Digging in the Earth

There is something so satisfying about digging in the earth.  Something so wonderful about planting something beautiful or useful or good.  Something so good about creating.

Lately we’ve been doing a lot in our yard.  It started with the woman running across our lawn.  It needed to be fixed…so we fixed it.  But once we started fixing one thing, we realized how much nicer it would look if we did this…and that…and maybe this too….

It should be said that when I say “we”, I actually mean “mostly Jason, but me a little”.  My main jobs have been to cheer and encourage and get tall glasses of ice water so Jason wouldn’t pass out while shoveling dirt in the mid-day sun.  My other job has been to create and maintain the potted herb garden on our porch that Jason has very little (absolutely no) interest in.

Our yard has made a complete transformation this year.  It’s suddenly this wide open, completely lush space.  It’s actually the NICEST lawn on the street.  It’s a bit more manicured than I usually like….but give it a few years for the new plants to spread and flourish and it’ll take on that “Secret Garden” feel that I like.  Yesterday, while discussing the backyard (which, oddly, we’ve done absolutely nothing to) I was thrilled to hear Jason use the word “sanctuary”.  It makes me feel like someday our house will be nothing but flowers growing wild and beautiful.

As much as Jason doesn’t care, I am so completely, nerdily, over the top PSYCHED about the herbs that I’m growing.  I’ve wanted to do it for years.  Every spring I’d think about how cool it would be to plant something (besides the random houseplants that we occasionally replant).  I’ve always thought that it would be cool to grow something useful like fresh herbs.  That way I’d finally be able to make those gourmet meals that I’d been meaning to whip up.  Yeah.  But, as with a lot of things, I’d always completely procrastinate.  I was intimidated.  I had no idea what I’d grow or how they were supposed to be planted.  For some reason, I also felt like once I missed my window in the spring, I’d never be able to grow anything  (Um, it’s not like I was planting a garden in the ground or anything).  

So, one Saturday morning, when the kids woke up early and I was trying to let Jason sleep in, I packed us all up and went to Lowe’s.  I already has that giant pot that was plastic, but looked like terra cotta.  I bought soil and 4 plants- dill, cilantro, mint & basil.  Within a week, the dill, cilantro & mint had taken off (the basil got a little too cold and never really grew, more on that later).  The pot is on my porch right next to the front door and every time I walk in or out, I smile.  The greatest feeling came when I was making dinner last week and needed some mint….and I went outside and CUT IT FRESH.   

It’s made me so happy that yesterday, when Jason started formulating the plan for our next project (which, no joke, was accomplished because we were BORED), I tagged along and bought more herbs.  This time I bought oregano, stevia (which I didn’t even know they sold) & another basil (try, try again).  So, last night, after hours on the latest flower bed (that I DID help with…I planted 5 of the 8 plants and with Georgia clay that’s no small feat), I planted my herbs.  I was sore and exhausted from the yard (yes, I did more that just planting), but I sat on my porch in the cool night and gave my plants new homes.  I replaced the shriveled basil with stevia, mostly because it looked sturdy and seemed like it could hold its own with the spreading mint & cilantro.  The basil & oregano each got their own pot.  And now, with a fledgling jade plant that’s trying to grow, I’ve got the most perfect line of mismatched flowerpots on my railing.  It makes me happy just to look at it.  After I arranged everything, I sat there and stared…almost waiting for everything to grow. 

I felt weirdly relaxed after all of that.  Actually, I’m feeling weirdly relaxed after WRITING about it.  I don’t want to whine, but I don’t have a particularly relaxing job.  Although it DOES occasionally afford me the time to write in a blog (cough, cough).  Maybe all those obsessive gardeners have something….

I’ve felt this relaxed, earthy “shift” lately.  I feel like I’m where I’m supposed to be (take that as you will..).  And that place is feeling the earth under my hands and knowing that I’m connected.  More to come…..



One thought on “Digging in the Earth

  1. I totally relate to this post. I love to work in my yard. Garrett thinks I’m crazy. I always have such big plans of things I want to do to my yard and never have enough time or money to do it. I thought this would be the summer I really got to work outside since the kids were older, but then we had our surprise baby:) Oh well, eventually, I will have plenty of time to do gardening.

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