a generous gift & hydrangeas

Marian ParsonsDecorating, My House19 Comments

Well, I’m writing to you today with four less teeth than I had yesterday!  Yep, at 36 years old, I finally had my wisdom teeth removed.  So, I’ve had my mouth stuffed with gauze and a ice pack wrapped around my head (Jacob Marley style) for the better part of the day, but I’m doing okay.  Thanks so much for all of your prayers, well wishes and tips.  You’re all wonderful.

I just took another pain pill, so I thought I would slip in a post while I’m feeling relaxed and very happy!


So, if you remember when I took a trip to Wisconsin, one of the shops I visited was Harvest Home in Pewaukee.  I was so inspired by the way Brenda, the proprietress, used plants in her home and shop.  She put plants in just about anything, the expected and unexpected.  Baskets, tea cups, gravy boats, buckets and I even spotted a plant in an old pressure cooker.  It looked like something that could’ve come out of the trash, but with a sweet plant tucked in, it looked really cute.


Anyway, I have since been on the hunt for some of the plants Brenda used.  Specifically, I wanted baby tears and a button fern.  I was able to find baby tears, but they weren’t as big as the ones Brenda had for sale and looked to be a different variety.  Well, she is so generous and mailed one to me!


(It’s in a plastic pot sitting in an ironstone soup tureen.  The height seemed to be fitting for the draping plant.)

And, since there was still room in the box, Brenda  stuffed every inch full of smaller plants.  I think she sent over 30 plants! It was like the “clown car” box of plants and I was pulling each one out to unwrap it.  She sent all sorts of plants, including a bunch of succulents, which she sold me on during my visit.

I have never been drawn to succulents, but I loved this pale blue one.  Wouldn’t that be an amazing paint color?!


I planted him in a little blue and white bowl.

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…and it’s right next to one of the button ferns she sent me, too.

I’m not sure what kind of plant this is, but it tucked perfectly into the mug Kriste gave me several months ago.


Speaking of Kriste, I couldn’t possibly keep all of the plants, so she took a good haul as well.  I love this arrangement she made in a dough bowl…  

I’ll let you know in time, which plants are doing well. MMS_Divider And, since we’re talking about plants, I thought I would share how well my hydrangeas are doing! mms-8412 I have loved going out to the yard and to collect enough blooms for a full bouquet of flowers.      

Trug full of hydrangea from my garden. Outdoor rug is from @annieselkeco dash & albert… A photo posted by Marian aka Miss Mustard Seed (@missmustardseed) on

Not only are they free, but they last for so long!  I’ve had some of them cut and looking beautiful for almost two weeks.

In addition to the flowers from my bushes, I had some leftover from the magazine shoot a couple of weeks ago and those have been long-lasting, too.  I’ve had to pick out one of two blooms that were drooping, but the rest are still looking fresh.

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I think I’ll ask Jeff to move one of the bouquets by my bedside, so I can enjoy them while I’m recovering.

Up next on the blog, part three of the “Home Evolution” series – the home office…


a generous gift & hydrangeas

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19 Comments on “a generous gift & hydrangeas”

  1. Beautiful plants! Hydrangeas are my favorite(well, maybe tied with peonies:).
    I picked five up on clearance last year. Four were alike but one was missing his its tag. The four were the “Peace” variety that are billed pure white, though they actually turn a beautiful soft pink. They further reduced the fifth plant due to the missing tag and that I was “taking a chance” on it.
    So now it has bloomed and I still don’t know the variety. I just know it may be one of the prettiest I’ve seen yet!:)
    It has giant heads that bloom light purple and pink combined and then turn to a smoky darker purple. Stunning!

    Best wishes for a speedy recovery!

  2. I have a good bit of white ironstone that I’d love to use as planters, but my question is what do you do about drainage? I don’t think I can bear to drill holes in my ironstone!

    1. No, I don’t drill holes in the ironstone. I put gravel at the bottom for drainage or I put the plant in a cup or small pot, so it’s not planted directly in the ironstone.

  3. Be sure to eat things like scrambled egg or mac n cheese or hash browns while you are recovering. Good in the belly will help keep the pain pills from making you sick. The egg is the best because of the protein

  4. So glad you are feeling better – dental work is no fun! I love to see how you are incorporating plants into your space. I think the green looks so fresh against the blue and white, and really stood out to me when you shared your home tour. I have some vintage silver containers I am looking to plant, hoping to pop some ferns in them. Your home evolution posts have really been enlightening to me, and I’m looking forward to the next in the series. Hope you get some rest!

  5. Your mouth should heal quickly as the mouth is the quickest healing part of the body. Loved all your pictures in the post.

  6. Hello Marian,

    I empathize with you and your current discomfort. Removing all four wisdom teeth at once is not for sissy’s. When I was 18 and just before my first semester of college I went through what you’re experiencing.

    As Carla (above) mentioned, hydrangeas can be dried and then reused and even put into a wreath! And for Christmas time you could spray glue them and sprinkle them with glass glitter! Oooooooo. Now that would make a nice Christmas ornament – on the tree – in a kissing ball arrangement, etc. Endless possibilities – dining room centerpiece, guestroom…

  7. Question: I love the plants “tucked” into things around the home! Do they do well in containers (like the mug) that don’t allow water to escape? I’m truly clueless when it comes to plants, so this is a serious question! Thanks!

    1. Some of them are planted directly in the container with gravel on the bottom and others are in pots and just stuck inside the ironstone. I needed to move a couple outside to get more sun, but most of the plants have been doing great.

  8. The color of the pale blue succulent needs to be a paint color. That was my first thought when I saw it. So pretty!

  9. How so very wonderful of Brenda to send you those wonderful plants!….yes, placing plants in the “out of the box” containers is so much more interesting….loved the inspiration here…and your hydrangeas are gorgeous…mine are suffering this year…I think I need to plant some new ones…Nothing like gorgeous hydrangeas in the house! Feel better Marian!

  10. What a nice surprise to receive in the mail! And what a generous friend Brenda is. I just received a succulent in the mail from Breck’s which is a special darkish “hens and chicks” plant called Black Knight. Your pale blue one is also a hens and chicks, I believe. The large rosette, or the “hen,” will send out runners which have baby, or “chick” rosettes on the end of them. Then the babies root and become “hens” and grow more “chicks”! So, eventually, those rosettes will need more room to send out their babies, although you can just remove the babies and start new “hens” if you prefer. Amazing, huh?

    I’m glad your wisdom teeth surgery is over and am sure you’ll have a quick recovery. But take advantage of the opportunity to convalesce for at least a couple days!

    I love the hydrangea blossoms. I simply must find a place in my yard to plant one or two this summer. I think they are so gorgeous when they are dried, too. The colors are so soft and lovely, alone or with other flowers. Yes, I MUST plant some.

  11. When your hydrangeas get droopy …trim the tips at angle cut into it ….so more water will absorb….dip the tips in boiling water to remove the tacky syrup and move to clean water quickly…I have kept mine going for over a week …change the water frequently….

  12. Hi Marian!
    I hope and pray you will feel better real soon! Your house looks beautiful with all of the changes. I love the addition of live plants. Take care and have a great day!

  13. I’m new to your blog, enticed last night by a LOVELY tufted couch that you reupholstered (I found the link on Pinterest) then was up into the wee hours reading other posts! 🙂 I’m in Pewaukee’s neighboring town, Waukesha most years in September for the highland games. Does this shop have a website, by chance? It sounds like just the kind of place I’d love to visit next time I’m in the area.

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