Thank you so much for the honor to write with you lovely gals here on Tend. I love checking in and seeing what's going on, reading similar philosophies and approaches to my own way of living. Every post emits a shared coziness and warmth; a breath of fresh air.
See, sometimes my green thumb turns into a green and jealous meanie when I see the many finely edited gardens dotting the internet. I have a hard time keeping my garden envy in check when I see others with bumper crops of vine ripened tomatoes. I immediately compare them to my own Better Boys, split and scarred from the recent onslaught of thunderstorms.
Then, sometimes, I watch my daughter play in the plants. I made up my mind early in my pregnancy that I would embrace her curiosity and teach her to respect the natural world around us. But also, as a mom I devote most of my energy to Mabel, and the gardens don't get the same amount of attention they used to. I plant things and don't mark them, forgetting about them until they produce something discernible. This year that something is beans. I've grown beans before: favas, limas, green beans, cow peas...but this year they came up, started forming beans and I had one of those new gardener moments where I ran inside and showed Charlie and Mabel that I. grew. beans. I had 2 beans in my hand, each bulging with the black eyed peas hidden inside. There were more out in the garden, not quite ready for picking, and definitely not a bumper crop by any stretch of the imagination. Those 2 beans in my hand, though, produced a swell of gardening pride.
I can't really pinpoint the source of pride. I suspect it's a residual effect of motherhood: I can choose to obsess over aphids and soil fertility, or I can choose to celebrate the small wonders that make Mabel ooohh and ahhh over a flower or an interesting rock. Being present in those moments has taught me to appreciate everything I grow, including my 2 pods of black eyed peas--my own amazing unbumper crop.