Flowers were in full bloom yesterday afternoon on the grounds of the Strawberry Banke Museum in Portsmouth, NH. I’m not sure what kind of flower this was, but it immediately caught my attention. The yellows (and reds!) always do.
I couldn’t help but notice this gorgeous row of tulips poking their heads out of a fence as if to say Look At Me! So I did. But how to choose my shot? Not wanting to leaving anyone out, I included them all…along with Number One in full macro mode.
My daughter had been checking out the newly installed garden beds that bordered her backyard. It was a hot, muggy afternoon. A recent rain shower had given way to bright sunshine. Well…June in Washington DC is often hot and muggy – not my favorite weather, but I admit her urgency piqued my curiosity…heat or no heat. So I grabbed my camera, stepped out of the air conditioned living room and joined her to see what she had found.
My husband and I were at the end of a week long visit to DC to celebrate our grandson’s 5th birthday…and to meet our 2 week old granddaughter. Up until then most of my camera clicking had been focused on them. A fun challenge with a constantly in motion 5 year old (the “sports setting” came in handy!), but far easier with a baby who stays put.
Once outside, I was not disappointed. New flowers had recently bloomed and among them…Passion Flowers! I had never seen one before, but upon further research I learned they attract butterflies, bees and hummingbirds. More photo opportunities for my next visit…along with the smiling faces of those two sweet children.
My friend and I were walking along the path behind our condo building last week. We had been deadheading some sad looking daffodils and stopped to admire a mass of iris. She and her husband had saved these bulbs from their previous home and stealthily planted them next to our building 3 years ago. As many of you know, iris spread…and spread. When you live in a condo, you sometimes have to get permission to plant anything. And when you’ve been a “house owner” for decades, it’s an unpopular concept. What could be wrong with sprucing up the place with some iris? Believe me, there are people who will count the ways. But don’t get me started.
Anyway, I am so grateful these purple iris spring from the ground each May. They are exactly like the iris I left behind at the house we sold almost 5 years ago. Iris that originated in my great grandmother’s garden decades and decades before. When you move in December, digging holes to plant iris bulbs is not an option.
So when my friend whipped out her scissors to cut off a small branch, I hesitated. It didn’t seem right somehow. They were so happy in the sun, swaying gently in the breeze. She was holding a stem with one flower and several buds all lined up together. Shouldn’t they be allowed to stay put? But before I knew it, she snipped.
I brought it inside, filled a bud vase with water and flower food and hoped for the best. After several days in its new home near a sunny window, the buds opened…one by one. Much to my relief and delight.
I spotted this tulip basking in the sun while on a walk during a visit to Washington DC last month. I must give credit to my grandson…who was scouting out flower photo opportunities ahead of me on his scooter…definitely a big help.
I woke up this morning to gloom and doom weather. By the time I was enjoying my coffee, snow had begun to fall in big fat clumps. What the heck? The simple answer: It is April 16th in New Hampshire where…besides live free or die…the state motto could very well be…wait a minute and the weather will change…. And so it does. My first thought: The poor daffodils!
These tulips arrived at my door yesterday afternoon – hand delivered by a friend and neighbor who lives downstairs in my condo building. I could “see” a big smile behind her mask.
What are these for? I asked. To wish you good luck tonight and thank you for all you are doing on the board!
You see, my small world is now a study in contrasts. Last night the NH Art Association hosted a virtual “opening” of a special juried exhibition and two of my photographs were among those chosen to hang in the show. She and her husband were among my friends and family who were “attending.” She was hoping I would win a prize (I didn’t, but never expected to…the honor of inclusion was more than enough). I was so touched by her thoughtfulness. It was just the bright spot I needed.
The other side of my life? Being on the board of directors of my condo association since December. It’s my new practically full time “job.” The experience has not been as entirely positive or rewarding as peering through the lens of my camera and writing blog posts. In fact, sometimes it feels like I am back in middle school – and I was never a fan of middle school. That’s probably all I should say on the subject, but those of you who have ever been on a condo board likely understand. So, if you notice I have been absent from oneletterup, now you know why. I would much rather be here, but it is what it is. However, I am taking flight (almost literally) from home next week for a long weekend to visit my kids for the first time since our covidcation last August.
I’ll bring my camera, but try to leave the craziness behind.
I happened upon a gathering of daffodils a few days ago…basking in the spotlight of the afternoon sun. One was gazing into the distance as if surveying the crowd. Which, at that point, was just me and the tall arborvitaes off to the side. The trio to its right? Ready and waiting.
It was a glorious warm afternoon and the entertainment was enjoyed by all…well, just me and the arborvitaes. But well worth it as the finale ensued…
…and the spotlight moved on as the afternoon came to a close.
What a desolate place would be a world without a flower.
Clara Lucas Balfour
Very much inspired by Dutch goes the Photo’s Tuesday Photo Challenge: Renewal
…please share what brings renewal to you…
While scrolling through my plethora (I love that word) of photographs looking to complete a project, I happened upon this one image (amongst many) of a sunflower. Frank’s prompt for this week immediately came to mind. I stopped scrolling…Renewal!
I remember that beautiful day last fall (last fall? seems like years) wandering through a local apple orchard, but being much more interested in the rows of sunflowers nearby. Many had already been cut away and sold, but a few remained. A singular flower with its face to the sun in particular caught my eye and made me smile.