Every morning during the summer, I wander out to my small vegetable patch. It’s a joy to me to watch everything grow and I love having fresh vegetables from my own dirt. As I bend over the green beans or snap off a few okra pods, I am reminded of my grannies. Both of them also loved growing things. I’d like to believe they’re living through me and I through them. What they gave me is both tangible and intangible.
I truly believe we leave more behind than we can ever imagine. What we love, what we are passionate about affects others. My roots run deep in people that loved the land and loved to see things growing. It’s evident in me and I hope it is something I pass on to my children and grandchildren.
Embrace the Future
Gardens are a way to embrace the future. This year everything in my garden has thrived, save the two bell-pepper plants a gopher pulled through one of his tunnels! It’s a glorious garden, but I see where I could have done better. I planted a lot in a small space. You have to climb over the green beans to get to the tomatoes. You have to step carefully past the okra to get to the squash. That’s when I start dreaming of next year’s garden. I’ll make it bigger. I’ll have the neighbor boy plow up a bigger patch so my daughter Tara can come out and plant a garden of her own.
That’s the way I think life should be. We should remember our lives and people of the past yet we should look forward to the future.
The Value of Trees
Over thirty years ago I started with two very bare acres. I started planting trees — little trees, the only ones I could afford. As I watered and watered and watered some more, pulling long hoses out to where each tree was planted, I had hope that some day they would be big and give off lots of shade. Now some of them are 30 feet tall. Some dreams do come true. I have over 100 trees on the homestead. Some I planted as birthday presents for my children. Some were gifts from my mother who also loves growing things. Some my daddy bought for me and helped me plant. They give me abundant shade and their leaves blow in the wind and it’s like music to my ears.
The trees bring the birds from miles around. I have water set out for them all through the place. I’m reminded every day how my Granny Everett loved her birds. Both my grannies raised chickens. I wonder if they enjoyed them as much as I do. One hen took to sitting last month and after sitting on twenty eggs for three weeks she finally did it — she got one little chick! Now like all mothers, her life has changed. She spends her day clucking to keep Little Chick close to her and she points out all the bugs she wants him to eat. She doesn’t seem to mind that she has only one — he seems to be enough. Every day he grows a little bigger and a little braver. He’s going to be a handful for his mother for some time to come. Animals — another passion of mine passed down through the ages.
Don’t be afraid to share your passions and consider the passions of your older loved ones. You could pass on a love that endures through many generations. What could be better than to give the future generation passions that bring joy throughout their lives? How many dreams could your passions evoke? Remember, some dreams do come true.