Coping skill #2, Nature’s bounty
How is it that something so very simple (and that I often take for granted) as the rising and shining of the sun holds such potential? For me, it’s an instant mood elevator, so I spent most of the day outside today…walking the dogs, feeding the birds, tidying up the yard and one of my all-time favorite outdoor activities – the cleaning, turning and planting of my garden beds. I KNOW, it sounds CRAZY, and I thought so too when a farmer friend, Poppy, shared that as soon as St. Patrick’s Day, if you can work the dirt – you’re good to go. I very skeptically adopted her strategy about 8 years ago…who am I to question a Wisconsin born and bred farmer girl??? It really does work.
Every March’ish, working the soil after a period of winter dormancy is always so fulfilling for me. The rich black dirt, its earthy smell, the decay from the fall and the new growth left over from lettuce that seeded itself is a sensory experience I relish. Today, I should have used gloves, the soil was really wet and cold, but there’s just something about the smell and connecting with the earth that I seem to crave. While I was clearing leaves, acorns and some remanants of kale stalks from last fall, I noted two red-tailed hawks soaring above, three groups of sandhill cranes making their trek back, among the robins who arrived two weeks ago and those beautiful but pesky blue-jays. The beds you see are a “honey-do” project Joe and I worked on together…they’re really beginning to show their age and because they hold such great meaning for me, I’m committed to lovingly tending to them and their bounty, coaxing out one last season. Today we planted spring greens – lettuce, kale and arugula. We saved the beets and carrots for another day. Crazy as it seems within about 7 – 8 weeks, like excited little kids we’ll be munching on our bounty.
You don’t need beds to sow your seeds. Depending on where you live – you could clear a spot and plant directly into the ground if you aren’t surrounded by rabbits and deer. You could join one of the many community gardens in the city. Containers with drainage holes work well, as do containers without them. If you have a container without holes, make sure to add a good layer of rocks, broken plates, or I’ve even used wine corks to the bottom of the container so the soil can drain. A fantastic local resource is Victory Garden Initiative, https://victorygardeninitiative.org
I hope you’ll join me in sowing your very own bounty – pick up a pack of seeds, most grocery stores now carry them. Maybe we’ll create our own little CSA.
Gratitude: waking up to the sun and feeling it filling my happy tank….for a dear friend whose gentle presence in my life over the last year, including a lovely message today, has buoyed me every time I’ve needed it, thanks WD! And for this app that’s new to me “Houseparty” I’m scheduled to enjoy happy hour tonight at 7 with 3 friends scattered across the US.
In loving kindness, and until tomorrow.