Friday, May 17, 2024

Time Will Tell --------

If you don't follow me on Instagram, and are wondering where I've been hiding as I've been missing from here, forgive me!
I have several reasons for not writing or sharing photos and life over the past month. One is being totally worn out at the end of the day after of weeks of home projects. How people live in their homes when doing complete restorations is unimaginable to me. Just getting through the days without going insane when all seems to be falling apart around me is taking its toll. Why do I still post on Instagram you may ask. Because it's quick and I can collapse in a chair or my bed and write a few words along with a few photos, usually something snapped that day and from the garden mostly as I haven't gone far lately. Let's be honest, sitting at the computer and composing a neat and tidy, well-written (hopefully) blog post, usually with photos, takes more of an effort and a lot more time. . . . . . . and having strangers working, coming and going, and just being there in your house or garden, disrupts everyday normal living.

That said, when I did get out more recently, the week before this one, it was mostly back and forth to the hospital.  My lovely Bob took a middle of the night ambulance ride when he became very ill. Because of his pain, and a temperature of 105 degrees, the EMS had him down the steps on that gurney in no time and he was gone in the flashing of lights but thankfully no sirens. I won't go into details other than to say a blood infection can be a scary, dangerous thing. . . . . . he had so many tests, scopes, scans and such, and 6 days of IV's and antibiotics. Great care from the doctors, nurses, technicians, and all the workers who help make a hospital run, such as the housekeeping lady from Peru taking care of his linens, to the be-bopping musician with the 'dreads' pushing his bed along the hallways to the MRI's and CT scans etc. So many great people that it's impossible to thank everyone. Our hospital is in the top 20 list of hospitals across the USA. We feel blessed.

Bob is home and still on antibiotics for a few more days. He's feeling better but requires a follow up exploratory procedure very soon. The surgeon was very pleasant when we met this week, explained everything in detail, and said this will all be done ASAP.  In all honesty we are both tired and praying things will go well. So many of you know Bob personally which is why I'm sharing this here. I feel bad that I haven't been leaving comments on your blogs and hope to catch up soon.

Now our new back deck is being built. The guys are two brothers and they are doing perfect work. Reliable, timely, polite, pleasant, and truly interested in pleasing us and doing what we want. . . . . . . . . . .and they call their mom in Honduras every morning!!!  I'll share photos of the deck soon.

The garden has again offered respite lately. I'm behind with a lot of things - such as sewing seeds. This spring seems to be so lush all around when one steps outside. The jasmine vines are massive and perfume the air, especially in the evenings when we've made use of the gazebo prior to the deck work. Pink and purple roses, peonies and clematis are lovely, and now the blue hydrangeas are opening.  But for me it's also the greens, so many shades painted on the shrubs and trees, fresh and clean prior to the oppresive heat and humidity of summer when all will sizzle and call out for water.

A few garden scenes and flowers captured recently - enjoy!

......and a special surprise the day I brought Bob home from the hospital,
Mrs. Cardinal had built a nest in the candolier on the front porch!
This is a first - usually we have finches in the hanging Boston ferns but
they've stayed away this spring.

This weekend I plan to get a ladder and look in the nest - I know she
must have eggs as she stays constantly, only leaving for a minute or
 two when we go out the front door.

Happy weekend. . . . . . a wet one forecast here but I hope to catch
 up with gardening, need to plant seeds and do some serious weeding.
We English grew up gardening in the rain so it will be like the 
good old days!



  1. Dear Mary,
    We have been thinking of and praying for you and Bob during this stressful time. Hoping for good results for Bob. Good health care is so important.
    I'm glad the interior work is completed on your house. It is disruptive, indeed.
    Lovely to see the photos of your garden. The nest in your outside chandelier is quite something!
    Have a good weekend, Love to you both

  2. Dearest Mary,
    Well, such ambulance rides in the wee hours or whatever time of the day, are no fun! My Pieter went twice like that and came home as I insisted not to separate us. You are so lucky for having excellent hospitals—we certainly are not that lucky with our local hospital.
    Hoping that they soon will find a remedy for his blood infection so it will not happen again!
    Meanwhile your garden did turn into a paradise and Mrs. Cardinal loves her nesting spot—how genial to find that.
    Those peonies are a dream, we used to have them but they're all vanished.
    Enjoy the beauty and hoping the deck is getting finished soon and your daily routine will return.
    That is so important at our age. I was so sleep deprived—unbelievable but by now I'm catching up. Slept around the clock last night but I must say I was exhausted after going with dear friend Mary Louise to Emory University to see my cardiac thoracic surgeon. All looked good and he wants to do another MRA in May next year. Seeing my new nephrologist at Emory on September 26.
    Those intens weeks with Pieter I was having severe pain near stent–graft in thoracic spine area. With more rest and heeding myself, it is is far better!
    My loyal caretaker is no longer at my side and no doubt it shortened his life unexpectedly!
    Life is not fair at times but we have to move on and be grateful for the good times.

  3. The wooden arch over the path looks like a perfect place to drape flowers... but I cannot do it. The long stems don't seem to go where I told them. Yours, on the other hand, are perfectly cooperative.

  4. Oh my, Mary, you sure do have LOTS on your plate right now! Most importantly, Bob is back home and better. Steve had a blood infection (from dental surgery that was not done well), and ended up in hospital, needing two operations within 24 hours - and he wasn‘t yet 40 at the time! Good to know everyone at the hospital has been so good and helpful.
    There is absolutely no need for you to feel bad when not blogging or commenting - our offline lives always have priority over our online ones.
    Beautiful flowers, and a surprise with the bird nesting on your porch!
    It‘s a long weekend here, with Pentecost Monday being a holiday, but it was off to a dramatic start yesterday (Friday) with extreme rainfall, strong winds, flodding and so on. Instead of two, it took me almost six hours to get to O.K.‘s, and he had to come and pick me up on the last leg when no other means of transport was available.

  5. Mary, when illness strikes, and in such a frightening way, all we can do is to give our whole self to that situation. You have no need to apologise for being absent. I am so sorry that your dear Bob was so stricken and pray that all will be well and that the further tests will be helpful. You know how often I went through the same thing, and it does take it out of you, so take care of you too. Much love. x

  6. Oh my goodness, Mary! I hope that Bob is on the mend now…what a worry for you. Please give him our best.

    Your garden must look stunning and to have the Cardinals so close by is a real treat!

    Meanwhile, here in South Devon, the weather is variable. After months of rain, everything is lush but it would now be good to have a longer spell of sunshine!

    Take care, Mary and look after yourself too!

    With love! Sal 😁

  7. It is nice to see a new post from you, Mary. My goodness, you have been dealing with a lot at one time. I am so sorry to hear about Bob's recent hospitalization. Will be keeping you both in my thoughts.
    Thankfully, your beautiful garden is offering a respite in the midst of everything. So sweet how the cardinal has set up housekeeping in your candle holder.
    Hugs to you and Bob!!

  8. Sending prayers to you both and hoping to see you soon, sweet friend! Jeannette

  9. I'm glad to read that your husband is recovering. That's a scary thing to go through.
    I enjoyed the views of your garden - more flowers than we have here in Illinois but we are getting there.
    Take care of yourself!

  10. I wish your husband a speedy recovery.
    Your garden is wonderful,
    a space that will help you relax and have good health.
    Mr. Cardinal made the most beautiful nest.
    It's a good sign.
    Have a beautiful week!

  11. As you know, I follow you on IG, so I knew about your new deck and Bob's hospitalization. Sometimes life gets very busy (and not in good ways!) and blogging has to take a back seat. It's so much quicker to post some photos and a blurb on IG. I haven't blogged in two months! Like you said, it takes a lot of work.

    I hope that Bob makes a full recovery and is back to his normal self soon. Between taking care of him and having to deal with contractors and all the work in your home, you have been through a lot lately. Take good care of yourself and try to get some rest. {{hugs}}

  12. Dear Mary, it is good to read a new blog from you, and hear about the reasons. I wish all my best to Bob!
    I took a longer pause from blogging too - needed time to rethink a bit, and whether it is worth all the time one needs. But I see: we both are back. So I am glad to see you again. Hugs, Britta xx

  13. Love your photos of the flowers. And yes, the rain this past Saturday. We live just south of you, below Angier. Our rain gauge recorded 2 1/4" of rain. Garden needed it but maybe not all at once.

  14. Dear Mary, I am so very sorry that you are having a difficult time. And I feel very sad that sweet Bob has been so very ill. I wish you both more happy days. Love, Gina.

  15. So glad to hear Bob is healing. Yes, Instagram is easy compared to blogging. At times I have thought of dropping the blog, but then it is a better record of what's happening for me. Your flowers are gorgeous and loved seeing your new deck on Instagram. Take care, dear ones!

  16. OK, why do I keep forgetting to say who is writing comments. That was me, Marilyn M.

  17. Dearest Mary, I came rushing over here having seen your comment on Britta's blog that all had not been well in your lovely world! I am so pleased to read that dear Bob is out of the woods, what a shock for you both that awful night had been. I wish him a fully and speedy recovery. And I hope your builders do an excellent job and your little Mrs. Cardinal has a similarly excellent result after her labours. Amazing you can watch it all from your window!

  18. How lovely that your husband is recovering! The blog is just like an diary, you write when time and thoughts are there.
    Best wishes for you now!

  19. Beautiful images of beautiful flowers. What a lovely surprise with the birds nest.

  20. Oh Mary, I'm so sorry to hear that Bob is poorly. It's a very stressful time for both of you , mentally as well as physically. Hopefully, the worst is over and you can now concentrate on getting Bob back to 100%. I have become very lazy with my blog .... I must do better !!! Your garden looks amazing as always.... so much colour. Ours is more 50 shades of green than colourful but I still love it. Having workmen in the house isn't my favourite thing even when they are lovely ..... I never know what to do with myself !!! Still, it will all be worth it when it's done Mary and you will forget all of the upheaval and enjoy what's been done. Give Bob a big kiss and a hug from me and wish him a speedy recovery. Sending much love from the UK. XXXX


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