15 minutes sketching in the garden today. Summer has gone, but there is much beauty still to be found in the garden.
August has just flown by and we haven’t participated in any of Daisy Yellow’s Daily Paper Prompts – until now, that is. Prompt #28 is to go out into the garden and sketch what you see. And we did just that.
Here’s Waif and his muddy knees observing some flowers and stones:
And here are his sketches:
Gman assesses the progress of his sketching:
And here’s his finished sketchbook page:
For me, this assignment was somewhat bittersweet. I enjoyed sketching, and found curling and decaying leaves and flowers to be particularly gratifying to sketch…but it did all feel like rather a reminder that summer is, indeed, all but over . Here’s my page:
This past week has been a busy one, with visits to friends and family; nights out with girlfriends; three picnics; a trip to a nearby waterpark; walks in the woods…all very lovely, but by the weekend I found my brain felt a bit fuzzy! This week looks like being another packed one, but I am going to try my very best to make more time for this:
Although, looking at my posture, I think I may need to sit forward a bit . Any posture tips from meditation gurus would be most appreciated!
And more time for slow nature rambles, especially when there’s a chance of spotting something as awesome as this lizard:
I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a native lizard before. I think it’s a female common lizard. She caught my eye as she ran across the path, and then kept very, very still as Gman took her photo. Just wonderful.
Today, while Waif was joining in with a football session at the local sports centre (that’s soccer to my American friends ), Gman & I went for a wander round the local neighbourhood. Popping in to the Sally Army charity shop, I couldn’t believe my luck at finding this super selection of bargain books:
Funnily enough, I had, last night, just read a review of “Seeking Silence in a Noisy World” and added it to my “to read” list on Goodreads (which, incidentally, never seems to get any shorter…I wonder why that is?!) so I was especially pleased to see this for the princely sum of £1.20!
On returning home, I was struck by the beauty of the echinacea flowers in our garden, and thought I would share a couple of photos, as it’s been a while since my last flowery post!
What has made you smile today?
This is kind of a continuation on the theme of fakeness…
I recently came across Bodhipaksa’s blog “bodhi tree swaying” and in particular his series on fake Buddha quotes. With the preponderance of quotation sites online, it is easy enough to grab a “Buddha” quote to fit what you want to say…but are they genuine quotes of the Buddha? One I have used in particular in the past is “If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our whole life would change“. I love this quote; I find it inspiring and I believe that others do too. But after reading a few of Bodhipaksa’s posts on fake Buddha quotes, I suspected that it might not be authentic. It turns out I was right! Bodhipaska writes:
It’s from page 112 of Jack Kornfield’s “Buddha’s Little Instruction Book,” in which Jack “distilled and adapted an ancient teaching for the needs of contemporary life.” This is a common pattern: if a book is called “The Teaching of Buddha” or “Buddha’s Little Instruction Book” then people jump to the conclusion that any quote from it is the teaching of the Buddha or one of the Buddha’s instructions. It’s not the fault of the author, of course…
So the quote is fake. I do vow to be more mindful in attributing quotes, and checking sources. But in some ways, I think, does it matter? If the phrase is one which is in line with the Buddha’s teachings, and is helpful to people treading the path, how important is it that the quote be “authentic”? I would be interested to hear others’ thoughts on this.
I have also been skimming through The Life of Milarepa (I will read it properly soon ) and came across this:
Showing others the path
When you don’t know the way
Harms yourself and others
This has become jumbled up in my self doubts of yesterday. Though I don’t think I am trying to show others the path, but only to share thoughts that I have found helpful and others may do too. I think if we took this Milarepa quote too literally, then there would be very few dharma teachers, and that could hardly be a good thing! But it is certainly something to chew on.
But – hey – flowers are wonderful, in the eyes of Jack Kornfield and many others, so today I am going to share a few from my garden. A miracle, every one of them. Enjoy
I won’t lie. It hasn’t been the best week – what with a mixture of blocked drains, crappy weather, marital disharmony and maybe just a teensy bit of PMT-induced grumpiness. So, this morning, seeing the sun shining I thought I would pop out into the garden with the camera and see what was blooming. I am glad I did. Check out this beautiful nigella damasascena (more commonly known by the much more poetic name “Love-in-a-Mist”):
Then there is the rather striking red hot poker flower:
And this wild sweet pea, which put me in mind of Little Bo Peep:
The Earth truly does smile in flowers, and today I was able to smile with Her.
I thought it would be fitting to finish with a picture of our first marigold to come out in flower. It’s a “Mr Majestic” and I showed you a tray of them as tiny seedlings in this post at the beginning of the month. And, as hoped, we now have flowers!
I hope you have enjoyed the may flowers challenge posts, and have had chance to check out the blogs of some of the other participants, especially that of Lori herself.
Tommorrow is a new challenge (isn’t it always?!) – the Index-Card-a-Day Challenge over at Daisy Yellow.
Last week, I was watching the Chelsea Flower Show coverage on the telly with my husband. They did a feature on plants that were good for wildlife. “Oooh!” I said, “We’ve got nearly all of these in our garden!” Aren’t we doing well, I thought. Then my husband pointed out that the reason there were so many wildflowers in our garden was because they like impoverished soil – or to paraphrase Dolly Parton:
“Wildflowers don’t care where they grow”
I quite like Dolly Parton actually. But don’t tell anyone
Many of the plants we bought, back in the day when we used to spend money on such things, didn’t do very well in our garden. But – hey – if the flowers we have are good enough for the bees and the bugs and the ladybirds, then they are good enough for me! And growing native wildflowers has to be a good thing. Why fight with nature?
Fat Buddha/Hotei certainly seems to be enjoying the red valerian and forget-me-nots in our garden:
And why not?
Lori has some beautiful pink flowers on her blog today – check them out!
I am loving the aquilegias in our garden right now. We seem to have more than any year before and they are such a range of beautiful colours:
There are even enough to spare for indoors:
Gman chose this jug at a craft fair we went to this week. It’s made by a local potter and sculptor called Heather Graham and I think it’s really rather nice
What’s blooming in your garden right now? For more flowery lovin, check out the other May Flower Challenge posts.
Yesterday, we had a glorious day out at Oxburgh Hall with a whole bunch of other home educating families.
There was a chance to plant up sage cuttings in the kitchen garden:
consort with scarecrows:
roll down grassy banks:
hide in the Priest Hole:
pose in front of the hall:
pose on the roof of the hall:
and, erm, practice sprint starts on a small bridge:
Not forgetting to hunt for flowers for the May Flower Challenge, of course:
A lovely, sunshiney day
OM ~ Mothering through Yoga
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