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Books, Gardens, and Peace. Oh My

I’ve not felt like sharing much lately and it’s for no particular reason other than I’ve been happily occupied with other things.

  • Reading really excellent books.
  • Working in the garden and near the pool.
  • Spending time with my daughter and helping her learn.

It’s been a relatively peaceful period and one of introspection and I have to say I’ve enjoyed it.

From my reading, I wanted to share two quotes with you. I hope you don’t mind:

“Education is experience & the essence of experience is self-reliance.”

I love this so much & I truly believe in it. I think we learn best when we see a need in our lives, or we have an interest in something. Otherwise, we’re just working for shallow, arbitrary gold stars and are highly unlikely to retain the information.

I came across this quote as a result of reading, not White himself, although I’ve added The Once and Future King to my list of must reads, but while reading H is for Hawk, by Helen MacDonald.

I like this book, but thus far I don’t love the book and I’m hoping my love grows as I continue. Have you ever read a book like that, where you really want to love it so much, because of the way it wooed you from the shelf, or the way it felt in your hands when you picked it up from the shelf, and flipped it’s pages while you inhaled the scent of bygone trees and ink?

Am I the only one who has a love affair with the books I read?

Anyway, here’s the other quote…

“Blithe superiority is the refuge of the small.”

This is a paraphrase from Henry David Thoreau and I was quite struck by it. It’s bold and lashing in its truthful measure of the smug, condescending types. The type I’ve known when all alone in the shower, recounting interactions with others who have somehow offended my sensitivities.

I’ve seen it in others as well, as I watch them criticize others. What I’ve come to realize is this: None of us has it figured out.




Not me.

Not you.

Not Them.

We’re all fools running amuck, spewing words and shouting critiques & all the while wishing our lives were somehow better and that we were important, or extraordinary – anything but common.

It’s weird.

I have been there. Boy have I.

Lately, I’ve been finding myself in a strange (for me) space of calm, peace, and strangely lacking any interest in criticizing anyone else.

I’ve certainly sat on my self-built throne of bullshit, pretending like I know something more than others. What a fool I’ve been.

I know nothing except this:

  • I love my kids.
  • I love my husband.
  • I prefer plants and animals over people.
  • If you want to see something grow bad enough, you do what’s necessary to help it grow and you know when it’s time to step back and let it happen.
    If you don’t feel happy, it’s your own fault. You can move on, make changes, etc. Own your power.
    New leaders make little difference, because real change happens at home.

That’s all I know for sure.

Enough about that.

From my garden, I wanted to share this:

I’ve always wanted to grow Cleome and finally have some. I love that they look like little fireworks.

The blackberries are getting blossoms! I didn’t expect that they’d produce this year, but I’m thrilled.

Nasturtiums are amazing plants and so fun to grow! I have so many growing in the beds and near the house. These plants are edible and have a peppery taste. Perfect for adding to a salad. They are also great for a scratchy throat. Just eat a couple of leaves!

The deck is finished and my husband and I worked together to mulch the fire pit area. If you’ve been following for a while, you know how much work this has been. What started as a 5 foot high pile of sand and clay soil has been transformed into a wonderful, usable space for s’mores and taking in the river view after a day of swimming.

I honestly didn’t know if it would work out. As I worked, I continually second-guessed myself. I criticized myself for “another lofty and unreachable goal I’ll likely quit on,” but I kept going.

I don’t know why.

The vision was clenched so close in my heart. I wanted to see it through and now that this is finished and looking nice, I feel happy to relax for the summer while I plan the next phase in what really will be our low-maintenance edible landscape.

I know it will take years, but I plan to work out 1 acre hillside so that it doesn’t even need to be mowed and we have ample food growing almost year round. If I add a greenhouse to the mix, then it’ll produce year ’round food.

Call me crazy, if you will…I’ve been called worse. 😉

Enough about that.

I hope whatever you endeavor to do today, that you do it with an open heart.

You are beautiful.

You are worthy.

The world needs more of YOU.



Categories: Nature

A Musing Mother

Hi! My name is Theresa and I'm a wife, mom of three, and grandma to two. I am a Nature lover and a follower of Christ. I live in an old farmhouse on the river where I homeschool our daughter. Most days, I can be found reading, making nature-inspired products, & gardening. I also enjoy traveling with my family, exploring cool local places, and helping out others where I am able. On the blog, I must about life, love, and learning.

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