Life is full of rewarding journeys. Yet nothing, short of the birth of my daughters, can quite match the feeling of putting seeds into the earth and watching them grow into the most beautiful, nutritious and abundant sustenance. From the tender shoots just poking through the soil to the ripe fruit hanging heavy on the vine, we celebrate every step of the way.
The little girls have scavenged all summer long with one or another of us in tow. Blueberries, blackberries, tomatoes, snow peas, blackberries, apples, plums, lettuce, cucumbers and even green beans were eaten right in the garden. The only things not consumed on the spot were potatoes, rhubarb, zucchini and onions.
The fruits of our labor were eaten with relish and enjoyed by the whole family as well as many of our neighbors. What we didn’t grow, we picked at local farms. For us, this way of life is the true definition of living. Our children are learning right along with us.
All of the gardens have now been cleared. Seeds have been saved and plants have been composted. With Jimmy recovering form his most recent surgery, we’ve enlisted the help of our nephew and young neighbor (led by my seventy-four year old mother) over 260 gallons of goat manure have been shoveled, hauled and dug into our gardens in preparation for next year’s planting. Compost is being dug in this weekend and then the winter rains will do their work helping the soil absorb all of those lovely nutrients.
Life as a New Pioneer has left me feeling rich beyond measure and more blessed than ever.