Let It Bloom

It’s been a life-long love affair with the Hydrangea, but the seasons are changing and it’s going away until Spring. This morning I noticed myself having a bit of trouble letting it go.

My daughter and I were out shopping this week. When I disappeared from view, she knew where to find me. We were near the flower department and there I was staring at the massive bouquet of multicolored Hydrangea. We carried it to the checkout, and when she beeped the bouquet and saw the price, she gave me a surprised look, or maybe it was shock.

I knew better than to meet her gaze and looked away thinking, you only live once. We came home and put them in water.

This morning I walked by the coffee table where they sit. Some of them had drooped overnight, so I grabbed the vase and took it into the kitchen. I laid them out on the cutting board, grabbed a sharp knife and sliced a good chunk of the ends off each stem. I chose a different vase, filled it with cool water and placed them in. They looked pretty sad, but I remained hopeful.

Looking out the window, I saw my neighbors outside, so took a walk around the block for a short visit. There’s nothing like listening to a toddler talk about life. When I returned home, the Hydrangeas were perking up and struggling their best. As I write, all are standing tall and looking refreshed, except for one.

We have a fear of loss and try and fix things to make them last longer. As I saw this one stem not revive itself I thought, well, I can always buy more, but then stopped that thought. It shouldn’t be that easy to replace. I’m just going to let them bloom, stay as long as they wish and move into a new season.

Seasons are temporary and I look forward to seeing the Hydrangea in the spring. Until then, I can have peace in knowing I didn’t try to make it stay. All I did was let it bloom.

A Full Bloom

I’m reading Stephanie’s book, “An Accidental Awakening.”, and it’s food for my soul. There’s a part in it I read yesterday that felt as if she was talking straight to me. What she describes has happened to me too, but I’ve fallen away from taking heed.

It happened again this morning.

The first time you wake up is when you need to get up. When your body is fully rested, it naturally wakes up. There’s a reason it wants you to get out of bed, but I normally just roll over in hopes for a few more minutes of shuteye.

This morning, the first time I woke up was 5:50 am. What I’d read in Stephanie’s book crossed my mind, but I didn’t get out of bed. I had an early haircut appointment and just wanted a little more sleep.

Now, I’m just flat out curious as to what the early morning wants to show me.

I’m ready for the warm months of Texas, so today’s haircut was mostly shave, and some cut. Top long and the rest shaved. Once complete, my stylist rinsed off the excess hair. The shampoo she used piqued my senses, and I told her, “That smells good.” She handed me a new bottle of shampoo and said, “This smell good too.”

I brought the shampoo home and sat it in the shower alongside the Waterpik!

bloom
Bloom

Of course, it’s named Bloom.

I’ve written about the bloom, and one post in particular was posted almost exactly one year ago entitled, Ready to Bloom. Words are like seeds and I’ve done a lot of sowing.

It’s that time of year when my heart begins leaning toward the sun preparing to bloom. The seeds sown last year will bloom this year, and I’m anticipating a full bloom.

Ready to Bloom

While making a Chemex, I took a picture.

The first thing I noticed was the steamy aroma pouring off the top, but then I noticed the flower sitting behind it. I wasn’t sure which brought me more joy! Nothing usually distracts me from coffee.

chemex

I rescued this flower from Walmart last week to plant in the yard, but it’s too cold yet. My daughter loves watching it bloom in the kitchen.

♥ ♥ ♥

I’ve begun SC Lourie’s, “2019 Start of the Year Soul Planner.” My daughter has her plate really full right now, so I’m dropping seeds of it for her to enjoy.

I made a suggestion to her about something that would ease up her schedule, but she wasn’t ready to hear it. I felt my heart say, “You dropped a seed”

People are not always ready to hear your idea, even though you speak from experience, but it can be a seed.

I’m hoping she can grasp this type teaching while she’s young, and not wait till my age. I spent these last few years growing and stretching myself, but this is the year for bloom. I can feel it in my soul.

2019fridge
The start of the journey.

My daughter talked me into buying a printer.

She’s using it for college, but I’m using it to sow some seeds. After starting this soul journey I’m so grateful for that printer! Samantha’s artwork is divine, so I’m printing out pieces of the journey to hang on the fridge. They alternate every few days.

My daughter will see them on the fridge.

She will be drawn in by their beauty, but hopefully she will take a pause and let the words fall like seeds. After plenty of seeds and some time, she will begin to feel what I feel today. Ready to bloom.

Waiting to Bloom

It’s odd, how you pack up your belongings, and move into a new space. It’s the same stuff you’ve had, but it finds new places to nest. This house doesn’t have a mudroom, so the dogs are fed in a breezeway. Three weeks later, they know which cabinet holds the food, and which drawer has treats.

In Bénisse Cette Maison, Laura Jinkins commented, “I am happy for you and your new adventure. I am especially happy that after such a short period of time, your new abode already feels like HOME.”Looking at her Blog this morning, she has made her house even more of a home.

Making small changes, prepare us for bigger ones.

Laura moved rooms around, and repainted them, giving her home a whole new look, and herself a new work-space. She will be inspired in her freshly painted, private space.

When your heart finds a home, your belongings follow.

Last year, my daughter had been looking at houses online for months, before finding this one. She knew it was going to be a challenge to find a home that would feed both our hearts. I enjoy quiet, and peaceful, and she longed to be near her friends, and all her favorite shops. We knew the area we desired, but where, oh where, was the house?

We drove out to the lake area, over an hour away from where we were living at the time, to look at a house on the market. It was an older home, and the best thing about it was the front door. We walked through, and went from room to room, trying out figure out how to make it work, but it wasn’t right. My daughter was getting discouraged.

If it doesn’t feel like home before you move, keep looking.

As we were driving away from that house, my daughter received an email notification of another house nearby. We stopped by, and what I saw outside, spoke to my heart.

arbor
Arbor with walk leading to the front door.

I stood inside this Arbor, looking at the vine, and pondered, “Would we bloom at the same time?” There is another vine growing along the fence at the end of the driveway.

The landlord assured me his landscape guy would come, and clean up the weeds clinging to everything. I said, “No. These are not weeds. They are flowers waiting to bloom.”

My daughter and I are freshly planted, and when the time is right, just like these vines, we will be ready to bloom.

Ready to Bloom

healI was on my way to an AA meeting yesterday, and stopped by to see Stephanie. She is my plant Guru. I’m not sure she realizes the magnificent healing she has brought to my life through these plants she encouraged me to bring home. It was time to buy my first one that would bloom. I spotted a pot that made me smile, and the plant we chose is big!

pot
Yes. I blew my Saturday budget on a pot and plant. No regrets.

She told me it is a good plastic one, but it looked real!

On the way home, I stopped at a small Farmer’s Market.

There is something about people sitting in 100 degree heat, that deserve our attention. A young lady was sitting at a table filled with bottles of honey. We began talking, and she invited me to her church. I listened as she told me more.

What made my ears perk was a study they have on Wednesday nights. It’s by Beth Moore, entitled, “Believing God.” I did this study years ago, and it was enlightening.

Believing God is what I’ve been doing, but it would be nice to do the study again. She is going to text me a reminder, but I was standing there because of the label on her honey.

beelove

Aren’t we supposed to Bee Love? Yes.

This journey  began with my daughter wanting Boston Ferns.

As I was leaving Stephanie’s, she said the main thing people ask her is how to grow a Boston Fern. The thought intimidated me too, but they are huge now! I told her about mine, and she said, “If you can grow a Boston Fern, you are the bomb!” All I did was care. I hugged Stephanie and said, “You make my life more beautiful.” She exclaimed, “That made my day!” She helped give me my beautiful life back.

bloombabybloom
Double bloom Pink Hibiscus and Mochee.

God knows when we are ready to bloom. Can you feel it?.

The First Step

I woke up at 4am, and couldn’t decide whether or not to go back to sleep. It’s amazing how many tiny choices we make in a day, with each one altering the next.

I began thinking of my French Press and how I haven’t used it very much. It was one of those things Barb ‘had to have’, but I couldn’t get satisfied with the taste of the coffee. I have read articles from coffee experts, and the instructions that came with the press, but this early in the morning, I wanted some simple steps. Google led me to an article by the easy to follow woman behind Gimme Some Oven.

Her way of making it just made sense to me, so I hopped outta bed at 5:00 am, and strolled quietly into the kitchen with instructions in hand, ready to try again. There are several steps involved in making a French Press, but anything that’s worthwhile has steps.

First I had to see how much water the press would hold. It held 4 cups, so I poured the water into the gooseneck kettle and sat it on the stove to bring it to a boil. Then waited. After it begins to boil, the water needs to rest for a minute, so I took it off the burner to rest.

I opened the timer on my phone and set it for 4 minutes, and poured the freshly ground beans into the French Press, just going through the steps. The hot water was poured just over the bed of grinds, about 2 inches, and stirred with a wooden chopstick to wet every grind, and the timer began.

My favorite part is watching it bloom. Putting my face over the press, I inhaled the magical aroma. If it’s really good coffee it should bloom, or foam up. The more it foams, the better quality. After one minute had passed, the rest of the water was poured in and the lid was put into place. The screen rested on top of the water with the plunger standing up.

I watched the countdown of time ticking by with the numbers illuminated blue in color. It was interesting when the timer got down to the last 30 seconds, the numbers turned red.

The one thing that bothered me about using the French press in the past was the feel of the pressing. I know how it’s supposed to feel when you press the plunger down with the palm of your hand. It should have some resistance, and not be effortless. This time it had plenty of resistance, so in the past I hadn’t poured enough in.

Le Creuset Café Stoneware French Press

Lessons learned:

  1. Don’t go back to sleep. The day is waiting for us to step into it.
  2. Keep using what we have and get it right.
  3. Follow some instruction. If the first ones aren’t to our liking, find better instructions.
  4. There’s a waiting period after every step.
  5. Let the water get boiling hot, but don’t let it spew. Anything that gets that hot needs a minute to rest.
  6. Watch the time, and be attentive to the red zone.
  7. Pause and enjoy the bloom. Breathe it in.
  8. When we begin to press through and there’s resistance, it’s normal. Nothing worthwhile should feel like an easy plunge, just continue to gently press.

Was getting up early, and trying once again to make a French Press worth it? You better believe it! That was excellent coffee. Keep trying and be willing to go through some steps to get to where you really want to be.

It all begins with the first step.

To Stay Planted

My friend who I meet for coffee once a month gave me a beautiful mug. It’s a travel mug, which I didn’t have. I usually drink my coffee before leaving the house, so it’s rather liberating knowing my coffee can now travel.

The box has been sitting on the coffee bar, and it’s just as pretty as the mug. Every time I pass by and read the words on the box, the phrase sticks with me for a minute while walking through the house. It’s one of my favorite sayings, “Bloom where you are planted.”

I’ve written about ‘bloom‘ because it fascinates me. What does it take for something to bloom, and waiting to see when it will bloom. Nothing blooms all the time, but just like an actual flower, we have days where blooming comes naturally. It’s no secret 2020 has been a year, and everyone is anxiously awaiting a new year, but we can decide to bloom where we’re planted. To find contentment where we are, and to shower kindness on ourselves and others.

Do what you can, where you are, and with what you have. To bloom where you’re planted works best when you’re willing to stay planted.

The Basil Plant

As mentioned in my previous post, the seasons are changing and some of my favorite things will go away till Spring. I’ve killed two Basil plants this year, but that didn’t deter me from buying one more. I’m not quite ready to let go and not make pesto.

Almost every market I’ve walked into has them in stock. One store had so many basil plants, they were on display like Poinsettias at Christmas. Why not buy one more Barb?

I told myself I’d bring one home, and if it was still alive after a week, I’d repot it into a larger container. The plastic container it was sold in has three holes in the bottom for drainage. I wanted to sit it in the kitchen window to receive some light, but I learned early on that wood and water don’t mix. The window sill is wood, so I found this little dish to sit under it.

Home from the market.

I sat it in that little dish up in the kitchen window for a week and it’s still alive. I thought it couldn’t hurt to sit it in love, love, love.

Here is what I’ve learned from the basil plant.

🤍 Don’t water it at night. Even though it’s more convenient to water it before bed, it doesn’t like sitting in damp darkness.

🤍 Just let it be. I see it first thing in the morning as I walk into the kitchen and it’s still alive! I realize it’s almost out of season and it’s slow growing, but at least it hasn’t died and that’s rewarding.

🤍 It reminds me to be kind always. It looks rather fragile and my persona shifts when I see it. It has new growth, but should be nervous for the day I plop the food processor on the counter.

10 days later. It hasn’t grown much, but it’s alive.

Maybe it just knows to move at a slower pace and enjoy where it is. Plants are a lot like humans, and we can learn from them, as this little plant reminds me to be kind and relax my mind.

The photo reveals I repotted it, slid the love, love, love dish underneath and sat it on the window sill. We would all be content sitting in a dish of repeated love, just like the basil plant.

Faith than Fear

To be a Badass woman, you gotta have a mentor. Another badass woman.

My friend sent me this meme this morning. It was in her FB memories, and I had tagged her on it two years ago. Today she returned it and it’s just what I needed to see.

blossoming

This is the same friend I meet for coffee when time allows. I wrote about her in Women Like Us. I aspire to be her level of badass. The words that jumped out at me this morning were, ‘more faith than fear.’

It’s as simple as that.

My daughter is home from England.

She flew there March 11th and three days later, all flights were canceled. It would have been easy to let fear creep in, but I’m too stubborn for that. My Mama was a badass woman and she raised one.

I had faith my daughter would return home eventually, but with each passing day I didn’t see any indication from the airlines. That is when my talks with God became more ‘high spirited’ and I laid all that fear at His feet. My fear was overcome by faith.

When my daughter’s text came in that said, “Virgin is still operational, I’ll be home tomorrow night.’, I burst into tears!

The tears were a combination of relief and joy. I knew God had heard me and He knew I couldn’t take much more. I reached out to my friend and asked her to ‘pray that girl home with me’, and she jumped on it. I’m grateful to all of you for praying.

Thank you my friend for reminding me to continue blossoming into a Badass woman with more faith than fear.

Get to Growing

This meme resonated with me and has been sitting on my desktop all year.

raining

For months, it feels like there’s been more rain than sunshine in Texas. I’ve written about blooming, but today I’m wondering if that’s the easy part. Like an exhalation.

The part of the bloom worth remembering is everything leading up to it. Wind, rain and cooler temperatures anyone?

We grow through what we go through.

This has helped me see the rainy days in a whole new light. Maybe blooming is the easy part. Growth happens with the rain.

Let it rain and get to growing.