Road Trip – Lavender Farm in Michigan

FFEDB355-5406-4D0E-AA1D-C99E01543143When I lived in Seattle, I tried to explore as much as I could. One thing I didn’t make it to was a Lavender Farm. It’s not that I buy lavender all the time, I just wanted to see the beautiful field of purple flowers blowing in the wind.

Good news, I have a chance to see lavender in Michigan. I grew up in Indiana, I know about corn, lettuce and sunflowers, but I didn’t realize across the border there were lavender farms. As a child, we did go blueberry picking in Michigan. We ATE a lot as we picked!! Luckily, the farmers never weighed us before and after, who knows what our bill would have been.

Here is where I am going in a few weeks. The Cherry Point Farm & Market, click on the link. They created a special lavender labyrinth. Now, their website says they lost a lot of lavender in early 2019 due to the Polar Vortex we had. They started re-planting Spring 2019, so it might not be as beautiful as in the website photos, but I will ENJOY walking through a labyrinth. I’ve never done that before.

My mother read many stories from Greek Mythology. King Minos and the labyrinth he had built was one of them. I will be thinking of this as I walk through the maze.

Europe has said borders are closed to American travelers. They are worried about a second wave of COVID. No traveling to Italy this year. So, that means we start explorations near our own home towns. 2020 – the year for change.

Porch swings… Are they a Southern thing?

DBE1BA3D-1D86-454C-BEA6-EA574BA1143AI have always liked the idea of a porch swing. Growing up near Lake Michigan, we would string up a hammock between two trees OR bring a lawn chair down to the beach to watch the sunset. A porch swing with lemonade was what we saw in the movies.

I was pleasantly surprised when I saw Felder Rushing’s Blog post, “Put a Bounce in Your Swing.” His story is wonderfully written about his father’s love for the porch swing and fine tuning the springs, so that it would be a perfect ride. The swing was also a place where his father’s creative ideas were imagined!

Reading Felder’s post reinforced why I have always found the idea of a porch swing relaxing. There is something traditional about taking time for ourselves to sit, swing, let our minds wander and enjoy nature.

Oh, and if you believe in saints, Felder has you covered. GET THIS, St. Proculus of Verona is known as the swinging saint. I would never have known this! You can read about him here…  “Swinging Garden Saints.

That brings me back to my question, “Why do porch swings seem to be a Southern thing?”

Need some LADYBUGS, buy Geraniums.

IMG_3514I enjoy gardening. When Spring comes I have favorite flowers. I love impatiens and geraniums. Imaptiens remind me of Carmel, CA, beautiful bedding plant, but they do need watering every day. Geraniums though, they are a hardy flower that bloom constantly with little care.

IMG_3510Recently, I went to the gardening store and was looking for geraniums in this pinkish/redish color. I looked down and this particular geranium was FULL of ladybugs. Of course, I smiled and was transported to my childhood when the “first” ladybug I ever saw had landed on my arm. This little bug was so pretty, sweet and dainty and when it walked up my arm it felt like a little tickle when it moved. My second thought was, “WOW – I must be in for some REALLY GOOD LUCK, there are a lot of ladybugs here!” My third and final thought was, how are there so many ladybugs on “THIS” particular geranium?

So, I read the little instruction sticker and it said that this particular geranium attracts ladybugs to it, which is good for your garden, because ladybugs eat different insects. DID YOU KNOW THAT? I didn’t.

When I got home I Googled “ladybugs” and found that in Europe ladybugs are called “ladybirds.” Not sure that I can see how a ladybug resembles a bird except for the wings it has. At the same time, it made me think that this sweet beautiful little creature does not look like a “bug” either. My research found that ladybugs “are known” for bringing “good luck!”

So, with this post, I share my ladybugs with you.

Let’s see what luck comes our way!