Joy List Monday -- Joy in the Garden

Ah... this time of year is heaven in the garden (though in the spirit of full disclosure, it would be a lot more heavenly without the bugs. The gnats and black flies have been terrible lately -- but there are certainly worse things than that).

garden, gardens, spring, raised beds, container gardening, Anne Butera, My Giant Strawberry

Things are growing and blooming. Seedlings are sprouting or filling out. We're still enjoying lettuce every day and looking forward to other harvests.

grape tomatoes, green tomatoes, tomato plants, tomato flowers, gardening, Anne Butera, My Giant Strawberry

Some things have been very slow going, like my peas (the first planting didn't even sprout), but they're finally coming along.

peas, gardening, snap peas, Amish Snap Pea, Anne Butera, My Giant Strawberry

(And yes, I've been tying them up with turquoise yarn... I found a ball if it in someone's trash and couldn't resist bringing it home to use in the garden).

garden, icelandic poppies, poppies, roses, pink grootendorst, Anne Butera, My Giant Strawberry

We have some lovely new spaces in the garden this year, thanks to a bit of re-arranging (we moved a shed!) and the decision to get rid of some ugly shrubs (I'll share some before and after photos soon), and I've been filling them up with edibles, herbs and flowers. (The photo below was taken where the shed used to be!).

garden, raised beds, flowers, Anne Butera, My Giant Strawberry

It all brings me so much joy each day.

miniature roses, roses, peach roses, gardens, Anne Butera, My Giant Strawberry

And so, for a Joy List -- I do hope you'll write one of your own for yourself or to share, it doesn't matter as long as you're paying attention to the beauty and gratitude in your life.

roses, pink grootendorst, garden, flowers, hearts, Anne Butera, My Giant Strawberry
can you spot the heart?

Joy List Monday: 

a weekly ritual
a reminder to stop and pay attention to the little beauties and graces that make life magical and to set aside time for gratitude each day

muffins, strawberry muffins, spring harvest, strawberries, Anne Butera, My Giant Strawberry

  • harvesting from the garden each day... lettuce, herbs, strawberries
  • flowers, flowers and more flowers
  • taking time to paint a small painting inspired by something from the garden each day
  • strawberry muffins (I shared the recipe in my Summer Newsletter, so subscribe now if you haven't signed up already for that and other goodies, including a subscriber-only sale!)
  • birds, always... especially a little wren and silly robins who sing to me every day
  • finding hearts
  • sunflowers and cosmos planted from seed growing bigger each day (and looking ahead to all those flowers!)
  • a fun idea in the works (which has nothing to do with the garden, but has me excited)
  • sketching in the garden
  • driving my dad's tractor through flower-filled meadows on Father's Day

watercolor, watercolors, botanical watercolor, watercolor sketches, sketches, Anne Butera, My Giant Strawberry

(I've been thinking about these little paintings as a sketchbook without a book. I may end up binding them in a book or using them as "thank you"s in packages I send. All but the single viola. That one I popped into my Etsy shop).

violas, viola painting, viola watercolor, botanical painting, botanical watercolor, botanical art, Anne Butera, My Giant Strawberry

Happy Solstice! Try to catch a view of the full moon; arriving on the summer solstice is a rare occurrence.


  1. Hi Anne,
    I wrote a comment on here a while ago, but it didn't appear when I came back just now.
    Thank you for inspiring us with your beautiful gardens and yard, your wonderful painting and upbeat writing. I love reading your joy lists and this week's was no exception.
    Here is my joy list - although it is a difficult time for me right now, there is always something to be joyful about.

    Sitting in the morning breeze on my porch and hearing the birds singing
    Knowing that my husband is there for me, no matter what may happen
    Cutting into beautiful floral fabric to create something lovely
    Carefully stitching with colorful threads and feeling the rhythm of the stitches
    Knowing that good friends are nearby, in person and online
    Laughing with friends and feeling their camaraderie

    Wishing you a wonderful week, Anne!

    1. Hi, Judy. Your list is perfect.

      So sorry to hear that you've been having a rough time. I always say that during those difficult times it's most important for us to pay attention to life's joys and graces.

      Sending love and light your way.

  2. Happy (belated) Solstice! We had cloud cover last night so I missed the Strawberry Moon, but I left a quartz crystal ball out in the garden to soak up the night magic, anyways. ;)
    I love the turquoise yarn! It looks very cheerful in your beautiful garden!

    1. Thank you, Laurie! I didn't get a good view of the moon, either. We have too many trees where we live. Love the idea of your crystal soaking up the magic. :)

      Enjoy the rest of your week!

  3. I spot the hearts Anne! One in the wood knot and one in the roses themselves! My joy list:

    Buying a new body,linen and room mist
    Sorting out an untidy corner so I can get to the window again
    A lush garden providing habitat for all kinds of wildlife
    Making time to read books again (after your post!)
    Making time for solitude and quietness

    I hope you are having a joyful week!

    1. Sounds lovely, Simone! So glad you stopped back and left this comment (and sorry I somehow missed it).

      I didn't spot the heart in the roses before you mentioned it! Thanks for pointing it out!

  4. Magical art and beautiful joys. You keep me inspired, Anne!

    1. Thank you, Aga! You always inspire me, too, my friend!


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