Friday, January 29, 2016

Pretty Pink Fringed Tulips

Pink fringed tulips: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
Happy floral Friday! These pretty pink tulips were becoming translucent, a sure sign that they wouldn't last much longer, so I thought it'd be nice to photograph their fleeting beauty for you.
Pink fringed tulip from above: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
 Thanks to their interesting center, these pink flowers are even more beautiful inside than out.
Pink fringed tulip at an angle: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
 Though I enjoy them from every angle.
Pale pink fringed tulip from above: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
I hope they brighten your day. Thank you for visiting! May God bless you!

Related posts:
White tulips:
National Cathedral tulips:

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Blizzard Birds for Wild Wednesday

Yellow finch in blizzard: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
Happy wild Wednesday! As promised in Saturday's post, here are more bird pictures from during the blizzard. While you can't see the snow in the top photo, it's my favorite because of how soft the golden finch's feathers look.
Dark eyed junco in blizzard: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
All of the photos in today's post were taken through windows. I wish I could have gotten a better angle so you could see the dark eyed junco's eyes better but they were as dark as his head feathers.
Blizzard bird with seed in mouth: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
This is another dark eyed junco. I lightened the picture considerably so you could see its eyes. I like that she has a seed in her beak.
Snow beaked blizzard bird: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
I think this is a Carolina wren. He's got snow all over his beak from pecking at the fallen seeds.
Snowtop feeding blizzard bird: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
I'm glad the birds were quick to eat the fallen seeds because the snow fell so fast that they were quickly buried. We feel blessed to be able to feed our feathered friends year round but especially during harsh weather conditions.

The plows are still working on the roads but life seems to be getting back to normal here in Maryland. We were really blessed to retain our power throughout the storm. It went out for a little bit today but it's back on and I'm thankful for that too.

May God bless you and those you love!

Related posts:
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Snowmen & post blizzard photos:
Tiger cubs in snow:

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Snowmen and Post Blizzard Walk Photos

Fun Snowman and friend: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
Today was my first walk since the blizzard and I loved the decorated snowman in the photo above.
Snowman and snow ghost?: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
The snow ended a few days ago but it's still piled high. Even though today was warmer, with temperatures in the 40s, there's so much snow that while it's melting, plenty remains. 
Snowy post blizzard street: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
I'm thankful for all the people who worked hard to shovel and clear the streets the best they could. There's clearly still more work to be done. 
Snowy post blizzard street 2: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
Thank you for visiting! May God bless you, all those still without power, those working hard to clear the streets, our emergency workers and may He also provide shelter for all who need it, healing for the sick and comfort for those who grieve.

Related posts:
2016 Blizzard photos:
2013 Snowy Morning:
2015 Snowstorm:

Saturday, January 23, 2016

My Maryland Blizzard Photos

Saturday 1/23/2016 Blizzard: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
By God's grace, we still have power and I am very thankful. I pray it will continue and pray for all those who don't have power and/or are out in this storm, as well as for the emergency workers. May God bless and protect them. 
Birds and snowdrift: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
During lighter snowfall the birds flock to the feeders and gobble up the fallen seed. In order to get the photo above I had to sit on the floor and aim my camera through the little open area near the bottom of the sliding glass door (see photo below). 
Sliding glass door snowpile: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
This door is set about eight inches above the ground so that gives you an idea of the amount of snow; though the drifts are much higher.
Blizzard birds: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
The birds managed to push off big piles of snow to access the feeders. 
Blizzard window view: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
Visibility worsens as the winds increase, blowing snow into the screens and all over. I haven't ventured outside at all today so these photos were taken through our Maryland home windows.

May God bless you and keep you safe!

Related posts:
Tiger cub in snow:
Sea lion loves snow:
Birds in the snow:

Friday, January 22, 2016

White Tulips for Floral Friday in a Blizzard

White tulips with yellow centers: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
Happy floral Friday! With the blizzard starting here in Maryland and it being the middle of January I thought we could all use some floral cheer. My prayers are with all those affected by the blizzard and extreme weather everywhere. May God bless you and keep you safe and warm.
White tulip macro: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
My super thoughtful husband bought me these tulips last week. I love the contrast between the white petals and yellow insides as well as the fringed edges.
White tulips in brown vase: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
We've kept them away from heating vents in hopes that they'll last longer.
White tulips from above: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
They certainly brighten my days. I hope they do yours too! May God bless and keep you!

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Bright spring flowers:
Early spring flowers:

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Mystery Corner in Master Bedroom: Clutter Clean in 2016

Rearranged long dresser top: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
Today's main clutter busting project was the mystery corner (below) but I also took a few more items away and rearranged the dresser top featured in yesterday's post. I originally left the middle of the dresser open for folding laundry but decided that I'm fine with continuing to fold it on the bed. You can see the individual items more easily this way but the front 2/3 of the dresser is clear so it's still nice. I will probably continue rearranging until I think it's just right.
Mystery corner clutter: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
This mystery corner used to hold my hamper but I moved it closer to where I use it (you can see part of it in the next photo). This corner is a clutter magnet because there's no purpose to it at the moment, other than holding the floor lamp and a cat bed (the basket). We have no overhead lighting in the bedroom so the lamp is needed. 
Full view mystery corner "before": Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
Here's a better view of the area I worked on today. The pile of black clothes isn't clutter; it's just laundry. So the first thing I did was to put the load of black laundry in the washer. I had put the empty box out to see if Baby cat liked it more than her basket. She did not, so it's going to recycling.

Two of the containers were full of weird stuff (from old love notes to painting supplies to an organic buckwheat pillow). There was even a box full of notes from books I read long ago (the box fit inside another box - boxes within boxes!). So I put away the keepers that belonged elsewhere (none of it belonged in the corner) and added the rest to the recycling or donation bags (recycling is in the kitchen and donation is in the office).

The white basket is currently being used for new items that need to be washed before used. I like to save the environment and money by doing fuller loads of wash so I wait until I have enough of the new item(s)' color (new things often bleed when washed for the first time) to make it worthwhile. I relocated that basket to the other side of the hamper so it's not one of the first things you see when walking in the bedroom.
Full view mystery corner "after": Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
This is the finished view. Much neater and less cluttery. I'd like to make use of that corner but I'm not sure if I want a little reading nook or a makeup vanity so until I decide, it's fine as a cat bed/lamp spot. What would you do with this corner if it were your room?

Lessons learned/Tips:
  • Shutting the lid on things makes them look neater (see the hamper open vs closed in above photos)
  • Having the floor clear makes the whole area look better
  • Less is more when it comes to the floor
Thank you for visiting! May God bless you and all you do!

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Dresser clutter:
Old hamper arrangement:
Cabinet clutter:
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Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Clutter Clean in 2016! First Project: Top of Long Dresser

"After" dresser top corner: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
Happiest New Year wishes to you! May God bless you and all you set your mind, heart and hands to do this year!

I've decided to make this the year of clearing the clutter for good. Not just clutter busting the excess in our home but actually changing acquisition habits so that I only bring in things that we need or love. Because of ongoing health challenges, the physical removal of clutter may be slow going but as long as I'm making regular progress, I'll count it a success.

My super kind hearted Facebook friends suggested that I journal this process and share tips and this article is in their honor. Thank you for your support, encouragement and prayers!
"Before" long dresser top: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
I started on this dresser yesterday but didn't take a photo until today. It looks cluttered in the "before" photo above but yesterday it was even worse. Yesterday I just took things that belonged elsewhere and put them where they belonged. Today I cleared everything off the top of the dresser (using long shallow plastic baskets I have on hand) and moved them to the living room for sorting. I determined to only keep that which I need or love so a lot went into charity bags.

Baby cat explores cleared dresser: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
My little cat, Baby, immediately jumped on the newly cleared space. She loves to explore and I love her. I will likely do a backdated post, but, sadly, Moose the cat passed away after Christmas. Moose was about 20 years old and was greatly loved. Now Baby is our sole feline companion. God willing, Baby will be 16 this spring. But back to the clutter busting.
"After" dresser top: Copyright © Phyllis Wheeler, 2016
Here's the "after" photo. I like it so much better than the before. While there's still plenty of clutter in the room, the whole place feels lighter and nicer. I will probably reconfigure the top in the future but for now it's my "Clutter Clean in 2016" inspiration point. My goal for this week is to keep it clear and take time to enjoy the newly organized space.

If you have a completed clutter clearing or organizing project with before and after photos and want to be considered as a feature for my "Clutter Clean in 2016" series, please let me know! There are so many of us looking to simplify, streamline and create space for what truly matters. You'll be an inspiration. You can leave a comment below or email me at If there's a lot of interest I'll look into creating a Flickr pool for the photos.

Thank you for visiting! May God bless you!

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