Bonsai Expo at Duke Gardens

Over the weekend, we went to the Triangle Bonsai Society’s Expo at the Sarah P. Duke Gardens at Duke University.

Bonsai

I’ve always loved the living art of Bonsai, a beautifully grown and trimmed tree or shrub in perfect miniature.

Bonsai

There were Pines, Junipers, Ficus and even Azaleas.

Bonsai

 

Bonsai

 

Bonsai

One gentleman even had a rock mounted to resemble a miniature mountain range.

Bonsai mountain range

I really enjoyed the afternoon admiring and learning about these small masterpieces.

Have you ever attended a Bonsai event or have grown a Bonsai tree yourself? I’d love to hear about it.

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Photo Challenge: I Love Bridges!

This week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge is bridges.

I have always loved bridges, the large, high ones that span rivers and highways down to the small, low ones crossing a creek in the woods. They are like tickets to another place you would ordinarily have to swim or fly to and, possibly because I’m petite, I’ve always like to be up high and look down.

bridge

 

stone bridge

 

wooden bridge

 

Which bridge do you like the most?

Check out prior photo challenges:

Dense Is Sometimes A Good Thing

Scenes From Atop

If You Just Can’t Wait For Fireworks…

If you are like me, you love Fourth of July fireworks! Sometimes I have to cover my ears (I’ve always been sensitive to loud noises) but I love the colors and designs. The bigger and brighter, the better.

Which are your favorite style of fireworks? Zigzaggy ones, sparkly ones…

Here are some photos to hold you off ’til the big day:

fireworks

fireworks

fireworks

fireworks

fireworks

flag

But remember, please be considerate of those who are troubled by fireworks. Namely those from the military and our pets.

Have a fun, happy Fourth of July!

 

 

How To Feng Shui A New Home

If anyone else is in the same boat as we are, moving into a new home, these Feng Shui tips could help make the transition smoother.  Feng Shui is all about balancing the energy in a room, house or office. Even if we aren’t aware of it, humans are influenced and affected by the arrangement of things and colors around us.

house

To learn more about Feng Shui, try these sites:

To Feng Shui your new home:

  1. Clean the house, inside and out. Everyone would do well to start living in a clean environment. Open the windows to let fresh air throughout the house for at least nine minutes to clear out any negativity.
  2. Orange Essential Oil. Sprinkle, diffuse or spray a little orange essential oil throughout the house to encourage positivism.  essential oils
  3. Bless or Dedicate the house. This can range from having your pastor or priest come and bless the house to you going clockwise room to room and focusing on the happy memories you will create in your new house.
  4. Pay particular attention to the kitchen. A good, strong kitchen will ensure health and happiness for all who live or visit the house. Add a few fresh herb plants, keep a fruit bowl filled with fresh, colorful fruit on the table and keep the kitchen clean and bright.  kitchen

These tips will get you started. If you’re interested in tips on arranging furniture, you can visit these sites:

or read some of my past posts:

Feng Shui for Summer

Feng Shui Animals

If you have any other new house tips, I’d love to hear them.

tiny house

How to celebrate Father’s Day Without Dad

There are so many great, fun ways to celebrate Father’s Day with your Dad and be grateful for all the years you have together. However, if you’re like me you’ve lost your father way before you were ready, so this post is for you.

Ways to celebrate Father’s Day without your dad:

  • Send balloons Heavenward. Write messages on helium balloons and send them skyward as a fun form of Father’s Day airmail. At night-time, releasing Chinese lanterns are very moving and beautiful. Just be sure you have plenty of room to avoid starting fires.  Chinese Lanterns
  • Do what Dad loved to do. Maybe you and your dad went to the ball games together or loved to sit in a boat and drown a can of worms. Whatever it was, do it again. Invite a friend or take the family along and relive old memories of Dad. fishing in boat
  • Honor Dad and his favorite charity or organization. Make a donation of money or your time to a worthy cause. Send the Zem Zem Club a check because their motorcycle riders were Dad’s favorite in the annual parade. Volunteer an afternoon at the local soup kitchen because Dad always remembered those who were less fortunate. Whatever the idea or value, you can find a way to assist others in honor of your dad.  volunteer symbol
  • Share photo albums. It can be very therapeutic gazing through old photos. Kids love to see parents and grandparents as kids. Or make a collage scrapbook page of your favorite dad memories and post it on the refrigerator door for all to enjoy. photo ablum
  • Make your dad’s favorite meal or dessert. Invite everyone over to enjoy dad’s favorite chili-cheese dogs, triple cheese pizza or Cajun chicken fried steaks. Relive memories while eating crumbly topped apple pie, chocolate chip cake or oatmeal raisin cookies.  chili dog

I hope I’ve given you some good ideas to enjoy Father’s Day even if your father has passed away.

Is there something you or your family do that isn’t in this post? I’d love to hear about it.

Father's Day

 

Top Ten Tuesday! Ten Reasons Cats Are Better Than Dogs

I agree with all of these plus some. What can you add to the list?

The Phil Factor

Last week I gave dogs and the dog people their due in the worlds oldest debate.  This week it’s the cats turn. Don’t worry, I have no plans to continue comparing animals.

funny-cats-013

10. Cattitude: You’ve got to respect their aloofness. They’re not all needy like dogs. If you’re gone 5 minutes, a dog acts like you’ve returned from the Bataan Death March while your cat just checks his watch and goes back to sleep.

9. Pooping indoors: When it’s cold and snowy and my dog has got to go at 6 a.m. I have to take her out. My cat on the other hand is even more stealthy about his bowel movements than I am. Cats are the ultimate Poop at Home People.  Some cats can even poop on a toilet.

www.toilettrainedcat.com http://www.toilettrainedcat.com

8.  Cats are never sick: My cat has been to the vet two times in three years. My…

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7 Ways To Celebrate Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is coming up this Sunday so start planning now!

mother and baby

7 Ways to Celebrate Mother’s Day:

  • Browse through family albums. Young kids love to see photos of their parents as kids and older kids will be thoroughly embarrassed with their own baby pictures 🙂  And all kids enjoy looking at old pictures of grandmas and grandpas when they were young.  photo album
  • Make some scrapbook pages. Use photos or mementos from activities of the past year. Children can express what “mom” means to them with stamps, stickers and markers.
  • Read some books about mothers. Cuddle up with your small ones and read about other moms and their young ones. My family always loved Are You My Mother by Dr. Seuss.
  • Get outdoors. Go on a picnic, hike through a state park, take a bike ride or go to the beach. Spending time together and outdoors will make lasting memories to scrapbook about next year.
  • Honor your own mother and grandmother. Enjoy a light lunch together or a massage at the spa. If your mother or grandmother has passed away, you can write a message on a balloon and release it or plant a tree or flowering bush in their honor.  balloons in the sky
  • Help other mothers. Donate any slightly used children’s items to your neighborhood thrift store to help other mothers struggling to support their families.
  • And don’t forget yourself. Be sure to reserve a little time for yourself. Take a luxurious bath without interruption, chat with a friend, take a nice nap, whatever will serve to recharge your batteries in order to survive until another mother’s day 🙂

 

I wish all the mothers out there a wonderful and happy Mother’s Day!

Be sure to tell me how you like to spend Mother’s Day.