1168. To me, every hour of the day and night is an unspeakably perfect miracle. ~Walt Whitman

I have always been delighted at the prospect of a new day,
a fresh try, one more start, with perhaps a bit of magic
waiting somewhere behind the morning.
~J. B. Priestley

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I have a recliner opposite my patio doors, and the doors are wide enough to afford a great view of a sizable portion of our yard and its flower beds. When I first get up in the morning, I enjoy sitting for a while in my chair watching the sun come up and the birds begin their daily activities. In the top photo above you can see a portion of a patio chair, part of the flower bed near the patio, part of another flower bed by Natalieworld, and about a third of the island bed that’s between me and the back fence. It was started decades ago before the removal of a large stand of bamboo that was behind it and the subsequent development of a new flower bed that now runs along the fence. Thus that back bed has become a sort of secret garden since you can’t see much of it until you walk around the island bed along the path near my neighbor’s fence on the north or the path that runs along the north side of the greenhouse. So it’s always fun to see what I’ll find when I finally get up and out to go look for what’s new back there on any given day. That back bed, anchored by a purple red bud tree that I’ve watched come up from a volunteer seedling, is where I threw out lots and lots of different kinds of seeds last fall. As spring advanced first came the poppies, the larkspur, the cornflowers, and the ragged ladies, and now the coneflowers, monarda, hollyhock, allium, daylilies, and a few sunflowers are blooming there currently. Also I have several kinds of vines beginning to climb on the chain link fence back there, and so soon I’ll have a host of morning glories, moonflowers, and coral vine flowers. So it is that a garden is more of a moveable feast than a static thing and when people ask what I have growing, it really depends on the week or the month. And I think that’s what I love most about it. But then there are the transitional times when not too much of anything at all is blooming.

If you really want to draw close to your garden,
you must remember first of all that you are
dealing with a being that lives and dies;
like the human body, with its poor flesh.
One cannot always see it dressed up
for a ball, manicured and immaculate.
~Fernand Lequenne

How priceless is your unfailing love, O God. People take refuge in the shadow of your wings. They feast on the abundance of your house; you give them drink from your river of delights.~Psalm 36:7-8  ✝

614. If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast. ~Earnest Hemingway

I love Paris every moment
Every moment of the year
I love Paris, why, oh, why do I love Paris
Because my love is there.
~Excerpted lyrics by Cole Porter

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Ooh la la! Je t’aime, Paris! It was my high school French teacher and lines like these above that began my love affair with the French language and Paris, the city of lights. Now more than half a century later, I still have to agree with Audrey Hepburn that “Paris is always a good idea” and with Earnest Hemingway that “Paris is a moveable feast.” In fact I thought it was such a good idea way back then, that when I went off to college, I decided to major in French in hopes that one day I’d be able to go there and live for awhile or for that matter maybe for the rest of my life. But alas and alack, as the poet said, “the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” And so they did! Before I graduated from college, I met and married my husband, a born and bred Texan who vowed he’d never leave this place, but being the young romantic that I was, I thought I could change his mind. It took awhile but eventually I did. During the summer of 2013 after we’d been married 50 years, my daughter, her husband, their three children, and James and I left Texas for a whirlwind visit to London, Edinburgh, St. Andrews, Dublin, and Paris, all places that we thoroughly enjoyed.  But go figure! James fell in love with Paris at first sight, so much so that if all goes well with my knee replacement next month, he and I are going to Paris again this coming summer. The rest of the previously mentioned crew will head to Italy while James and I stay in Paris, and then we’ll all come together in Strasburg for a 5 day Rhine River Cruise before coming home. The moral of the story: No matter how old one gets, he or she should never give up on his or her dreams, and God is always good!!! Four weeks, four days and counting…

Hold me close and hold me fast
The magic spell you cast
This is la vie en rose
~Excerpted lyrics by Guglielmi, Luis Gugliemo/Gassion, 
Edith Giovanna/David, Mack

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“You know, I sometimes think, how is anyone ever gonna come up with a book, or a painting, or a symphony, or a sculpture that can compete with a great city. You can’t. Because you look around (in Paris) and every street, every boulevard, is its own special art form… ~Quote from the movie, MIDNIGHT IN PARIS

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Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life. ~Proverbs 13:12  ✝

**All collages created were by Natalie from images via Pinterest