Monarch In The Serenity Garden

Monarch Caterpiler

I decided to change the look of the area next to the fence that leads into my Secret Garden. I chose to use silver, orange and purple. This picture is when my Garden Angel first planted the small plants. Boy have things changed. The silver has tripled in size, the red/orange snapdragon have grown also. I also put in 3 blue margarites and  a few purple plants.

A few months ago I planted 2 large milkweed plants which draw butterflies. The yellow and orange flowers complement the yellow  and the yellow and orange Tanzia already there. My Garden Angel (who finally came back for wherever Angels go) got so excited when she saw the Monarch caterpillars crawling all over the plants that her halo practically fell off her head.

Yesterday she suddenly appeared at the back door and her eyes sparkled as she showed me the caterpillar that had attached itself to one of the lawn chairs just outside the back door to the patio. It actually was beginning its cocoon.

I just peeked out in the backyard and we now have our first cocoon!!!



Gail Manishor, Author of

From Here to Serenity, A Spiritual Guide to Transform Your Life



Affirmation: Today I follow my dream, I continue to put one foot in front of the other and I listen for guidance. I guard the garden of my thoughts and I think about what I want to create. Every day I give thanks for all the good in my life.
From Here to Serenity, A spiritual Guide to Transform Your Life
Gail Manishor, Author

Double Delight

My Garden Angel has jumped ship or I’ve been deserted by my Garden Angel. Now Angels are here to serve and protect us. So where’s mine when I need her?

Thank goodness Angels never really leave you but mine took a month’s vacation. Is that fair? Are angels supposed to do that? I guess even angels need a rest occasionally. As you can see by the picture, the garden is still beautiful. I’m doing the best I can to maintain the garden. Alas the weeds are beginning to gain ground.

The Secret Garden is not looking at all well. However the crepe myrtle tree is blooming and the Princess Plant is glorious. For some reason the roses in the Secret Garden are not doing at all well. My husband tells me this is not the right time of day to take a picture on that side of our home. So I’ll post a picture of that next time.

My kitten Coco is doing well, but is still biting. One minute she’s kissing me and the next minute she’s biting. I’m about ready to throw in the towel and call a Cat Psychic. Someone suggested I put a little white vinegar and water in a spray bottle and spray her when she does that. What are your thoughts about that?


Further Adventures With Coco the Cat


There’s always more to learn about cats. That’s what makes them so much fun.

The other day my Garden Angel brought over a package of cute little toys for Coco (including some balls with bells in them and little mice with catnip in them (which she loves). She’s now decided it’s more fun to fetch the mice than the balls. She bats them under something. I think there are now at least 3 mice under our refrigerator

The above picture is Coco getting ready to pounce on those feathers above her. She thinks it’s a bird but I think it’s me she’s thinking about pounding on.

She is a delight and so sweet and so pretty. However, she’s biting me till the blood runs. She doesn’t know she’s hurting me. She’s a baby.   So what do we do? We’ve tried all the suggestions.  She’s a cat and we’re having quite a challenge with her. You name it, I’ve tried it: Bitter spray, spray bottles with water, blowing in her face, distracting her, playing with her until I’m worn out, giving her time-outs, and giving her treats when she’s good. It’s not working.

I think we now have the answer. A friend told me about a collar that calms cats.  It’s in a purple and yellow package, has pheromones and lavender in it that calms cats. I brought one home and put it around her neck. She acts like she doesn’t even know it’s there. She is now the sweet and cuddly kitten I wanted from the beginning. She now even cuddles up with me when I take an afternoon nap and I love it.

I thank Spirit for this very cute and now cuddly ball of fur.

Share with me some of your cat adventures.

Gail Manishor, Author of
From Here to Serenity, A Spiritual Guide to Transform Your Life

Gail’s Serenity Garden

Joy and Peace in My Garden

Gail Manishor, Author of
From Here to Serenity, A Spiritual Guide to Transform Your Life

Do you know what my Garden Angel just said to me? “I have plans for our garden. I know what needs doing. The most important thing is to prepare the soil. But you go out and get all excited and buy plants by the carload and distract me from my plan.”

Okay, She’s a little bossy. But, Wow! She’s right. I do that. But I’m compelled and can’t stop. Well, let’s face it, I don’t want to stop.

Sunday I went over to Anderson’s La Costa Nursery. It’s always fun to go there and poke around. Of course, I can’t leave without buying just a few things. Anderson’s is really beautiful and has well cared for plants in interesting and well-designed settings and helpful people.

Sunday I went over and bought more red and orange flowers to fill in and highlight the purple (Whirlwind Blue and the silver plants I already have on one side of my back garden.  I bought: orange snapdragons, red Nemesia, orange Nemesia, Phlox hybrid “Intensia blueberry,” and a plant I’ve been lusting after for a long time named  Very Cranberry Cape Mallow.  I think it’s looking very beautiful and that’s what matters… Well –  my Garden Angel does have something to say about it. Luckily she usually gets into the spirit of it.

“Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.” –Thich Nhat Hanh


Some of What I’ve Learned So Far

Gail Manishor, Author of
From Here to Serenity, A Spiritual Guide to Transform Your Life

Before I begin, please take a look at the above website. I’ve revised it. What do you think?

Coco & Baby

Everything is spiritual because everything is Spirit expressing. We may not remember that, but it is true.

I did say I wouldn’t go on and on about my cat, but Coco is a big part of our life. She’s still a kitten and bites. She’s not biting me, but she’s still biting Bill.

The above picture is Coco with a stuffed toy horse that my Garden Angel brought over. For some reason she absolutely loves to play with this little horse.

After having cats most of my life I’m learning more about them. My Garden Angel told me about a TV show that I didn’t know existed. It’s on Animal Planet on Saturdays.

“The Cat From Hell” is a series. The star of the show is a startling sight at first. But, don’t judge a book by its cover. He is a really neat guy.

Here’s what I’ve learned so far:

  • Cats are either bush dwellers or tree dwellers. Tree dwellers like to have perches high up and place to look out on their territory. This helps them feel safe.
  • Don’t hold a cat cradled like a baby. It makes them feel vulnerable.
  • Hold a cat up against your chest with her paws unconfined.
  • When a cat’s tail starts twitching, put her down and leave her alone. She’s had enough.
  • If a cat rolls over on her back and exposes her tummy, she feels safe with you.

Back to Coco. She is recovering well from her surgery and is getting sweeter and sweeter. She is a pleasure and a joy.






From Pink to Blue


                                                                                                                                            Pink Jasmine

 Today my Garden Angel arrived with homemade delicacies for Bill and  a quick hug for me. Tragedy had struck and my beautiful fragrant pink jasmine that draped the entry to my Secret Garden made its transition (died)  very suddenly. We wondered what had happened. Finally I sadly cut the dead branches away.My Angel and I discussed the problem. Do we want to plant another pink jasmine or should we try something new?  We decided to move  the Sweet Memory Duranta (which blooms spring to fall, attracts butterflies and hummingbird and has showy lilac-blue flowers. These plants grow from 10-15 feet tall the tag said) from a pot and put it into the ground. She began her work by gently taking the plant from its container. We could see it was struggling to get through the drain-holes in the bottom of the pot. It desperately wanted to be in the ground.  I don’t have a picture of it at this point but will find a picture of what we do have to delight your eyes.

Meanwhile I began weeding and cleaning out the old leaves around the roses.After I had gone into the house my Garden Angel moved all the pots of plants off the patio washed down the patio table and chairs and the patio itself. She is an absolute marvel. But I think all angels are wonderful. Don’t you? I do.



Gail Manishor, Author of
From Here to Serenity, A Spiritual Guide to Transform Your Life


New Neighbors at Last

More On Gail’s Serenity Garden


Hillside Beauty

Photo by DeLynn Hood 

You do get what you pray for. Sometimes it takes a little longer than other times.

Our neighbor with the weeds and rundown yard has moved out and a wonderful couple has moved in.

Changes are already in evidence. The weeds that were two feet above the top of our fence are now gone. Yeah! The trees in their back yard have been pruned and trimmed back and one was taken out. Our new neighbors came over yesterday to have us signoff on the colors they’ve chosen to paint their home. (We have Home Owner’s Association which wasn’t much help with the previous owner.) They have a Rhodesian Ridgeback dog upset by the move, but they have taken steps to calm her and “All is Quiet on the Western Front.”  I looked it up on the internet and this dog comes from Africa and was used to hunt lions.  Very interesting don’t you think so?

Meanwhile Gail’s Serenity Garden is getting quite a bit of rain which is a blessing for our garden and this whole area. A special blessing is that this is the fire season in Southern California and we have rain at the perfect time.

The hillside is filling in and My Garden Angel brought in more nice rocks and placed them on the hillside. She also moved one of the purple Pride of Madera from down below at the base of the hillside up toward the top of the hill a perfect place for it. It should do well with this wonderful rain.

The branch from a neighbor’s Twisty Willow Tree has rooted and is very happy in a beautiful cobalt blue pot and loves the rain.

I miss my Garden Angel as she is busy helping other people with their gardens. But she will come back when I need her. That’s what Angels do.

Gail Manishor, Author of
From Here to Serenity, A Spiritual Guide to Transform Your Life


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