zondag 19 juni 2016

Stop and smell the roses

If you like to find satisfaction in life, it is said that you have to acknowledge the value and meaning of simple things, like stopping on your garden path to smell the roses, and admire the beauty of the flowers, standing proudly or tumbling down the trees, like a waterfall of flowers. 

Perhaps I am a hopeless romantic, but I try to do just that, to take it all in as much as possible. It's only two weeks that the roses in my garden are at their best, and that's not long.

When I was in the garden today, the rambling roses (Veilchenblau & Paul's Himalayan Musk) are already losing their petals and delicious scent. Last weeks rain speeded things up considerably. They both gave an abundant display of flowers. Paul's Himalayan musk has taken over one of the trees in the middle part of my garden completely. It's breathtakingly beautiful.

The roses in front of my garden house: New Dawn, Rhapsody in Blue and Pink cloud, are still in flower. In the back a simple dog rose, I once took a cutting from when on a walk, and some roses I bought for a Euro in a dump store, look magnificent. 

In other parts of the garden, Belinda's dream, Constance Spry, Waltz Time, Heritage and Leonardo da Vinci make me smile. How elegant they look.  

My experience is that working in a garden does not only have physical benefits, it heals, clears the head, gives you the peace and quiet that you need, and makes you appreciate simple things more. Above all, it makes me a happier person. I can recommend it to you all.  

Stop and smell the roses.

Wishing you a lovely week!

Madelief x 

zondag 12 juni 2016

In the footsteps of ....

Whenever I go on holiday, I try to combine nature with culture. To me it's the perfect mix to make my days out a success.
Last week, when in the Lake District in England, my two friends and I managed to do a bit of both.

We followed in the footsteps of William Wordsworth the poet, of  Beatrix Potter the author and illustrator and of John Ruskin, art patron and critic. All passed away a long time ago, but the homes, gardens and interiors they created, the hills they walked on, are still there for us to visit, to enjoy, to learn from and get inspired by.

We made some beautiful walks too, near Coniston, Ambleside, Grasmere, Rydale and Tarn Hows. Starting off at seven o'clock in the morning and finishing before noon. Because of the warm weather, with temperatures over 25 degrees Celsius, this was the best way to enjoy the countryside and not get too hot and tired. In a local newspaper one of the headlines read that we had: 'One of the best weekends ever'. I don't know what 'ever' means, but it made me realise how lucky we were. There is a reason for those hills to be soooo green!

The coming months I will be showing you some more photo's now and then, but this is it for now. Hope you had a wonderful week too.

Happy week ahead!


Madelief x

Grasmere: photo 1, 17, 22 -  Tarn Hows: photo 2, 7, 9, 10 -  Hawkshead: photo 3,  6, 19, 20  - Rydala: 8, 11, 14,  18, 26 - Brantwood: photo 13, 23, 24 - Holehird gdns, Windermere: photo 15, 16 - Hill Top: 25

zondag 29 mei 2016

Spring idyll

What a delightful weekend we had in Rotterdam. The sunshine and high temperatures made it feel like summer.
The flowers in my garden seem to like the warmth and humidity. They thrive. Somehow they all seem to be in flower at the same time too.

In the middle part of the garden, which is quite shady, the rhododendrons, geraniums and Salomon's seal are in flower. In front of the garden house and along the garden path, the first roses steal the show. Foxgloves pop up everywhere. It's a spring idyll.

My middle daughter and I spent great part of the weekend at our allotment. It makes me happy to see how much she enjoys gardening. We cut the box hedging, mowed the lawn and did some weeding. With a heavy heart I decided to get rid of the lupins. They were covered in aphids, which caused the plants to wilt.

In between the heavy work, I found some time to plant sweet peas and sow Cosmos.

Next weekend I won't be able to post. Friends and I will be on a short holiday in the Lake District (UK). If you have any suggestions of special places to visit, I would love to hear.

Have a good two weeks. Will be back soon.

Love, Madelief x

* The dress on the above photo's  is a vintage one. I am not sure of the period, but it's beautiful.

* The purple rose on my photo's is called Rhapsody in blue, the lilac one Indigoletta and the bright pink ones: Pink Cloud and Tom Tom. 

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