Monday, 3 April 2017

Phyllis Purser: Nothing Negative about these Perfect Little Works of Art

I don’t claim to have any knowledge of these ‘little works of art’ I am simply sharing them for your enjoyment. They are in a very old album, or it could be a tradesman’s sample book? I’m not exactly sure. Sketches & Designs is written on the spine, and a business card for The Photochrom Company is pasted inside the front cover.


Photochrom, sometimes spelt Fotochrom or Photochrome is a process for producing colourised images from black-and-white photographic negatives. I’m not the best person to try to explain the process, but if you would like to know more a quick Google search should supply all the information you need.

The following images are all by Phyllis Purser:

Photochrome Photochrom PHYLLIS PURSER  REFERENCE NUMBERS D.5099  - D.5101
IMAGES BY MRS. P. M. PURSER (PHYLLIS PURSER):  REFERENCE NUMBERS D.5099  - D.5101 

The album contains 240 images by well-known and not so well-known artists. I recognise some of the names like Frank Mason, Phyllis Purser, Enid Warne-Browne and Susan B Pearse while others such as Ernest Uden and Persis Kirmse are unfamiliar to me. Most measure 3.5 x 2.5 inches, although some are postcard size or larger. Each has a unique reference number and / or a title.  

PHYLLIS PURSER PHOTOCHROM IMAGES  D.5102  - D.5107
PHYLLIS PURSER: REFERENCE NUMBERS D.5102  - D.5107

I won’t be able to share them all, but I will share a sample of each artists work. I hope it will be useful for anyone researching the Photocrom Company or the individual artists.

Phyllis Purser collection of Photochrom images
PHYLLIS PURSER: REFERENCE NUMBERS D.5142  - D.5147

PHYLLIS PURSER: REFERENCE NUMBERS D.5148 - D.5152

I’ve done a little online searching and matched a few of the images to postcards. The one on the left was published by Photochrom (the same name as on the business card) and the one on the right is as it appears in the album. The words on the postcard are; 'taint what we have, but what we give, taint what we are, but how we live, taint what we do, but how we do it, that makes life worth going thro’ it’

Postcard and photochrom image by Phyllis Purser

The image on the left is from the album and the one on the right is a postcard with the caption ’twould be nice to see your face again.

Postcard and photochrom image by Phyllis Purser

At first glance, I thought this 

Postcard and photochrom image by Phyllis Purser

looked very similar to this postcard found on Pinterest but actually, there are lots of subtle or not so subtle differences. 
Postcard by Phyllis Purser

To me, the original image looks incomplete, but the teddies and dolls on the finished postcard bring it to life. The little elves sitting on the wall are very reminiscent of the Boo-Boos as drawn by Mabel Lucie Attwell. The Boo-Boos were incredibly popular at the time so adding something similar probably made the postcard more commercial.  

The Boo-Boos as drawn by Mabel Lucie Attwell
 Mabel Lucie Attwell's Boo-Boos



Phyllis Miriam Palmer (Purser) (1893 - 1989)

The second daughter of Thomas Palmer, a printer and
stationer, and Beatrice. Lived at Grantham, Lincolnshire.
studied at the Nottingham School of Art. Worked from home
as an illustrator. Began by designing postcards for Alphalsa
Publishing and Vivian Mansell Postcards. In 1917 married
Jack Purser, who soon went to war. On his return, they lived
in Paris where Phyllis continued to draw. Worked for
J. Salmon of Sevenoaks. Returned to England in 1921, lived
at Hoylake on the Wirral. Produced designs for Photocrom
of Tunbridge Wells. She eventually produced postcards,
greetings cards, Valentines and gift tags. Most prolific in the
years prior to the Second World War. Later returned to painting,
taking up her art training again.Exhibited at the Society of
Women Artists (1973). Salmon and Vivian Mansell published
her work for the rest of her life and  continued to print her designs
long after her death.

Sources
Rozanne Purser obituary (Phyllis Purser's daughter) 
Artist Biographies

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Saturday morning dawned bright and beautiful but with more rain on the way, it was time to grab my camera and head out into the garden. As I process the photographs just a couple of hours later I can hear the rain beating against the windows. It’s hard to believe how quickly the weather changes, but then it is April, so we have to expect April showers.

Is this a crane do you suppose?  I’m not sure, but I can tell you it enjoys a sunny spot under an old apple tree.
I’ve just been reliably informed this is a Great Blue Heron (thank you Marcia and Eve). My blog readers are the best!

The rock plants are lovely at this time of the year, and this purple aubretia is one of my favourites. For those of you who appreciate ‘botanical correctness' I believe aubrietia is the proper spelling, but I’ve always known them as aubretia. They are growing in a wall that skirts the patio, funnily enough they don’t do well on the rockery, but they are very happy in the wall.  

The Pieris Japonicas are doing especially well this year. This one is growing under a weeping cherry which is just beginning to flower.

Close-up of the white bell-shaped flowers of the Pieris Japonica if you are looking for an evergreen shrub for your garden this could be the one. They put on a spectacular display of flowers and new growth in a variety of colours from pink to dark burgundy.

The keen-eyed among you will have spotted the naked lady in the corner. She is Freya (or Freyja) a Norse goddess associated with love, sex, beauty, fertility, gold, war and death. If you would like to know more about this particular goddess, there is a mass of information online.  We fell in love with her when she was shiny, bright and new, these days she has weathered, and taken on a patina and life of her own. She presides over the garden, and often goes for midnight walks – either that or there is some other mischief afoot!  

The weeping cherry, this glorious sight will be short lived because of all the wind and rain. 

I’m not certain, but I think this is a Malus or crab apple. It has apple like fruit in the autumn and pretty peach/pink flowers in March and April.  

No spring garden is complete without a few Primulas. 

This  nesting box was a present from my sister and her husband. We are eagerly waiting to see if someone sets up home in it.  It was very brightly painted when new, but it’s beginning to fade and blend in with the honeysuckle, so we are hopeful.

Thrift or Sea Pink (Armeria Maritima) makes perfect ground cover for gravel gardens or growing in a wall as it is here. 

 Another photograph of the Pieris Japonica looking especially pretty against the blue Forget-Me-Nots, the green shoots to the right are the first signs of another favourite, Lilly of the Valley.

This pot of daffodils looking lovely in the sunshine is a bedraggled and sorry sight now. The rain came down so hard it flattened them. I'm hoping they will pick up but if not, I will put a few sticks in the pot to help support them. 

The Christmas Roses (Helleborus) are still flowering, but they will soon be taking a rest only to appear again next December. According to legend, a young shepherdess by the name of Madelon was tending her sheep one cold winter’s night. As she watched over her sheep, three wise men passed by bearing gifts for the baby Jesus. Madelon began to cry because she had no gift to bring the Newborn King. An angel, hearing her weeping appeared and brushed away the snow to reveal a beautiful flower – the Christmas Rose. I think of that story every year when the first flowers appear.

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Terry asked me to thank everyone for the get-well wishes. He will have to take life a little slower than usual for a while, but he is on the mend.

Do you think the album could be a tradesman’s sample book? Would you enjoy seeing more images from it? Do you have a favourite spring flower?  I would love to know your thoughts so please leave a comment. 


62 comments:

  1. Goodness! This is gonna take me at least
    three lemon teas...Hang on! :).

    Seriously though, all the little B/W photos
    look lovely! I always say, l think B/W or
    sepia look far better than colour..! Gives
    an image more character, and more life!
    And of course not only did this apply to
    photos but to film as well...Early film
    colourisation dates back to the beginning
    of the 20th century. These processes were
    decidedly low-tech, though; artists would
    hand colour copies of films before sending
    them to theatres...!
    And, there are hundreds of films from 1930
    to 1955 that were turned into colour...Even
    the Moon landing in July 1969 was in B/W...
    later to be 'coloured in'...That's if it ever
    happened...??? :).

    The garden looks really lovely Barbara...lots
    of colour and the weeping cherry looks great..!
    And Freya looks lovely to...won't comment..it'll
    only be rude.
    Associated with love, sex, beauty, fertility, gold,
    war and death...Goodness! l'm lost after sex..HeHe!
    Say no more...!!! :0).

    AND...What on earth is that 'horrid' blue thing....
    It looks like a deformed parrot..! :). Reminded me
    of John Cleese doing that funny walk in Fawlty Towers.
    HeHe! And..NO! It's not a crane...cranes are found
    down by the harbour, lifting great containers onto
    lorries!
    Seriously though..l do know that there are 15 species
    of crane, in 4 genera..and, some are big enough to eat!
    oooops!

    Finally...before l go for a lie down...! :).
    Make sure the bird box faces anyway...but South!
    So go get yer compass out....! :0).
    (Great Post).

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  2. Hi Willie, first things first – in regard to the bird box – why? Are you winding me up?? I know there is a joke there somewhere, but I can’t for the life of me think what it is.

    I don’t know what the ‘beautiful blue thing’ is – that’s why I’m asking. I don’t even remember where it came from, but I’m hoping it wasn’t a present, or you just might have upset someone. Actually, it does look a bit like John Cleese now you mention it but don’t tell anyone I said so.

    I did think about leaving out the s—word, but it’s what it says in Wikipedia, so I went with it. They obviously know more about these things than I do. :)

    You are very knowledgeable about the film industry Willie – and there is a theme for another blog, go on, you know you want to. As for the moon landing, of course it did. It was on telly and in all the papers so it must be true.

    Hope you are feeling better today, xx

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  3. HaHa! Well...l'm not feeling myself...!!! :0).

    Now look...Most of the wind and sunshine comes from
    the South..so if your box is facing South, you won't
    get a 'dicky~bird' in it...how would you like it,
    every time you landed at the entrance, you got a gust
    of wind up yer whats~it..! :). AND! NO! Don't put the
    hole facing upwards...! :).

    Just thinking...unusual for me, l know...That bird is
    a Flamingo...that's lost it's baby...! :).
    So, if it's a Flamingo...Paint it..it..it..Pink!
    Though, if it was me, l'd bury it up~side~down..head
    first, and tell people it was an Ostrich! At least
    you'd have somewhere to park yer bike! :).

    HaHa! Moon landing...in the papers and on telly.....
    And, you still believe it happened! If you look very
    carefully, when they land, you can just see Thunderbird 2,
    in the background...! So, yes, must be true then...! :0).
    Jeeeese! I need another lie down...!!!

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    1. Dear Willie, I’ve not stopped laughing since I started reading your reply, you are such a tonic!

      Now, let me see if I’ve got this right. I mustn’t put the hole facing upwards, but I should bury the pink ‘flamingo’ upside down so I can park my bike. After that I need to find a video of the moon landings and look for Thunderbird 2. Should I look out for lady P and Parker too?

      Interesting fact Parker’s first name was Aloysius, and he was also known as “Nosey” Parker – bet you didn’t know that!

      Now I need I lie down. :-)

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    2. Yes! I knew his name was Aloysius...In fact
      he's on the Halifax add. at the moment, he
      wins £500,000 and goes off to the Med. and
      leaves Lady Penelope behind at home! Quite
      funny!
      So, if you have a name like Parker..'Nosey'
      is about the limit...imagine a name like...
      Willie! "Nuff Said".

      So...Just follow my instructions to the tee,
      or is it tea..and you won't go far wrong...! :).

      Delete

    3. I must have missed that advert Willie, but will keep my eyes open for it.

      It took a while to reply this time because I was busy with the pink paint – I might do the fences next! :-)

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  4. Dear, dear Barbara! HELLO! As always, you provide the most darling images and books from times that I wish were still with us. Kindness, gentleness and the celebration of nature are always the focus of the art you share. These are precious images, many of which I've never seen, but I'm guessing that the 1930s era is the most prominent time period here? I love that era of illustrations. The fox terrier was often the dog of choice in these drawings, I love them so.

    So glad to hear Terry is on the mend! And as for my favorite flower? It's so hard to tell, but right now at the moment, it's the blue muscari for spring as well as lilac. Come early summer, I have so many others such as peonies, roses! It's soooooooo enchanting, and may your April bring you much promise my friend.

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    1. Hello Anita, and as always, you say THE nicest things, thank you dear friend. I agree with you re the era, although some of the cards in the album appear to date from the 1940s and 50s so I’m not exactly sure.

      I love muscari too, we have some in the garden. I should have shared them, next time perhaps. I associate Lilac with my childhood, so another favourite for me, oh yes and peonies and roses. It’s impossible to choose!

      Thank you for your sweet comment and your friendship.

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  5. The album has some wonderful images. Some of them are familiar from postcards etc, but I have never heard of any of the artists. The flowers in your garden are wonderful, and I love the statues, too, a wonderful pace to relax. And finally, glad Terry is getting better, all the best for both of you. Hugs, Valerie

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    1. Hi Valerie, I’m having fun finding out about all the artists, and it’s really nice to have blogging friends to share them with. It would be a very solitary occupation otherwise.

      We just need it to get a little warmer now so that we can enjoy sitting out in the garden. It looks beautiful outside today, but the wind has a very keen chill to it, so we are sitting inside with the heating on.

      Thank you very much for wishing Terry well and for the hugs. Hugs. Barbara xx

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  6. Your garden is just wonderful. And so are the images you shared. Mostly though, I'm glad to hear your husband is on the mend.

    My favorite spring flower? All of them because it means winter is over, and the dandelions that were out soldiered on during a sudden freeze not long ago and still survive.

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    1. Thanks Alex, both for your comment about the images and your kind thoughts for Terry.

      You are so right about spring flowers! It’s strange how we view dandelions as weeds, but if you see them en masse they can be breathtakingly beautiful – just so long as they are not on our lawn! :)

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  7. Very beautiful images as always :) So glad Terry is getting better. I wish you a great week, dear Barbara :)

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    1. Thank you so much. I've just been looking at the beautiful flowers on your blog and can see I still have a lot to learn about photography. Hugs Barbara

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  8. Dear Barbara - first so glad Terry is on the mend. I am sure you are keeping a wonderful eye on him. As for the black and white illustrations...these are darling. Love them...like Anita I have to say it makes me think of much sweeter times.
    Oh my your garden and flowers are awesome. I especially admire the Japonica. I have nothing similar that grows like these here. You appear much further along than us too. My peach tree I think will be in full bloom this week. It is a lovely pink. Well friend I sure enjoyed my visit here today. Hope you have a beautiful day. Hugs!

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    1. Hi Debbie, your lovely comment was all it took to ensure a beautiful day, thank you!
      Spring suddenly arrived in our little bit of the UK. The wind still has a chill to it, but the sunshine is wonderful. Not quite warm enough to sit outside with a cup of tea, but it won’t be long. I hope your peach tree gives you a wonderful display very soon. Hugs Barbara

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  9. Oh my gosh Barbara, what a fabulous post!!! I love all of this vintage art and thank you for the trip back to yesteryear!!!
    Your photos are so dreamy and bring to mind the beauty and magic of all gardens...from the formal to the wildflowers! Gorgeous!!!
    Have a beautiful day~

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    1. Well, you just made my day, thank you Jan! I enjoyed putting the post together, but it’s very reassuring to know you enjoyed it. I tend to ramble on about whatever is on my mind (or on my desk!) and just sort of hope readers enjoy it. I hope your day is going just as well as mine.

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  10. Wow, Barbara! You took my breath away with this post. Those lovely Photocrome images were fascinating. When I saw the one of the little girl with the sunbonnet profile I flashed on my grandmother's handiwork. I remember so many Sunbonnet Sues stitched into napkins and tea cloths that she created. And your garden was a delight. Such lush blooms.

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    1. That image was on so many things when I was a girl, but this is the first time I’ve heard it described as Sunbonnet Sue. It’s a lovely description and perfectly apt. Thanks for coming over.

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  11. I am very glad to know that Terry is getting better, Barbara. Your photos are beautiful, and I love the art! Thank you so much for sharing.

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    1. Hello Linda, your Monday warmup was a perfect start to my week, so thank you for that. Thank you also for your sweet comment.

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  12. Thank you for taking is through your lovely garden! Lily of the Valley is my hub's favorite scent. That can't be a crane it has to be a Blue Heron. Lol

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    1. Hi Eve, Lily of the Valley does have a lovely perfume. I had a mixed bouquet which included Lily of the Valley on my wedding day. Terry and I have been married for forty-six years but the smell always transports me back to that day. I think you (and Willie) must be right about the crane! :-)

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  13. Sometimes slow is good.
    Interesting artwork, both before and after tinting.
    And you have a beautiful garden.

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    1. I’m rather slow these days, so I appreciate that sentiment!

      To be truthful parts of the garden are beautiful but other parts (not shown in photos) are in need of some tender loving care. It’s always the same after a long wet winter, but I will get it all sorted out soon.

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  14. The little album images are so wonderful! The four heads peeking out of the bed jumped out at me as one of the cutest. I love seeing the before and after pieces. The one you found on Pinterest has so many differences, I wondered if maybe a different artist copied the original, adding in several new ideas. Although if others in the album appear to be rough drafts, then maybe not. Such BEAUTIFUL garden pictures! I can almost smell the different scents. What a shame when heavy rains knock some of them down, glad you got pictures first. Definitely a Great Blue Heron in that first shot. I saw a live one just the other day on a road trip to Buffalo, NY (got back today). Freya is lovely, too. Sending lots of healthy wishes to Terry. Great post, Barbara!

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    1. Hello Marcia, I’ve just taken a look at both images of the little girl on the wall. It won’t be easy but if you look closely you can just about see Phyllis Purser’s signature on the bottom right of the finished card. I keep hoping someone who knows about these things will email or comment. If that should happen, I will do an update in a future post.

      I’ve just been looking at Great Blue Herons online, and I’m sure you are right. I had no idea what it was so that is one mystery solved. :) I hope it was a good trip? Thank you for your kind words, Terry is most grateful and so am I.

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  15. Such amazing images. I loved this post. Interesting too.

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  16. Hello dear Cousin, Another fine piece of work and beautiful pictures, those of the 'little works of art' (my favourite is the Boy and the Dog as the words are so true.) and those photos of your garden. As for the blue bird......I say it is a Stork because it looks to be stalking something or maybe it is in the Blue team and just posing for the camera before returning to the bowling alley after retrieving that stray ball it is about to pick up. Now the rather charming figure in the corner, the Norse Goddess Freya, associated with all the things you listed and good with birds too by the look of it. I am not surprised, she is a woman, therefore very able to multi-task. My favourite Spring flower? The Snowdrop as it is usually the first sign of approaching Spring. My all time favourite flower is the Forget-Me-Not. It is pretty and yet unassuming and just the name alone can trigger so many delightful memories for me. John

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    1. Thank you Cousin John, I’m happy you found something to enjoy in this post. The ‘Stork’ which I’ve now been told is a Great Blue Heron, certainly looks to be stalking something either that or it doesn’t enjoy getting its feet wet! Well done on spotting the bird in Freya’s hands. I’ve always assumed it’s a Dove – but I could be completely wrong! Speaking of birds, we saw a Woodpecker on our walk this morning (that is one of very few birds I do recognise), we also saw bluebells for the first time. Spring is romping away. It will be summer before we know it. Have you got Forget-Me-Not plants in your garden? Once you have one you will have hundreds. I love to see them each year and let them grow wherever they want, as you can tell in the photo. x

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  17. Your garden looks wonderful and I'm glad you grabbed a few pictures while the sun was out. I had a Pieris Japonica, which we called Mountain Fire, in my small garden in BC. I also love Lily of the Valley but I must admit my favourite spring flower is the tulip!!

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    1. Hello Darlene, I hadn’t heard that name before, but it is very certainly apt. I do love tulips but always find them more difficult to grow. Our garden is very wet, and I don’t think the bulbs enjoy that at all...

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  18. The photos you shared with us are lovely. I can see how the child on the wall made you look twice. It does look to me like the one in your book was the original or draft and then it turned into the one you saw on Pinterest. I am not sure what the pictures are from- I have been wavering back and forth- but they are interesting for sure. I enjoyed looking at them and would love to see more.

    Seeing your beautiful garden makes me long for everything to bloom here. Of course, I know it will soon enough- but spring is taking her sweet time this year. My allergies have started up- so I do know something is starting to bloom (I can see some of the trees starting). :) In the spring, I have always loved tulips and daffodils- but there are so many pretty flowers. I just like to see the earth awakening again.

    Glad Terry is on the mend!

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    1. Hello Stephanie, thank you for your kind thought for Terry.

      I’m so pleased you enjoyed the pictures. I will share some more but thought I should check with my lovely blog readers first. There is nothing worse than visiting a blog and thinking oh no, not more of … 

      We get a pollen count on breakfast TV each morning, and today the presenter said pollen levels are high because of tree pollen – so it could well be the problem for you. I hope the spring arrives on your doorstep very soon. I know allergies can be a real nuisance and make life very uncomfortable. I hope you have some kind of medication, which helps.

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  19. Dearest Barbara,

    One of the lines you shared: "taint what we are, but how we live, taint what we do, but how we do it" ~ how it stirs me. I have a collection of quotes (picked from everywhere and sometimes with my personal elaborations) which I turn to every morning as part of my nourishment routine before I get to work, and I'd flip to different pages depending on how my mood is that day. Today's, at the top of the page I'd flipped to, reads: "It's not just about WHAT you do, it's also about HOW you do it. Show up with your quiet & bright energy, your good humour."

    Your garden reflects your character. Flourishing (your heart), blossoming (your spirit, every day), and creative (yes, you are). Flowers are in bloom because it's time to open up and welcome fresh abundance in. Your garden, however, is glorious because of you. You've taken the patience and love to tend to it. And it shows. It absolutely shows.

    I must have a thing for bell-shaped flowers for the ones that attract me the most are the white bell-shaped Japonica in the company of the forget-me-nots.

    I'm so happy to receive your comment, Barbara. I often think about you, too. Things are very well over here. Yesterday, I received a rejection from a magazine and it took me less than 3 seconds to get over it, lol. "Aww ... it's all right." Next! I was rather surprised at how quickly I'd gotten over it. Teeheehee. It's about how we show up in this world, hey?

    And in this same week, I've received 2 clients' messages telling me they love the stories I'd written for them.

    Guess which news I'm going to focus on? :)

    I hope you're taking great care of your health. Enjoy the garden view. Enjoy the quiet, gentle growth of your heart every day. Have a lovely day ahead, my dear friend.

    Sending Terry my best wishes, too. Hope he'll be out and about taking fabulous pictures very soon!

    xoxo C.

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    1. Dear Claudine
      What an amazing coincidence – there must be something very profound about that quote, or perhaps it was simply because we were thinking about each other. I’m quite sure you always show up with a good humour and bright energy Claudine and can feel it through your words.

      Bless you for your really kind words about the garden and about me, you always say just the right things. I do love the garden, although I don’t spend as much time tending it as I should. Actually, it is very happy to look after itself through the winter and always comes back more abundant than it was the year before. The forget-me-not arrived next to the Japonica quite by accident. I imagine the birds dropped the seeds, or I might have had some on my clothing from a different part of the garden and transported it to that spot. Either way it looks lovely there so it will stay.

      I’m so sorry about that rejection but well done on dealing with it so swiftly and so well! I know exactly which news you will be focusing on, and I applaud you for it. Your positive attitude is shining through and winning the day.

      Funny you should say about Terry getting out and about taking pictures, he did that at the weekend but overdid it and felt awful for a few days. This afternoon he has been out again and has come back looking and feeling fine, so he is definitely on the mend. I’ve just passed on your good wishes, and he asked me to thank you.

      Have a wonderful rest of the week Claudine, lots of love xxxx

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    2. Oh dear, don't overdo it! Lol, I'm glad he's feeling much better, Barbara. And I love what you said about the garden tending itself. Reminded me of The Secret Garden (I didn't enjoy the story that much, but I did like that garden).

      I'll come visiting your blog every few weeks. Please don't worry about me having to take the time. I dearly want to. (And as flowery-and-fruitful as work goes, I'm aiming for a work-lifestyle that is steady and strong, not overly busy. So visiting my friends' blogs is part of my work in children's books, and part of my lifestyle in reading about prettiness - like your posts.) xoxo C.

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    3. It’s always difficult to balance work commitments and down time but much better if you can achieve it. Thank you for visiting and for your friendship. xx

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  20. Beautiful flowers! And that collection of images... Wow. It's history right there. Loved seeing it.

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  21. Is that really your garden? It looks like heaven. Thanks again for a lovely post, and you've given me an idea for a couple of shrubs for my patch. Just got to check if they're immune to cat/fox pee, and another animal I haven't yet identified. Maybe an escaped elephant judging by the amount it graciously leaves in my garden.

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    1. Hi Roger, yes it really is our garden, but of course I’m only showing you the best bits. Perhaps I should do another post showing the untidy corners, unfilled pots and the weeds that never stop growing. :-)
      The neighbour cats often leave little presents for me to find but luckily nothing larger than that. I would like night-vision cameras in the garden, but it sounds as though you need CCTV and night-vision it might be the only way to catch a glimpse of that elephant!

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  22. Love these images, they're just delightful! I'm so thrilled to see your garden/flower pics, ours is just starting to green up! We are blessed to have Great Blue Herons at our little lake every year. A few weeks ago one flew in early in the middle of a snow squall! We are finally starting to warm up and more migrant waterfowl are passing through. We had swans the other day which was a joy to see. Glad your dear Terry is doing better. Take care of yourselves, sending hugs! ~ Diane

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    1. Hello Diane, I love seeing pictures of your lake and garden it always looks wonderful. Great Blue Herons sound so exotic, and yet they are around in the snow, how strange. I must read up about them as they are an unknown for me. Terry looks a little better every day so things are moving in the right direction. Thank you for the hugs – they are always appreciated. Barbara xx

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  23. Dear Barbara what lovely eye candy! I loved all the images they are lovely. Thank you for sharing.
    Love the beautiful flowers from your garden. Your garden is so beautiful. Love the Heron. I went and bought some aubretia last Sunday and some Christmas roses.. I seem to be constantly putting plants in my rock garden as most of the plants seem to die. Now I know why the mystery is solved. I saw the wood pigeons pecking at the new growth in the rock garden no wonder my plants are not growing😀

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    1. Hi Shashi, we have a pair of pigeons in our back garden, and they are creating havoc! They really do have an eye for rock plants! I wouldn’t mind so much if they didn’t just peck at them and throw the bits on the floor. I guess they are after insects, but they are so clumsy and always manage to flatten at least three other plants at the same time. They actually make me laugh with all their strutting around. They are the funniest birds! Thanks for coming over, have a lovely rest of the week.

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  24. What a beautiful garden. I'd love to meander through it.
    The pics are cute:) And the two you pointed out sure do look alike.

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    1. Hi Sandra, you are welcome at any time but there is not far to meander. The photos make it look larger than it really is, or maybe it’s the strategic way I took them :-)

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  25. these pieces of arts are amazingly cute and eye holder!
    white bell shaped flower are so pretty .
    your garden is absolutely magnificent my friend!

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    1. I’m very pleased you enjoyed the pictures and the flowers. Thanks for coming over.

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  26. Hello Barbara, it was so lovely seeing those drawings and to read the titles that came with them as well.
    Your garden is gorgeous, and the garden art as well. I love the little nest box too.
    Great to have a look around, and I especially loved the story behind the Christmas Rose.
    Beaut to catch up once more with you :D)

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    1. Hello Sue, so glad you enjoyed them. We love the next box too. We’ve put a welcome mat out outside and are now hoping for visitors. :)

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  27. I love Helleborus. I had one I got at the Biltmore Garden Shop at my old house that looked just like yours, which is gorgeous by the way. I'd like to get another for our current location.
    Again....beautiful garden.

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    1. Thanks Sandra, I appreciate that, you really should treat yourself to some Hellebores, they are super plants.

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  28. I love these book images. They are very fascinating for children.
    And photos from your garden are marvellous. Thanks for sharing.
    Have a great weekend!

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    1. Thank you Shon.
      I've been trying to visit your blog but when I click on your name but your blog page is blank?

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  29. I really love this post -- I love ephemera so very much so seeing the drawings and illustrations was a treat, as was your garden. I love your wonderful heron -- my "neighborhood" heron we call "Harry." I keep waiting for him to return for the season.

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    1. Hello Jeanie, thanks so much for your kind comment. I love ephemera too, just wish I had more storage space. :-) Harry is a wonderful name for a heron – Harry the heron – what could be better?

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  30. I had to come back for another visit,because your blog is so interesting. I adore the little black and white drawings and 5149 reminds me of Sunflower Sue, a quilt pattern.

    You have an incredible yard. It's so colorful and filled with flowers I have never seen before. The statues are perfect, too. You make very good use of your space.

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    1. Thank you so much for reading more of my posts, I really appreciate it.

      I remember those little drawings of a girl wearing a bonnet from my own childhood but didn’t realise they had a name. Cleemckenzie left a comment saying she knows them as Sunbonnet Sues, and you know them as Sunflower Sue. Both names are lovely, so I think I will alternate between the two.

      Thank you for your sweet words about our garden it is always at its best in the spring.

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I really appreciate your comment. Thank you!
Barbara xx

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