Bob's niece Marissa and four-year-old grand niece Alina visited us this past weekend. We went to Washington, D.C. to visit the National Air and Space Museum and the Washington National Cathedral (and of course the Bishop's Garden!). We also went paddle boating on the Tidal Basin and rode the Carousel on the National Mall. We were very lucky, the weather was perfect.
Alina is a little girl after my own heart: she LOVES flowers. Of all the fun activities she did in D.C., her favorite was visiting the Bishop's Garden at the National Cathedral.
It was not easy to get her to leave the Garden. She meandered down every path several times.
She stopped and admired all the flowers (can you image how long that took?).
Her favorite spot in the Bishop's Garden was the koi pond. She really wanted to "pet" the black and white one.
Alina's love for flowers was most apparent when she visited my garden. Although it paled in comparison to the Bishop's Garden, Alina had the same look of awe in her eyes as she did when she was in the Bishop's Garden. I took Alina around my garden to show her my flowers, all the while wishing I had more pink flowers, her favorite color. To my surprise, she was totally into all of my flowers. She wanted to know their names and would gently touch each flower and said "that's very pretty." I asked if she wanted to pick some flowers and make an arrangement for her room. Her almond shaped brown eyes widened as she gave me a big smile and gently nodded her head. She stood silently next to me, basking in the bright sunshine, and surveyed my garden. All of a sudden, her little happy sparkling sneakers skipped across my lawn to my pink azalea bush. I knew at that point that Alina was totally engaged.
This azalea bush did exceptionally well this year. The dazzling clusters of pink blossoms were shining in the bright sunshine. Good Choice, Alina! We cut a few branches.
Then she spotted the grape hyacinths (Muscari), "how about that purple blue one?"
"I like that white one" pointing to the bridal wreath spiraea (Spiraea prunifolia).
This is a showstopper every spring without fail. At this point, I was thinking, this child has discerning taste! With their arching branches loaded with clusters of pure white flowers, these are elegant additions to any arrangement.
"OOO, that lavender one is very pretty."
Indeed! The columbine (Aquilegia) is more lavender than it's either blue or purple! I was impressed! We cut a few stems.
We also cut a few lilac branches and a few stems of yellow rocket (Barbarea vulgaris).
All of a sudden, Alina ran away from me. I heard her say "let's get that magenta flower." MAGENTA? She stopped at my magenta azalea and waited for me.
After cutting a few branches of the magenta azalea, I asked Alina, "Do you have enough?" "Ya, let's go put them in water," she answered.
As soon as we got in the kitchen, she pulled a step stool and positioned herself at the kitchen island waiting for her "water." I gave her a blue plastic cup full of water. Without waiting another moment, Alina went to work to create her arrangement.
All of a sudden, she looked up at me and said "let's get that pink heart flower. I want to put it here," pointing to a little gap in her arrangement. Now, this was the girl who knew what she wanted and saved the best for last! When I first pointed out to Alina my old fashioned pink bleeding heart flowers (Dicentra spectabilis), she told me "that's very pretty. I like it a lot." I have to admit, as we went inside I was happy that Alina did not ask to pick the bleeding heart flowers even though we passed right by them on our way in. They had just bloomed, and I find them to be unusual and very pretty. Alas, no such luck! Alina was just saving the best for last.
What a beautiful arrangement, Alina!
Our World Tuesday