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Archive for the ‘gardening’ Category


Honestly, I didn’t know there is such a thing as this. a special day celebrated for book lovers. All these years I was not aware of it until a friend on Facebook forwarded this lovely  photo from Chicken Soup for the Soul. It was celebrated yesterday. Today, in our country, it’s already August 10.

How nice to celebrate a special day for books and readers alike. I love this photo. it shows the beauty of having books around with maybe a hot cup of coffee or tea on a rainy day.

Cicero surely was thinking of me  🙂  when he said these words.  Garden and books, two things I both love.  How I wish I really have a small room for a library but all I have are several shelves for our accumulated books over the years. My daughter is a book nerd, she used to buy series of publications when she was here. I remember a complete set of the Harry Potter series, all hardbound copies which she reserved  at National Book Store when they were out in the market. I remember watching the movie adaptations with my kids.  Remember  Hunger Games, a trilogy of young adult dystopian novels written by the novelist Suzanne Collins? She also has hard-bound copies of  Stephanie Meyer’s books  Twilight. I haven’t read them, I am not fond of vampire stories and werewolves.

By the way, I am done with 145 books for my Goodreads’ 2017 Reading Challenge.  Five more books to go,  yahoo 🙂 I lately finished another memoir by Frances Mayes, author of the lovely book Under the Tuscan Sun . Under Magnolia is all about her coming of age, her growing up years in  Fitzgerald, Georgia. I love the photos inside the book.  It made me think of how she looked like when she was younger.

Though it’s late, I want to wish you all Happy Book Lovers Day.

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It’s cold.

I was hoping I will be able to finish trimming the carabao grass this morning but the garden  is wet from the rain. It rained so early  and according to news report, it is because of ITCZ (Inter Tropical  Convergence Zone). It would probably drizzle the whole day, that kind which we call tigatik or ambon in Tagalog. It’s that kind of weather that makes you long to go back to bed or either stay in a corner and read.  I just ate a cup of Banana and Honey instant oatmeal.  So lazy to cook breakfast. Or maybe, it the perfect time to drink that cup of instant coffee I’ve longed for all week.

Are you a tea or coffee drinker?

How many times have you heard this frequently asked question, “tea or coffee?”, be it in some obscure diners or  some  extravagant restaurants in town. During the past few years, many coffee shops have sprouted like mushrooms in the metropolis which only proves that there is money in coffee. Coffee drinking is synonymous to bonding with friends, closing deals with business associates and simply relaxing in the comfort of your  home while watching a good TV program or curled up in a corner reading your favorite book.

I used to be a coffee drinker, but now I have limited my coffee intake for just once  or twice a week, or when I feel I have the craving for caffeine early in the morning. Just can’t resist the aroma of freshly brewed coffee or a cup of the instant variety. Those of us who drink coffee know about caffeine and its effects. Though tea and hot chocolate have caffeine too, apparently, it is lesser. They say that three cups of coffee is considered an average or moderate dose, but what about the add-on  like cream, sugar and other kinds of sweetener put in a cup to make it more flavorful? There are various creamer mixes like Bavarian mint, Cinnamon spice, Irish cream, Hazel nut, mocha, Amaretto and other flavored creamers. And there are many ways of brewing coffee. Drip coffee makers have a fairly simple, quick and easy way to prepare a cup. Coffee grounds are placed in a filter basket inside the machine which is filled with water. The hot water drips through the ground into a glass carafe to produce brewed coffee.

When I was in college, I met a Japanese friend who taught me how to prepare Japanese green tea. Tried to teach her some  common English words so  she sent me packs of green tea complete with instructions on how to enjoy a cup. That pretty much started my love affair with the beverage. Green tea is dried, not fermented so it produces a lighter flavor. It’s good for colon cleansing.  There are several varieties of tea in the market today – black tea, Earl Gray, Oolong tea, Orange Pekoe and there are varied flavors too just like coffee.There is also bubble tea which are pearl shakes made of Tapioca (sago in our Filipino language). The tea is usually served with a gigantic straw which is just the right size for slurping. Hot tea drinks may come in the flavor of almond , lemon, vanilla, orange, spearmint, peppermint and chocolate mint. I love the brand Celestial Seasonings, Twinings in different flavors and Lipton Green Tea.  There are so many locally produced tea flavors here  too like ampalaya, malunggay tea, banaba and the like. They are all medicinal. Years ago, I bought a tea set, those dainty cups which are so cute and chic and I have been using them until now.

Tea or coffee, anyone?

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Sometimes there is an advantage in attending anticipated mass. As Josef was free last Saturday night, we decided to go to mass at 6:30 pm.  It made my Sunday free.

For the past two mornings, I’ve been in the garden digging, replanting and weeding . Getting ready for the rainy days.  The satisfaction one gets from gardening….priceless. I know some won’t agree with me.   Sometimes I don’t wear gloves at all.  It’s nice to feel the rough and coarse earth in your hands once in a while. And it’s nice to see recently trimmed plants lining the garden wall.  One of my friends who visited me last Thursday brought  a pot of pink shrimp plant for my garden. I have the yellow variety so this pink one would add to the beauty of the yellow flowers. I hope I could propagate it later.

Pretty in pink. Can’t wait to see this in full bloom. My pink shrimp plant.

 

A Celosia bloom

I bought a seed packet of this Celosia and planted  it  a few months  back. I wonder if it would produce another color.

Gardening is one relaxing activity that I could not give up.  Yesterday, I transferred some Portulaca plants and they are now flowering nicely in different colors. They are so easy to propagate and very good ground covers. If it does not rain this afternoon, will be able to finish uprooting the weeds outside.  Gardening is hard but the happiness and satisfaction it gives are priceless.

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Good morning! A  blessed Monday morning to you all.

I woke up at 4am, gardened at 5am until  around 6:30am. A cool wind is blowing but the sun is hiding again. I only got to realize that 5am is already bright enough to pull those unwanted weeds growing side by side with our Santan plants outside.  Oh, I know it is hard to maintain a garden no matter how small it is. It  needs constant care, otherwise you’ll end up having those blooms dwarfed by unwanted ones that grow faster than your plants.  To see new buds and blooms is reward enough though. I haven’t taken any photo for a long time now. I haven’t bought a new camera yet. I just use  the cameras on my cellphone and my tab. They take good enough photos but not  in high-resolution as the camera itself. One of these days…one of these days.

I have to run to have my hair trim at David’s yesterday. Gosh, I think it is now more than two months since I had it trimmed. I’ve missed my hair stylist and a bit of shoulder massage that one gets  in between the shampoo and cutting. It’s only  there that I am updated with showbiz news. Funny how they are so “in” when it comes to showbiz life. They must be reading all those features that come with the People magazines that they have in their shop.  I seldom watch variety shows, I only catch up with the news early in the morning and that is not even  a regular thing.  They have jacked up their price. It’s a good thing there is a bit of a discount using my senior citizen card.  It does come so handy when I go grocery shopping (although not all items are included) and  buying medicines for my maintenance.

Some of my friends are coming over for lunch this  Thursday. I am excited to see them again. The last time we saw each other was January of this year.

Sometimes, listening to the news reminds me of these song lyrics. Sing it with feeling people. I don’t understand what is happening. This country has become……

♫♪Do you know where you’re goin’ to?
Do you like the things that life is showin’ you
Where are you goin’ to? Do you know?

Do you get what you’re hopin’ for
When you look behind you, there’s no open doors
What are you hopin’ for? Do you know?♪♪♫

How was your weekend?  I hope it was an enjoyable one with family and friends.

 

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I lost my muse.  No creative excitement whatsoever. Or maybe I was just too lazy to blog. It’s exactly a week since my last entry here.  Come to think of it, I haven’t visited  WordPress the past days. There are times when blogging takes a back seat and reading takes precedence.   Got so engrossed finding new books and new authors lately.

I noticed new followers to my site. thank you so much. For a while I haven’t ventured reading other blog posts yet. Maybe one of these days, when I get around to visiting your sites, I will follow you too. It is so nice to have new friends in cyberspace. New  perspective, new thoughts to read, new blogs to discover.  Having all of 1,997 posts seems to be too much. I’ve covered  many subjects for the past eight years but  I have forgotten some posts I had earlier.  One of these days, I’ll go back and re-read them.

The rains have set in. We have thunderstorms almost every afternoon. Sometimes, it drizzles, at other days, it rains good enough for me not to water the plants for two days. I need to trim the grass again. Whoa, the agony of maintaining a small garden but the rewards of having new blooms and greens all around.  I’ve finally planted the Celosia seeds and Zinnias. some have sprouted lately. Can’t wait to see them flower.  My pink, white and purple Ruellia are in bloom. Fancy seeing those white and pink flowers after having just purple blooms for a long time.

Went back to my internist yesterday only to learn that he does not hold  clinic on Mondays. I just assumed he is always there every day except weekends. Gosh, I have to go back again probably in two weeks. Quite lazy to beat the morning heat. The sun is up as early as 6am now.  The days are really longer during the summer months.

How have you  been? I hope  everything is running smoothly in your world.

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For the past several days, I  was not inspired enough to blog and share my thoughts.  I don’t know why. These are those times when I prefer finishing the books I have started on my e-reader, just quiet moments listening to the noise of the day, the usual hustle and bustle  of  city life.

Finally, we’re done trimming the carabao grass (as usual) over the weekend. I love the nice clean look of our small garden. I counted the fruits of our langka (jackfruit trees)  in all stages of growth. There were more than twenty of them and small shoots are still sprouting like crazy. Our  two calamansi trees are in their flowering stage too. I just love the lemony scents of their flowers.  They  delight the senses in such a big way.

Have you ever experienced starting on a new book and a new author and  having that big smile on your face because you found it? That feeling of bliss and well-being because you were inspired by the story? That feeling that everything is okay and you wish the story would go on?  But such is the sad part, a story always has an ending. It may not be something  you expected, it may not be something that you ever thought of, it may not be something that the story calls for, but precisely the ending sometimes leaves you breathless with that silly smile on your face because of such a moving encounter with a good read.

Some books I prefer reading slowly like Upstream  by Mary Oliver. Taking those words in small doses so to speak.  I  always look at the dust jacket of the book and I  smile because I have  a copy. It’s actually my third book of Mary Oliver.  Lately, I started reading Write It Down, Make It Happen by Henriette Anne Klauser, a sort of self-help book.  There was a time during my college years when I got engrossed reading Psychology and  Philosophy books. That waned  over the years until lately. The latter speaks of writing down your goals and achieving them not in the spur of the moment perhaps but through the  blessed days of your life. We speak of miracles, we speak of coincidences but I guess it’s  God’s way of telling us to go on  because He will never abandon us.  Have faith in all you do.

Oh, I can’t believe  it, I am on my 89th book  in my Goodreads 2017 reading challenge.  It’s about  59%  and  36 books ahead of schedule. So glad of this.

Good morning everyone!

 

 

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I just received this  message from WordPress a few minutes ago with this logo:

“Congratulations on writing 100 posts on Gardens and Empty Spaces!”

Haha, it’s my 100th blog post on my other blog  Gardens and Empty Spaces. I have long neglected this blog because for the last six months I haven’t taken  pictures of my garden  until today. I have to use my tab to take photos. I am glad that for every milestone in blogging,  WordPress has always a reminder so we  won’t forget.

Come visit me there if you have time.  Would love to update it at least once a month.

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