Let’s face it, the world is crazier than ever. The genocide in Gaza, the ice caps melting, the ebola virus, the strange world of politics and food and GMO’s, fracking all over, and now, Toledo, Ohio not having any water. It’s enough to make you want to run and hide, except there is no where to go. So these days, I am all about creating beauty and being surrounded by things that bring me a certain feeling of joy and bliss.
This Summer has been heavenly in my little corner of the world, and as we float towards Autumn, like some of the crimson leaves that I see drifting from the trees, it’s all so beautiful.
The tomatoes have started to ripen and we’re eating them like bandits enjoying the bounty. Which makes up for the disappointment of last year with all those weeks of constant rain and not one tomato.
I have the feeling that it’s all a yin and yang thing, and the iChing that I just now consulted said that is correct 🙂
The zinnias and cosmos that I planted late, on purpose to feed the bees, are blooming magnificently.
As I sit here looking out my window to all the flowers that are colored with the light of the sun, the bees and butterflies are all gathering to feed. Everything feels perfect. Which is why I plant flowers and food for me and them – because more bliss in these crazy times is what I can contribute to keep the balance. At least in myself.
I wait and watch every spring to see where the poppies will appear. No, not the Oriental Poppies (pictured) because as we all know, they come up from the same basal root year after year. I must say that this year they are putting on a spectacular show, and as a poppy lover I am just thrilled! I know this is not the first post I’ve written about my poppy joy, but I just can’t help it. They don’t last long, and they are so beautiful. It’s a good thing I didn’t have any children, because I am sure I would have named them “Poppy Joy”, “Oriental Poppy”, and/or “Opium”.
That sense of excitement of not-knowing is only attributed to the “Breadseed Poppy”, because those are the ones that come up from seed…here, there, or someplace else. And they are all about to open! I always find them coming up in my garden beds someplace different every year, and I like that because it is kind of crazy and not expected. I can remember back in 1994 (hey that’s 20 years ago) when I made my first garden in Switzerland, it was so very neat and lovely with flowers all around the edges. Along with getting older and letting-go of so many things in my life (including that perfect order in my beds), I kind of let the garden have its own life, with me just giving water, some food, and some tilling (oh, I almost forgot the weeding part, which I call “yoga”). I just planted some blue bachelor button seeds in one of the beds, just because I love the color “blue”.
There is one poppy coming up and about to open in the next day or so right under the chicken run. I don’t know what color it will be, but how I love surprises! I saw it coming up under the flowering quince bush a few weeks ago and had to clip back some of the branches so that that one poppy will be able to get the sun it needs to open. I hope I can get a good shot of it with my camera, because I am sure you will want to see it as much as I do.
Already we are around 15 inches or so under the amount of rain of what we had last year at this time – so far so good. After last year’s sad 70+ inches of rain, my gardener’s heart almost broke in two, but once you have the experience of smelling the witch hazel, the lilac, the rose-scented daffodils, and the calycanthus after winter, and just seeing the flowers, the roses, the peonies, and then tasting the basil, the lettuces, the cucumbers, the parsley, the cilantro, the gooseberries, the raspberries, the swiss chard, the beets, the mints, the carrots, the roses, the peonies, and of course, the beloved tomato right off the vine, well, how could there not be a garden in my life, even if I get old and can’t move very well. It is absolutely essential for me to anticipate joy in my daily life, and that is what a garden brings to me.
Seeing beauty in a flower could awaken humans, however briefly, to the beauty that is an essential part of their own innermost being, their true nature. The first recognition of beauty was one of the most significant events in the evolution of human consciousness. The feelings of joy and love are intrinsically connected to that recognition. Without fully realizing it, flowers would become for us an expression in form of that which is most high, most sacred, and ultimately formless within ourselves. Flowers, more fleeting, more ethereal, and more delicate than the plants out of which they emerged, would become like messengers from another realm, like a bridge between the world of physical forms and the formless. They not only had a scent that was delicate and pleasing to humans, but also brought a fragrance from the realm of spirit. Using the word ‘enlightenment’ in a wider sense than the conventionally accepted one, we could look upon flowers as the enlightenment of plants. — “A New Earth” by Eckhart Tolle
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It’s been a while since my last post, but with family emergencies, work, and trying to figure out the weather to be able to put my garden in, all I can say is, where has the spring-time gone?!
So much has been going on for all of us, that it’s nice to take some time to appreciate what happens all on its own in nature – without us doing anything.
Since moving into our house in 2002, I’ve been watching the way the light moves, seeing what can go here, what would look good there, and now, after all these years, the flowers and trees and plants are happy where they are and are just doing their thing – bringing a pure joy and happiness that makes my heart open.
Believe me, I am not going to enter any contests, nor will I be posting these on the hundreds of sites where I could “share” them.
I can’t handle the crazy things that are going on right now, I don’t want to comment and write about the things that don’t make sense…all I want to do is to share what I see coming up and blooming in my garden.
Enjoy this Beautiful Life.
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I wasn’t always into gardening, or painting, or cooking. I was too busy making money, juggling things, and multi-tasking. I felt an adrenaline rush knowing how good I was at keeping it all together.
Or so I thought. I got into a car accident and everything seemed to stop. It was the first time I wasn’t able to “do” anything. I had to slow down, and it felt weird. The conditioning that tells us that we have to keep getting better, to be on top, to be the best, to “do” is something is almost impossible to avoid. It’s stupid, really.
Each day seemed to be a miraculous event. My senses that had got jolted from the impact of that other car made my awareness of simple things heightened.
Worrying about money stopped. Worrying about being fat stopped. Worrying stopped, actually.
I put lots of colors on white paper. I sent the ones that I liked to my friend, who liked them too. (Tosh, I will always be grateful to you because without you liking those paintings, I would not have continued).
Things grew in my first garden back then without me doing anything except making the soil nice, and bending over and putting the seeds in the earth according to which day Maria Thun said I should.
Now twenty years later, I feel as busy as I did right before the accident. My experience is that there is a link between sickness and stress levels, and accidents are not accidental.
I am on high alert right now, paying attention to my thoughts, and taking time for moments where I am not “doing” anything.
I am not keeping up with the news. I am not trying to look younger, to have sex as often as I did when I had eggs in my basket, so to speak, nor am I buying every new toy in the world of technology in the belief that I need to get it to be able to be “more connected”. Frankly, I am over being “connected”.
I am not trying to fit more things in my day that will make me better.
There are things that I am doing that I feel help me to cope these days:
1. I am getting a massage regularly from my favorite person, Mimansa (Thank You Mimansa!).
2. I am going out into my garden to see what is blooming, because I planted the flowers that I love over the last 12 years and if I don’t get out to walk around because I’m too tired every day, I miss the fragrance and the joy I get from seeing them.
3. I am taking more time with my partner to do things – little things. Like listening to an old Van Morrison album and kind of spacing out on the living room floor. Or driving to get a beer somewhere in the evening. I don’t want to miss out on the time that I have with him because I was “too busy”. Nope, it’s time to set some boundaries and limits and to enjoy what I have.
I am constantly trying to find the balance between being able to handle the stress of work with having a life too.
I don’t know what is going on lately, but the more I try to keep up with what’s going on in the world, the more I find myself going inside. It’s not that I don’t care about people and things that are newsworthy, it’s just that I think I’m at the point of screaming, “Uncle!”
Thankfully, Spring has arrived here. Interestingly enough, the plant growth rate seems to be very rapid this year. I mean, the mint just started to come up a week or so ago, and now it’s a foot high where I haven’t pinched any off for the rabbits. Everything seems to be growing so quickly. The cilantro that overwintered is bolting; the nettle is almost 3 feet high; the rhubarb is flowering already. Hmmm.
While taking my evening walk with my dog tonight, I was aware that today is “Earth Day”. I looked around at the green growth that was everywhere, and I felt so much joy. Even though it was a busy day with work, I knew that this is the last week to plant poppy seeds, and I had saved some bachelor buttons from last year, the blue ones, and those needed to get in the ground. Then I have to move a couple of rose plants that are spaced a bit too close together, and…then I smelled something that made me smile: plum blossoms! It’s such a unique smell that reminds me of the way my grandmother, Mabel Carter, who is long dead, used to smell. Then I needed to get some compost and when I rounded the corner, I smelled the sweet shrub that had opened drifting in the air, just like a ripe melon!
So yes, the world will go on getting more and more insane. That’s fine. I am drawing a line in the ground: I am going to start to feed Sadhvi what she likes. It’s time. Funny when I opened the mailbox and saw that my TIME magazine subscription was about to run out, you know what, I tore it in half and threw it in the trash on my way to feed and water the chickens.
“When the world wearies and society ceases to satisfy, there is always the garden.” Minnie Aumonier