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Victoria Lauren, taken at her MawMaw’s house during July, 2013.

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The morning of her 15th Birthday.

Fifteen.  My girl is fifteen.  I am not sure how that happened.  We have rocked and sang and gone to sleep and woken up and shopped for clothes and had talks and laughed ourselves silly and participated in learning how to cook and do laundry and sew and fifteen years has just flown by.  She’s a happy girl.  She is smart and good and kind and loving and gorgeous.  She does NOT like change or mayonnaise  or meanness  or being called Vicky.  She is fifteen.


With her decorations waiting for her friends to arrive.

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She had a VERY SPECIFIC cake color preferenceps blog Victoria 15th B-day Party 7.25.13 014

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A bunch of other fifteen year old girls having pink and orange cake and pizza.PS Blog Victoria 15th B-day Party 7.25.13 020

Getting ready to do the art project while eating fruit pizza.  Victoria made Kate blog Victoria 15th B-day Party 7.25.13 008

Various other July pictures such as Victoria riding Hipper the Hippo the night we picked her up from Girl Scout camp.  I have a similar picture but it was taken in Montana, and I was on a blog July, 2013 057

The Girl with her kitty cat.  PS Blog 7.25.13 004 PS Blog 7.25.13 002

Giving Doc Suze’s trampoline a workout while visiting MawMaw.  ps July, 2013 006

Happy Birthday, Angel Girl.  I love you so, so much.  Thank you for making me a Momma, and for putting up with me while I learned how to be YOUR Momma in particular.

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Forget being planted. Just. Bloom.

I’ve had a blog post rattling around in my brain for awhile, but I’ve been waiting for a time to get it all written just right with the exact pictures I want for it, and now–this second– I say enough!  I’m slingin’ it out there and will straighten it up later.

Three springs ago I bought some flowers for the librarian at my old school who was retiring.

May, 2011 Vinca the First along with other lovely flowers for Margaret upon her retirement still in their flimsy flats with rich, black soil.

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I guess I bought a couple of hot pink vinca for myself as well, but they broiled to death that summer. Or so I thought.

I just went out on the porch to take this photo.  It’s after 10 p.m., so I held a flashlight in my teeth and took  this abysmal shot with my iPad mini on which I am now typing with one finger.  (Twenty minutes later I have determined that until I get a keyboard to use with my iPad mini, I will not be using it to blog, no matter my level of determination. . .therefore I can now use actual photos of the vinca for real, but I give you this as a nod to my willingness to throw caution and good photography skills to the wind.)

Photo horriblus of the Vinca Volunteer.  Those are some whacked out colors there.


You know that saying, “Bloom where you’re planted?”  That is what I’ve been thinking about for a very long time.  In fact, I think of it every time I step around this prodigious plant, ’cause this huge, blooming, survivor of a vinca was most certainly NOT planted.  It is what you call a volunteer.  Although why it would volunteer to plunk its roots down LITERALLY between a rock and a hard place , (aka: a brick walkway and a concrete slab)  is beyond me.  I assume the choices were put down some roots and get yourself a drink or die.  Obviously,  much like lantana and plumbago and some other hearty plants, this vinca is one that even I can’t kill.  But seriously, it didn’t HAVE to live.

I’m not even sure how it survived.  It volunteered itself the summer of the huge wildfire(s).  And SURVIVED a very, very long time with no one giving it water on purpose.  It IS growing right under the eve of our (gutterless) roof, therefore it gets watered a lot when it rains (which it didn’t from like March until the middle of September that first year).  It also  gets the ever loving daylights beaten out of it by the torrents pouring off the (gutterless) roof when it DOES rain.  The first time we got a for really, truly storm I nearly cried at it all pummeled and flattened to death.  Bye, bye, Sweet Vinca.

But the next morning, it had straightened itself up quite nicely and was putting out more blooms.  By the next day it was in a growth spurt and practically strutting–at least in essence.

This being my point.

Sometimes we aren’t planted. 

Sometimes we are tossed into the compost pile like some watermelon seeds I threw out at my old house.   Sometimes we are left in a pot awaiting transport or determination of where we are supposed to go permanently like some azaleas Tony hasn’t put into the ground yet.  Sometimes we are put somewhere that isn’t supposed to be our final spot, but negligence and forgetfulness  (and life) happen and before you know it, it’s either make it work or die.  Sometimes we end up being in an unlikely or  uncomfortable place where we really weren’t planning to be.  It may not even be where we are “supposed” to be.  The thing is–the watermelon seeds grew more watermelons, and we ate one that October which is NOT watermelon season.  Even in the south.  The azaleas are sitting in the pots in which they rode to our house March of 2012, but this spring when the ones in the ground bloomed, the homeless ones did too. The vinca  despite all odds survived rather than  burning slap up and is now a gorgeously, flowering plant that neither my order-loving husband nor I want to rip out of its unlikely home.

Why is there a Volunteer Vinca growing out of a quarter inch gap between our brick walkway and our concrete slab?  I really couldn’t tell you.   I can’t miss it–that’s for sure.  It’s large, covered in hot pink flowers, and is in. the. way.  But it makes me think.  And it makes me smile.

We can grow or we can die.  Those are the only options.  Merely existing is just a living death. And if there is enough life left for us to grow–even if we weren’t planted?  Well. . .we can still bloom.

“And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.”  Matthew 6:28 & 29

Volunteer Vinca:  A Photo Journey

You can see the Vinca Volunteer under Thad’s arm.  Obviously October of 2011.  Two little sproutlets that somehow grew despite horrible draught, burning heat, and downright neglect.  We were too lazy to even pull up the first shoots we saw.Vinca Blog

June, 2012.  Just a little over a year ago, we were astounded at how it had survived and grown.  At least I was.  You can still see it there between the rock and the hard place.Vinca Blog Summer, 2012 002

September, 2012 was when it really started showing off what with the rain and cooler temperatures.  This was when the thought began forming in my mind.Vinca Blog September 2012 014

And, tonight.  July21, 2013.  It’s a little beaten up due to a storm we had earlier today, but it’s already bouncing back.  We had some hard freezes over the winter so that at one point it was just brown sticks, yet here it is–about three feet across and the tallest stems about 12-16 inches high.  Amazing.Vinca Blog July, 2013 058


And beating a dead horse. . .this morning, July 22, 2013, in the light.



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It looks to me like the collective is giving this little offshoot a pep talk.Vinca Blog July 22, 2013 002