Recently I was gifted with another novel thanks to the From Left to Write Online Book Club. This novel, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, by Barbara Kingsolver. It details a year in the life of her family as they learn to live off the land. And I have to admit…I was a bit jealous.
I grew up with a garden. We always had one. My grandfather did most of the tending. And then he passed away. Ah, but my desire for a garden lived on.
At one point, I lived in my almost dream place. It was a converted barn on four acres of land. It was spacious and allowed me to experience my dream again. I had flower gardens and…vegetable gardens. I grew radishes and cucumbers and carrots. I grew bush beans and peppers. I grew corn and pumpkins. It was a lovely assortment.
When the kids played outside, they could graze in the garden for a snack. When evening came, I watered and weeded. In the mornings, I picked and prepped. We had a steamer. Life was good.
It really was. Our grocery bills plummeted during the summer. Our quality of life rose significantly. And I felt better about all of it…the healthy eating, the healthy feeding, and the healthy living. I was thinner and happier.
Life was better, simpler.
Then we discovered we needed warmed climates for the boy to thrive. He had a lot of respiratory issues brought about because of his prematurity. (Kenna was so early, when she gets out of the hospital we may need to move to South America.) And the move to North Carolina came swiftly and impulsively.
I couldn’t have the vegetable garden in the apartments, but I continued to raise my beloved flowers and make our life pretty. And when we finally moved into a house, I discovered that the home was built on a giant rock…the entire neighborhood was.
This year, however, the husband has agreed to help indulge my need for a more homegrown life. He claims that he will be build me a raised bed. He tells me that he will even build me a greenhouse. And this is more than possible given his newly acquired window stash. (The beauty of installing windows as one of the many services we provide…)
I’m confident this year will be different. And so I ordered seed and plant catalogs. And I reminded him that we have goals for winter this year. And I think we’re ready. We’re good to go. We have a start on our big future. A good start. Soon we’ll be growing a vegetables…and with any luck, our baby will grow like a weed.