Sunday, 12 July 2015

Cosmos - the Love Flower

"Cosmos bipinnatus -- White and Lavender", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2015

The genus, Cosmos, has about 20 species of annual and perennial plants in the Asteraceae family, the family of sunflowers, daisies and asters. The cosmos flower is native to Mexico and naturalized across most of the eastern U.S. and Canada. 

The Cosmos genus includes the species Cosmos bipinnatus, commonly referred to as the Mexican Aster, Cosmos sulphureus also called the Yellow Cosmos and Cosmos atrosanguineus also known as the Chocolate Cosmos (so called because its fragrance is similar to that of chocolate).

"Cosmos bipinnatus -- White", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2015

The word Cosmos is derived from the Greek, which means "balanced universe". The flower's fragrance and vibrant colours give it the attributes of peacefulness, wholeness, and modesty. In the language of flowers the typical meaning of this flower is "the love flower". (

This flower is often used to illustrate one's deepest feelings of love. When sent to someone on Valentine's Day it can be said to mean "walk with me hand in hand"; "see, life is indeed beautiful" or, simply, "I love you".

Years ago, now, I did a drawing of Cosmos sulphureus, the Yellow Cosmos (actually mine was a bit more orange than yellow!).  This was before I installed a back-up hard drive and, so, the actual drawing was lost -- along with many others -- when I had that massive computer crash about 5 years ago.

A recent posting by a Facebook acquaintance reminded me of what a gentle, lovely flower it is and so I decided to try my hand at drawing it once again.  This time, however, I decided to draw the variety with which we, here in North America, are most familiar --Cosmos bipinnatus

Imagine that my drawing of the "Love Flower" is sending out loving thoughts to you all.

Much of the above information was taken from various Internet sources.


Having fun on a family outing!

Braden on horseback.
Ride'em Cowboy!  Get along little doggies! 

Braden milking a cow -- Even a cowboy has to help
with the chores once the round-up is done!

Brothers -- note the Inukshuk in the background -- 
 The traditional meaning of the Inukshuk is "Someone was here" 
or "You are on the right path."

Rònàn practicing his Kung Fu moves!

Rònàn back at home playing with his toys.  Note the trendy ankle bracelet -- 
what a cool guy!



Suki, half-awake, wondering why I am
calling her name! (Photo taken by A.P.)
The Fly!

No, I am not talking about the horror movie but about Suki's recent encounter with a fly.

How the fly got into the apartment is a mystery... The front door has been opened a number of times during this past week, but, normally, there are no flies in the hallway. However, there must have been one somewhere close to my front door at some point over the past few days. Sadly, it made the mistake of flying into my apartment -- one of the few apartments on this floor where a cat resides!

Suki trying to catch the fly
It only took a short time for Suki to notice it flying about.  Once she was aware of it, it was obvious that there would be no sleep or rest for anyone until the fly was captured or killed.  I mean, I could have ignored the jumping and running in her efforts to catch the fly; however, Suki, as usual, had to give me a running commentary consisting of constant meowing sounds of different pitches and intensities. 

I don't fully understand cat language, but I did realize that the gist of what she was saying was something along the lines of: 
"Look, I am trying my best to capture this varmint and I expect you to join in and work with me. After all, if it lands on the ceiling or high up on a curtain or the wall, then I need you to knock it down to my level or simply catch it and present to me for farther evaluation."

So, I did exactly as I was told -- like any good cat person would.  I took a towel and used it to swat the fly, knocking it to the floor. Stunned, it lay there for just a second before being gobbled up by Suki.  She sniffed around a bit before walking, proudly, to her favourite chair.  After all, she had caught the culprit, hadn't she? Once she had jumped onto the chair and made herself comfortable, she groomed herself slowly and deliberately for a few moments before giving a great sigh. She then settled down for a long nap with what looked almost like a smile on her face.  All hail the conquering hero!

As for me, things are much the same.  Nothing new to report -- I continue to feel as poorly as usual!  

I am looking forward to receiving a visit from a friend on Friday morning, but, otherwise, the week should be a quiet one.  I am rather glad I don't have any medical appointments scheduled as downtown Toronto is so busy right now with the Pan-Am games underway -- lots of tourists. And, of course, there are the many athletes from all over the Americas. Good luck to them all.




"Icon - Christ sent them out ... giving them authority", by the  hand ofSarah "Sallie" Thayer, revised 2015 

Jesus summoned the Twelve and began to send them out two by two and gave them authority over unclean spirits. He instructed them to take nothing for the journey but a walking stick— no food, no sack, no money in their belts. They were, however, to wear sandals but not a second tunic. He said to them, “Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave. Whatever place does not welcome you or listen to you, leave there and shake the dust off your feet in testimony against them.” So they went off and preached repentance. The Twelve drove out many demons, and they anointed with oil many who were sick and cured them.  Mk 6:7-13

What an interesting passage this is. Why did Christ insist that the Twelve not even take an extra tunic with them?  Surely, it would have been useful to have an extra tunic to protect against the morning chill or to use as a pillow at night.  He, however, seemed to want the Twelve to experience absolute dependence on the Providence of God and the kindness of others.  I wonder if they were all obedient?  

Over the centuries, many of the saints have taken this passage quite literally.  St. Francis of Assisi is a prime example as this passage defines the first "rule" of his small band of followers. Of course, us ordinary humans seem to be unable to live so radically and thus, with time, his followers became as dependent on creature comforts as the rest of us.  

However, I can't help but wonder what we would be like if we could all live simply and without greed.  Not desiring for ourselves any more than we actually needed at the moment -- giving any and all excess to those around us who, at that moment, did not have enough so that we all had sufficient but no more.  Can mankind ever really subdue those inner, devouring monsters of greed and the desire for power?

And, so I pray that we may all know the peace which comes from being able and willing to let go of the desire for riches and power sufficiently so that we can freely and joyfully share what we have with others -- trusting that He who is Love will bless our feeble attempts to "love our neighbour as ourselves".


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