Thursday, April 26, 2012

This Last Week of April Showers

It truly has been 'April Showers' here at Willow's Cottage this week.  It is unusual to say the least that we have rain in April.  And this week, it has rained several days.  Although I appreciate the benefits of the rain, I'm looking forward to May Flowers!  I appreciate the blessings that God brings me each week, also.  Here are five:

1.  I love this video of my hometown which a Portland friend posted on facebook.  I watched it with great fondness for the beautiful place of my childhood (and a decade of my children's childhoods).  I remember the views.  In the video, I saw the steps I sat on as a young girl at Washington Park and gazed at Mt. Hood.  Seeing the bridges reminded me of driving with my brother across the Markham Bridge in his new black convertible, top down, my long blonde hair blowing in the breeze.  Great memories of growing up in a wonderful city!

2.  I read This post at becomingminimalist and want to share it with everyone.  In so many ways it describes my journey through the years.  Since early adulthood, I have walked the voluntary simplicity road which is now called 'minimalism' by most people.  Voluntary simplicity or minimalism isn't involuntary poverty; it's choosing to live simply with only what best graces your life.

3.  On the subject of minimalism, simplicity and decluttering, this week I met in real life a wonderful woman whose blog I've been following for a long time, for two years (shortly after she began blogging in March 2010).  Colleen of who lives in Australia has been on holiday in the US for a couple of weeks with her husband, and they had a long layover in Los Angeles.  After emailing back and forth, we decided to meet at The Getty Center for a few hours.  Just think, if the internet didn't exist, if we didn't have similar interests, we would never have met!  I'm so glad we did, both virtually and physically.

Willow and Colleen at The Getty Center
Los Angeles in the background

4.  A gardening mystery contest.  What flowering plant is this?  I know; do you?

5.  This magazine is my absolute favorite!  Country Living, British edition, is a delight which I enjoy monthly.  The mother of one of my students receives it from a friend who subscribes to it.  After she has read the current issue, she sends it to class with her daughter to give to me.  It makes my day!  I read it avidly and then pass it on to someone else, sometimes two someone elses, and it eventually ends up in the hands of the lovely lady who owns the local tea shop All Things Tea.  Each issue is read, treasured and passed on to at least four people.  I know I live in a mediterranean climate and the gardening advice is mostly useless for me; I know that it's geared for the English market and I live in the US;  but I love it and read it cover to glossy cover every month.

These are just five favorite events in Willow's Week.  I take joy in searching for positive, pleasing things in my life.  It just makes the week go better.  Thanks to Susanne who faithfully hosts Friday Fave Five, and thanks to all the other people who post their faves to encourage the rest of us.


nikkipolani said...

"We're going to have a drought!" my mom said breathlessly, "No rain from May to September." I told her we never get rain from May to September. But we're glad to get it in April! Sounds like you had a great last week in April with meeting Colleen and seeing your hometown. Sorry I can't help with the plant -- reminds me a little bit of broccoli rabe flowers.

Willow said...

You're close, Anne!

Dorothy said...

I love hearing about your great magazine passI Some things are just too lovely to keep to yourself.

Okay, I give up on that flowering plant, Willow.

ellen b. said...

Well you know there's no chance of me guessing the right thing for your plant! That's great that your new Australian friend was able to see the Getty on a layover! Well done. I love recycled magazines! Have a good weekend.

Jerralea said...

I read the minimalist article. This strikes a chord with me because last year when we moved back home after the flood, we couldn't get everything back into the house that had been there. This was after throwing away many flood-soaked items.

Hello, my name is Jerralea, and I have a clutter problem. LOL.

Seriously, I do see the value of decluttering and it will be a life-long process.

However, a dish collector such as myself can never be a minimalist.

I do not know what your plant is. If Anne doesn't know, I sure wouldn't!

Brenda said...

So many wonderful things in your week! It's fun to meet another blogger, I'm sure she really enjoyed seeing a famliiar face (so to speak) in LA!

I agree with your thoughts on minimalism.

Jientje said...

We've had a real cold and wet month of April here in Belgium, I'm longing for the warmer days when we can eat outside again!
I know that magazine, I used to buy it years ago! I truly enjoyed that video, Portland is beautiful!

Faith said...

We finally got some much needed rain here too in eastern NY. To the west of us they had SNOW! (glad it stayed out in buffalo...and thank God they are 5 hours away! lol...)....Is that flowering plant some kind of verbena? i don't know plants very well other than the common ones (tulips, lilacs, roses, etc.). How awesome that you got to meet a blogging buddy!! someday I hope to meet Sandy of Jesus and Dark you know her blog? It's fun to connectwith people of similar interests, backgrounds, etc. Enjoy your weekend!!

Susanne said...

How fun that you were able to meet up with a blogging buddy, especially one from another part of the world! Funny that we both linked to different posts from the same blog.

That video of Portland was so nice. It looks like a lovely city. Gotta love that bridge that opens up for the ships!

HeatherLiz said...

It's kale! At least I'm almost sure--looks just like what's in my garden.

Willow said...

Mama Minou--Bingo! You win! Yes, it's kale. We seldom see kale flowers because it's not allowed to go to seed. Well done!

Anonymous said...

i thought it was mustard, rather than kale, which i thought had a cream or white flower.

kale leaves are usually much wider than mustard, but they are both in the cabbage family, so who knows?

snoopydogknits said...

Ha ha! Country Living is also my magazine of choice; usually passed on by a friend. Have a great week! Ros

Sharon Lynne said...

Portland looks like a beautiful city, set in a beautiful area.

How exciting--about connecting with your blogging friend!

Regarding your comment...if you visit the Kern River, go in the Spring because it gets VERY hot in the summer. I had never been there either. The area has definite personality...rugged and wild. Also diverse wild life and wild flowers.

Julene said...

What a lovely week you had! I enjoyed reading each entry and following along on memory lane!
How many days does Kale go from seed to flower to seed? And, how many seeds do you get from one plant It's a good Science lesson for elementary students. :)

Bethany said...

My sister just told me that they are going on vacation this summer to Portland! And we almost bought a house in Portland last week... though the other coast! ;)
I bookmarked the simplicity blog... I've started to pass along some things to people who will appreciate them more than I do (or as much). That is also really great that you could meet Colleen after all this time! The world is very small in some ways, isn't it? Have a great weekend!

Mr. Puffy said...

I did enjoy your reminiscing of driving in your brother's car with your hair blowing in the wind. What a wonderful memory for both of you :)

Love the picture of you and your blogging buddy - are you both wearing handknit cowls? I expect at least you are!

Tracy said...

Living more simply, minimally is a topic close to my heart too, so I appreciated the article link a lot. Such fun you were able to meet Coleen. Meeting a blogging friend for real is always a thrill. And I LOVE the British Country Living magazines, and have been a subscriber for years--it is one rather expensive pleasure I've still kept up. But I pass the mags on to my Mom, who them passes it on to my sister, etc. ;o) Nice to catch up with you here, Willow post travels, and we'll be traveling again in a couple week. Happy Spring Days ((HUGS))

Knitting Linguist said...

What a wonderful list! And how fun that you got to meet a "virtual" friend - I have enjoyed every one of those types of meetings I've had over the years; it's amazing what a blessing the blog has been in that sense.

Barbara said...

How nice you got to meet another blogger Willow.

I like to declutter every year but am not into minimilism for the sake of it, just get rid of what I no longer need.