First the roses.
The red one is a Chrysler Imperial, a climber that I got from my Mum. It has a story. It was a climber that she had been given as a gift, and my Dad planted it out the front of the house on a larger frame. It got heaps of sun, and would go mad, climbing 7-8 feet high, covered in mid-sized scarlet red blooms with THE most knockout fragrance. In 1994 my Dad retired and within a month had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He loved this rose bush and I have a photo of him cutting back this climber for his last time. After he died (4 months to the day from diagnosis, 5 months after retiring, and 1 month after turning 65) we were comforted by the blooms of his favourite rose. And later in the season, Mum took cuttings from the bush and had four new bushes grafted as presents for us four girls. We all planted them at our homes and every bloom seemed like a present from Dad. I am the only one still living in the house with the rose. All the rest of my family have since moved house, including Mum. It is my favourite rose, and never fails to knock my socks off with its scent. Don built me the rose arbour to house it, and I have many memories of him building it, my sister sitting under it as she recovered from surgery for ovarian cancer, and family photos beneath it following my Nanna's funeral a few months later. I love it to bits. I plan to get new bushes made/grafted again for Mum and my sisters.
The other rose is either a little pink Iceberg, or a David Austin rose called Sharif Asma, both of which are near the back door in large pots. They are always producing little blooms and are fairly hardy and indestructible. The pink glass with it was a candleholder gift from one of my sisters.
This big bush is a Banksia near my front door, outside my bedroom window. It is quite spectacular this year. On one or two days a year, flocks of enormous black cockatoos alight on the plant and eat the blossoms from the banksia cones, leaving an incredible mess, but having such a raucous time doing it that one can't be cross with them! It is amazing to watch them having this 'flash-mob' style party. One year they woke me up with all the activity only 3 metres from my bed!
Anyway, that photo is there because Lesley arrived last week for a birthday cuppa, and just loved the Banksia, so we took our photo with it in the background, before having a spot of candle-blowing out with CAKE! She and her Mum then returned for dinner, after the day's visiting at the hospital finished.
Happy birthday Les! We had plans for posting the same photos on our blogs simultaneously, but Les is a bit computer and time deprived currently, so there will be a delay. We have had all sorts of fun together while she has been back, I will miss her dreadfully when she returns to San Diego. We splurged on vintage Japanese obis on Tuesday....there were so many to choose from. We were also spoilt by our local hairdresser friend with a gift of fabric from a local designer close-out. When I say fabric, I mean BOLTS !!! So much to choose from! Thanks Maggie, what a honey! I dare say its not the last you will see of that fabric. I'm sure some of it will make its way back to you! I definitely feel a few bags coming on (if I can just stay home long enough).
Anyway, really must dash. I have a to-do list a mile long to accomplish today before getting on a plane again for Melbourne and the last wedding of the month. Our niece's, it is sure to be utterly gorgeous, but she has just called me and warned me that it is pouring with rain and bitterly cold in Melbourne, so bring warm gear! Consider ourselves warned! I haven't even started my own packing yet!
Hmm, the red dress may be a bit cool, back up plans aho!
I'm away for 9 days and then work for 2 days straight away, so if I don't mange to post anything I'll be thinking of you!