Wednesday, May 25, 2011

May 25... and few signs of spring

It's May 25, just a few days before the Memorial Day weekend, and we've had about five days of spring since it began in March. The Memorial Day weekend is typically unpredictable and often, the weather is lousy (having worked a couple of weather-dependent Folklife festivals), but we usually have more sunny days leading up to the long weekend.

I've heard it's not supposed to be nice until July.  Really?  My garden is suffering, but my weeds and unwanted grass are happily growing and spreading. Plants and flowers that typically bloom earlier are about a month behind. I'm still wearing my down coat, and I've had the heat on in my car. This is not normal, even for gray, drizzly Seattle.

One of the new gardeners, Marion, got an early start, planting all things weather-resistent, and his garden is lush and beautiful, already offering up greens for salads.  The rest of us are fair-weathered and have little to show so far.

It's in the 90s in Savannah.  I'm here why???

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Nothing says local like...

... Portlandia.  Eating out?  Ordering chicken?  Watch this episode to see just how far - well, relatively speaking - you can go when it comes to local.  

Thursday, March 31, 2011

"Garden as if your life depended on it"

I've read this line a number of times recently (but of course I can only find one of the many articles I've noticed). Point being, urban agriculture may play a bigger role in our futures, so doing what we can now, even with our small gardens, is a pretty good step in the right direction. Here's the one article I was able to find.

Garden as if your life depended on it - CounterCurrents, 3/30/11

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Gardening season!

Garden season is here. Seed catalogs dropped into the mailbox in January. Inquiries about garden space landed in my inbox in February. The Early Spring Edible Plant Sale is coming up on March 19.

Our first new gardener, Marion, is an enthusiastic one; he's prepped the bed, and already has some seeds and plants in the ground. Our recent freeze doesn't bode well for the pre-planted seeds, but the starts look pretty good. Although a colleague at work said she's already planted peas and carrots - hearty crops that should survive a freeze or two. Clearly, I don't really know much about gardening...

Joining us this year are Marion, Rebecca, and Ross. Jen, Andy, and Yukko are back again (as is Shiv, of course), along with possibly a friend of Andy & Yukko. It's looking like a full crew. In addition to each of the individual plots, we'll have more shared space this year.

In February, we had Forrest's compadre Ascension do some prep work around the yard and in some of the side beds, cleaning out weeds, grass, and other unwanted growth. The berries and herbs now have room to breathe and spread - and hopefully we'll have weather this year to support a lush crop. After the endless, cold winter, I'm ready. Shiv has expanded, yet again; he has cut back and cleared the north hillside under the lilac and rose bushes, and continues his rows a bit up the eastern hillside.

Stay tuned for pictures and stories as we get our unofficial community garden underway for a third season!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

At the root

It was 2008 when things really started to unravel, although it wasn't immediately apparent. And no, life wasn't always peachy before that, but it was rolling along well enough that any underlying instability wasn't particularly noticable.

In 2009, the earth moved and my life turned upside down in ways I never would have imagined. So in 2010, I dug deep and at last discovered the root of all that shaped me and got me to where I am.

I may not have taken this route had I an inkling of the pock-filled road ahead. But I had to. What was initially forced upon me became a deliberate process of self-discovery. The past, now blown to bits; what was wouldn't ever be again.

To reach that root, layer-upon-unknown layer had to be stripped away, one painful striation at a time. Gradually, all the heartache morphed into awareness, understanding, new tools and perspective, and finally, a healthy vulnerability, compassion, and a new way to be in the world.

Tending to what I've unearthed will be a lifelong process. But the knowing makes it possible to move beyond long-entrenched limits, and create my life on my terms - what I want, what I need, not on familial obligations, debilitating beliefs, or other life-squelching perceptions.

I'm not dramatic by nature, but it's been a dramatic process. I have much to be thankful for - many memorable moments and life experiences. I have lived fully, in large part, but I see many places where I've been stopped, or as one friend put it, "couldn't get traction." I'm not lamenting; I can see where divine guidance has intervened at key points and pushed me along this path, both for better and worse; it's all part of what I now recognize as my "soul work" so I could get to the place I am now.

But I can't help notice the missed leverage points, where something could have changed. The question begs: would I still be right where I am at this point in time? Could I have got here sooner, less painfully? Of course there's no real answer, but I'm coming to believe we land here intentionally to learn something specific, pre-designed, in some way. This is a new leverage point, and I can now choose to move through my life in a very different way.

2011 promises to be another year of growth and change, but this time, consciously self-directed and happily embraced. This year, I give credence to my dreams, listen to my internal self, believe the universe supports my needs and desires, and create from a part of me that wasn't previously available.

Big changes are imminent. And yes, with my partner, sailing on parallel paths (cultivating parallel plots?), new tools in hand - for ourselves and each other. It's a new adventure, with a whole lot to look forward to. I expect challenges, and I know practice will take mindful effort because I'm still learning, but I am much more equipped to take them on. I'm ready.