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Archive for April, 2013

Magnolia

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I marvel magnolia and was thrilled to receive one of the elegant magnolia postage stamps on a snail mail the other day.

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Last month, Canada Post has issued the above two stunning floral stamps of magnolia to commemorate the arrival of Spring.

Here is how Canada Post describes the uniqueness of this exotic flowers:

“The two colourful magnolias appearing on the stamps are the ‘yellow bird’ and ‘eskimo’ hybrids, specifically developed for the harsh Canadian climate. Whether it is their shyly opening cup of velvety petals, or their intoxicating fragrance prized by luxury perfumers, there’s something romantic and irresistibly exotic about magnolias. This breathtaking flower is one of the world’s oldest flowering plants dating back over 30 million-years, existing even before bees.

The flower is associated with nobility, perseverance, dignity and a love of nature. Magnolias are often used in floral arrangements such as wedding bouquets to represent the purity and dignity of the bride. Magnolia’s are also known for their resilience under difficult circumstances. They represent rebirth, transformation and tenacity, the perfect metaphor for the spring season.”

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Magnolia, the first time I heard of this elegant name was through a brand new ice-cream chain that invaded our small town during the high school days. Their chocolatey, milky and creamy ice-cream bar was pretty craving; the flavorful ice-cream bar still linger on my taste buds these days!

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The magnolia blossoms adorning the tree somehow resemble fanciful decorated ice-cream bowls… now I am imagining the hallow of the petals being filled to the brim with swirls of flavorful ice-cream awaiting to be licked!

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The next time I heard of the name “Magnolia” was during my college year.  One day, at the school campus,  we were awakened by the sudden explosive of these flamboyant flowerage outside the window of the school library.

One of our professors exclaimed delightfully that those showy flowers were called Magnolia and it was his most favorite flower.

Wow, we were surprised to hear his liking towards flowers for he was a stern man.  Huh, it must be the power of flower that revealed his tender side!

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Back then, magnolia flowers were a rare jewels; but these days it has become a household name.

At this season of time, my path is brightened and colored by these luxurious flowers, and their vibrant presence definitely commands attention.

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These goblet-shaped blossoms liken floating flower candle bowls are fascinating to look at.

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Every time I pass by one of these showy plants, especially during this peak beauty, I can’t help but to run towards the tree and be saturated by its elegance and fragrance.

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Like many flowers, this majesty magnolia petals wither pretty fleetly;

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Ahh, the splendour and the brevity of life!

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Master of Life

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Cherry Blossoms

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I cherish Cherry Blossom; they are aesthetically pretty and pleasingy! It is fascinating to notice the smiley starry eye gazing down at me whenever I look up the dazzling blossom.

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My late mother adored Cheery Blossoms. She was always beaming with joy whenever she shared about her many pleasant experiences strolling through the dazzling pink wonderland near Washington DC. She loved the sweet and soft pink petals snowing pretty-fully and playfully upon her. I think she had encountered hanafubuki!! (=花吹雪 Snowstorm/Blizzard of Falling Cherry Blossoms)!

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Cherry blossoms is a cherish-er of joy!

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These few weeks, cyberworld is graced with many stunning and candid snapshots of cherry blossoms with people reminiscing their delightful encounter with this springtime beauty!.

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The first time I ever saw cherry blossoms was from a flip-page calendar we got from a grocery store.   The elegant and mystic pinkish flowers against the backdrop of the majestic snow-capped Mt. Fuji would usually featured on one of the picturesque pages.   As soon as the calendar year was over, I would quickly tear off the page and use it to wrap the cover of one of my elementary school textbooks, so that I could glance at the splendid scenery and dream that one day I could step into this enchanting land of Sakura and experience her Hanami Festival (观赏樱花盛开)!

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Walking under the canopy of the fluffy cherry blossom and catching the blowing soft and delicate petals is happiness!

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I can totally identify what Kathleen Gillum experienced below:

I stand beneath the blossomed boughs
all touched with fairy lace,
And feel the wisp of fragile petals
on my upturned face,
I’m gazing up in wonder at the beauty of the trees,
cherry, damson, plum and almond
Dancing in the breeze.

Their branches seem like billowed sails
Against a sea of blue,
Stirred by the wind they bend and sway
And scatter beads of dew.
A pretty froth of pink and white
in beautiful array,
Adorned in bridal finery
In delicate display.

As rays of light touch tiny buds
They open one by one,
And turn their dainty petalled cups
Towards the morning sun,
And high upon the apple spray
A blackbird starts to sing,
Pouring out its praises ‘midst
The blossoms of the spring.

(taken from the publication “This England” Spring 2010).

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As I write, the place outside is astoundingly bursting, like sparkling fireworks, with cherry blossoms showing off their glorious splendour. It is glamourous!! Unfortunately the flirty sight and the floral scent of cherry blossoms are only momentary. The flowers as it has a short life span. Normally within a week or so of its blooming, the petals will give ways to new fresh green leaves.

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Long live cherry blossoms… before the next gentle wind come to “hanafubuki” your sweet smelling petals away to the neverland!

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Splendor and majesty are before Him; strength and glory are in His sanctuary. (Psalm 96:6)

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Mango Madness

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The homegrown mangoes were enormous and extremely sweet. My sister, Iris, said they had spared three for me to try. I was anticipating to taste those wonder mangoes that the family highly valued; but when I reached home, those fruits were still dangling on the treetop yet to be harvested.

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After a month, those eye-catching mangoes looked more like a forbidden fruit as it still refused to ripen. After I left the country, the family sort of didn’t think much about the green mangoes. One day, Iris heard the chirping of singing birds outside the kitchen window. In fact, the cadence had been going on for a few days, but on that particular day, the tweedling was unusually loud and joyous so she decided to take a peek at the commotion.

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To her sheer delight, she looked up and saw one of the green mangoes had finally turned to a ripen yellow;  but to her utter dismay,  the fruit was bruisely attacked by the avian creatures.    Gazing at the soft ripen yellowish flesh of mango dripping down with tangy juice, Iris couldn’t resist not to climb up and pluck away the fruit. But then the thought of the Heavenly Father watches over the birds and feeds them stopped her from reaching further. Thus the birdies were able to continue enjoying the nibbling on the mouth-watering crop.

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Eventually the ripened mangoes were picked off from the tree.

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Hmmm… those meaty-sweet-smelling-tropical-deliciousness were supposed to be for my palate!!

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Iris told me her family almost chop down the mango tree last year because it didn’t produce much fruit, and sometimes no fruit at all.   One day, under the mango tree, the family was led to pray for God’s guidance whether to axe down the tree or to keep it.

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Within a short period, the tree started to blossom profusely with mango flowers.

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The blossoms gradually transformed into many mini mangoes…

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to mouth-watering mangoes…

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The family was overwhelmed by the miracle tree and the abundant harvest that the good Lord has blessed them with — over 100 sweet smelling mangoes waiting to be picked!

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The family not only enjoyed the fruit with gratitude, they also distributed the fragrant fruit of their prayer in their neighborhood.

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I took this picture with Iris’ grand-daughter two years ago, and who knew that the tree behind us would turn out to be one mighty tree that causes such mango madness!

Iris told me that this year gotta be another year of fruitful favour, for the same tree is now adorned with many tiny mangoes already. They can’t wait to savour and to share their bountiful harvest with their community again… including the carefree birds in the air!

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