Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Faith and the Future and a MeMe for Me!

I feel greatly honoured because Autumn Belle of My Nice Garden has passed on a Meme award to me. This is the first time that anyone has paid such a delightful tribute to my blog and it gives me the chance to pass on the award to some of the other really brilliant blogs that I have come across since I started writing my own.

But the most difficult part for me is revealing things about myself that will interest other people. So I shall follow Autumn Belle's lead and pick the alphabet as my focal point, but I shall concentrate on the letter "F" because there are seven really important areas of my life that start with this letter.

Family makes the first "F" because I am blessed with a truly wonderful group of relatives - particularly my husband and my son, but also my mother, my stepchildren and all my uncles, aunts and cousins. We are spread all over the world, but we are good at keeping in touch and blogging has really re-ignited some old family relationships and brought us closer together.

Friends are my second "F" because I have many friends and my forays into gardens around the world have brought new people into my life and re-united me with old friends who share my interests. My work in India has also brought some exceptional new contacts into my life.

Foundation has to be my third "F" because of my work in India. My husband and I travelled there last November and he became ill during our trip, but thanks to the skills of my friend Dr Deepak Babel, he received the best possible treatment in India and was able to return to the UK after a short spell in hospital in Rajasthan. Since then, we have set up The Raven Foundation and are now raising the funds to build a hospital for the villagers (like the lady above) outside Udaipur. We hope that this will be the first of many such hospitals in rural India and have been really encouraged by the support that we have received so far.

The laying of the foundation stone in India - with Dr Deepak Babel and our helpers

My fourth "F" is for my dear father, who died earlier this year, after a difficult battle with cancer. He taught me much of what I know and I will never forget his smiling face and his great wisdom - he is also an integral part of our Foundation in India, because he gave me the strength and encouragement to start the project, as you will see from the early entry on our Raven blog.

This is my father shortly before he died, with me and my brother

Number five is the "F" for faith that drives me forward in all the work that I do - there are few days that I wake up without feeling great excitement about the coming day and that's where Life in a Day comes from.

Foliage and flowers make my sixth "F" because I never enter a garden without gaining inspiration from the wonderful vista in front of me, and even on grey days, gardens bring me great pleasure.

Finally, "F" is for freedom because I am so lucky to be able to travel the world, photograph the wonderful sights that I see and share them with everybody who takes the time to read my blog.

And now I turn to seven other blogs that fill me with inspiration - they are not listed in order or preference - and I rate them all equally, and hope that you will enjoy them as much as I do.

Pomona with Tulips in the Woods, with her wonderful perception of nature and the glorious photographs that a feature of her blog.

Sue with The Balcony Garden because she makes such a wonderful read with her tiny space.

Lynn at Red Studio, Helen at Toronto Gardens and fellow British Blogger at Artist's Garden because there are always wonderful photographs and such interesting entries every time you visit. Donna at Mother Nature's Garden also gets my vote for inspired entries and lovely pictures.

Notes from a Somerset Garden is another English blog that fills me with inspiration and reminds me of home when I am travelling.

I'm really pleased to say that two of my other favourite blogs - My Small Cornish Garden and Crow Cottage - have already been nominated and this gave me the chance to choose some of my other favourite blogs. But the real truth is that there are so many beautiful blogs out there that making a choice is difficult, so I hope that these nominees will spread the word with their choices.

Best wishes to all my fellow bloggers and I hope you enjoy your space as much as I do mine! And now it's over to you, but in order to be part of the MeMe award you need to:
  • Link back to the person who gave you the award.
  • Reveal seven things about yourself.
  • Choose seven other blogs that you want to nominate and then post a link to them.
  • Let each of your choices know that they have been tagged by posting a comment on their blog.
  • And finally, let the tagger know, when your post is up.
Enjoy and thanks again Autumn Belle, and here's a parting picture of my other great love besides gardens...... birds!


  1. Thank you so much for passing on this award to me, much appreciated.

    Also, lovely to know more about you, always nice to more about the person behind the blog.

    Warm regards

  2. Charlotte, now that I have read your reveals, I feel that I know more about you, you family and the great job that you are doing. I am pretty sure that it would have made your father very proud of you. Thank you very much for passing this spirit of friendship to others.
    By the way, that owl is really cute. I can't help smiling each time I look at it. I feel like catching it and pinching its nose because the expression is so human like, i.e. mischevious!

  3. What a great post and revealing more about you! What great work you are doing in India! I was fascinated to read what you are doing there and the good works and seeds you are planting. I'm sorry to hear about your father. I'm sure he was a great man! Love the picture of the different colored trees against the water--beautiful!

  4. beautifully written.... and I do understand why you love shopping in the Indian Bazaar.

  5. Thank you so much for visiting my Quiet Country House this morning. How fortunate that the first post I found upon visiting your blog introduces you so well through the "f's" of your life.

    I envy you your travels! Alas, my travels to date have been mostly of the "armchair" variety.

    Your photographs are beautiful! I'm so glad I came by.

  6. Thanks, Galloping Gardener!It's an honour to be suggested for the MeMe award. A very cool idea, and great way to spread the news about other garden bloggers, and get to know the people behind the words all the better.

    I enjoyed reading your seven. It must be so fulfilling to be able to create better lives for people in India the way you are doing. How wonderful that you worked with your father and that you have a great way of remembering him.

    Your picture of the foliage reflected in the pond is stunning. This is a view you see every day? It is beautiful. The sunset as well is a stunner. I love skies, water and birds with a passion.

    Will work on my MeMe post. You've given me lots to think about.

    Sarah from Toronto Gardens.

  7. Thank you so much for giving me an award. I think my own blog stands far below your own and I am amazed to recieve anything :-) I love to follow your posts and your travels. Our own are curtailed at the moment due to caring for an elderly relative but blogging gives a sense of freedom and I am visiting the exotic through you :-) The photo of your with your father is one to treasure and I'm sure he would be proud of all you are doing. I am pleased to have meet you and I will think about the meme :-)

  8. Those are great reveals, Congrats on your meme award!
    I like that owl photo, very cute!

  9. I am very happy to meet you Charlotte, through Autumn Belle. I've already said the nice praises in my previous comments about writing, photos, the person, etc. This time i will concentrate on the OWL, it really looks captivating with lots of expressions we cannot seem to fathom. Mischivous as Autumn Belle said is one of them, curiosity maybe because of the piercing stare, but there is a certain kindness in it, which also is the best trait of the owner of this site! That owl is an apt signature! thank you.