This has been one of the busiest and most fun seasons of my life. I go to church, or the library, or wherever, say hi to friends, linger too long chatting, get home, make food, go to another activity, mow the lawn, flip the laundry, and woops! I’m late putting the kids to bed again, and I missed something, what was it, oh yes, the deadline for summer camp….
Do you feel this way too? I’m not frantic, really, it’s just that life seems to move at a frenetic pace. I feel often to slow to keep up. I try, I really do, but I simply can’t keep all the files in the order that they need to be distributed. My friend Clare says we should have gotten a degree in logistics and planning. Boy, is she right!
One of the endeavors I have been excited to try for some time now is to plant a real garden. We did experimental things like sticking lettuce and kale in our flower beds, but the light in our yard is just so bad, the stuff didn’t really grow well. I even tried a container garden one year, but again, not enough FULL sun! So this year I pleaded with my man to hammer me up a few raised beds for the front yard, aka the “Sunny Spot.” He reluctantly agreed because he could see the sparkle in my eye that says, Come on honey….. So, despite his reservations (neighbors who take VERY GOOD CARE of their lawns for example), he gave in….
On the day we were going to install said contraptions, the feelings began to come out, and I saw that there was some deeper issues at stake…Every relationship has it’s issues, and sometimes I marvel at girlfriends who have far more complex problems, ours is a simple comparison issue. The comparison I speak of has been evident in our relationship since early on, and although we have grown immensely in our ability to handle the struggle, sometimes we find ourselves in….a relapse. Let me speak plainly: My husband is equivalent to the Tasmanian Devil in speed, and in a blur, can accomplish tasks with great efficiency. To watch him work is quite something. You really just stand back and watch, or at least that’s what I do. I am more of an observer. I can turn it on, and go full throttle, but I am more of a sprinter, with lots of time in my schedule no matter how busy, to find time to watch television, read, take long hot baths, and write… I enjoy sports, and frequently challenge my body, but in comparison with my husband, who was a serious college athlete, well, lets just say there is no competition! I know what you’re saying, we shouldn’t compare, and yes you’re right, but how can one not notice these things when living closely together as a married couple? Sometimes, it just slaps you right in the face. And sometimes, it’s in awe of the other person, like WOW! You just did that so well, and so FAST! The other side of the coin is also good to look at, like WOA! Those weeds grew so fast that my front yard looks like the everglades, and oopsie daisy, I think I did say I would keep the garden looking beautiful….I think Abel was seeing the everglades and was rightfully feeling a little concern. So, we did what every honest couple does, we looked for other options…we considered a rooftop garden, but thought better of it and experimented with a new idea: THE DRIVEWAY GARDEN!
we put those suckers right down on the driveway, and lined them with a huge, thick, black contractor bag cut in half, and then we poked holes in it….
we put more holes in the side that was farthest away from the house…..
then we laid stuffing, or “fluff” on the bottom of the beds for drainage….
the kids helped!
then we added dirt to the raised beds…and my honey cooked up some Korean Beef on the grill, check my recipe page for the delicious marinade!
and many tiny seedlings!
We had more help than we knew what to do with!
It was a good lesson for all of us in working together to solve problems, and even though I was initially disappointed not to have my veggies in the front yard, I actually have really valued the back yard, because the kiddos can play and I can relax because they aren’t running out in the street and scaring the neighbors! This was a win-win if I ever saw one! And, while I find much gratification in raising children, and watching them grow, it is an incredible feeling to walk outside and see beans climbing upwards, tendrils flying out, looking for something to grab a hold of! And orange zucchini flowers that uncurl, forming little fairy homes as they spread…
I love my garden, and if you are interested in having your own, I hope you persist even though there may be challenges, and there are good people around to help you make your dreams a reality!