Friday, November 13, 2009

Chatfield Hollow - Greens, laurel and pine cones for three......

It was a perfect day - a November wind was blowing beneath gray ominous sky - we walked proudly and with determination - the task before us - to gather enough greens, mountain laurel and pine cones for three potted Christmas season arrangements for three graves of three wonderful men - my Dad, my nephew, my brother-in-law - all resting in peace beneath the now very big tree up on that hill in Resurection Cemetery.

We have been walking though Chatfield Hollow for twenty five years now - ever since my Dad died. As I have shared - he, at age 17 was a member of the Connecticut Corp of Engineers and built all the bridges in Chatfield Hollow. One is pictured above!! Then 7 years ago - my sisters son Clayton died - and he was laid to rest one place away from my Dad. And next to him? His Dad - Kelly - who passed this past January. This year is the first year we had to gather enough greens and pine cones and laurel for three potted arrangements - and we did! :-) The finished arrangements ae pictured above. My sister Nancy has quite a talent for such artistry - as did my Dad - who was a florist by trade and passion although he drove trucks most of his life. Floristry was his gift and my sister has such a gift as well. :-)

Our Mom is pictured as well - walking happily along with her walker - I had my walker/rollator too! I, at one point, became so aware of how my mobility has changed since we first were walking this walk to gather our greens and cones and laurel. I felt tears of reality and we stopped and rested and we all hugged - the loving silence was so inspiring - energizing - we forged on up the grade to "our area" we always go too - pictured above of the deep pine trees with pine needles blanketing the earth. We gathered quietly - each aware of the other - knowing how blessed we are to be together this day - to remember honor - share - breathe - live and carry on. And we did. With walkers and tears, laughs and deep sighs, we carried on.

We went back to my Mom and sister's home and enjoyed a delicious lunch of quiche and salad and ginger ale. And we just spent time talking, remembering, believing, praying, loving, laughing, crying and sharing. The wind blew, the sky stayed gray - the air was sharp and biting - the trees almost naked - the leaves tossed about - and we stood firm - on a solid sacred ground of mothers-daughters-sisters - ever vigilant - ever loving - ever true - for all our days. Amen.

I can't seem to figure out how to get my pre-set signature to the bottom of this post. Hmmmmm. Cinner? Help? :-) And there is a picture almost completely hidden behind another picture and I can't seem to re-locate on the post - if you click on it though and enlarge it you can see a good view of one of my Dad's bridges. :-) Can someone tell me how to arrange pictures on a post.

Love Gail


Bernie said...

I love this post Gail, so full of love and respect....your arrangements are beautiful and oh your mom looks lovely....enjoy your wonderful family, they are such a blessing but I know you already know this.....:-) Hugs

Gail said...


thanks so much for your kind words. :-) And yes, my om is SO lovely, inside and out!

Love to you my friend

Eileen said...

Oh, your sister has a talent for sure, and she's very Blessed to have inherited that from your Dad.
Each of you has some form of the artist in you. Beautiful!

I loved this post. Past and present intermingled, along with a yearning and yet a forging ahead. I love how you honor your life, and the lives of your loved ones.
Every age of life, and every stage of life is sacred, and I love reading that in your posts.

God Bless you, Gail.
Love to you,

Gail said...


I love your visits here. And I SO appreciate your wise, loving and validating words. I am very aware of all that was, all that is and all that I believe will be. It is a sacred blend of moments. Amen

Love to you my friend

Teacher's Pet said...

Your laurels, poinsettias, and pine cones are so pretty.
I enlarged every photo...and loved 'being' with you on your walk.
I was very fascinated with the photo of the bridge and the one of the river with the river rocks and the beautiful leaves. It sounds like it was a perfect day for this lovely tribute.
Tell your Mom that she is beautiful...and is very photogenic.
Her smile is radiant.
Thank you for taking us with you on this quiet and peaceful walk to take the flowers to the resting places of your Dad, your nephew, and your brother-in-law.

Gail said...


Iam SO happy to see you here. :-) I love that you took the time to enlarge each photo - and oh yes, my Mom's smile is radiant, second only to her lovely blue eyes. She is precious. And I am honored that you enjoyed being with us - thank you for being you.

Love Gail

TheChicGeek said...

Hi Gail :)
I love this full of love! What a beautiful and blessed day to be outside collecting for your beautiful arrangements! You and your mom look happy together and that's so nice to see. You lifted my spirits with your heartfelt and loving words.
I wish you a beautiful weekend full of love, peace and many blessings.
Happy Friday, Gail :)))
xxO :)

Choices said...

Hi Gail,
A perfect day indeed! The photos are all so beautiful, and it must have been so pleasant to look at your surroundings as you walked. Your are so blessed to have a wonderful family and and I can tell you cherish every moment with them.
Take care.

Gail said...


Thank you SO much - it really was a beautiful day and you are SO right - I am truly blessed to have my Mom and Sis. :-)


How's my favorite California girl? :-) Me my Mom and Sis were all happy - I didn't put a picture of my sis - oops She was always a few huindred feet ahead. heehee. It was a beautiful and blessed and loving day.

Love to you both

Margie said...

Dear Gail
Oh, such beautiful pictures!
Loved them ....thank you for sharing them!

Such a loving post!
I loved it!

You are blessed!
So happy you have such a wonderfl family!

Tell "hello" to your sweet mom!
She is adorable!

Wishing you much joy, love and many blessings!


cinner said...

Hello Gail, the arrangements were beautiful, I am glad the three of you were together, your sister ahead, just like mine. I know it is frustrating to notice the lack of mobility. Just do what you can do. I had that happen in a store shopping the other day. after 15 minutes I had to ask Wain to take me home. Your Mom is beautiful, and guess what I have the same jacket as you except its red, it is my warmest jacket. Now your trouble with the signature. I do my typing before I add any pictures, that seems to keep it at the bottom...I only know how to post one picture at a time. If I find out I will let you know. Have a great weekend Gail, I know your weekend is more Tues and Wed. Know I am thinking about you. Take care.

Gail said...

thanks for making me feel 'normal' by sharing that you have the same mobility limits, at times.
And the jacket? It is actually my husbands - it is a flannel shirt-jack with a quilted lining and a hood. It i light and yet warm so although it is his I wear it way more!! heehee
And ya, I will type first and then add the pictures. Good idea.
Thanks for visiting me - it is always so good to see you my friend.
Love Gail

Gail said...

it really was a lovely day - all of us together. And my Mom is so precious and adorable. I/we love her SO much. thank you for your loving words to me.

Love Gail

Diana said...

Hi Gail,
The arrangements were very lovely. Worth your walk I would say. This is a nice tradition even though it was born out of sadness. They say that you can find something good in every situation. Your mom looks so sweet. And you always make me feel like I'm right there with you Gail. I love that.
I always post my pics in the center anymore. It's just easier for me. Sometimes I do it after I write everything and sometimes during.Either way, it's always time consuming! I keep hoping that blogger will figure this out and make it easier some day!
Love Di

Gail said...


I am so glad that you feel like you are right with me in my posts. I feel really good about that. And ya, my Mom is so sweet. I love her so much.
Thanks for the tip on posting pictures - clearly I need all the help I can get. :-)

Loved you

Wanda said...

Lovely post Gail...your walk at Chatfield Hollow is a nice tradition...your mom looks very happy to be with you! You truly know what the important things in life are.

As for photos...I upload all my photos to "center" first and then write my post between upload photos in reverse order, last ones first. You can also write your post in "Word" or "notebook" and then copy and paste between photos.


Gail said...


Oh yes, it was a perfect November day at Chatfield Hollow- and thank you for the tips on putting photos on my posts. I wonder if I can go and fix this one. hmmmmmm

Love you

giggles said...

Beautiful, Gail........ Pictures and story and characters......