I’ve always been able to grow things with no problems. I inherited a green thumb–one I never really wanted and hardly ever used. When I was a kid, my grandma and grandpa had a garden that stretched (literally) as far as the eye could see along their property. It started at the back of the house and kept going into the horizon. They grew every kind of vegetable imaginable and my grandma spent countless hours canning every single year so she could enjoy the fruits of her labor well into the years to come.
A few months ago, my oldest son came to me and said he wanted a garden. This brought a real smile to my face because 1) It came right out of left field, 2) His interests only include video games and dinosaurs, 3) He always gets more bored in the summer than the other kids, and 4) I saw it as an opportunity to spend time with my kid.
So, being the cool mom that I am, I sat down with oldest son and we made a written plan for the things we wanted to grow. We decided that he is responsible for half the watering and weeding and I’ll do the other half. We now have five tomatoes, one cucumber plant, and two beans, along with several flowers.
The beans were not planned. It seems that when I put my petunias into the pot, my daughter sneaked some beans into the pot with the flowers. When I began digging the flowers out to put them in the ground, I found two really nice, four or five inch tall bean plants growing in the side of the pot! I never even knew a plant would grow that way, but they did.
The beans are doing quite well, though. We planted them in the ground with the rest of our veggies and I’m curious to see how they turn out after being planted originally with petunias.
Gardening is a new adventure for me. My son is reluctant to help (even though he’s the one who wanted the garden) unless there is digging involved. For me, though, I’ve found a new sense of peace when I’m out there. My garden is small, nearly microscopic compared to the garden my grandma used to raise, but I’m pleased as punch with it. When I’m weeding or digging around in the earth, I feel completely at ease, like there isn’t a single care in the world. I like that I can go out there and, since my kids are allergic to work sometimes, I’m alone for a few minutes.
This adventure has another purpose, though. Not only will there be veggies when it’s time to harvest, but sometimes a writer needs to live a little of their own life in order to write. You have to do stuff. You have to find a new hobby sometimes, which is what I’ve done. In order to climb a mountain (write a book), sometimes you must first conquer the villages below (gardening, painting, or whatever new hobby you might pick up).
And if that village gives you a bountiful harvest in a few months, well, that’s just a tasty bonus.