Friday, September 16, 2022

The Queen, Memories, Dahlias




In Memoriam
Queen Elizabeth II
1926 - 2022


Some of my earliest memories of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II are probably from seeing the postage stamps, which bore her image, my mother used to mail her letters. And certainly from the lovely portrait I saw of her in public places—in our school, at the post office, in our community hall. It might have been the portrait above, it feels so familiar, which is why I chose it for this commemorative post. (artist unknown, image found on the internet)

As a girl, I remember waiting with my family every Christmas Day to watch the Queen's Address. The regal event was all part and parcel of the day's beribboned festivities. And when the Queen came to Canada on numerous occasions, I eagerly waited to catch the clips of her on television and in the newspaper. My mom as a girl made a scrapbook of Royal visits. She remembers waiting with her mom and dad to see young Princess Elizabeth step off the train in Edmonton with her parents, the then King and Queen. Mom's scrapbook, lost in the attic of her childhood home, came to light years later to the great delight of us all. It thrilled me to carefully page through this tactile remnant of my mom's girlhood. I think it captured my own imagination for the Royal Family. I was always glad Canada was a part of the Commonwealth Family.

The closest I came to seeing Queen Elizabeth in person was when she visited Edmonton, Alberta in August 1978 for the opening of the Commonwealth Games. I was twenty-one, had moved to the city earlier in the year, had started my first adult job. My first summer in the city. The news came down in our office that the Queen would be at the Alberta Legislature one morning, and anyone who wanted to join the lines could head down the hill to see her. The Queen no doubt came that day to meet her viceregal, the Lieutenant Governor, Alberta's representative of the Canadian monarch and to meet the Premier of Alberta, Peter Lougheed. It must have been a quieter day for the Queen, I don't remember hoards of people around that sunny morning. I easily found a spot near the north entrance of the stately domed building where she came out, stepped into the waiting car (probably a Bentley) with the royal flags fluttering on the hood. Her entourage slowly drove by, so close I could almost touch the car. I don't recall if she waved. I know I did; I might have had a little flag in my hand. It was a thrilling moment. Not having a television or a camera (certainly no iPhone), I bought up all the newspapers to clip photos for my own Royal scrapbook.

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This week I've been gently following the news of the Queen's coffin on its journey from Balmoral to Edinburgh to London, where she now lies in state at the Palace of Westminster until her funeral on Monday, September 19th. If you've been watching, you may have noticed the lovely wreath of white flowers set on top, designed using some of the Queen's favourite flowers picked from the Balmoral Estate. It included dahlias, sweet peas, phlox, white heather, and pine fir. info from Country Living magazine

The other afternoon, Rick and I visited the nearby St Albert Botanic Park where we hoped to see their beautiful fall display of dahlias. There was a definite autumnal feel to the day, warm sunshine mingling with crisp air and the sound of leaves scrunching as we walked. Since dahlias were a favourite of the Queen's, I wanted to pause right there amongst the dahlias. . . to honour the memory of this gracious lady I have known all my life and have loved as our Monarch.

Here are dahlia photos from our visit, including one pearly white blossom which I took especially with Her late Majesty in mind.









"May flights of angels sing thee to thy rest."

From King Charles's Address following his mother's death
—the line originates from Shakespeare's Hamlet



—— ❦ ——

Wishing you a beautiful day,
Brenda





23 comments:

  1. It's lovely to think that the flowers actually came from the Queen's favourite home.

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  2. Brenda what a sweet tribute to the Queen. She was quite a lady...may she rest in peace!

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  3. loving tribute to a special lady...

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  4. Lin Floyd was anonymous

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  5. I can't explain this, Brenda - I just have this feeling that the Queen saw and felt your quietly tender tribute through the dahlias... and that it touched her spirit... more than so many other things that have been on bold and strenuous display these past few days.

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    1. Caitlynne Grace, oh my, your words reach into my heart and make me want to sing. Thank so much for sharing such a beautiful thought.

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    2. I’ve been a bit crazy reading any news coming from England, especially for articles about Prince Harry and Megan Markle; they’re my favorite royal couple.

      I highly enjoyed your post. Do you still have the royal scrapbook you made?

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    3. Thanks Merry! Alas, I do not have the old scrapbook anymore. It's not that long ago that I went through my old scrapbooks and cherished them one more time before letting them go. On occasions such as we've just experienced in the past week, there is a small regret; but at the time I felt fine to release them.

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  6. Such sweet reminiscences of your queen. (I rather feel that she was "queen" even to those who weren't in her kingdom.) In these days of little honor, it is refreshing to see honor paid to the late queen and to her position.

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  7. Beautiful tribute/memento<3 thank-you!

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  8. Lovely memories. How nice that your mother kept such detailed scrapbooks.

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    1. I was enchanted when Mom's girlhood scrapbook surfaced. To me, it was a little piece of the past that I cherished.

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  9. The white dahlia is just stunning. How nice that you found your mother's scrapbook. Sadly, I think it's become a lost art. I remember getting such enjoyment from pasting things in mine. I'm sorry for the loss of your Queen. It is the world's loss, too. I was wondering where the quote came from that King Charles used in speaking of his mother. Thank you for including that information.

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    1. Karen, a scrapbook and paper with glue created so many hours of enjoyment in my childhood as well. I'm so happy to hear from you today. Isn't that quote beautiful - such a gracious send off.

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  10. How lovely that the flowers came from Balmoral, where she felt so at home. The Shakespeare quote, said by her son, is touching. She's been on my mind these past days, too, and yesterday's final goodbye was magnificent. I feel curiously bereft today knowing that she is gone. She's been part of the background of my entire life.

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    1. Bereft is how I feel today as well, Lorrie. She's always been there and I found that comforting.

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  11. Thank you for the tribute! That white dahlia is beautifully symbolic and fitting. <3

    Gretchen Joanna

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  12. ~ A late reply.☺️ I appreciated your loving and respectful comments regarding Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. As a young U.S girl, I was so interested in anything “Royal.” ~ and, I too had a scrapbook that I loved. I still have it although many of the magazine photos have “lost their glue!”☺️
    As an adult, I was mesmerized still by the Queen’s life and a reign of 70 years.
    Thankyou Brenda for including the beautiful photos of the Dahlias!! I have wanted to grow more of them; the past 2 years planting 1 or 2. They are exquisite and your “attention to” them as part of this tribute will encourage me to make a plan for next year!!!!!
    As ALWAYS, thank you!!!!~ Ann

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To My Beautiful Readers,

Some people come into our lives, leave footprints on our hearts, and we are never the same. ~ Franz Peter Schubert

Thank you so much for leaving your 'footprint' here in my comment box. I do appreciate you taking a moment to share your thoughts today.

Brenda xox

PS. I do not always comment here, but I do look forward to coming and visiting you....