Pumpkin Cottage

Pumpkin Cottage
sit and visit a spell

Friday, November 27, 2015

Keeping Tranditions - Handprints

For years, we have celebrated
the every day by
making stepping stones
for the garden. 

Each stepping stone is embellished
with hand or foot prints, names and

Thursday, November 26, 2015

In Thanksgiving

Colossians 3:17
17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, 
do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, 
giving thanks to God the Father through him.

To our extended family and friends
our deepest gratitude for all you've done
to support our little family. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Spreading Sunshine SMILE

Every time you smile at someone,
it is an action of love, a gift
to that person, a beautiful thing.

                           Mother Teresa

Before Surgery

We have come a long way in recuperating.
The worse part of the total hip replacement
was leaving my children for the unknown.
In recuperating, the relentless nausea has
has riddled me with discomfort.
Seriously, it does not let up.
Headaches have joined the arena
of  hideous ailments.

I have been praying on cancer
warriors who have suffered so
much more than I can imagine.

Visit Night of Surgery

Sadly, a medicated brain has deemed
me, gaga, and does not allow
for any kind of concentration for
handicraft, magazine
perusing, or attending of seasonal
craft shows.  My companion is
the TV watching me.  I like to fill
the background with familiar voices:
Lucy and the kids from Friends.

Walking the Day After Surgery 

Mr. Lee returned to work at the end
of last week.  Life is immeasurably
better because he is in it.

Going Home.  After Two Night Stay.

For the outpouring of
well wishes, our hearts overflow
with gratitude.  This
season of Thanksgiving is made
more meaningful by our family
and friends' continuing loving support.

Thank you. 

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Do Good in Any Season

Let us not grow
weary in doing good,
for in due season we shall
reap if we do not lose heart.

               Galatians 6:9

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Find Christmas Vintage

The power of finding beauty
in the humblest things makes home
happy and life lovely.

                               Louisa May Alcott

Treasures from Mora's Antiques located on
Main Street  in Lake Elsinore.

Red reindeer and honeycomb ornaments are on
my 2015 Christmas collection watch list. Score!

Friday, November 20, 2015

Querida Mãe

Dear Mother,

It has been 6 years since your passing.
I think of you each day and feel
forever blessed to have had
you as my mother.

You taught me to pray, to buy the best
I could afford, to love with an open heart,
to share, to care about the poor and less fortunate,
and countless other treasures to live by.

You taught me that the front garden is the first living
room and it should be inviting to guests and family.  You
taught me that with parsley, green onions, and a pinch of
salt a healing broth could be made.

You taught me to plant by the phases of the moon,
to enjoy the feel and smell of the dirt, to show my
love by talking to plants.

During the most difficult time of caring
for father, you would work the garden by the
light of the moon and found solace in the company
of flowers and vegetables.

There was a legacy in all that you shared.  When I became
pregnant with my fourth child at forty-two I worried you
would be angry and disappointed, but no you said that
would be the child you carried in your soul.

Calheta de Nequim, Pico, Acores Summer of 1976

I can't identify the three on the left, but if you start in the middle.
Dulce, in the blue and white weave top, the baby is Christine, my
niece, my sister and her mother, Mericia, is holding her.
That's my granny, Olinda, she had Ankylosing Spondylitis, too.
At the far right is my mother, Alzira.  Mother is 46 years and my
Granny is 91, look how black her hair is.

Granny had the bluest eyes, alabaster skin and jet black hair.
More than any of us, Olinda, was a happy smiling soul.
She raised 13 children of her own to adulthood. My mother
was the youngest. 

This photo reflects not only people I love but things I hold
dear.  The wood ceiling, exposed rock walls (white washed),
a hanging cabinet.  I can't be sure but I think lace decorates
the shelf in the cabinet and there are hanging tea cups.
Look to the right of my mother, there is a white enamelware basin bowl.

My father and mother in the pink kitchen of 424 Purisima.
Mother in her ever-present apron.  I collect aprons because
they remind me of her and the care she used in everything
she did.  My mother is holding the last supper that would
hang in a place of honor in each of her kitchens.

I long for them, especially as we enter the holiday season.
Today and everyday you live in my heart.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Look on the Bright Side of a Shower

Smile, Breathe,
and, Go Slowly.

                Thich Nhat Hanh

Since surgery, I have been planted
on a hospital bed in the living room.
Clovis, black kitty,  has been my night
time sleeping companion.  He sits with
me most of the day, too.

Strawberry Plants Starters Planted in October

My first shower in over two
weeks felt incredible and was more
precious than rubies. No full immersion
of the incision site for 6 weeks
from surgery.  That's okay, I can't
imagine getting in or out of  the bath

The nausea during recovery
has been horrific, absolutely
the worse part of this experience. Worse
then the ugly scar, the removal of 54 staples,
and blood draws from my hands.
Slowing down and recurperating, for
my demented brain, is a waste of precious life.

Between the nausea and gaga brain
there is simply no choice but to remain planted.
The ability to concentrate has been stripped from me.
I am unable to read or create.

This big baby, however, is able to share, 
the ability to walk and manuver stairs
without the snap and pop of the hip joint is
totally worth it.

I was able to watch Downton Abbey
from the beginning with my precious
caregiving husband and it was lovely.
Gobbled up the experience like tea
with sponge cake.
The last season (6) returns in January 2016.

Rewatched Don't Eat the Daisies
with its music and fabulous interiors. 
Mr. Lee teases, but it is true, I will
watch a movie just for its interior
styling. This film is a family

Mr. Lee planted starter strawberry
roots, they were brown sticks, just
before Halloween and look there are
green leaves and a bloom.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Recovery; Gettie Up

How would you encourage your wifey
to get up for a muscle strengthening walk after hip replacement?

Mr. Lee promised a treasure hunt in a thrift store,
a tasty home cooked lunch,  and the last aired episode of Downton Abbey.

Oh my.

Treasures for everyday, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.  Giddy
with joy.

A brand new Christmas apron, an USA-made psychedelic pot holder,
one chalk board eraser, three turkey pot holder pins, a variety of granny
art ornaments, and a pair tiny dutch shoes.

Not bad for the first time out.

Ice for my leg and a tasty lunch, who can resist?

This is Mr. Lee's portion, I like my beef without any pink.

Monday, November 9, 2015

José da Lua

Growing up there were individuals who with mean spiritedness
referred to my father, as José da Lua. 
The term was derogatory, intended to sting with shame. 
Joe of the Moon. I don't know how us kids became aware
of it, but I was never, not for a moment, ashamed of my father.

While he had his feet firmly planted on each day, he had
his notions and day dreams to keep him moving in the 
rut of laborers' work days.  An intuitive trapped as
a laborer. 

My father was hard working, I never heard him complain 
about work although he must have been tormented by the
bullies.  Individuals who needed to draw attention
to themselves by making others feel like less. 

Father was a simple man. an animal whisperer, 
and a day dreamer.  He couldn't be bothered by participating
in the rat race or the superficial snobs who labored with him
but thought themselves superior. 
He was honest and a true blue friend.  
In times of lack and in times of sorrow he stood 
strong.  He walked with dignity; his head held high.

Father was handy, he knew how to clean fish, 
had a mighty green thumb and was born with a
natural talent to care for animals.  He was completely
intuitive with animals. 

He wanted for nothing more than to care for farm
animals.  Like the venture he had possessed but 
relinquished to immigrate to America. I can not 
imagine how heavy his heart must have been to
leave his passion.

So many of us, me included, never recognize 
our calling.  My father had his calling 
held tightly in the palm of his hand.

Traveling to the moon must have been a way to shut out 
the futileness of his reality.  To have willingly abandoned
all he held dear came at a grave price.  
Surrounded by village idiots, in the workplace, 
with only disparaging sentiments, my father held his silence.

His talents may not have had apparent market value but 
as a human he had plenty of value.  He was not a womanizer, abuser,
or a drunk.  I can not recall him speaking ill of anyone.

From him, I learned about what matters most.
The past two weeks have allowed for comtemplation
of my own spirit. I am richly blessed by deep roots because
I model his behavior.  

The best and most beautiful things
in world can not be seen or
even touched - they must be 
felt with the heart. 

                                 Helen Keller