THANKS giving…

Pumpkin Thanks
Gordy in a pumpkin patch.*

Like so many others: I have been thinking about the topic of BEING, being a human, what constitutes gratitude, gratitude verses happiness, what the nation is going through, what we as a people stand for, what I as a person want to stand for, what makes me proud and what brings emotions of happiness/sadness, elation or pain. Brain exhausting.

Like so many others: I am clear I have a lot to be grateful for. The glass is full-no matter if it is filled with air, water, emotions, or things, there IS something in there-the empty is if I let it be. I know all that. (I don’t always remember it, but I DO know it to be true.)

We are our thoughts, our actions in many ways define our beings. The world feels particularly chaotic these days, spinning at an uncontrolled speed. Those are two, what I would call, facts.  I hope the collective ‘we’, and more personally I/myself, will always be searching, asking questions and concerned about the big picture.  At times I am not clear of what I am searching for? Searching for the next human element of that day? Searching for answers? Searching even for the question at times! Searching for the next path. Searching for the next idea. Many of the questions never end, and I suppose that’s a good thing. Somedays it works out better than others. That’s just life.

Turkey Drawing
Click to see a  larger version. *

As we enter the week of Thanksgiving here in N. America, I circle back around to the first sentence of this post. I sit here thinking about what it means to “be”- to be a human, a family member, a co-worker, a friend, a blog writer, a woman with unsolved questions (like us all I assume.) A woman with many things I hope to be able to do/accomplish in the upcoming year(s.) However, right now I am simply a person who just wants to get through the next month of “holidays” without too much frenzy, muss and fuss, and try to experience the joy and wonder that is supposed to be around the next six weeks or so. In truth-not my favorite time of year-but time marches on, and once again, here we go prancing, dancing, and dining into “The Holidays!”

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Gordy w/Pumpkins and Leaves
©BotanicalBeautiesbeasties…Thanks and Thankful…

A few days ago I was at my ‘other job’ and I want to share what I think is a fabulous reminder of holidays and meaning. The morning started out as usual with a good morning and ‘how are you’ conversation with my first lesson of the day.  The man said something to the likes of  “I’m good we are getting ready to celebrate one of my 2 favorite holidays.”  I have met this gentleman at work a few times, and I knew he was a ‘good guy’ but his answer was so great that it has prompted this blog post.  I said “I too like Thanksgiving, it is actually one of my favorite holidays, no big pressures, the hype is low (all that stuff seems to go to that other very big winter holiday that the world seems to love so much and the retailers can’t get enough of.) This one is about family/friends, some good food, and hopefully a nice day.”  Well my answer pales to his. He said, simply and elegantly …”Yes that’s all true, but my two favorite holidays in N. America are July 4th and Thanksgiving… because on July 4th we celebrate freedom here in the USA and on Thanksgiving, everyone hopefully has something to be thankful for.” I couldn’t agree more and thought it was a wonderful answer and reminder of the true reasons for many holidays.  I add a tiny bit more , and they get to stop and think about it for a moment. So the obvious question of the day…. just what are you thankful for? No need to tell me or the  world…just always a good question to think about. Happy Thanksgiving… and for those that celebrate it- Happy Hanukkah as well!

Thanks for so much to so many of you.

THANKSGIVING WEEK – OMG, Can you believe it?!

The Botanical Beauties & Beasties want to wish you all a happy beginning of the Holiday season… Merry Everything… Happy Days… Healthy Wishes.

  • If you can: Eat Local  … ReUse what you can… ReDuce your carbon footprint as much as you can…. ReCycle all you can….and ReThink your ways. All the parts, that means all of us do indeed make a whole. When you stop for a moment and think about it,  it feels good to be part of a good cause

The Botanicals will be over the river and through the woods this week, so there will be few words. 

Gordy is already available as a Holiday Card as well as a blank card. To see /to buy go to

Merry Everything Joy for all Happy Holidays!

gordy_art Blank Card
The image that is on the blank Card. No message inside
Gordy - Holiday Card Front
The image that is on the front of the Holiday Card. The inside message is "Merry Everything Joy to all Happy Holidays!"

Gordy wanted you to know!

According to Merriam-Webster:

Definition of GOURD

1: any of a family (Cucurbitaceae, the gourd family) of chiefly herbaceous tendril-bearing vines including the cucumber, melon, squash, and pumpkin
2: the fruit of a gourd : pepoespecially : any of various hard-rinded inedible fruits of plants of two genera (Lagenaria and Cucurbita) often used for ornament or for vessels and utensils.
Origin of GOURD  Middle English gourde, from Anglo-French gurde, gourde,from Latin cucurbit a.  First Known Use: 14th century


The Gourd Family (Cucurbitaceae) includes hundreds of species of vines bearing coiled, climbing tendrils and some of the most unusual fruits in the world. The total number of species may exceed 700, with at least 100 different genera. Known as “curcurbits” to gourd lovers, the fruits of this exceedingly diverse family come in an astounding array of shapes and sizes, from tiny, marble-sized “jumbie pumpkins” of the Caribbean islands to giant gourds over seven feet (2 m) long. In fact, the undisputed world’s largest fruits belong to this remarkable plant family. According to Cucurbits, the official newsletter of the World Pumpkin Confederation, a 1993 record-breaking pumpkin weighed in at 836 pounds (379 kg) and a giant squash tipped the scales at just over 700 pounds (317 kg). One year later at the “gourd olympics” in Port Elgin, Ontario, the reign of the pumpkin was broken by a 900 (408 kg) pound squash. 

… Fun facts I just learned about gourds from this website.

  • So important were gourds to Haitian people in the early 1800s that gourds were made the national currency…To this day, the standard coin of Haiti is called a “gourde.”
  • Although some popular dictionaries define a vegetable as a plant part generally eaten with a main entree (but not as a dessert), all the edible gourd relatives are really botanical fruits.
  • Spaghetti squash and most of the colorful, warty and star-shaped ornamental gourds seen at Thanksgiving time also come from varieties of Cucurbita pepo. Since they all belong to the same species, ornamental gourds, summer squash and pumpkins may cross pollinate in your garden, resulting in some interesting hybrids. In fact, some farmers avoid planting ornamental gourds near their edible crops to prevent pollen contamination and bitter, inedible squash and melons.
  • Most hard-shelled gourds come from the Old World Lagenaria siceraria. So important were these gourds in the daily lives of native people, that they were introduced into human cultures throughout the world. Probably their most important use was for containers, including pots, pans and bowls, and these gourds are still used to this day in many parts of the world. For water vessels, they are still preferred over earthenware jars because they are lighter and they cool the water by evaporation. In addition to containers and eating utensils, Lagenaria gourds are used for fishing floats, rafts, pipes and snuffboxes. 
  • Gordy with Gourd