WELCOME TO Val's Alentejo -I write about my region of Alentejo. My art ,painting, my cottages, Family life, my animals -Travels And my love for Roses- and rural country life.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Madame Fifi !! and my Doves

Some of you might remember , now and again I  have posted  photos of my little dove family. One family imparticular   stay close to the cottage. I have watched the family grow.
 I took these photos yesterday morning.    The doves have now taken to sitting on my new patio wall, and I can see that they feel right at home.amd that pleases me, they are even getting used to the dogs.     I put some bread out  for them once in a while..   I was just a little late yesterday with my camera, to capture   one dove that was sitting on the head of my buddah statue.  They are becoming tamer, moving in closer and closer to the patio.   I can now go outside and they will just sit there, these two seem to be particularly inquisitive ,watching me while I sip my coffee.  They fly away after a while, then return later. The same daily routine.   Their nests are in a couple of olive trees near by.  

                                         Its a treat to see the doves sitting on the wall -mates for life. Their cooing is  soothing especially in the early morning. Its the simple things that make us happy!
                                      Merrily preening himself .. Its a shame my camera is not good enough to get a more focused shot.
  I have never taken much interest in doves, but have always liked them.   I read this morning(wikipedia) that there are around 320 species of them around the world.   Some with amazing colours.  Mine here in the garden are just the common type.. they like to be on the ground..and peck away.

                                      Louisa May Alcott.-
  Graceful games and friendly meetings,
  Do I daily watch and see,
  For these happy little neighbours
  Always seem at peace to be
  On my window ledge, to lure them,
  Crumbs of bread I often strew,
  and ,behind the curain hiding
  watch them flutter to and fro.

How gracefully Lousa writes about the doves..   taken from her poem   " MY DOVES"

Miss Fiffy
While finishing off the last touches of   "Madame Fifi" !!! (still in progress) and taking photos of the doves.    I  took a break and walked around my little garden. I was  amazed to see that since i have given them extra rose feed to  they are blooming better than ever, even in the heat of these  hot summer days. They gave me inspiration for  Madame Fifi. ! ):

                                              This rose bush I ordered from a friend.. It came from Germany ,all these roses are on one stem. I have no idea of the names of Roses.. I just love to grow them.  I have a wonderful rose book..and often look up the names and see the photos of the most stunning roses.. and I say to myself.. that's like mine.  I never tire of them.
                                                      A perfect yellow blossom
                                             This one you have seen before.. its hidden behind my pergola amongst the oleander trees.. it flowers through all the seasons.

Life here at Rose Cottage is delightful during these long hot summer days.  I am enjoying being able to sit ouside on the patio, planning my little agenda for the next event.
 Today I will be painting again  , and  later making a trip to the potter, in one of our nearby villages.  I have finally found someone who will fire my bisquet plates and tea pots.
Wishing you all a wonderful week.  Full of laughter and sunshine.


  1. Dear Val, Such a happy post! The doves are so very sweet, and it is wonderful watching them becoming more and more at home with you. Maybe they will have chicks and share them with you too.
    Fifi is great, the eyes are wonderful and your colouring is my favourite palette! Gorgeous! Enjoy your summer xxx

  2. Hello Val:
    We are so very pleased to read that you are enjoying the long summer days - may they continue for a while yet!

    Doves are wonderful birds and you are so fortunate to have them with you. Friends of ours in Herefordshire always had them and we have, in out time, spent many happy hours watching their antics.

  3. All so beautiful Val...I love birds, can't get enough of them. You combined them with your beautiful garden shots and your lovely artwork...I don't think it gets any better than that....

    Sending you best wishes...from Saigon

    Jeanne xx

  4. Dear Val - As far as I can make out from your photos the birds you have in your garden are Russian Doves.
    The scent from all of your beautiful roses must be delicious and heady in the warmth of the evening air.
    Love your painting of Madame Fifi, definitely a Portuguese lady with great style.

  5. Dear Val
    How beautiful the day you passed! You look around, to distinguish in everything in your garden, turning to painting! Everyday simple and beautiful things you love. Your rose are great !

  6. Dear Patricia,
    I thought about you and the parakeets that come to your porch, when writing this post. I am so blessed with the doves..they are are a graceful bird and they are getting used to me.
    Madame fifi.. well.. i started her about 8 years ago.. I cannot draw faces..so took a strait dive into it.. she looks a little out of skew.. ha ha..
    but fun anyway.

  7. Thank you Jane and Lance,
    I am enjoying this summer. I seem to be more relaxed than last year. The guests in Rose Cottage are enjoying their holiday and i can read and relax and while the day away painting..
    I do love it when the doves come. I agree they make funny little antics.

  8. Oh dearest Rosemary.
    I was looking so hard on the net to see what kind of doves mine are.. Thank you so much for giving me the name of mine.. Rather intriguing name "Russian doves"
    My Ukranian friends Pedro , who is my handy man and Olga who helps me clean around.. call me "Baboshka"
    i am a hopless speller.. but i am sure you know what that means!
    Madame Fifi ..well i started her about 8 years ago..and never finished her.. the face is not correct..but it was fun. its a fill in for somewhere.
    Thank you for your comments Rosemary.

  9. Hello dear Olympia,
    I have been a little abscent these days.. summer seems to just take over the day.
    Yes, my i like to keep life simple. I am pleased with my roses..they give me great pleasure.
    thank you

  10. What a perfect poem to go with your pair of Doves! sandie

  11. I love your wonderful (German) roses!


    ♥ Franka

  12. Dear Val,
    How sweet for you to see the doves at such close quarters. Your roses are ever so pretty.

  13. Thank you Jeanne, for you lovely comments..
    Its just beautiful here at the moment.
    best wishes to you there in Saigon.

  14. Thanks June..
    just enjoying these lovely days of summer and the doves keep me company along with the dogs.

  15. Thanks Sandie,
    I think the poem was lovely.. you should try read it all through..

  16. Thank you Franka.
    your comments are appreciated.
    happy days

  17. I love the reassuring sound of doves. It makes you feel like all is right with the world. Your roses are beautiful. That one prolific bush is just astonishing!

  18. Hello Val, your posts make my feel all warm and smiley, I love the way you describe your surroudings and daily life in your wonderful country, we have a pair of collered doves nesting in the conifer tree. they really are so gentle and have beautiful faces, so I can understand the joy you get from feeding them. Your painting is lovely I have spotted the roses, Wishing you a lovely summer
    Thea x

  19. First of all, Val, I love the photo on your header...gorgeous!!! Secondly I love watching the pairs of doves in my yard and lastly those white roses are sheer PERFECTION!...:)JP

  20. oh, you are so lucky. i love doves. i used to have a beautiful pair. and this morning i saw a baby on my walk with edgar. your doves are magnificent.

  21. Val,
    Did you paint Miss Fiffy? Wow, that is lovely. Oh my, your rose bushes are doing much more nicely than mine are. My rose bush is drooping from this California heat. I love your red rose. I smiled when I saw your Header because just today I wrote a short story for my family about a horse that I used to ride named Lady. She rode at full speed and gave me the ride of my life. Your horse on your Header reminds me of Lady. What a beauty!
    ~Sheri at Red Rose Alley

  22. Thank you Thea.
    how nice that you have doves too. They are so calming to watch.
    Miss Fifi..looks better on the wall than in the picture.. but it was fun painting her..
    happy days

  23. Horses can give us such pleasure and also can be pests. Surprise thought i couldnt see her.
    Yes, i painted miss fifi.!! she was fun to paint.. i am not into faces..but she came out better than i thought.
    Thank you for you kind comments Sheri,
    I doubled up the feed this summer.. here we have 38 39 and 40º ..its very very hot.. i give them lots of water every other day.. and it seems to be working better than last year.. of course dead heading too.

  24. Thank you Annette..
    I do enjoy having the doves around...

  25. Thank you JP..
    That particular rose bush is fantastic.. it is loaded with blooms.. its the extra feed.
    so nice that you too have doves.. they are soothing and funny to watch.
    pleased you like the header.. its naughty surprise.

  26. hiya val,
    I love doves but sometimes they eat flowers and plants esp. the ones with water inside :)I believe that they bring luck wherever they land =)

  27. Your roses look wonderful and are in such good condition despite having to endure such high temperatures. How lovely to see those doves coming so close. One of my favourite books as a child was Little Women.
    Sarah x

  28. thank you Gorkçe,, yes , thats what is said.. that doves bring good luck..but i believe they bring peace too.

  29. Thank you Sarah,
    the roses could be even better.. but i cant keep watering every day. I am so surprised this summer they are weathering the summer very well.-- it is so hot here. thank you for your kind comments.. always appreciated Sarah..

  30. Thank you Val for such a beautiful post. I love to hear the coos of the doves and did not know that poem from Louisa, thanks for sharing it. Your roses are just beautiful, I was telling the Captain that we need to feed ours more, they didn't do very well this summer and thank you for your kind words about my little porch. Like yours, it is a serene place to sit a spell..Happy Thursday..Judy

  31. Hello Valerie

    You have been busy. I, too, love your painting. I have mourning doves in Florida. They nest in my ficus tree. What I wonder is, do the parents leave the nest to their young or must the young move on? You have the "Tilston Green Thumb" when it comes to roses.


  32. Hello Helen,
    To answer your question.. All I know at the moment is that doves mate for life. they stay with the same partner.. from what i can see I now have about 6 that are very close to the house.. I do believe the parents stay near by.. and then their offspring find a mate and live here too.. must look that one up.
    thank you for your kind comments.. madame fifi..was just a fun painting.. her face is a little elongated..but she looks better on the wall than in the photo..

  33. I like doves too Val! ... and I find your Fifi very beautiful.
    I think is the way to live a full life your know. When one is able to observe and enjoy every little thing around them. It's the real life : )

  34. Thank you dear Demi..
    I do love living here in the country... i am at peace ..
    nice to hear from you.

  35. Thank you Helen..
    My mother was the one with green fingers, but i am slowly getting there.. I enjoy my garden more now than ever. sometimes not enough hours in the day.
    thanks for comments on miss fifi.. she was fun i started her about 8 years ago.. she looks better than she does in the foto..

  36. I love Madame Fifi! Such beautiful color and life! I would enjoy watching your wonderful dove family too. Thank you for stopping by to comment on my blog. I always love to hear from you.

  37. Dear Judy,
    Such sweet comments. I too like you love my home. I am enjoying so much my patio.. still lots to do.. but will get there.
    We are practically a day's difference its Friday today.. you will probably be just waking.
    enjoy your porch and your lovely secret garden..


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