Monday, February 21, 2011

How many days until spring?

Friday was a beautiful day in Kansas City.  I spent the day seeing customers, handing out price books and talking about new plants at the nursery.  

At the end of the day I was in the Crossroads District, just minutes away from the Kauffman Memorial Gardens, and realized it was time to stop talking about plants and time to go see some.  

The doors were wide open at the garden's conservatory and the sweet scent of gardenias and orange blossoms filled the air.

Gazing balls reflect the view of the sky from the windows above.  Light streaming in from the windows at the front of the conservatory shines through the petals of the flowers of the Euryops.  

If you too are wondering how many days there are until spring and need a plant fix, a visit to the Kauffman Memorial Gardens will probably help.
On the way to the conservatory, don't rush too quickly past the plants in the gardens outside.  Even in the winter, there is plenty to see.  The copper colored exfoliating bark of the China Snow Lilac glows.  I love the lines of the twisted trunk in the middle photograph.  Deciduous female holly plants have bright red fruit all winter long. 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Thinking of Hawaii while there's a blizzard outside

The schools and airport are closed and a blizzard warning continues through noon  tomorrow.  With a foot of snow on the ground, more snow coming down, and the wind chill at one below, it seems like a good time to think about a much warmer place.  Such as Hawaii!  

While in Kauai, we drove past the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church many times before taking the time to stop.  Though it's never in the plans, my husband and I always seem to find a church or two to visit while on vacation.  
The inside is as beautiful as the outside.  

When we first walked in the church an elderly woman walked up to the statue of Mary.  She knocked on the base of it with her fist several times before praying.  I could just imagine her saying "Mary, are listening to me, can you hear me, are you paying attention, I've gotten something to tell you..." 

The grounds of the church are also lovely.  Though probably wrong of me, I kept thinking they must have a really good priest and choir to get people to pay attention while inside.  I would be tempted to stay outside and pull weeds, smell the flowers and listen to the service through an open window.   


The plants are as colorful as the stained glass windows.  Visiting this church and saying a prayer was a wonderful stop on a busy day of sight seeing.  Maybe that's why we end up visiting churches while on vacation.  No doubt, God knows we aren't good at slowing down, even while on vacation.