One of the items I’m patiently waiting to check off my “bucket list” is a visit to one of those huge sunflower fields that goes on for acres and acres and acres. My guys and I happened upon a small one here in Northern Alabama a couple of summers ago, but I’m looking forward to “losing my mind” in a “goes on forever” field of sunshine. The fields of Tuscany are the dream, but that will take $$$ and careful planning. I learned recently that there’s a sunflower field in Autaugaville, Alabama, just a few hours away, so it is on the summer-to-go list.
Until then, I visit sunflower fields through YouTube videos, photographs, and postcards. I received one such postcard from my Love Notes pal, Trang K, a few months ago. The gorgeous field of sunflowers of Door County, Wisconsin brightened my mailbox and my heart.
As you can see, Trang “planted” a twinkling tulip in the field and wrote a sweet note with a nod to the memory of my sister Lori, who loved tulips:
Amidst the sunflower fields of your heart, there are always tulips to be found.
Let your spirit glow and dance. Let your soul swoon and soar. Be one with the Sun, flower of your heart.
Isn’t that a beautiful message? It still warms my heart.
Note: Yesterday’s blog post strangely went “missing” for a few hours, so maybe you missed it. If so, click the previous post and check out Lori-Anne C’s stunning sunflower work. Even though the scan isn’t great, you will not regret it. 🙂
Some of the most exquisite sunflower postcards in my collection were made by Love Noter Lori-Anne C. The intricate details of her paint and ink cards always fascinate me. The card she designed for International Women’s Day 2019 did not disappoint.
I did not miss her message about balance:
If you have the power to make someone happy, do it. The world needs more of that. Know that the “someone” can be you!
I’ve noticed [lately] that women, in particular, must be constantly reminded to take care of themselves. All my life, I’ve watched women put their needs and desires on the back burner while they pretty much served up every part of themselves to everyone else. We extol the virtues of sacrificial mothers and wives as if martyrdom is necessarily their calling, as if any attention to self makes them less selfless–or, worse, selfish.
Some of us are wired for such giving of ourselves, but just in case you have convinced yourself that everyone is entitled to all of you and all of your time, let me be clear: It’s not selfish to put on hold for a moment all the things and all the people vying for every bit of you. It is imperative that you pour some of your time and energy into yourself–to do something that makes you happy, that frees you, that heals you, or makes you giddy.
You can’t help others with only bits and scraps. You have to be balanced and whole–well, healthy–to help others, and you won’t be if you’re only serving others.
So go on. Plan to do something just for you–even if that means doing absolutely nothing.
The world around you is not going to fall apart if you take a little better care of yourself. –S.C. Lourie, Butterflies and Pebbles.
I decided to forgo the post I wrote today and, instead, share some über cuteness–a link to an article featuring a squirrel completely relishing his moment with flowers. The photos give me “all the feels” and they’re worth seeing–even if you’ve seen them before.
Trust me. This is worth the click:
“Man is timid and apologetic; he is no longer upright; he dares not say ‘I think,’ ‘I am,’ but quotes some saint or sage. He is ashamed before the blade of grass or the blowing rose. These roses under my window make no reference to former roses or to better ones; they are for what they are; they exist with God to-day. There is no time to them. There is simply the rose; it is perfect in every moment of its existence. Before a leaf-bud has burst, its whole life acts; in the full-blown flower there is no more; in the leafless root there is no less. Its nature is satisfied, and it satisfies nature, in all moments alike. But man postpones or remembers; he does not live in the present, but with reverted eye laments the past, or, heedless of the riches that surround him, stands on tiptoe to foresee the future. He cannot be happy and strong until he too lives with nature in the present, above time.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson, from “Self-Reliance,” (1841), emphasis mine
‘I don’t feel very much like Pooh today,’ said Pooh. ‘There there,’ said Piglet. ‘I’ll bring you tea and honey until you do.’ –A.A. Milne
I think I need Piglet today. I don’t feel very much like myself and the remedy would be a hot cup of tea with honey and a feel-good book.
In a late September blog post, Laurie listed bottling lavender honey among the tasks she completed that particular day. My curiosity was piqued, so she told me about the eight bee hives by the fields. She explained, since the bees spend most of their time foraging in the fields, the lavender influences the flavor of the honey.
Then, she sent me a bottle!!! Surprise!
I have the perfect tea for this honey. I had planned to wait till Friday–the beginning of Thanksgiving Break–to enjoy them, but since my mood is “meh,” I think I’ll have that tea this evening, just before bedtime.
What is the perfect tea? Lavender chamomile with a bit of lavender honey!
Of course, Laurie didn’t just stick a bottle of honey in a box and send it on its way. She also included a note written on a notecard featuring art by her stepmom–a reproduction of an oil painting of the entrance to Niles Garden.
According to the note on the back of the card, the flower colors coordinate with the colors of the French, Spanish, British, and American flags, the countries that [once] rule[d] the territory.
When you get a moment, drop by Laurie’s blog and see what she’s up to. I’m especially enjoying her 52 photos challenge. Maybe, you will too!