accomplished in the morning and I'm so happy with how it all looks. We cleaned the patio furniture and the umbrella, mowed and edged the grass, cleaned up the chicken coop, weeded front and back yards both. It's all ready for summer now. We spent the afternoon visiting with the Bear's parents and preparing dinner; the Bear smoked salmon outside and I made side dishes (baked potatoes, green beans and dinner rolls). We had a store-bought key lime pie for dessert. My in-laws brought me a beautiful bouquet. They always think of me on Mother's Day and I really appreciate it. I love being part of their family.

My Bears gave me some really wonderful, special gifts yesterday. The LB made a mobile in school, featuring polymer-clay butterflies dangling from sculpted wire. I'm so impressed with the intricacy of his butterflies. The children made their own clay canes, formed into shapes and sliced, then baked. All three of them built me a beautiful little table, which I intend to use as a plant stand in the living room. The Bear did most of the work, obviously, but the small pair helped with sanding and staining. The table is made from Brazilian cherry and it's lightweight and delicate. They inscribed it for me. I can't wait to put a plant on it. I'm thinking about a shallow bowl of succulents; the window is very sunny most of the day (that's the chair where I usually sit to cross-stitch). There was also a lovely handmade card, a bottle of hazelnut syrup for my coffee and a new set of fineliner pens. I felt loved on Mother's Day, as I do every day, and I love them all so much. I hope you had a lovely Mother's Day, if you celebrate it. I know it isn't an easy day for everyone, but I hope you felt loved and honored.

Thank you for your comments regarding the LB's medical results; we are so glad to have one part of this situation over and done with. He is a happy, kind and bright child who brings so much joy to our lives and to know that he has one fewer health concern is a great relief to us. Thank you, too, for keeping him in your thoughts and prayers, I appreciate it very much. I hope you have a great week!

33 comments:

  1. I love that even though we are miles apart your weather seems to mirror what is happening over here. Those butterflies are beautiful. I feel much better today and I will be glad to get back to work for a rest tomorrow! Jo x

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  2. how lovely!!! that table is so beautiful! as are the butterflies, (etc!)... what a lovely weekend! so glad for you! family is a real blessing!

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  3. You are truly blessed, sounds like you had a wonderful weekend and were honoured as a good Mother should be. What a beautiful table made with love, always the best type of gift. Take care.

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  4. Beautiful gifts! I can't imagine anything lovlier than that little table, what an amazing thing to do, and the inscription is so special X

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  5. What lovely gifts, the table is wonderful. I especially like the inscription. I can imagine people looking at it in the future and imagining you being given it and using it. The LB's mobile is brilliant as well, the butterflies are so cleverly made. I'm glad you had a good mother's day, it sounds like the very best sort of day. Love your flowers against the wall, they're so pretty. And you hens - they're very free ranging!

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    1. Thank you, CJ. The kids brought the hens to the front yard because we were working there and they thought the hens would like a change of scenery. It was nice for about five minutes before we spotted a hawk and they were shuttled right back to the coop!

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  6. Your gifts are all lovely, Jennifer. Your bears - big and small - did you proud! :o)

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  7. Beautiful gifts, Jennifer. The butterflies are amazing and the table is so precious - especially that inscription. So glad you had a lovely Mother's Day. Loving the chuck photos too! xx

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  8. Beautiful gifts handmade from the heart! I'm in serious envy of your irises.

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  9. Such beautiful gifts ...
    Loved all your photo's, thanks for sharing.

    All the best Jan

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  10. Sounds like you had a wonderful Mother's Day and that you got some very thoughtful gifts. I love the table and that butterfly mobile - both beautiful and I know will be loved and cherished. A bowl of succulents on that table would be perfect. I had not seen your last post about your son's tests, so I went back and read it. While I'm sorry he had to go through invasive tests, I'm doing a happy dance with you that his surgery last year was a success. I'm sure that news was the best Mother's Day gift you could've received!

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  11. I think the best Mother's Day present is that your kids are healthy and happy. Wonderful news about your son's successful operation. He must be so happy to have those tests behind him now. Kids sure can be brave little souls, putting some of us adults to shame the way we complain about things. The butterfly mobile is wonderful! It looks like it will be bouncing or waving in the wind all summer long. I love the little table your bears made for you. Cherry is my favourite wood :) Such a nice stain and finish.
    So glad you had a great day even though it was busy, it sounds like it was full of love too. Enjoy the rest of your week!
    Wendy xox

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  12. This is another lovely, serene post! I enjoyed the pics. The butterfly mobile is so pretty and that table will be a keepsake for sure. Glad you had such a nice day.

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  13. What a wonderful Mother's Day for you, Jennifer! And what a thoughtful family you have. The butterfly mobile is wonderful, and that table something you will treasure for many years. I missed your last post (I've been visiting my new grandson), so will have to go read it and catch up, but am so glad for you that you had good medical news.

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  14. Such a wonderful weekend you had Jennifer. Your gifts are just beautiful. I love the butterflies and the table is certain to be something you cherish forever. I always enjoy your chickens. I've wanted to have them for a long time...and I can have three within city limits here as long as there are NO roosters. The problem is that when we travel to visit our children I don't have anyone to care for them. Our dog sitter said that she draws the line at chickens! Ha! So, I always enjoy seeing chickens in other people's blogs. Have a wonderful week.
    Blessings,
    Betsy

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    1. Thanks, Betsy. We can have up to 14 hens within city limits, but we can't have roosters either, which was a real problem when one of our hens turned out to be a boy! Luckily, we have a neighbor across the street who also keeps chickens and he is happy to look after our girls when we go away for more than a day.

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  15. I'm glad you had such a nice mother's day. Your table is absolutely beautiful.. a family heirloom for sure. I look forward to seeing what you put upon it. You're a lucky woman! I'm so glad your son has one less worry. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

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  16. I am glad you had such a lovely Mother's Day Jennifer. The gifts you received are beautiful. Playing an instruments is such a wonderful activity and I wish mine had not given up the cello, or would choose something else to play. x

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  17. What a wonderful Mother's Day you have had! Such beautiful thoughtful presents :). Playing a musical instrument is a wonderful skill to have, I am so glad that my parents spent the money they did on lessons, I will do the same for my children :).

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  18. The little table is a lovely gift, Jennifer, as is the mobile. What thoughtful presents. I'm glad you had a happy Mother's Day. My children have sadly given up playing musical instruments (trumpet, guitar and violin). You can lead a horse to water and all that... It must be lovely to witness your children's enjoyment and hear them playing. Sam x

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  19. Chickens, and pink iris...Yay! How wonderful to have the LBs playing guitar; nothing beats the music of children in the house. I love listening to our neighbourhood children doing their piano, horn, and even a bagpipe practice. Your Mother's Day looks fantastic: the table is perfect in every way, and the butterflies look so professional. You have very talented children Jennifer. :)

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  20. Such wonderful and precious gifts. I love the table and its inscription, I think it makes a gift all that more special. The butterfly mobile is absolutely beautiful, something to treasure for sure. I'm glad you had such a lovely day with your loved ones.

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  21. It's a perfect place to enjoy. Butterfly hanging attracted me lot.

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  22. Oh Jennifer, the little cherry wood table is delightful. What a wonderful Mother's Day present. Our bed and a chest of drawers are made from Cherry wood (bought from Heal's 20 years ago). The design is called Frontier because it is a very simple Shaker design not dissimilar in style to your table. Occasionally I oil the wood with Danish oil which gives a gorgeous non-shiny lustre to the wood. My children used to play the guitar although neither had guitar lessons. My son was a violinist and could play anything with strings so for fun I bought him a guitar from a charity shop and had it restrung and later my daughter used it to accompany herself singing Joni Mitchell and Laura Marling songs. Nowadays my daughter's boyfriend is a very talented musician and has a multitude of guitars but my favourite is the acoustic. Sometimes he brings it along when he comes to stay but the best time was when all of us stayed in a 17th century banqueting house in the Cotswolds over New year and Luke played guitar and we sang along to all our favourite songs. Our ancient guitar (don't be shocked) was taken to pieces in a very good way by my son for an art installation. It's still in pieces in his cupboard!

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    1. Thank you, Sarah. We are die-hard devotees of Danish oil here. It's our favorite product for wood-care, that and good, old-fashioned Johnson paste wax. :)

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  23. Thanks for a wonderful visit, Jennifer :) I enjoyed glimpses of your days both through your narrative and photos. Fabulous weather really helps to heighten the joy of our days, doesn't it. I'm glad you had a great Mother's Day and were celebrated for being the good mother you are, and I'm glad to know the Bear's folks are back and were a part of it.

    On Saturday my oldest granddaughter had asked help from me to do a craft project for her mom for Mother's Day. As I was leaning over putting a box of stamps back on a shelf I felt a twang in my lower back :( Now after ice and on and off heat I am nearly back to a full upright position standing :) I was able to walk out to our picnic tables by the pond for a cookout on Sunday and enjoyed happy love messages from all my children. Blessings!

    Wishing you a happy week! xxxx

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    1. Thanks, Gracie. I hope your back is better soon. Take care.

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  24. It sounds like you were properly spoiled just as you should be, you felt loved because you are loved, and that is the best present of all.
    Hugs,
    Meredith

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  25. What beautiful gifts to treasure for ever. There is something so special about handmade presents. The butterfly mobile is wonderful and looks so professional. Enjoy x

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  26. What a lovely table. It will be perfect with a plant. And the butterfly mobile is so pretty, too. You are a talented group over there. :)

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  27. That table is amazing. They put so much thought and time into their gifts for you! Happy mothers day to you, I'm glad you had such a great day. Xx

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  28. Hey Jennifer,
    Your Mother's Day gifts are quite beautiful. I'm swooning over the table. I'm also swooning over your daughter's hair. Can she sit on it? I would have loved long hair as a child. Sadly fluffy and fine red hair does not suit.
    Leanne xx

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  29. what wonderful gifts Jennifer and well deserved, I'm so happy that you had such a lovely day x

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