Isn't this the most inviting little nook? I spotted it in a garden in England and am in love with its appealing freshness -- that chair nestled in its leafy green wall. I would love to have a chair in that shade of green. I would sit on it with a good book and daydream, looking up to gaze at the beauty around me. Maybe reading "Elizabeth And Her German Garden" by Elizabeth Von Armin.
This is one of my favorite passages from that book:
"I am always happy (out of doors be it understood, for indoors there are servants and furniture), but in quite different ways, and my spring happiness bears no resemblance to my summer or autumn happiness, though it is not more intense, and there were days last winter when I danced for sheer joy out in my frost-bound garden in spite of my years and children. But I did it behind a bush, having due regard for the decencies.
There are so many bird-cherries round me, great trees with branches sweeping the grass, and they are so wreathed just now with white blossoms and tenderest green that the garden looks like a wedding. I never saw such masses of them; they seem to fill the place. Even across a little stream that bounds the garden on the east, and right in the middle of the cornfield beyond, there is an immense one, a picture of grace and glory against the cold blue of the spring sky.
My garden is surrounded by cornfields and meadows, and beyond are great stretches of sandy heath and pine forests, and where the forests leave off the bare heath begins again; but the forests are beautiful in their lofty, pink-stemmed vastness, far overhead the crowns of softest gray-green, and underfoot a bright green whortleberry carpet, and everywhere the breathless silence; and the bare heaths are beautiful too, for one can see across them into eternity almost, and to go out on to them with one's face towards the setting sun is like going in the very presence of God."
Do you ever want to dance for joy as you anticipate the promise of a creative and productive day? Or maybe you have had a vision or inspiration, hitting you like a thunderbolt, and you are bursting with ideas for enhancing your life?
Oh Elizabeth, I love your "spring happiness" and that you danced for sheer joy behind the bush. You are one of the delightful dreamers I love to read about; your joy and excitement about transforming a wilderness into a garden is expressed in joyous passages such as the one above.
Elizabeth Von Armin's idyllic garden was a sanctuary for her. It was where she went to be alone and clear her head. We all need to find our nook, our retreat, our special place in our house or garden -- a place to meditate, to dream, to plan and to read. These are the simple pleasures and moments of reflection that refresh and rejuvenate us. They may lead us to our muse, to a new source of inspiration. They often lead to great ideas: a new plant for the garden, a new dream for our lives, a solution to a nagging problem, a new approach to our days, even a new blog post! Taking our coffee outside in the morning and spending some time in reflection, seeing the first blossoms of spring can give us a little thrill and suddenly we are smiling. Suddenly we know the day is going to be all right. These are the beautiful moments that allow us to live and breathe. These are the moments that take us to the border of the next big step, or even that little step that will make all the difference to the rest.
Elizabeth Von Armin's "spring happiness" is contagious. A new season can point us in fresh and exciting creative directions. Happy Spring!