Sunday, 31 July 2016

Hemerocallis -- Daylilies

"Hemerocallis -- Daylilies", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2016

This week's drawing features a daylily that I recently saw growing in a friend's garden. I know it is a cultivar, but I could not find its name.  All I know is that since it is a daylily, it is of the genus, Hemerocallis

Since plants in the genus, Hemerocallis, are not considered to be true lilies, they are placed in family, Asphodelaceae (any lily-like plant whose roots can be eaten).  Asphodelaceae used to be one of the subfamilies of Liliaceae (which includes true lilies) which daylilies once called home, but now daylilies have been given a separate family since they are not true lilies.

[Notice that the preferred spelling is "daylily" as one word. Many dictionaries spell it as two words.] 

Hemerocallis is native to Eurasia, primarily eastern Asia, including China, Korea, and Japan. This genus is popular worldwide because of the showy flowers and hardiness of many kinds. There are over 60,000 registered cultivars. Hundreds of cultivars have fragrant flowers, and new scented cultivars are appearing frequently in northern hybridization programs. 

The word Hemerocallis is derived from two Greek words meaning "beauty" and "day," referring to the fact that each flower lasts only one 24 hour day. To make up for this, there are many flower buds on each daylily flower stalk, and many stalks in each clump of plants, so, the flowering period of a clump is usually several weeks long.

Portions of the above were taken from various Internet sources.

MY SISTER, JANET, AND ME (usually the Suki and Sallie section)

My sister, Janet, caring for her 9-month-old sister, Sallie (me!)

Today, instead of writing about Suki and myself, I am devoting this space mainly to the memory of my sister, Janet.  She passed away on Monday afternoon, July 25, 2016.

Janet had not been well for the past seven months.  The cancer, with which she had been diagnosed and treated 5 years ago, returned at the beginning of this year. After chemo, she seemed to be doing well for a few months but then she collapsed this past Monday afternoon and never regained consciousness. She leaves behind her husband, two grown children and their families which include 3 wonderful grandchildren.  Her funeral was held yesterday in her home town in Tennessee (see photo below).

Janet's family arriving at the church 
She was my only remaining sibling.  It feels so very strange to be the last member of my immediate family still living.  I have often thought about all those stories, traditions and secrets which make up a family's history. These are the things that will be lost unless they are passed along to children and grandchildren. Knowing this makes me think that, perhaps, I should write down some of the things I remember so that I can share them with Janet's children since I have no children of my own.

Janet left home to attend university when I was 10 years old.  Our older sister had left home years before so, when Janet went away, I was left alone with our aging parents. At this point, my father moved us to a new home he had built located out in the middle of nowhere.  Our closest neighbour was a sharecropping family who lived over a mile away.  I had to take two school buses each way, each day in order to reach my school. 

This meant that I spent many hours each day with only my parents, my books, my special trees and all the farm animals (for which I was assigned responsibility) for company.  During the next 7 years, before I, too, left for university, I heard many stories from my mother that neither of my other sisters had heard. As well, I experienced many things in that isolated setting that had not been experienced by my sisters.

As I come to terms with my sister's death, I recall so many things that I shared with her in our adult years. Since Janet was 7 years older I was, we had to wait until I was a young adult myself before we really got acquainted and became not only sisters, but good friends. I am so grateful to have known her -- she was truly a wonderful lady and I am going to miss her very much.

Suki looks at me as if to say:
"Isn't it time to eat yet?"
As for Suki, she is doing reasonably well. She had a fairly quiet week and hasn't gotten into any mischief -- as far as I can tell! 

I have been able to decrease the amount of pain medication she is getting each day without any signs of distress on her part. This also means that she no longer is showing any signs of stomach upset.

Braden listens carefully as I read to his brother
As you know, I had arranged a visit to "my boys" and their parents this past Sunday.  I was able to make the trip and really enjoyed seeing them all. I arrived about 10 A.M. and had time to visit with the boys before we sat down to enjoy a delicious brunch together. After that we were able to visit a bit more before it was time for the boys to go for their naps. I had a wonderful time and did not suffer too much discomfort.  Of course, I was exhausted by the time I returned home, but it was worth it. Now we are talking about arranging another visit in a few months.



"Parable of the Rich Fool", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2016

Someone in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, tell my brother to share the inheritance with me.” He replied to him, “Friend, who appointed me as your judge and arbitrator?” Then he said to the crowd, “Take care to guard against all greed, for though one may be rich, one’s life does not consist of possessions.” Then he told them a parable. “There was a rich man whose land produced a bountiful harvest. He asked himself, ‘What shall I do, for I do not have space to store my harvest?’ And he said, ‘This is what I shall do: I shall tear down my barns and build larger ones. There I shall store all my grain and other goods and I shall say to myself, “Now as for you, you have so many good things stored up for many years, rest, eat, drink, be merry!”’ But God said to him, ‘You fool, this night your life will be demanded of you; and the things you have prepared, to whom will they belong?’ Thus will it be for all who store up treasure for themselves but are not rich in what matters to God.Luke 12:13-21

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