Peace at Gardners

Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

Y’all know there’s not much that I love more than finding peaceful, awesome local businesses. Today, in my search for peace, I had to pop over to Gardners Landscape and Nursery in Chester Springs, PA. This spot is conveniently located just off Route 113, real near another fan favorite, The Chester Springs Creamery at Milky Way Farms.

The nursery has so much to offer, and the best part is that they don’t back down during the holidays.

“You know it’s like, winter, right?” Hubs told me when he heard my plans to venture out for plants.

I laughed. He laughed. I’m well aware of the changing seasons. But today it was 55 degrees in PA! That means I had enough warmth in my bones to move around outside and dig my fingers in the dirt (yaaasssss, I know I should wear gloves more often. I’m gross and it’s totally fine. I even touched a worm today, no big deal).

Today I wanted evergreen arrangements for the front porch and Gardners is where it’s at!

The shop features a huge greenhouse, which houses an impressive collection of indoor plants. This time of year, walking through the space feels just like being at Longwood, only each item at Gardners is available for purchase.

Their wreaths are gorgeous, offering a mix of sizes, colors and textures. Who knew there was so much pine to play with?

They also have a ton of crafty items if you want to build your own arrangements. It’s like Build-A-Bear in there, except you’re making grown-up treats for everyone to enjoy. Their inventory is so well curated, I can’t help but feel impressed each year.

This shop is a happy place for me. It’s a space that offers peace. I can wander around, allow my mind to settle and get creative. When I need extra inspiration, there are busy hands working to create new items each day. I recommend you pop in and see what they have. I can’t say I’ve ever made a trip there without feeling wildly impressed and incredibly peaceful.

I left with some evergreen arrangements that I absolutely love. And when I look at our front door, I feel ready for the holidays.

What brought you peace this week? Share the peace!

Thanks to the sites below for their added inspiration! Maybe something will spark your interest, too.

Peace in Bulbs

With colder weather well on its way here in the northeast, I find myself hibernating from my sweet planties outside. I miss them but spend little time with my hands in the soil.

But I’m learning that winter is a great time for planning and dreaming and scheming for my garden.

Photo by Gary Moore on Pexels.com

This week, I found a soft spot grow in my heart when I had the opportunity to talk about plants a little bit with my step dad. We sat on the couch, warmed up by the living room fire, feeling super wintery, and talked all things green. Just thinking about the garden made me smile. It was so peaceful. My whole body relaxed when I thought about the green garden to come next spring.

Icing on the cake came when my step dad asked if I wanted some dahlia bulbs this year.

“They’re in the garage!” he said. “Take as many as you want.”

I pictured them in bloom when I stared at those rooty little fellas. My heart just swelled at the sight! Now I will learn when to pull the bulbs from the ground and how to store them each year for our Pennsylvania winters. I need to learn how to care for them, too. I have reading to do!!! And making plans for the things I love bring me great peace.

I can’t say that I’ve ever found peace in something as simple as a brown, hairy little dahlia bulbs, but every day teaches me something new.

What brought you peace this week? Share the peace!

Want to learn with me? Check out this super informative video from one of my favorite Youtubers, Garden Answer!

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Peace in New Beginnings

Photo courtesy of Patty Kline Capaldo

When I asked local Creativity Coach Patty Kline Capaldo what led her to painting this past year, she told me that words had suddenly failed her. A dear writer friend and inspired artist in her own right, Patty transitioned from writing to painting during the pandemic. The shared isolation, stress, and fear carried into 2020 had many effects on many people.

“I just, I don’t know, I couldn’t find words to write,” Patty tells me.

Ever the learner, Patty discovered when one creative outlet tapers, other avenues become available.

“I have a calm energy when I paint,” she tells me. “I find myself gawking at trees, and I just want to paint them so badly.”

So she does.

“It is a refuge because I couldn’t find that state with writing. I had lost that.”

The peace in nature is so wonderfully reflected when recaptured in a painting. What’s even more peaceful, perhaps, is the peace that comes from trying something new. The lense of a beginner requires less criticism and fewer edits. Being a beginner means anything flies. It means having fun and shushing the voice in our heads.

“Being a beginner is fun,” Patty reminds me.

Willing to try something new?

Enter peace.

Willing to become a beginner at something?

Welcome peace.

For Patty, it doesn’t stop there. She will participate in a Fundraising Event at Creative Light Factory this Saturday, November 20th from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. She’ll sell her paintings alongside fellow artists. She’s putting herself out there, showcasing her art, and welcoming all the new experiences to follow.

When I leave Patty’s workspace, I feel a surge of peace. I’m happy for her. She’s brimming with positive energy, and we both know good things are ahead.

What has brought you peace this week? Share the peace!

Want to connect with Patty for coaching, questions, or to purchase her art? You can find her on Facebook and Instagram.

Peace in the Woods

Photo by Nejc Kou0161ir on Pexels.com

When Hubs and I bought a new house in 2019, we were practical about what we were buying. There are some shallow woods behind the house and then a yard out to the side of the house. The woods lead up to a heavily trafficked road, so we were thankful they could act as a divider for our kids, keeping them away from the busy street.

“Look at all the grass!” we said.

“This will be good for soccer balls and flag football!” we said.

But we’d left behind a creek and a larger wood that felt like a trove for curiosities and creative play.

Enter: Mom, woods lover.

The woods I called a “natural barrier” have been calling to me. I love walking through a space covered in a chaos of sticks, branches, messy leaves and random wildlife growing as it pleases. Thanks to a dear friend, I relish in photographing moss and lichens and unusual fungi. Or reading poetry about nature. Wordsworth comes to mind, as he writes,

Once again
Do I behold these steep and lofty cliffs,
Which on a wild and secluded scene impress
Thoughts of more deep seclusion; and connect
The landscape with the quiet of the sky.
The day is come when I again repose
Here, under this dark sycamore, and view These plots of cottage-ground, these orchard-tufts,
Which, at this season, with their unripe fruits,
Among the woods and copses lose themselves,
Nor, with their green and simple hue, disturb
The wild green landscape.

William Wordsworth, Lines Written a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey

Some days get too hectic with cleaning, cooking, chores, and the general responsibilities that pop up. We can’t always get a hike in, or ever a trip to the woodsy playground I think I appreciate more than the children so.

And so, the woods have continued to call.

I couldn’t help myself. I grabbed a few rakes, one especially heavy duty one, and a good pair of my clippers. And I started hacking. I carved out a path and started to line it with the logs that are light enough for me to carry on my own. Other logs I rolled slowly into place.

The kids eat pretzels and play while I haul my butt around, collecting thorns and dirt in my socks like precious talisman.

Now the kids call this space their “secret garden.” It’s nothing more than a quiet spot in the woods where I’ve raked and lined the edges with log rounds from a walnut tree we cut down.

But it is removed from other spaces. It is quiet. And beautiful. And full of possibilities.

What has brought you peace this week? Share your peace!