• Inspiration

    Proust Captures the Spirit of my Hopeful Monday

    Dad with Kids, Proust Captures the Spirit of my Hopeful Monday, Karen Hugg, https://karenhugg.com/2019/06/10/hopeful-monday #MarcelProust #HopefulMonday #travel #dad #dadtravel #inspiration #quotes #family

    Last week my husband flew to Ireland for work. It was not a hopeful Monday, more like sad Sunday. He travels once every couple of months and when he’s gone, we feel a slight tension in our family. Overall, we’re fine and with my three kids being older, it’s easier now than it used to be, but we still feel the absence. And inside the absence, a strange quiet yearning exists. We go on with school and work and home life but we’re all waiting for the five of us to be together again. Because my husband works at home…

  • Plants

    What Happened to My Skimmia? From Stately Shrub to Plant Skeleton

    Skimmia, What Happened to My Skimmia? From Stately Shrub to Plant Skeleton, Karen Hugg, https://karenhugg.com/2019/06/08/skimmia #skimmia #shade #shrub #evergreen #broadleaf #berries #gardening #plants #dogs

    Skimmia japonica is a lovely broadleaf evergreen shrub — except when your dog goes the bathroom on it. Then it turns into this, a yellowed sad skeleton. It used to be stately and lush, a perfect plant for deep shade, but that all changed. A Pretty Green Scheme I planted this skimmia in an effort to contrast with the variegated dogwood growing behind it. For years it worked perfectly. The deep green leaves of the broadleaf evergreen mounded horizontally against the upward vase shape of the light-colored dogwood. But then last winter, my dog made it his pee post and…

  • Garden,  Plants

    How to Garden in a Shaded Sunny Border

    Shaded Sunny Border, How to Garden in a Shaded Sunny Border, Karen Hugg, https://karenhugg.com/2019/06/07/shaded-sunny-border/ #gardening #plants #shade #sun #border #garden #soil #clay

    I have this tricky garden area on the eastern boundary of my yard. It has a huge oak tree. It has a lawson cypress. The trees shade out an eastern and southern exposure until about two o’clock when the hot afternoon sun blasts through. Then all hell breaks loose. It’s the most difficult area of my yard in which to garden. A shaded sunny border. A Heavy Wet Soil Baked in the Sun Part of the problem is a massively tall oak tree grows along the fence in this part of the garden. The tree isn’t all that healthy. It’s…

  • Books

    Where in the World is The Forgetting Flower T-shirt? England

    Natasha Oliver, Where in the World is The Forgetting Flower T-shirt? England, Karen Hugg, https://karenhugg.com/2019/06/05/t-shirt-england #TheForgettingFlower #T-shirt #NatashaOliver #author #books #novels #scifi #England

    Today, The Forgetting Flower T-shirt is in near Reading, England with author Natasha Oliver. Natasha talks about moving to England after living in Singapore, her love of Brené Brown, and her new book The Evolved Ones, Awakening. Check out our talk. Who are you and what do you do for fun (either in your job or outside of your job)? My name is Natasha Oliver and I’m a wife, a mom, and a writer. The order depends on the time of day. For fun, I like a variety of things. I like to go for walks because now I live in the…

  • Pets

    Was My Sweet Puppy Sent by a Dog From Heaven?

    Olive, My Dog, Was My Sweet Puppy Sent by a Dog From Heaven? Karen Hugg, https://karenhugg.com/2019/06/06/dog #dog #pets #Dingo #Olive #Arrow

    My friend once told me my dog Olive was sent to me by my dog Arrow. Arrow passed away about a month before Olive came into our lives. My friend speculated that Arrow knew I was upset about his passing and he wanted to console me with another mixed breed dog. Olive was a wiggly puppy, abandoned by the side of the road on New Year’s Day and found by a kind soul in the Seattle area. She was skinny and filthy and had fleas. But with a good bath and a lot of love, she recovered. In fact, once…

  • Writing

    The Importance of Writer Tribes in a Creative’s Life

    Woman Writing, The Importance of Writer Tribes in a Creative's Life, Karen Hugg, https://karenhugg.com/2019/06/03/writer-tribes/ #writing #writers #writerslife #writertribes #writinggroups #solitarylife #craft #books #fiction

    I’ve been thinking a lot about tribes and how important they are in a writer’s life. Writers are often solitary beings so joining a group, any kind of group, can be stressful and intimidating. We writers write because writing is easier than interacting. Not for everyone, I know, but it’s certainly the case for me. So while I’m a writer who enjoys being alone, I also yearn to connect with people. Not often, probably far less than others, but I do have that yearning. I realized this when I first took up fiction writing as an adult about 12 years…

  • France,  Paris

    A Hidden Gem of the French Open Is Its Parisian Suburb

    Jardin Botanique de Paris, A Hidden Gem of the French Open Is Its Parisian Suburb, Karen Hugg, https://karenhugg.com/2019/06/03/parisian-suburb #Paris #FrenchOpen #RolandGarros #tennis #Boulogne-Billancourt #Parisiansuburb #sights #France

    If you’re blessed to watch tennis in person at the French Open, you’re probably spending a lot of time near the Roland Garros stadium. It’s located in the lovely Parisian suburb of Boulogne-Billancourt. This city formed by the merging of two former cities, Boulogne-sur-Seine on the north side and Billancourt to the south. I’ve spent a bit of time in Boulogne-Billancourt and fell in love with its quieter, more relaxed ways. If you’re a tennis tourist and don’t want to make the train ride to Paris, check out its local sights. It offers its own wonderful museums, gardens, and restaurants.…