Making a list…the twelve….

Happy New Year!  This is the time of year that abounds in lists.  Best Movies, books, most searched on Google, and those deadly Resolutions!  Why are they always the same every year?  Here is another list, based on a favorite theme of some of the British magazines I follow.  “Twelve things I can’t do without”.

1.  Google.  The world at one’s fingertips.  How did we get along without it?  How to?..…fill in the blank?  Blam – here’s how.  What is….Boom – well you get the idea.  Engrossing and marvelous!

2.  “COUNTRY LIFE.  My weekly Brit fix, only slightly cheaper than going there. Published in London since 1879 for the huntin’, shootin’, fishin’ set, I love the in-depth articles about historic buildings, theater and book reviews, gardening, cultural oddities and “Tottering-by-Gently”.  “COUNTRY LIFE’s” bright light dimmed last month with the retirement of expat Carla Carlisle’s column, which closed each issue.

3.  Flower Shows!  2012 Philadelphia Flower Show, Hawaii: Islands of Aloha. Above all the light waves, thousands of white anthuriums – probably not one left in Hawaii that week.  The 2013 theme is “Brilliant”, a spotlight on Great Britain.  It runs from Saturday March 2 to Sunday March 10.  It is the largest indoor flower show in the world.  If you have never been, GO!

4.  Armand Gamache and Guido Brunetti.  Wherever Dona Leon and Louise Penny lead these engaging detective heros, I’m running right behind.  They can’t write them fast enough for me!  Who-did-it is the least of it with any mystery.  With these talented authors, it is the framework for musings on much larger social issues.  Of course, walking around Venice with Guido or Three Pines with Armand doesn’t hurt either.

5. The Berkshires.  The most beautiful place on earth in every season.  Whether you think of them as hills or mountains, the area is sublime, and home…

6.  “Fleur creatif”.  A beautifully produced European design magazine from Belgium published six times a year.  “Fleur creatif” showcases the best of European floral designers with how-to information in several languages.  Belgium is the epicenter of exciting sculptural designs. The only drawback is flower envy – seeing the amazing plant material that is not available here. Order the magazine in the U.S. from

7. Chocolate.  Good for you? Maybe.  Essential, OH YES!  Reward for good times, comforter in bad, energizer for slumps.  Did I say essential?  Dark chocolate, always.

8. Fresh flowers.  Flowers make everyone smile.  The urge to create with them grows and grows – ha ha, pun intended.

9.  Reading glasses.  “Where are my glasses?” Oh for a penny for every time I have said that, or worse, rampaged around the house looking for them.  Luckily, most come from the drugstore so I have pairs in odd drawers.  Worst are when my ‘fancy’ ones get swept off the podium with the flower trash!

10. Papers.  I’ve almost never met a piece of paper that I didn’t like, but especially artist’s papers that can be turned into artist’s books.  Papers, ephemera, paste and glue transforms blank pages into celebrations – artist’s books, my version of paper dolls!

11.  Nikon Coolpix L810.  Framing my world so I can spread it around.  Hopefully trading up to this camera has raised the quality of the photos.  Next gadget for it should be a monopod.

13.  “Beginning with A Wedding” started this online adventure which focuses on flowers, flower shows, friendships, fun and sometimes food.  Thanks for coming along, sharing ideas and having FUN!


P. S.  I could easily go to 20 things….Netflix, L’Occitaine hand cream, Project Runway………….What things can’t you live without?






About Susan

Susan Detjens is a former landscape painter, she lectures, demonstrates and runs workshops on floral design for museums, horticultural organizations and garden clubs across the US.
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2 Responses to Making a list…the twelve….

  1. betsy says:

    Hi Susan: Thanks for reminding me of all the things I can’t do without, and to start making my own list. Wish I could do it as well as you do!!

    We agree completely on at least the following: Lindt Chocolate (dark, of course!) We were once at the “factory store” in Zurich; Google, Donna Leon, and a pair of glasses in every room!!

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