Monday, September 7, 2015

The Shabby Garden

Mrs. White's front porch with wildflowers - part of our "Shabby Garden."

In England, the grounds of a property are called a "garden."  Here in the United States, we refer to it as a "yard."    However, when there is an acreage of some substance (from an acre upwards) it is charming to refer to one's property as an Estate, and to the grounds as one's garden.  This is what I like to call our home for my own amusement.

We have always taken great care in the upkeep of our land.  Mister and Great-grandfather (who lived with us for nine years here at the Estate) took excellent care by mowing, care taking, and landscaping.  There were small portions allotted to flowers, simple vegetable gardens, and our strawberry patch.

Since early this spring, things have drastically changed here.

This is the first summer without our beloved Great-grandfather (My father, who passed into heaven early this year).  I see the neglect on the grounds and desperately miss him.  I often think such things as, "Grandfather would never have allowed this screen door to be in such disrepair."  I also see his carefully built woodshed, which stored his winter fuel, and notice the land has just about overtaken its beauty with weeds and overgrowth.

My beautiful outdoor "pulley" system, which once held our wet laundry, has fallen and is in desperate need of a few minor repairs.  Paint is peeling all over the house.  So many things are in great need of care on both our house and our gardens.

Our grass has grown out of control all across our acreage.  Our sons do their best in their attempts at regular mowing but cannot possibly compare with the loving care of Great - grandfather's efforts.

I have only recently stopped crying when I see all the beautiful things Great - grandfather made on the property. They are precious reminders of him.  Instead, I say a prayer of thanks for him, and his presence, with peace and joy.  

In early spring, Mister took on the task of all the yard work and care taking, mostly alone.  He planted wildflowers for me, in remote and obvious locations throughout the property.  He did not have time to plant our vegetable gardens, this past May, because a devastating injury made him home bound and unable to work.  Thus, the state of things at our Estate.

This morning, I walked the property and noticed there is a Shabbiness to it that I have grown to love.  The wildflowers Mister planted for me are bright and blooming in delicate elegance.  They bring joy out of what would be sadness.  I smile when I see them.   There is beauty in some sort of simpleness when we are content and at peace with things we cannot change.

Mrs. White

From the Archives -

Wouldn't You like One of These?  - Home as a Little Christian School.

Enjoying the Baby - Afternoon Walk in the Parlour.

Remembering Great - Grandfather - Holiness from the Garage


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Find Home-keeping Inspiration, in Mrs.White's book -Mother's Book of Home Economics .  Paperback, 312 pages.


lorie said...

Mrs. White. I didn't know that your father had passed away. So sorry for your loss.

Jill May said...

I am so sorry for the loss of your father. I lost my sweet dad 5 years ago to cancer, and I know the heartache that comes with it. Praying for the Lord to mend the sadness for you, and to also bring healing to your husband. How sweet of him to plant wildflowers for you to enjoy! Here in the midwest, I call our 2 country acres our "Homestead". From our Homestead to your Estate, I send hugs and prayers to you!

Anonymous said...

Mrs. White, I am sorry for your loss, your father sounded like a wonderful man. Your family is in my prayers, especially your mother.

in His peace,

Melissa M. said...

I am so sorry for the loss of your father.

Curtains in My Tree said...

It is so sad when we loose our parents to death, takes a long time to heal I know

And since you had your father there to help everyday makes the pain a little deeper i'm sure.
This is a lesson of life to enjoy what we have when we have it, I learned the hard way, I am a senior lady now living alone and miss my entire family

Kathy said...

So sorry for the loss of your father. It is hard to lose our parents even though we have the hope of seeing them again. I'm glad the wildflowers bring you comfort as well as all of the things that your father made.
How is your husband doing? Hope that he is recovering well.

Stephanie said...

My dear Mrs. White, how my heart aches for you... I am truly sorry for your loss. My you continue to find comfort and peace in the arms of our precious Heavenly Father and may you rest in your special memories. Hugs to you!

Unknown said...

I'm so sorry for your loss! But it's beautiful that you can look upon the things he built and fixed for you and remember him.

Carol@Labor of Love said...

I'm glad that the wildflowers gave you joy. It is good to pay attention to little gifts. May God bless your family as you adjust to the loss of your father.

Ginger Harrington said...

I went through a similar cycle of grief when my parents died. For a while, reminders were painful, but with time they bring comfort of gratitude and remembrance for lives well lived. Linking with you at Grace and Truth today. Have a great weekend.

Karen Del Tatto said...

I am so sorry for your loss. What a visible legacy that was left behind on the grounds of your estate. Beautiful memories of his care and attention to detail.

How sweet of your husband to plant wildflowers.

Thank you for sharing your story and how God has brought you peace in the midst of heartache to enjoy the simple pleasures that is now your estate.

JES said...

I just love your way of thinking... Thank you for sharing your special posts on the Art of Home-Making Mondays!

Rattlebridge Farm said...

Your lovely post is featured tonight at Foodie Friday and Everything Else. Thank you so much for this heartfelt, wise post.

living from glory to glory said...

Thank You, This was lovely and written from the heart! I could see it all in my mind's eye. We also like to refer to our place as the Estate.
What a beautiful tribute to your Father!
Blessings, Roxy

effieknots said...

I am sorry for your loss. I can relate totally to this post. I lost my husband in 2015 and his garden, of which he was very proud, is not the same. I try my best but, because of my grief, am not as strong as I once was, although I am gradually recovering. My son works 12 hours a day, but does what he can - which is a great deal. Last year we did not harvest our grapes, or anything else to be honest, but this year we were able to hire someone to prune the grape vines. Hopefully we will be able to continue to produce my husband's beloved wine. My husband's loss is a wound in my heart that has not healed as yet, but his garden represents a tiny part of his love and protection throughout our marriage.

The love we shared with those who have departed, is what is important and that which consoles us in our grief.

Mel at Adventures of Mel said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. This is beautiful. Thank you for sharing, and it's so good to see you.