March 18, 2011


Don't postpone joy until you have learned all of your lessons.
Joy is your lesson. 
                                                                            Alan Cohen

It's been an exceptionally busy week.  One of those weeks where you feel like the whole thing has been a blur...and you can't possibly accomplish everything that needs to be done.

 Mexican Flame Vine

I finally managed to pick up the mail and the box was crammed full.  Another task to be managed.  The backyard right before twilight seemed the best place to tackle this chore.  I spread everything out on the table to begin sorting and I was mesmerized by the quality of the light.

At this point the mail was completely forgotten and I jumped up to run in and get my camera.  Fortunately I did remember to charge the battery (unfortunately, not in time to get a shot of the recently blooming Martha Gonzales).

Bloodgood Japanese Maple

Jerusalem Sage Bud

The next fifteen minutes were the most blessed gift I could have received:  new spring growth bursting to life, the most soft, beautiful light and the ability to be so swept away by the moment that everything else was forgotten and the joy that had been so deeply buried only moments before came rushing to the surface.  

Globe Mallow Buds

So much intricate beauty to be found in these buds...the texture and detail is captivating to me.  You can see how the light affected the quality of the had a somewhat purple hue that was captured in the shallow depth of field.

I'm not sure what these flowers are...they've just popped up this spring...maybe weeds.  (post edit - they are false garlic - thanks to Jenny of Rock Rose for the id).   If they are, they can stay.  They are tiny and delicate and sway gently in the breeze and they add nice little pops of white.

These kind of moments are what make my yard a is where I find peace.  It is where I find tranquility at the end of a week that doesn't promise anything but more is where I find joy.


  1. Oh so many beautiful pictures. I'm dreaming the time when we are that point. Every day you have something new to wonder and to be happy about that beauty:)

  2. What wonderful buds and blooms Cat! There is nothing better than relaxing in the garden in all its tranquility after a busy week! Hope you have a rejuvenating weekend.

  3. All your shots in evening light are beautiful, but it's the Bloodgood maple that caught me. The thin leaves look like ballerinas stretching before their big appearance --- elegant, arching, beautifully teetering, and a bright expectant glow in the background just waiting for them to dance.

  4. I love those moments when I remember to just stop and look at the garden. Looks like there was plenty to look at in your garden, beautiful photos.

  5. Beautiful!

    Mexican flame vine is unknown to me. I'll be taking a look as I love flowering vines and you can never have too many options for vertical color. :-)

  6. Who needs to go through the mail when you've got Spring to photograph! Love that Mexican Flame Vine. At first glance I thought it was some hybrid coneflower. Very cool. What is the hardiness zone on it? Jealous of your Jerusalem Sage buds. Mine took a hit from the freeze this year and it's slow to recover. I think your sweet little white blooms might be Star of Bethlehem. Is the foliage kind of grass-like?

  7. Oh, Cat! They are all so beautiful! Seeing your images, reminds me that I must learn to use my new camera.

  8. It is such a magical time of year Henrietta. I look forward to experiencing your spring with you!

    Thank you Karin, I hope you have a great weekend too!

    Thank you Mike!

    Laurrie, you know how sometimes you take a shot and look back at the camera screen and just smile knowing you caught a special moment in time? That's how I felt when I captured that shot. It was magical.

    Thank you Marguerite. Have a wonderful weekend!

    Thanks Alan. Mexican flame vine is 9a-11. I'm pushing my zone a bit but my back yard is pretty well protected from the harsh north wind. Several plants that I didn't expect to return this year have...ever hopeful!

    Toni, For Mexican flame vine info see above comment to Jerusalem sage is new to my site...just put it in last fall and I've been happy. It's got some protection from the wind as well. It struggled a bit but is starting to perk up. I'll look for more info on the Star of Bethlehem. That is what the foliage looks like. Thanks for the id! Have a great weekend.

    Hi One, Thank you! Yes, I am anxious to see how you like your new camera. Your photos are always beautiful ;) Have a good weekend!

  9. These are gorgeous, the first and the second ones are amazing!

  10. Cat, you again took some awesome nice pictures.
    I have never seen any Mexican Flame Vine around here where I am living. I need to do some research on it. They look awesome to me.

    I just love being out in the country side and to see all the wildflowers blooming. Just wished I could take as nice pictures as you do.
    Have a wonderful and relaxing weekend.
    Paula Jo

  11. Great post, Cat! Love that second photo of the Mexican Flame Vine, btw.

    As always, beautiful photos and inspired words.

    Love you, my dear!

  12. How wonderful Cat - so important to enjoy those moments, so fleeting but they do indeed bring such joy. You capture the light beautifully, very magical. The post can wait!

  13. Lovely images, Cat, your Mexican Flame Vine especially stunning!

  14. beautiful, sometimes we must 'take time to see the flowers', I think the light at the beginning and end of day best, Frances

  15. Just beautiful! So glad to be able to share in the joy of that moment.

  16. Thanks Tara, Have a great weekend!

    Thank you Paula Jo. This is such a great time of year and the wildflowers are always beautiful.

    Thanks Tita - <3

    Hi Janet, thank you! Yes, your post was a nice break too and I so enjoyed your magnolia bloom.

    Thank you Joey!

    I do too Frances. It's always my favorite time to take pictures!

    Thanks Chris, I'm glad you enjoyed the photos...I couldn't wait to get them out of my camera so I could share them!

  17. Beautiful photography! I love your pictures of Mexican Flame Vine. My Japanese maples are only just leafing out too.

  18. Cat, thanks for sharing your beautiful photos and your thoughts. I'm so glad you stopped and took a few minutes to capture them. Sometimes I get caught up in the busy crazy moments and forget to enjoy the simple, beautiful things in life. Your photos of the Mexican Flame Vine are gorgeous! I also thought it was a coneflower at first glance.

  19. Beautiful! I know what you mean about the light being just perfect. Makes you forget everything else.

  20. Thank you Masha. I enjoy the maples leafing out so much...they are such gorgeous trees. They always get a bit of leaf burn at the end of the summer but I just can't help but plant them.

    It is easy to get caught up in the busyness Ramona. Thanks for taking the time to stop by. I really appreciate those who follow my blog as I know how much time it takes ;) The Mexican flame vine does look a bit like a coneflower. In person though they are smaller and cluster a bit.

  21. I know the feeling well ... the need to 'drink in' everything around you, the peacefulness in the garden, camera in hand to capture what you see and feel - the world and all its cares brushed aside for something much more important. Not everyone can experience this - unfortunately.

    Magnificent captures and a great post, Cat !

  22. The lighting does look beautiful. I've never seen a Mexican Flame vine before, the flowers are so pretty. I find a great deal of joy in my garden too. Sometimes after a bad couple of days, just getting a chance to play in my garden for awhile can change my whole outlook on things.

  23. Great capture of the lovely detail of early spring. Glad you seized the moment, something I am training myself to do.

  24. Cat, you need to print that picture of the false garlic, get it framed, and hang it in your house somewhere post-haste.

  25. Your posts always make me smile, Cat. They are full of heart and warmth. I love the Jerusalem sage bud...just ready to shed its winter cover and burst into the sunshine. Thank you for reminding us to slow down and really look at what's around us.


Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind.
"Pooh!" he whispered.
"Yes, Piglet?"
"Nothing," said Piglet, taking Pooh's paw. "I just wanted to be sure of you."
~A.A. Milne

Thanks for taking the time to visit!