The Garden Fairy at Work

fairyI feel the need to wave my magic garden wand this spring. Our small side yard garden has been so magical for 15 years while our kids were growing up.  The magic of Sally the Scarecrow(below), bean teepees, and low growing touchy feely herbs has been a delight for me(and my children!).


Time to sprinkle a little Pixie dust on the garden. We won’t forget the child like wonder, but I need to fill the void for whimsy and surprise as one of our birds leaves the nest.

I took a drive tonight past one of the gardens that will be on the Sacred Heart Garden Festival tour next week. The tiny front yard garden is full of twists, turns, contortions and angles that will confuse some, but delight others–like me.

My search is for a maze that will slow things down, an Alice in Wonderland garden all grown up. I almost stopped this evening as I saw the homeowner pruning and primping the plants with his magic wand.

I will wait with excitement, and that will be my first stop next Friday morning.


Blessings from the Garden.


Spade and Trowel

I am not a shopper. I promise. My husband may dispute this even though I stand firm. My patterns of purchase are made in peaks, then valleys(aaahhhh).

Looks like a slow death on an EKG then a revival.

bump                   bump                                            bump               bump bump

bump              bump                    fflllllaaaatttlllliiiiinnnneeee                  bump

On our 11 mile drive to the Tanger Outlets in Bluffton, SC, I wondered out loud how one could possibly spend an entire day shopping at these outlets. We arrived, and found ourselves in awe. Kate Spade, Nike, Abercrombie and Fitch, PacSun and on and on. There are at least 2 Tanger Outlets here. We had to stop for lunch at the Olive Garden to plan our attack so we would not lose ourselves in this shopping twilight zone.


We returned with bags of clothing, a large Kate Spade bag and 2 pair of Nikes for me so I can keep up with running buddy Julie. I dropped off the girls and headed to The Greenery on Hilton Head Island for a quick run through before closing time.







My therapy.










































New ideas.













Crossing off my plant list.















Nectar of the Gods.











Sorry Kate, but I swoon over a different spade!

Blessings from the Garden.


April Announcement~ Transcendental Tomatoes


I am at the beach ready to get home to plant tomatoes. It’s that time of year.  We will have a winner of the Master’s Golf Tournament tomorrow, school will be back in session, and we are ready to get down and dirty! right?

The transcendentalist Henry Thoreau said

“Nature spontaneously keeps us well.  Do not resist her!”


Bell Peppers

Hot Peppers



Bush Bean seeds

Corn seeds

Okra seeds

At the very least, plant a tomato.

green tomatoes

Blessings from the Garden.



HHI Dining.

Thanks again Facebook friends for the many recommendations below on where to go for good food on Hilton Head Island!


So far, we’ve been to…

It’s Greek to Me

I had Greek salad and small cup of lentil soup–delish. I sampled Roberts Gyro plate and it too, was very good. The lamb was seasoned just right, the beans crisp and the potatoes served authentic Greek style. Marianna and Emma had just the right size pita pizzas. Fresh toppings. Sam had a Gyro wrap. He ate half at the restaurant, then scarfed the rest down yesterday for a snack. We sampled the baklava with shredded phyllo and it, too, was fantabulous. The service was genuine. Our waiter sounded like he was fresh off the boat from Santorini. Delightful.

Kenny B’s Cajun Seafood Hut

Seemed like we were headed into a Chinese take out place. Kenny B’s is small, but had enough room for the 8 of us. Saw two people from Augusta, so figured this must be a good place. I had crab cake with a generous salad. Robert had VooDoo pasta which I don’t think he could finish because the portion was so large. Sam had shrimp and grits. He said it was a bit spicy, but he lapped up that grits! Emma almost finished her grilled chicken po boy, and Marianna had a cajun grilled taco.Best thing? The bill was not too painful!

Red Fish

The Red Fish website is top notch. I made reservations here because we had 6 adults, and the impression from the website made it seem as if they would be crazy busy. The menu revealed some pricey menu items so we decided to make this an adult night out. We had reservations for 7:15p, arrived about 7:30 and there was no wait for our table. Trendy looking place and very friendly staff. I ordered the blue cheese salad and the shrimp spring rolls.  Both very tasty. Robert had flounder which he said was OK. Our guests split the lobster and shrimp burger. Good call since it was huge. Another guest ordered the flounder which he finished.  I don’t think this is a place to go for value, but if you are looking for a wow-zer wine list, local artisan jewelry, and some trendy menu items, then by all means give it a shot.

Tonight it’s Mellow Mushroom. We decided to let our friends pick their place tonight. The kids will enjoy a night out, and the parents a cheap date.

We have 3 nights left here. Can it be?? I still want to try Sante Fe and go to Skull Creek Boathouse for some finger swelling seafood. Back on track next week. Eating tiny pumpernickel sammiches for lunch accompanied by protein chips…YUM>

see you soon.


Dining on HHI

Wow. Ask on Facebook and ye shall receive. After an exhausting cleaning marathon at home, we arrived at Number 27 Beach Villas.  We stayed in one of these units last year and it was PERFECT. Three levels, the boys in the dungeon with video/tv/whateverboysdo.   Then a kitchen/living area, and 2 bedrooms on the top floor.

One step into number 27 and I thought “cat pee”. I am usually the fussy one so I decided not to say anything unless someone else said something first. Plus I was seeing double from the last minute rush to get out of my house in Augusta.  We unloaded the cars, then found ourselves sitting in the main room when Daddy said, “this place is a dump”. OK.

Thank you! Long story short–I volunteered to call the management person, he told us to go next door to Ocean Club number 8. So here we are. Completely remodeled. I spent most of the day on the rooftop deck catching up on email and reading all of your Facebook suggestions for HHI eateries.

Last night we ate at the familiar “It’s Greek to Me” and it was, as usual, delicious. I had a Greek salad and a small cup of lentil soup. Daddy- Gyro Plate . I tasted the lamb on this plate and it was extremely tender and delish. The Girls gobbled up pita pizzas and Sam devoured a Gyro wrap. The eggplant appetizer was garlicky, but we finished it up! We shared a baklava that had shredded phyllo on top which we thought was coconut. After sharing stories about Greece and Greek food, we ended up at Number 8.

So thank you for all the suggestions!! We are off to Kenny B’s tonight with some friends. Will report later. xo ML

PS. OH…Happy hour at Number 8 tomorrow 5:30. We will have wine and beer and a little snacky snack. Let me know if you will be here. ML


7 Update and Weekly Assignment

We have been slightly off track due to a death in my family and another planned obligation. So part of our group met on Friday, closed the chapter on food, then discussed the clothing and possessions chapters. Although they are separate chapters, we agreed they are very similar since clothing ARE possessions!!



Some of us in the group feeling defensive of Jen’s seemingly making us feel guilty. We concluded that you can give and give and give to the poor, but not change too much of the cyclical root problems. On the other hand, we concluded that pressing on with good works of generosity—If just one person benefits–it’s worth it.

With this in mind we came up  with two assignments for this week:

1. Count the number of clothing items in your closet that are available to you on a daily basis. Come to the group with the number of items you have.

2.  Tackle some of your “possessions” before Thursday and put those you really don’t need in a bag.  Bring the bag(s) to our meeting this Thursday. A member of our 7 group will take the bags to Catholic Social Services after our meeting. This can be clothing or household items. Yes, CSS does sell items, but they also help families/individuals in need of setting up a home.

3. We will begin reading and tackling the “media” chapter during Master’s week. Come prepared to discuss how you can trim down your use of media to make room for God’s work in your life.

All present on Friday agreed that the workbook is a great resource–a “Spark Notes” for the book!! We watched part of the You Tube video interview with Jen on Friday, too.You can Google that interview on possessions if you want to watch at home.

The main goal of the group is to clear the clutter so that God can do His work.

It’s a busy week–tackle those assignments in conjunction with your Master’s prep.





Camellias in Bloom

flowersforlisaclark50th 001

I was fortunate that my 50+ Camellia bushes remained unscathed by the recent ravages of ice storm PAX.  In fact, the blooms have been magnificent this spring!  I was just flipping through Martha Tate’s book, Margaret Moseley’s A Garden to Remember,  admiring the loveliness of Mrs. Moseley’s Camellia collection.

Camellias add such strength to a garden because the leaves are a deep green and remain all year long. Camellias can grow to be 25 feet (or more) high and wide!


Camellias are a must have for the purposeful gardener. I use camellia blossoms and leaves to create colorful flower arrangements and also for boutonnieres. Pictured below are a dozen arrangements created with Camellia blooms, ranunculus and roses. Adding a touch of the unexpected such as home-grown camellias completes a lovely eye catching centerpiece.


According to Margaret Moseley, beginning gardeners should purchase plants in collections. Research the colors and petal configurations that appeal to you, then begin adding them to your landscape/garden.

I am fortunate to have Jim Stutts down the street. We have over 50 of his Camellias in our landscape and side garden thanks to him.  He is our regional Camellia expert, and very generous to neighborhood newcomers sharing his passion for Camellias.

So if you are changing up the garden or your landscape this spring, start your list of Camellias. They will add good structure to the garden and grace your table with bountiful blooms!



7 Group Experiment Update.


imageAn update on our experiment with Jen Hatmaker’s “7 An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess” .  We have met as a group only one time. My mother’s brother, Frankie, passed away last week, so we postponed our second meeting until this week.

Our group has finished the chapter on clothes and most of us have finished the next chapter on possessions, which is very similar to the clothing chapter. I immediately got to work on my closet.

This is great timing. The Master’s golf tournament is around the corner which means a week of strangers living in our home.


I should have counted what I took out of the closet, because it looks like I never started! I happened to pick up ‘Simple Abundance’, turned to March 25. The post was about clothing! The author proposes that the only clothes in our closet be those that fit us well and that we absolutely love. Every day would be perfect if this were the case.

Wondering if I can get there.

Are you already there?