It’s The Little Things

In the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter, and sharing of pleasures. For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed. Khalil Gibran

I’ve always loved this quote. It’s beautiful, lyrical and true.

This little nest landed in the garden under the Chinese pistache tree. I spotted it in the tree late last year after the leaves dropped for the winter. Before I could take a picture, it came down in the wind. It is actually illegal to remove a bird’s nest, but once it’s on the ground…and empty, you can pick it up and admire mama bird’s nesting skills. I kept the little nest indoors through the wet months, then returned it to the garden for bird recycling.

Bird's Nest

Bird’s Nest

My friend Marcia and her lovely daughters dropped of this sweet little heart on Valentine’s Day. It’s a birdseed cake, shaped into a heart and ready for hanging in the garden. I love this little heart, and the big hearts that placed it on our doorstep.

birdseed heart

Heart Shaped Birdseed Cake

And on the subject of big hearts and little things, my friend Kelly, sent me a few packets of sweet pea seeds for our summer garden. She thoughtfully included purples, so that when my purple-loving sister stopped by, she could enjoy them too.

sweet pea seeds and gift bag

Sweet pea seeds from Kelly

Those tiny seeds didn’t amount to much in the first year, leaving me wondering what I did wrong. I take it personally when I can’t get something to grow.

Last year, they came up on their own, filling a corner nicely till the first heat wave laid them low. Like me, they wilt in the heat. They were stunning while in bloom though, and those little seeds taught me a thing or too along the way.

sweet peas

Sweet Peas, 2015

This year something big happened. It rained. Then it rained some more. I noticed seedlings spreading all over the front garden, right next to the newly planted California natives. Those little seedlings shot up and out and eventually filled out an entire corner of the front garden.

sweet pea collage Nov to April

Self Sown Garden

The garden is flourishing with an all-volunteer mixture of sweet peas (Lathyrus odoratus), love-in-a-mist (Nigella damascena) and bachelor buttons also known as cornflowers (Centaurea cyanus).

Now that I have several blooms, I’m going to start cutting indoor bouquets. The scent is out of this world.

sweet pea blooms april 2016

Bachelor’s buttons, pink and blue, Love-in-a-mist in the background, lavender and fuchsia sweet peas

“…for in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.”

What is your favorite little thing?

32 thoughts on “It’s The Little Things

  1. Yet again I’ll mention [have I before?] how funny I have found it that contrary nature waits for you to strip it all out and plant the natives – then contrarily she sends rain and all the cottage flowers are voluntarily with you again 🙂 It’s so pretty – and when it is done the natives will happily come out to play. Win – win Alys xoxo

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  2. That Boomdee is such a giver!! She gets it right every time!
    I adore how the country garden is springing up for you now you have your natives planted…. Gotta love nature and her marvelous sense of humour. 😉

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    • Danella, she’s a wonderful gift-giver, and dear friend and the best at wrapping and presentation, hands down. I learn from her every day.

      Nature’s gifts are equally in abundance this year, with love and with humour. I love it.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Just look at those sweet peas! I love that you put the nest back out for the birds to recycle, no doubt it will be reincarnated as another nest in no time at all.

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  4. Will the newly-planted native plants be okay, even though they’re currently overwhelmed by the pretty blooms? Enjoy those flowers while you can–they’re lovely!

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    • Thank you, Kerry. I’ve wondered the same thing, but since the cottage flowers are only covering about three of the new natives I’m hoping they’ll spring back. If not, I’ll happily replace the few that lose out on the sun.

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  5. That was a bonus indeed. And I loved seeing Mouse enjoy the view. Such a ham that one. It’s looking so lovely and now you have more seeds to plant. Gift packaging is a Boomdee special. You know exactly who made it by looking at it. 🙂 What a treasure.

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    • That’s it exactly: a rainy-year bonus of gorgeous and prolific blooms!

      Mouse is a ham. He loves being in the center of everything and often head-butts the camera mid-shot. He’s great company.

      Yes, Boomdee packaging is one of a kind. A treasure indeed. xo

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  6. Heavens to Mergatroide !! You’ve really got the bonus bloom full on there! They look like they’re on steroids. I’m so glad you got them to come back and dazzle you, how fun! Thanks for sharing the photo’s and there’s Mr Mouse, LOL. He could hide out in there until his girlfriend saunters by. They’re really so delicate and pretty. I had a very tiny little vase that I’d put them in. I wish they lasted longer when brought in but thankfully it doesn’t take too many to make a cute little display. I can’t wait to get mine going xoxo kiss kiss

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    • Aren’t they amazing? It just goes to show you that nature knows best. They did okay in the drought, but they’re happiest when the rain germinates the seeds. I’m calling it “the jungle” as each bit of earth is filled with sweet peas, cornflowers and love-in-a-mist, and they’re all supporting each other. I did eventually stake a trellis, and that too has been covered with blooms. It makes my heart sing every day. My entire neighborhood thanks you for those magic seeds.

      I cut several at the end of the week, and I think they lasted about four days. I keep several small jars and a few vases for these tiny blooms.

      Will you plant yours from seed or from starters?

      Liked by 1 person

      • (( Waving )) “Hello entire neighbourhood, it’s me, the girl from Canada” LOL

        I have my sweet pea seeds soaking as we speak. We had a few terrific days and I’m itching to get out there. Oh so dusty everywhere and I need to do a major clean up of snow/grass yuck and old leaves that fell after the fall cleanup. I wanted to use the garden hose today. Jim’s leary that overnights can still be 0 (32 F). But I need to spray everything down before I can work in the yard. I LOVE summer !! Even when winter is mild, it’s still time spent for the most part, ‘inside’. “Must….. get….. outside” (say it with angst, like captain Kirk)..snicker xoxo

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  7. There are too many ‘favourite little things’ to list… raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens… etc; it would blow up your blog – lol. I love how the sweet peas woke up this year after the rain and the thoughtful gift your friend Marcia dropped off; did she make it herself and if so, how?

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    • Sara, I like your optimism. It’s the stuff of life that makes us happiest, isn’t it? All the “little things” that bring daily joy.

      Marcia is quite crafty and made these little hearts with her two girls. There are recipes on line if you search “bird cakes” or “bird suet” if it is something you want to try. I think they’re shaped with cookie cutters.

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    • Thank you, Lisa! I’m enjoying it every day, all the more so since we’ve had so many dry years in a row. We had another storm over the weekend, which once again filled my tanks to capacity. It’s been wonderful.

      Yes, Kelly and brilliant gift presentation go hand in hand. She’s the bomb!

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  8. What a treat to see your garden progress through the winter months, Alys! Your special sweet peas will make such pretty, delicate bouquets. Best of all, they will remind you of a special friend. ♥ Seeds are some of my favorite little things, too! They hold our hopes and dreams! We must wait until mid-May to sow our seeds here. In the meantime, daffodils and forsythia blossoms add bright, sunny spots of color to the garden. At the moment, snowflakes are falling over my garden! Such crazy Spring weather in the Midwest this year! ♡

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    • Daffodils and forsythia are both a brilliant shade of yellow. What a nice thing to have popping up from the snow, Dawn. I’ve been reading about this late season snow on several blogs. What a shock.

      I just ordered the Susan Branch book. Thanks for the reminder. We can trade notes. 🙂

      I knew you would enjoy little seeds. They’re full of hope and promise for tomorrow.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. So glad you got a good rain. Those sweet peas are gorgeous. I never thought to save nests to put it for birds the next season. Will try. My favorite little thing is sniffing each new iris blossom that blooms in my front yard. It’s been an amazing iris year!

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    • Sniffing iris blossoms sounds like a wonderful little thing, Leilani. They’re extraordinary.

      Do you find many nests in your garden or nearby trees? We have a few squirrels nests in our orange tree, but they seem to fall apart over the years and come down in bits and pieces.

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