Thursday, October 20, 2011

Thanksgiving Month, Day 20: Flower Girl

For the last three years my friend Doreen has given me the most amazing birthday present: she fills baskets and pots with shapeless, nameless, greenish plants and arranges them around the front and side of Nilgiris.

And it's not random planting and arranging, either. She has a picture of the final product in her mind's eye when she starts gathering plants. She knows what colours, flowers, height and depths she wants, and she plants accordingly.

Of course, those greenish, shapeless plants are not nameless to her ...

But that's not where it stops: for the rest of the spring and summer and into the fall she commits herself to watering, pruning, fertilizing, turning containers, pulling off dead heads.

And even that's not where it ends: she has taken over the care and management of Shauna Rose ("We've got to give that rosebush a chance!")and she also coaxed blooms out of the late-planted sweet pea fence. 

Oh yes, and she also cuts and arranges flowers for me in the TH because I have no time or talent for such things - and I LOVE fresh flowers at each table!

Doreen has been a true friend to me over the years. She has come over to visit or check the flowers and has ended up stirring a pot or chopping vegetables or doing loads of dishes. She listens to me, counsels me, laughs and cries with me (more laughing than crying!). She is not afraid to be vulnerable, to express herself, to show her heart, despite the fact that that same heart has been pummelled and bruised so often.

She is not afraid to be herself.

But even though she's practical and pragmatic, she gives me items that tell me she's heard me, she knows my dreams, and she wants me to succeed. She gave me a travel documents pouch before I went to South Africa. A Mad Hatter's Tea Party gift mug and tray. A beautiful green cut glass bud vase ("I was noticing that you don't have many that you can put a couple of flowers in ...").

And she gives me time with her, which is the greatest gift of all. 

She sees the potential, the finished product in her mind's eye and she encourages me toward that end.

So this month I want everyone to know who makes the initial approach to the TH so sweetly romantic with the beautiful flowers, and who encourages my own mind and soul to blossom and grow.

Thank you, Doreen! xo


  1. Those flowers make SUCH a difference in approaching the Tea House, and they always keep growing all summer long. A faithful friend is a lasting treasure, and the blessing spreads into so many hearts. Thank you, Doreen and Karyn, for sharing the evidence of your lovely friendship, with the world!

  2. The pictures and feelings you evoke in your tales of the TH make me wish I lived in Canada so I too could enjoy the friendly and loving atmosphere that you have created.
    The wonderful closeness of your family and your loving nature shines through in your narratives.
    I can think of no better testament to both your dear mum and are all a credit to them Karyn. xx

  3. Wow Karyn, that brought tears to my eyes. Doreen cherishes your friendship. We are fortunate to know someone like you that is beautiful on the outside and the inside. Also a great hugger. You Rock Karyn, thanks for your kind words. D


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