I had an epiphany of sorts last week.
Audrey’s oldest son, 3-year-old William, is getting very interested in letters and words. I happen to have a little sign hanging on my back door inside doorknob, and he was studying the words on it: In the Garden.
“What does this spell,” he asked.
I answered, “In the garden.”
“What does it mean?” he innocently asked.
“Well, Honey… I hang this little sign when I am going out to work in my garden. That way you’ll know where I am.”
Silence. Then he walked four little 3-year-old steps to gaze out my bay window.
Finally, “Grandma, where’s the garden?”
Oh, yeah. Little detail. There isn’t one.
And I got to thinking that this little guy has never seen me work in my garden. My husband and I moved to our home 3 years ago. We had sold our home a little north of here when William was a mere 6 months old.
Now THAT home had gardens. I had a garden for each of our 4 children. We celebrated Audrey and Jane’s graduations from college in those gardens. I had a grandchildren garden (we had 5 grandbabies back then, and William was the youngest).
Audrey and Jane dressed for their weddings in that home, and we captured my gardens in the photographs.
I had a garden tea party baby shower for Audrey when she was expecting William.
My neighbors and I divided our beautiful plantings and often stopped to chat, have a lemonade… or a beer!
I had bountiful blueberry and raspberry bushes. My granddaughters had the greatest fun picking those little fruits.
I had exquisite garden decorations (stone, granite… each with a precious meaning). Thank God my home purchase and sales agreement specified that I take these with us. Oh. They’re in my shed.
But anyway, back to William and his question. I realized at that moment that William was too young to see my gardens. He never saw me at sunrise, noon, sunset, and even in the dark… planning, digging, planting, watering… loving the earth and its glorious bounty.
I realized that he couldn’t know that when we moved to our new home (well, old home… our home was built in 1780), my husband and I spent two years renovating the interior, and almost three years renovating and rebuilding the back of our home. We added decks. A pergola. A shed with its own little cupola, with a rooster weather vane. We leveled the yard of all its weeds and growth and nastiness.
William didn’t know that I would awaken at night and stare out of my bedroom window onto the front lawn below. I actually had nightmares about the front. One day I took a sledge hammer from our shed and hammered the crap out of a horrible fence that smothered the front yard. I felt a twinge of bad for the former owner… and then it seemed that all of my neighbors simultaneously were shouting “hurrah!” I raked all the dead things away… and that’s where we are today.
Ah… my little William who loves to work with his daddy in his own gardens (Audrey is not the gardener in her family) didn’t even know about grandma’s green thumb.
Long story, well, long! I have entered DIY Network’s America’s Most Desperate Landscape contest. I’ve gotta get back to the soil. I’ve gotta hit dirt.
But I had to have a little fun doing it. So. Have a couple of laughs on me (and my son-in-law, Steve, and my granddogs in their breakthrough acting rolls) in the video HERE.
And while you’re there, rate my landscape as the worst in America so my front yard will get a little respect! Rate it as ONE shovel (“landscape emergency!”). I’ll thank you all on the Today Show if I’m a finalist!
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