Beauty is the garden where hope grows…
I began gardening after I lost my job/career as a librarian in the spring of 2004. I found it stimulating and calming all at the same time. First I spent some time learning about drought tolerant plants in my area, picked out a few at a local nursery, and I was off. What a marvelous pastime!
I find gardening and philosophy go well together, providing life lessons and metaphors everywhere. Here’s a bit of gardening wisdom from a piece I wrote ages ago:
Eggplant Seed Wisdom (2005)
Today I was trying to decide whether to even attempt to grow a few eggplant plants from a packet of free seeds I was given. Then it suddenly struck me, what a silly question! Just put them out there and see what happens. It’s such a tiny investment of time and energy, and who knows, I might even get an eggplant or two out of it.
This is true of so many small decisions I make everyday of my life. I worry too long about whether to throw them out there and see if they take root. Why agonize over it? Just put the silly seeds in the ground. What have I lost if nothing comes up? This has evolved into my philosophy of “do what’s right in front of you, and stop worrying so much about every little thing.” This all has to do with trusting in the universe and following my intuition.
The universe put these seeds in my hand. I did not go out seeking after them. They are here and they certainly won’t turn into plants sitting in their neat little package on my living room table. I am the vehicle these tiny seeds have chosen to give them life. Whether I like it or not, I’m in charge.
After I planted the seeds and dutifully started watering them every few hours, I sat and thought about how many decisions in my life could be dispatched just as quickly and easily. No muss, no fuss.
My interest in gardening has led to only good things [and people] in my life. This summer I discovered a very cool nursery out in the country near Rye, CO.
Perennial Favorites is a wonderful place to visit. I love talking to the ladies there about plants that do well above 7,000 feet elevation. This is one of my favorite places on earth.
I’m constantly on alert as I drive around this area, for new wildflowers. Last week I saw a flower I’m certain I’ve never seen before near the railroad tracks in La Veta.
Isn’t the flower beautiful?
This plant stands about three feet tall on a thick stalk and the flowers shoot out like this. I found it among a bunch of sunflowers right along the tracks.
Would someone please tell me what this is? I’ll send you a free copy of any one of my books if you can identify this for me! Thanks!
This morning I woke up to a dense fog surrounding our home, so rare around here! We received almost half an inch of rain last night.
Only minutes later, the sun worked its way through the clouds, and the Spanish Peaks began to emerge…
Looking west, Mount Mestas suddenly appeared with a big fat gollop of clouds on top.
LOVE the cloud and sun show in this part of the country!
Home Sweet Home
My favorite time here in the southern Colorado foothills is the morning. I wake up to such a marvelous array of natural sounds. I love to hear the birds greeting the new day.
Then I go out to my garden and appreciate it all!
Yesterday we took a trip up to Pueblo to visit a farm east of there to buy fresh produce. I love buying directly from the farmers and the prices are quite good!
Then we drove into Pueblo to visit Yang’s Gifts in the Pueblo Mall. Why? Because I won a FREE gift from there! What fun going through the store choosing something just for me and for free! I love this store, but then I have always appreciated jewelry, fans, and beautiful clothes from Asia.
One thing Mike and I now disagree on. I enjoy occasionally driving into Pueblo or Trinidad to shop. He gets quiet in the city and his joy level visibly increases when we leave town.
He gets happier and happier as we get closer to home.
I just read a new review of the Criterion re-release of the 1985 Albert Brooks film “Lost in America” in The Atlantic. This film is a satire about two upper-middle-class Californians who decide to quit their great corporate jobs, and go “find themselves” by traveling our country in a Winnebago.
I couldn’t help thinking, as I read this review, how pessimistic their viewpoint is. Perhaps these Californians failed at their goal simply because they didn’t have a good plan from the beginning. It’s one thing to quit your “boring, predictable existence earning a solid wage” with no real plan at all. It can be an entirely different experience to spend the time to find out where you most want to live ahead of time, and then create a sustainable lifestyle in that place.
Like so many of us from the Boomer generation, the main characters in “Lost in America” achieved financial success and yet could derive no pleasure from that success. What I have learned from decades of living is that financial success provides no pleasure, unless it also provides personal freedom.
Our greatest success in choosing this new, rural lifestyle has been the freedom we now enjoy. Many would find our lifestyle boring. If you have no interest in weather, wildlife, sunrises, and an ever increasing appreciation of the natural world, you would probably run back to the city after only a few weeks, if not days.
The silence here can be deafening, unless this is the kind of silence you’ve been seeking your entire life.
Monsoon showers are coming through every afternoon now,
with double rainbows attached!
“Sunshine is delicious, rain is refreshing, wind braces us up, snow is exhilarating; there’s really no such thing as bad weather, only different kinds of good weather.” – John Rushkin