The Art of Peace Gardens

Peace Garden signIn Sebastopol there is a Peace Garden: I know because my Mom was one of the “hippies” who thought of the idea and planted it over 30 years ago. Actually, she planted it as a member of the EarthStewards group. I have photos of Mom and the founder Danaan Parry hugging. I went to the garden this past Spring, since Mom had died, based on a very distant memory of it.

I saw the first few flowers in the 1980’s in that garden, and thought they’d die without water within one year, or get uprooted by the terrifying Sebastopol Gophers; the flowers were so small and fragile.  I was that pessimistic about how much Mom and her group could do when I was young. Although I wanted peace as much as everyone else. The Berlin Wall was still up, and wars never seemed to end in the Middle East. You won’t believe what I found …. continue reading

Garden Gnomes and the Magic Camel… stories of restoration

Irene Rowlery painting two garden gnomes

Me, retouching the two garden gnomes with acrylic paint.

Last week I pulled Mom’s two garden gnomes out of storage in my garage, and restored them. It is the least I can do for my mom, since she was feeling sick.

Honestly I have been procrastinating. I had promised to do this years ago, but I did not know how to restore garden art, while still retaining its original charm. I am a good girl when it comes to maintaining “original charm” and “artistic authenticity.” continue reading

Making a Birdhouse

bird house in the garden, by Irene Rowley

final bird house in the garden

Hello!  I recently made a birdhouse for my mom (Oma), since she loves to work in her garden, more than anything. I am looking forward to Spring and seeing if any little birds make their nests here, to keep my mom company. I thought I would share it with you, as an idea for Valentines Day presents this week.

Here are the steps for making a simple garden birdhouse: continue reading

Making Stepping Stones

Oma's Stepping Stones - yard art

Oma’s Stepping Stones

Oma moved out of her house this weekend to a retirement village. We had to sort through and give up many treasures stored in her house and barn for over thirty years. The question arose what to do with Oma’s stepping stones?  Her grandchildren had each personally handmade a stone, and decorated them with their hand prints and footprints, many years ago. We were in a great hurry and all the cars were full already of furniture. At the very last minute, I saved them from the dump heap, as I just could not bare to lose them!

Stepping stones are easy to make and great yard art. I recommend you try to make a stepping stone, at least once.

How to Make Stepping Stones

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