Wednesday, March 9, 2011


Spring is on its way. Just the other day, Kathi and I were working in our backyard. And it happened. I got a big whiff. Maybe it was on the wind. Or maybe it was from raking leaves. Or, it could have been just wishful thinking on my part.

It will not be long before spring is upon us. Time to start gardens of flowers and veggies. To dig into that dark rich soil, that brings forth the bounty that we place on our tables and share with family and friends.

Dark rich soil that we have worked hard to place seeds of beauty and grace. Flowers that we give to family and friends and place on our tables, and on loved one's graves --those who are no longer with us. The food that we receive from the dark rich soil that feeds our bodies. The little sprouts that we lovingly nourish and take care of so that they feed us.

To me there is nothing like digging in the dirt. Whether it is to plant flower seeds or plant a vegetable garden, or just to get some worms for fishing. It brings forth memories of playing in the dirt as a child. Of helping my great grandparents start the vegetable garden. Of the smell of the soil. The coolness of it as it sifts through your fingers.

Have you ever heard a plow going through the soil? It is a sound that you will never forget. And the smell of the first turned soil of spring. I can close my eyes and swear that I can smell it now. Even as I set and write this it is something to behold and it touches my inner-most being.

My great grandparents and grandparents are gone. My parents are getting to the age that they will not be able to garden much longer. My Dad speaks more often of being on the farm of my great grandparents as a small boy. You can see the far off look on his face as he remembers parts of his younger childhood.

Memories like that of Papa carrying him in his pajamas out to the watermelon patch. Papa would thump watermelons until he found a good ripe one. He would then set my dad on the ground. Papa would take out his pocket knife and cut out a chunk of watermelon for each of them and they'd set right there on the ground and eat. Once they ate what they wanted from one melon, Papa would turn the melon face down in the dirt and they would go and find another ripe melon. My Dad swears that they ate at least a dozen melons that way, but he really knows that it was more like two or three at the most.

Gardening is hard work, but the rewards are many. And tasty, also. It seems that when you have your own garden the veggies taste better. The tomatoes are sweeter, the onions are more crisp, the lettuce more tender. It just kind of makes your mouth water just thinking about it.

If your garden is just flowers, think of how they light up your yard and home. Flowers seem to say that here is a home with love. A person who loves nature and it's beauty. Someone who took the time to plant them. It seems to put a smile on your face when you see them.

Yeah, spring is on the way. Hope that all of you have figured out what to plant, whether it be veggies or flowers or both. It is time to do some gardening exercising. kneeling, some arm curls, and some lower back exercises also.

So when you hit the ground running and are ready to dig, take a moment to take a deep breath, and exhale slowly, and when you take that first shovel of dirt, take a handful, and smell it.

Does it not smell of spring and good things to come?

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