Two summers ago when Anne and I went to Ireland we spent a lot of time at the Burren. One of the strangest places you will ever see. At first glance it looks like God just cleared out a huge plot of earth (and like a little boy at play)….began happily throwing stones, rocks and boulders of every size down on it…covering every square yard of this “waste land.”
*The most important lesson learned from the video, however, was how life would not be forced out of this difficult terrain.
It crept in, in the form of hundreds of varieties of flowers, peeking their heads out in crevices through the rocks.
Flowers really are the messengers of the past.and Monday night this was evidenced over and over again by some of the ‘garden celebration guests’ who came bringing floral designs of every kind.
As different friends would surprise me with their flower, plant, or arrangement some would tell me the reason why they brought that particular flower. After several of these incidences I began to see a pattern playing out which I found quite interesting.
Several of the gifts had a personal connection to family members, some of whom are now gone, whose love of a certain flower or plant was passed down and now lives on in their memory.
Harriett Edwards: “The succulents came from Ed’s grandmother. She was a wonderful gardener. The day of her funeral, at age 97, every one of the lilies and irises on her casket came from her own yard. We used the “Hen and Biddies” on the tables at Frankie’s wedding reception two years ago. You were her History teacher in the eighth grade a few years ago.”
(*Frankie was one of the sweetest students I ever taught…she recently married and has a precious little boy….so deserving of this happiness.)
Look how beautifully these succulents can be used in floral arrangements in a cement basket container and pot: Harriett sent these two photos she arranged and sit in her yard…such talent!.
It is a “knock out” connection in love. I only hope I will be able to come close to the special relationship these two “women” share by blood and love with my grandchildren.
Gin-g: Gin-g told me “Becky…there is no connection to blue hydrangeas but my Mother told me one time I was like my grandmother Huggins who fixed flowers for Gardner Webb…Boiling Springs High School back then…flowers are just God’s way of showing His love to us…”
And that is what Gin-g does constantly….show her love with fresh flowers almost every time she stops by to visit….she knows how I love fresh flowers and blue hydrangeas bring back a special day for my daughter Mandy and me….her wedding day.
Sue Anne: Sue Anne, too, chose a blue hydrangea arrangement and her love of these flowers stems directly from her father’s love of them. Near the end of his days, while he was in the hospital, Sue Anne’s mother would pick some and bring to his bedside table in his room at the hospital to cheer him up. These flowers had always been his favorite!
That particular year….the bushes produced more hydrangeas than ever before or since. The hospital staff, who adored him, always commented on his fresh hydrangeas and how beautiful they were which made him smile. After his death they sent blue hydrangeas to the funeral.
Later when Sue Anne’s mother died and her house sold, she got her son to go with her and pull up the hydrangea bushes so she would always have Dad’s favorite flower in her yard.
Dianne: Dianne and Gina are in my Sunday class but I didn’t know that Dianne is a “Master Gardener” and helps with arrangement at Magnolia Gardens. I have heard that professional flower arrangers think about the recipient’s personality before making an arrangement.
I think this must be true because as I studied every flower in the arrangement….I found myself smiling in delight….bright oranges yellow, reds, and pinks….bright colors of life….a love of life. Perfect! Thanks girls!
Anne: Anne arrived first carrying a tray of what she thinks is moon flower seedlings but it is so hard to tell this early…might be morning glories so she threw in a pack of moon flower seeds just in case. I can’t ever tell the leaves apart, early on, either.
Her love of flowering vines stems from her father she thinks. He was a doctor but loved working with plants in his spare time and his passion was flowering vines, especially passion plant vines. She has extended his interest and passion to other types of flowering vines.
When Anne got back from Charleston last night she sent this: “Dad mostly cultivated orchids but had this beautiful passion vine he was very proud of that grew up toward the top of the greenhouse attached to our house. He would cut off the blossoms as they came, and one of us would get to take it to our teacher.
Dad made gardening seem effortless, although I know differently! He would tell us he just “chucked” this or that in the ground and it would grow. He spent lots of time watering – I think that was when he got his quiet time, puttering in the greenhouse or out in the yard.”
Isn’t it amazing how our loved ones, who came before us, leave such a large footprint behind which we fill with continuing shared love and passion?
So until tomorrow….Flowers are the best keepsakes because we can’t keep them…only love them while they’re here…just like our family and close friends.
“Today is my favorite day” Winnie the Pooh
*Even though this Easter lily (which just bloomed two days ago) has definitely delivered its message a little late…it is still the same message every day of the year “Christ the Lord is risen today.” Hallelujah!
And speaking of “Hallelujah” Libby’s medical tests came back fine….no further treatment. Thanks for all the prayers!