The Sunshine Factor

where sunshine is a way of life


From Peony Palace to Hibiscus Haven

An unidentified white peony blossom.

An unidentified white peony blossom. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When Dave and I were house shopping for one of our homes, I was standing in the backyard of one of our choices when a picture flashed through my mind. I imagined a whole backyard full of peony bushes. I had always loved them at my aunt’s house, had read that they could live hundreds of years, and were a science lesson – near the blossoms’ opening date each June, you would be able to see ants working hard at opening the petals. I said to Dave, “we could call this house Peony Palace!” It turns out we didn’t buy that house, but later on I did plant a perennial garden under the bay window of our kitchen, and there were many peony bushes. 🙂

I’ve told you recently how Dave and his mom gifted me with many, many, MANY big flower pots as my birthday gift. Well, one of the two smaller plants is a hibiscus. It delights me every day with a new blossom. I am glad that in the story Eric and I are writing, I mention a hibiscus. 🙂 So yes, now my house has a new name, Hibiscus Haven.

It’s interesting how years and age can change things. When I was a little girl, I didn’t understand why my mom loved flowers so much and why my dad was such an enthusiastic gardener for her. Well, now I know! It’s something unexplainable, my love for flowers, but it’s come full circle for me. What a colorful life!





Poetry Saturday – Rose


Pink rose petals

Pink rose petals (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Amorpha fruticosa flowers. Note that unlike mo...

Amorpha fruticosa flowers. Note that unlike most other plants of the bean/legume family this one’s flowers only have one petal. Usually a bean flower has a large “standard”, two “wings” and two “keel” petals. Here, only the large standard petal is developed. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


When the dew

sparkles on your fragrant petals

I know it’s June


I think of my Aunt June

whose name I have for my middle name

(she was born in June, I was not)


Dear rose

you have so many lovely varieties

I like the peace rose most of all


Light yellow petals

with a soft pink in the middle of the flower

the fragrance even more delicate than other roses


To look upon you

I feel peace —

just like what is your name


Please try

to hang around longer this year

that way

I will remember to be

happy and smiling all year ’round



Happy June!

photo credit: terrydu via photopin ccMy favorite flower

photo credit: terrydu via photopin ccMy favorite flower

English: Russian Olive (Elaeagnus angustifolia)

English: Russian Olive (Elaeagnus angustifolia) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

June is one of my favorite months.  Here in the Twin Cities of Minnesota, the mosquitoes are not at their peak yet, so it’s easier to be outside.   The humidity is not so cumbersome yet.  In early June, the blossoms on the trees such as the crabapple and lilac bushes might still be around for a little while yet.

June seems to be the harbinger of new beginnings, such as graduation from school or college  –and weddings too.  For me, it’s always a time for me to take more walks outside and enjoy nature.

Trivia question:  do you know that in the beginning of the month of June, when you walk past a Russian olive tree, you can smell something spicy, like cinnamon?   My neighborhood had a lot of vacant lots where the deer and other critters lived, and the vacant lots were edged with my “cinnamon trees”.  Alas, now the new subdivision has moved in.  The deer and turkeys are still around; however, my walks don’t smell spicy anymore.  😦

I wish you a very happy month of June, and prayers go out for a safe and remarkable month for you.