The Lord will carry you in your long journey my dearest Anna. I will buy an African Violet that you loved so much. It will forever remind me of you so I will cherish that African Violet as if it was you and it will have a very special place in my garden.
Mar 26, 2008 | 2:30 PM PST
I am so thankful that I have a place to go when I wake up in the morning. The only time I do not think of my sister Anna is when I go to my garden, check which flowers are blooming, weed, water and just about do anything I can think of to forget, otherwise, all that is in my mind is imagine how my sister had been suffering in the last 2 to 3 months. Why the Almighty is prolonging her pain, I have no answer, only to believe that He is the one to decide, not me, not the doctors, not her family. I know she will leave us soon and for her it will end but it won't end for us she will leave behind. I was up late today, almost past 7:30 a.m. I went outside to my garden and there where blooming clematis today, Ruby Glow completely covering the planter with its many blooms, Grandiflora up in the arbor, Lasurstern, Multi Blue, Niobe and Empress. And I can see the freesias enticing a bee with its fragrance. I would like to cut them all off and give them to her as a token of my love but she can't even hear me or see me anymore, just breathing to let us know the Lord has not yet taken her away. It will be soon, my loving sister.
I was planning to prune the Apple Blossom clematis today as it has finished its flowering. But then, I noticed that there were two blooming clematis on AB's arbor. I thought that I trailed a Jackmanii to that arbor. As it turned out, it was not Jack, a purple clematis, but Guernsey Cream. Whew! was I glad that it was GC. GC is a type 2 and Jack is a type 3. I would have such a headache come pruning time for Jack. When I first started planting clematis 4 years ago, I did not know hoot about them. It was a learning process but of course, as I was so eager to start my garden, I combined a purple clematis, Jackmanii, and a white clematis, GC. I thought it would look marvelous to see the two colors blooming in one trellis but they are of different pruning type. Well, lessons learned by mistakes. I just have to be overly careful come pruning time. This year, I just pruned them both the same to a height of 1 ft except for the long long stem of GC trailing on the arbor.
Mar 23, 2008 | 8:48 AM PST
Wow, even though it was cold and windy, it was a pleasant surprise to attend my first outdoor Easter service. Glad that I bundled up as advised. The service was held up on a hill with a single white cross. The road was long and narrow but getting there was half the fun. The hill was close enough to see the bottom of the mountains where a few cows were grazing. Too bad the sheeps were not there, the first time in years, as they said, that they were not. Now I know that from my house, these were the mountains that I can see from my backyard. There was also a beautiful creek near the road. The whole view was an awesome sight, a huge farmland with only a single old red barn and nothing else but mountains and the all green grazeland. The beauty of it all was a sight to see. How can one not believe that there is a higher power creating this beauty? I wish I had taken my camera (maybe someday just to go see the sights again). And then comes the service as the sun was rising. I was so overwhelmed, from the sermon, to the rising sun, the mountains, the creek, and the vast green land. I know if Christ did not die, there is no life hereafter. Happy Easter my dearest Anna, your life will begin anew.
First one ahead of them all except Apple Blossom is clematis Ruby Glow to open up today. One taken in the shade is sharper than the one taken in full sun. Clematis on the Web says that its color can range from ruby red to purple pink. I don't know what color to call this, lavender? lilac? light purple? It shows no pink at all. First one was taken in full sun, kind of fuzzy but second was taken in the shade.
Today is Palm Sunday. At church service’s prayer request, I asked that Our Lord takes Anna home. At the service, all I could think of was my sister Anna. I often wondered why God is prolonging her sufferings. Maybe it is to bring us closer to Him, that nothing is more important in our lives than to know Him and have a relationship with Him.
She would slip into a coma now and then but would wake up stronger in spirits even when her body is withering physically. I was told that a couple of days ago when she woke up, she said that she dreamt that she is not terminally ill and she is happy in her dream and in the garden I made for her. She was admiring the lilac and white bougainvillea that I planted in one spot and wondering why there are two colors in one plant. You see, there really are two plants in that one spot as I planted them together myself, a white and lilac bougainvillea. She had seen the blooms on those plants and carried the image to her dream. When she woke up, she asked why she was in her sick room, that she thought she was in the garden. So she asked to be taken to the garden, as weak and ill as she was. She did not want to be taken back to her sick room. She wanted to stay in the garden and enjoy the sun and the flowers. So you see, a garden is really paradise here on earth when you know that a terminally ill woman can still enjoy the garden, the flowers and the beauty of it all.
I got a phone call from my niece today that Anna has gone back into coma. I cried my heart out again and got very depressed as I am here in California and not able to hug and kiss her as she is in our native land. As I was helpless and depressed, I went to the living room and looked outside. A little brown bird then flew in front of the lawn close enough for me to enjoy the way it was walking so slowly, looking around and trying to find what it was looking for. I wondered maybe it was not looking around for something. Maybe God sends it my way to lift me up and dry my tears. The small bird stayed a very long time, walking around and around, pecking on the grass and coming back closer to the window. I watched that bird and I forgot everything as I was fascinated by the way it was walking. I will never forget that sight, a bird waving its tail to me, showing me its graceful walk, God’s way of telling me that we are all His creatures and He takes care of all of us, and enabling me to be strong enough to write this blog.
Again, I beg pardon if you happen to read my blog and you’re offended. If not, I humbly asks of you to just say a little prayer for Anna.
I spent all day today gardening. It gave me some peace of mind, forgetting a little bit what I am feeling all day. My younger sister is in coma again today. She is now down to 80 lbs. and having morphine day in and day out to ease her pain from pancreatic cancer. Gardening since I woke up at 5 a.m., no lunch yet and it is now 3:30 p.m. I finally stopped and went inside for lunch but even that I can't seem to do. I feel the hunger pain but really no appetite so instead I am writing this blog, just to get this terrible feeling out of my system. Gardening truly helps and the crying. It relinquishes my soul. Anna, my sister, you will be in heaven soon where there will be no more tears nor pain. It is okay to let go. And say hi to mom and dad too when you get there. I am sure they are waiting for you with open arms. I love you so. P.S. So sorry if I offend anyone.
I saw this flower blooming today. I do not remember planting this because I generally keep tabs of the name of what I plant. This was growing in a very shady location and looked wilted so I transplanted it last year to a sunny location - in front of a clematis florida sieboldii to give the clematis some shade in its roots. It is now blooming and I am really curious as to what this flower is. It is somewhat greenish in color with large leaves.
Today, I used my compost soil to add to my potted clematis. Soil is still a little wet but good enough as topmost soil on the planters. The soil looks so good but eggshells were not fully decompost. I need to wait and see if the plants will be healthier using this compost soil. Thanks, Bill Mitchell. I added just a little bit of peat moss as you suggested and look and see, I was able to use the compost today.
Per your request, here is AB's home. It is planted on this arbor on the right side of this picture and on the left is rosa Zephirine Drouhin (no bloom yet). AB is a clematis Armandii, a group A clematis, an evergreen which can grow up to 20 ft. and blooms early spring. Most clematis generally leap on their 3rd year, i.e. lots and lots of blooms if pruned properly on their 1st and 2nd year. I also trail a stem from a nearby obelisk to add to this arbor, a clematis jackmanii because I mistakenly pruned one stem which I thought was dead a few months after I planted it.
For Anna, my younger sister, I dedicate this blog. Yesterday, when she woke up in her coma, she asked to be taken to the garden I made for her. With her frail body at now 80 lbs, she still wanted to see the garden one more time. Although I am now away from her and she is in PI to wait for our Lord to take her home, I was told that the first thing she asked for when she woke up was to see the garden. She wonders still at the awesome beauty of the orange hibiscus, one blooming after another one fades away. How can she have the strength to still wonder at God's beautiful creation with death looming anytime now? As her husband always says to us, if we could only have a 10th of the strength and courage she is showing us, we should be thankful. Yes, I am thankful that she is braver than me. I am thankful that it won't be me to show the weakness of myself when faced with such certainty of death, and not to be able to lead my family to an acceptance of the inevitable. My sister Anna is such a wonderful and precious lady that is showing me and us all how to die with dignity, even with more than 2 months of pain and suffering, and a morphine diet day in and day out. To you my sister, I salute you for you have shown me courage I can never imagine. May God carry you in the palm of his hands when it is time to go. But know that I love you wherever you will be, your sister, D.
Mar 5, 2008 | 1:56 PM PST
WOW! I wish I could be so lucky. Today, I received another email that I won a UK lottery among millions of people with emails and I was one of 4 winners. It was for 835 thousand pounds or roughly $1,658,000. Two weeks ago, I received another so called NL lottery that I was among six winners of 1,935,000 Euros, that's about $2.9 million. And I can't even win a $5 California lottery. Too many scams going on. I just marked those emails as unsafe. My nephew from Toronto was scammed for 10 thousand Canadian dollars through these scams. So be careful, just a warning.
Mar 4, 2008 | 12:14 PM PST
These clematis (some bloomed before and others just completely disappeared) are still not showing anything as of today: Group B - Franziska Marie, The President, Kiri Te Kanawa,Natascha, Minuet, Edith, Lord Nevill, Piilu and Edomuraski; Group A - montana Peveril, Pink Flamingo, Markham's Pink and Snowdrift; Group C - Alba Luxurians, Hagley Hybrid, & Minuet. What did I do wrong???. I know I planted some tulips on Pink Flamingo and Markham's Pink space. This is agonizing to say the least, not knowing if they are still alive.
Mar 4, 2008 | 11:52 AM PST
Clematis Apple Blossom beats them all. It has hundreds of buds yesterday but today It was the first clematis to bloom this season. This day is special too for me as my sister Anna is now in and out of her comma. Maybe the flowers bloom just for her.