Treating Myself

Major doings today! A friend and I treated ourselves to a trip to the big city for a shopping spree, though to be honest, it’s only a big city in comparison to this tiny burg, and the shopping spree was merely to stock up on groceries.

Well, groceries and chrysanthemums in my case. The flowers weren’t a spur of the moment thing — I’d actually planned to buy a mum or two for my garden. They are such a nice addition — adding mounds of greenery during the summer, and copious flowers in the fall. Even better, they come in a variety of colors. A blog reader once sent me a photo of a park that has many mounds of mums with many colors, and I fell in love with the look. The plant already in the ground (bought last year) as well as the three starter plants I got today are a step in the right direction.

My friend teased me about buying more plants when she saw the mums in my cart, but I told her there is no such thing as too many plants, and that’s true, especially when it comes to perennials. More than half of the plants in my various gardens right now are annuals that will need to be replaced (unless, of course, they reseed themselves, which they might).

So, a nice drive, groceries to fill my empty refrigerator, chrysanthemums to plant — but wait, there’s more! After we finished shopping, we had lunch at an Asian restaurant. Pho for her, kung pao chicken for me. Imagine that — not just a treat, but a meal I didn’t have to prepare for myself.

Now I’m hiding inside. Outside temperatures are just shy of 100 degrees Fahrenheit (an interesting side affect of having international readers is that I finally learned how to spell Fahrenheit without the help of spellcheck), and even briefly stepping outside is enough to fry my skin. People always say, “but it’s a dry heat.” I do know firsthand that a humid heat makes people feel as if they are smothered in a hot, heavy, wet blanket, but dry heat sears. So basically, there is no such thing as a comfortable 100-degree day.

Tomorrow will be about twenty degrees cooler, and Saturday will be twenty degrees cooler than Friday, so that will be a big treat. (Lots of talk of treats today!)

I’m purposely not looking beyond Monday’s weather because Tuesday will be back in the nineties, yikes. Though maybe after a few cooler days, the heat will be a treat. But I doubt it.

Now that I’ve finished my blog stint for the day, I’ll be heading to the couch to read, and that, too is a treat — a comfortable perch, a book, and air-conditioning. Lovely.

I hope you managed to treat yourself today, too.

***

What if God decided S/He didn’t like how the world turned out, and turned it over to a development company from the planet Xerxes for re-creation? Would you survive? Could you survive?

A fun book for not-so-fun times.

Click here to buy Bob, The Right Hand of God.

Suffering for Art

I’ve never been one to believe in suffering for my art. Not that “my art” is actually art — it’s more in the line of pretty photos I’ve taken to memorialize some flowers I’ve grown. And if art isn’t worth suffering for, then pretty photos — no matter how attractive — definitely are not worth suffering for.

Actually, there wasn’t much pain or suffering involved, and it was a silly thing anyway that’s not much to talk about. And yet, here it is . . .

Last evening, when I got home from work, I noticed this bright orange zinnia, and wanted a photo.

It was a couple of feet into the garden, so I used my walking stick for balance as I leaned over to get a photo, and the walking stick slipped on the foliage, making me lose my balance, and I went down. Sort of ironic, really — if I hadn’t been using the stick for balance, I wouldn’t have fallen. Luckily, I wasn’t hurt except for a small scratch on my arm. Even more luckily, I was able to get up without any trouble.

So that’s a good thing, I suppose — not the fall but learning that I can still get up. I’ve been wondering about that, but I’ve been hesitant to sit on the ground to test myself in case I couldn’t get back on my feet. So I passed the impromptu test and got up with very little trouble. Whew!

It’s been a while — years, maybe — since I’ve fallen, and hopefully it will be a long while before I fall again. I am very careful about such things because I’ve known too many older people whose lives as they knew them came to an end after a fall. (Not because of the fall itself, of course, but because of the injuries the fall caused.)

If ever I need another photo in a hard-to-reach place, I won’t try to balance myself as I lean over to get a close up — I’ll just step right into the garden, and the heck with any damage. One footstep would for sure cause a lot less damage to the garden than an entire falling body. Or I could simply pull out the plants that are in my way. (That’s why the reach was so great to get the photo — the garden had grown out of its bounds.)

I won’t have that same problem next year — that particular garden spot might be mostly empty. Although it’s on the north side of the house, it turns out the be the sunniest (and hottest) place on the property, which is probably why my cool-season grass browned out along there, so it will be the perfect place to plant the desert wildflower seeds I received yesterday. Because it might take a year for the plants to germinate, it’s possible there will be only dirt (and weeds, of course) in that spot.

But for now, there are still some pretty flowers for me to photograph.

***

Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator.

Variety

At the library today, I found a notice that our county library district is bringing the Little Free Library program to town. I’ve visited these wonderful mini libraries when I was traveling and was delighted to see it coming here because it’s a great program for a reader. Then I realized I don’t need a little free library — I have a big free library that’s closer to me than any of the little libraries will be.

Still, those little libraries will give me an incentive to walk. I’ve noticed that as I become more settled into home ownership and garden caregivership (no one really owns a garden, one only takes care of it), I have a harder time walking simply to walk. I need a reason and a destination, and visiting a variety of little libraries will give me both of those nudges to get out and walk. That’s my hope, anyway.

After I picked up my books at the library, I bought a variety of items at the variety store. That’s what we called places like dollar stores back in my day, and sheesh. I can’t believe I used such an old-person cliché as “in my day.” Considering that I am still alive, all days are my days.

As I was wandering around the store, I had a brief episode of disorientation. It wasn’t a physical problem but a temporal one — I saw a few Christmas things and for a moment, I had no idea what time of year this is. Christmas? Already? What happened to Autumn? Halloween? Thanksgiving?

I suppose I shouldn’t make disparaging comments about seasons. After all, my Christmas stocking is up, though in my case, it’s not a matter of rushing the season but of forgetting to put the stocking away with the rest of my Christmas things last year, and then being too lazy to drag out the Christmas decoration box again to stow the stocking. This particular stocking was a special gift and is not the sort of thing I can just stuff in anywhere, so I left it hanging. I’ve enjoyed having it up, and anyway, who says a stocking is just for Christmas? This one is beautiful any time of year.

Keeping with the Christmas theme, when I got home and checked my mail, I discovered a wonderful present — wildflower seeds! A variety of seeds are included in each packet: globemallow, desert marigold, brittlebush, chocolate flower, firecracker penstemon, Arizona milkweed and rush milkweed — all perennials. Considering that these are desert plants needing little water and lots of sun (and might take a year to germinate), it will be a whole new gardening experience for me. Luckily, I was gifted with several packets of this wildflower mixture, so I’m set in case of mishaps. Even better, I have the perfect area to plant these seeds — one of the still uncultivated places in my yard. I hesitated to put anything there because I don’t much feel like adding any more time to my watering schedule, so these plants will be great once I get them started.

Whew! Lots of variety, today. And it’s early enough for even more variety to come.

***

What if God decided S/He didn’t like how the world turned out, and turned it over to a development company from the planet Xerxes for re-creation? Would you survive? Could you survive?

A fun book for not-so-fun times.

Click here to buy Bob, The Right Hand of God.

Garden of Weedin’

I was outside this morning clearing out weeds and dead annuals and digging up Bermuda grass in preparation for fall planting (lilies and chrysanthemums) and transplanting (New England Asters), when I happened to look up and actually see the garden I was working on. I do see my various gardens, of course, but I tend to focus on what I need to do or what I am actually doing — focusing on the not-so-pretty things, in other words — rather than the gardens as a whole.

It could be that this morning I was looking at the garden from a different angle than I normally do because I was standing in the middle of what was, just a couple of weeks ago, a mishmash of dense grass, weeds, and wildflowers. But whatever the reason, today I really looked and it astounded me to notice that this particular area is becoming something of a garden of Eden instead of the garden of weedin’ that I’ve been dealing with.

I wasn’t the only creature out and about this morning, enjoying the lovely day and the lovely view — a black swallowtail butterfly flitted from flower to flower, so focused on drinking nectar that it didn’t even seem to mind that I was standing there taking pictures.

There seems to be a dearth of butterflies in this area of Colorado, so seeing one is a special joy. It also makes all the effort to create a garden even more worthwhile — not just something for me to do, not just an excuse for me to go outside, not just something to look beautiful, but also something that is worthwhile to other creatures, too. (Though to be honest, I could do without the grasshoppers. Prejudice on my part? Perhaps, but the truth is, they are extremely destructive beasts, eating 50% of their body weight every day. They supposedly eat 25% of available forage in the western USA. And, in fact, they ate absolutely everything Jeff and I ever planted except lilacs and Siberian elms; they even ate entire three- and four-foot saplings, bark and all.)

But this is supposed to be a post celebrating the positive aspects of my garden, not the negative ones. And there is much to celebrate today.

***

Pat Bertram is the author of intriguing fiction and insightful works of grief.

A Dream of the Future

I came across a Buddhist quote this morning: “Do not dwell on the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.”

Normally I would agree that this is a good philosophy (one, moreover, that worked well for me while I was dealing with grief), especially since all we have is the present moment, an eternal now. Though come to think of it, I’m not sure that’s true. By the time you’ve said or thought “now,” that particular now — that moment — is already in the past. I suppose the secret is to forget “now.” To just be. Though I wouldn’t know either the truth of that or how to do it now that I’m identifying as a gardener. Or landscaper. Or whatever.

For example, this morning when I was out digging up Bermuda grass and other weedy vegetation, I also tried to figure out what else I need to do now to prepare for the garden I hope to have next spring. Prepare the ground, of course, to extend a grassy area into the garden area so I can more easily get to the back of the garden to take care of those distant plants. Decide what to plant in areas denuded by the removal of dead annuals, or perhaps decide not to plant and simply wait until next spring and see if any of those annuals reseed themselves. Also decide where to move plants that need to be divided, such as the New England aster, which are growing rapidly this year. (I started out with one stalk three years ago. It grew to seven stalks last year, so I divided them and thought I was set for another couple of years, but now each of those seven stalks has spawned at least an additional seven stalks.) Since the asters won’t divide and replant themselves, I have to decide where to put them.

Admittedly, this transplanting won’t need to happen for another month or so, but meantime, I need to get an idea of where to put them and to prepare the ground if they are to be planted in what are now uncultivated areas.

All of this takes planning because all of this takes a lot of work, and I have to pace myself to make sure I can do the work despite an aging body and diminishing reserves.

So, is planning part of the present moment? Obviously, one can only think in the present moment because you can’t think today’s thoughts yesterday or yesterday’s thoughts tomorrow, but all that planning is for the future.

And a garden is, almost by definition, a dream of the future.

Dwelling on the past is also something that is necessary when it comes to a garden. You have to pay attention to what thrived and what didn’t, what you did that you might not want to do again, what you didn’t do that you should have done. (I’m still trying to figure out what I could have done differently to keep swaths of my newly sodded lawn from dying, because until I can figure that out, any reseeded grass would surely end up with the same fate.)

There are, of course, those times in the garden that one does what one does — planting, weeding, watering — without thinking of . . . well, without thinking of anything. Much of gardening is mindless work where nothing exists beyond the work itself. So that part might live up to the Buddhist ideal, but the rest of it? Not so much.

It’s a good thing, then, that I’m not Buddhist.

***

Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator.

Today’s Tarot Reading

Although I continue to do a brief tarot reading every morning for practice, the cards still don’t tell me much of anything. In fact, they generally seem too disjointed to tell any sort of story, whether mine or anyone else’s. Nor do I see a metaphor for my life in the cards, which is what some people believe a tarot reading is — a metaphor for the querant’s life. The querant, for those who don’t know anything about the tarot, is the person seeking answers. In my case, I am both the reader and the querant, so perhaps I’m too close to the querant’s situation to make sense of the cards.

Unlike most people, I don’t ask the cards specific questions; I stick with a generic, “What do I need to know today?”

Apparently, since I don’t glean anything more specific than bad things happened or will happen, or good things happened or will happen, I don’t need to know anything else. But then, that’s pretty much life, isn’t it? Those good and bad things that happened or will happen don’t need to be anything earthshaking because except for a few truly earthshaking moments — births, love, death — most of life is about small happenings.

I suppose I could change my question to see if I get any other sort of result with a different query, but the truth is, I don’t really need the cards for answers to life’s questions. I don’t seek insights into the past because the past is done with. I don’t care to know what will happen in the future because if I live long enough — a day, week, year, whatever — I will experience the future firsthand. I don’t need a metaphor for my life because I am living my life, metaphor or no. I certainly don’t rely on the cards to give me investment advice or anything like that because . . . well, for one thing, I have no funds to invest, and for another, if I have to rely on myself to interpret the cards, I might as well rely on myself to interpret the various investment possibilities.

Still, it’s possible that someday a certain tarot deck, the preponderance of my readings, a greater understanding will all click, and then I will know . . . something.

Meantime, there is my daily practice.

Despite my earlier declaration that the cards generally don’t tell a story, today’s three-card reading did, at least to an extent. The first card, the four of swords tells what happened in the past. (After facing multiple crises, you needed time for solitude and getting ready to face new challenges). The second card, the ten of swords, hints at the results of that past. (Pain, loss, desolation, but in that darkness are the seeds of hope.) The third card, the four of wands, suggests what will happen next or what actions will need to be taken. (Country life, work/life balance, peace, a sense that our projects are a wider expression of who we are.)

Did this reading change anything about my life or tell me anything I didn’t know? Well, no, but it did give me a blog topic, and that’s not a small thing.

***

Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator.

What’s to Come

We had a lot of rain Wednesday night, so yesterday morning I took the opportunity to start clearing out some flower beds in preparation for fall and winter. The lilac garden particularly needed work because the tomato plants I’d planted in the large space in front of the bushes went wild and completely buried the still-small lilac bushes. I trimmed back the cherry tomato plants, and then spent an hour or so untangling the bindweed from the lilacs, which I hadn’t been able to do because of the tomato forest.

Surprisingly, despite the neglect and competition, the lilacs are all doing well. I’d planned to plant the tomatoes in my raised garden next year, but now I’m thinking I will plant cherry tomatoes in pots to keep them from taking over the flower beds. Better yet, considering the long, ropy branches, maybe I’ll plant them in hanging pots.

This morning, the ground was still damp enough that I decided to continue my pre-fall cleanup. I hadn’t been able to get to my lilies to weed them because of all the wildflowers that grew in that area, but with most of the flowers spent, I was able to do a lot of clean up — pulling weeds, weedy grasses, and of course, the dying wildflowers.

I need to get grass seed to fill in the spots in the lawn that seem to be dead. There should be plenty of seed left to extend the lawn into the flower bed so that it will be easier to get to the lilies. Since that area is toward the back of the yard, I won’t mind as much if the weedy grasses encroach on the expensive grass — either way, I will be able to mow the area, making it easier to work that flower bed. (And end up with a few fewer feet of ground to weed!)

As I water and weed, I spend a lot of time looking at the garden, trying to figure out what works best for me and what doesn’t, and from a weed-pulling standpoint, I enjoy the bushy flowers like echinacea more than the single-stemmed varieties because they don’t seem to get as weedy as other plants. I must admit, though, that I did enjoy the wildflower gardens and the ever-changing blooms. My problem with the wildflowers was the difficulty in weeding as well as trying to control the foxtail grass that seemed to grow even better than the wildflowers, so perhaps the wildflowers would be best in the raised garden.

And oh, the wild four o’clocks. They never did well, never got the mounds of flowers they were supposed to, but I just found out they didn’t need to be watered much. I was going to move them to a place where they wouldn’t get watered when I watered my grass, but apparently, they don’t do well as a transplant. Considering that the plant went dormant for a couple of years, I’m not sure it’s something to worry about.

I also don’t think I’ll have to worry about planting more Love Lies Bleeding amaranth — apparently, it readily seeds itself. I like it, at least sometimes, when the garden itself decides what to grow. It saves me a lot of trouble.

I’d also considered not planting more moonflowers, but they do well here, and since it’s next to the fence, and since my neighbor likes it, it seems a good thing to replant, though it, too, might reseed itself, saving me the trouble. (Though, truly, it was no trouble at all to throw a few seeds on the ground and give them a bit of water.)

I realize there’s nothing particularly interesting in this post. It’s mainly for me, reminders of what’s to come in future seasons and what I need to do to ensure that coming.

***

What if God decided S/He didn’t like how the world turned out, and turned it over to a development company from the planet Xerxes for re-creation? Would you survive? Could you survive?

A fun book for not-so-fun times.

Click here to buy Bob, The Right Hand of God.

Playing the Hand I’ve Been Dealt

I do really well most of the time playing the hand I’ve been dealt in life.

Did I really use a game metaphor? Apparently, it’s not just gardening I see as a game, but life itself. This isn’t my conscious view of life — life has thrown too many tragedies and tragic consequences my way for it to classified with amusements such as card games or ball games or even gardening — but it does seem at times as if fate is willy-nilly dealing out experiences. Wealth to this person, beauty to that one, grief to another. Admittedly, at some point most people deal with grief, as if it’s a wild card that can fill out any hand, but still, I don’t think life is a game with distinct winners and losers. Nor is life playful or amusing as games should be — it’s generally too serious. (Though people who do manage to deal with life’s vicissitudes in a playful manner — people who believing the underlying energy of the universe is that of a child at play — find that things go their way more often than not.)

But all that is by way of an aside. I really came here to write about a moment I experienced last night. As I said, I do really well most of the time playing the hand that life and death (not my death, obviously, but the death of various loved ones) has dealt me. In fact, the cards I am holding at the moment are great ones — a comfortable home, a yard to get creative with, someone to call when I have a house emergency, a job that pays for such trivialities as groceries, good friends.

And yet, there are those moments . . .

Last night I went into my bedroom to turn down the covers in preparation for sleep, when suddenly I was hit with a vast wave of loneliness. I have no idea where it came from or why it chose that particular moment to engulf me, but there it was, stopping me in my tracks.

I let that devastating moment pass through me, though a faint sense of being alone lingered as I finished my task.

That’s all there was to it — just that moment. It wasn’t enough to send me spiraling into grief, but it was enough to temporarily overwhelm me.

And it was enough to make me take stock and realize that after all I’ve been through the last decade or so, I really am lucky to be doing as well as I am.

***

Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator.

Thinking Things into Futility

I’ve spent an interesting hour or so online looking for a word to describe one who tends to think things into futility. I started with “fatalist,” which sounds like it should be a word for a “futilist,” but only the end result of the philosophy is the same. Fatalists believe all is fated, all is destined to happen, which can leave them feeling resigned about life since they believe they are powerless to change anything, and in the end, that powerless can lead to feelings of life being futile.

Fatalism led me to nihilism, because apparently, the two are intertwined on the internet if nowhere else.

Nihilists believe there is no underlying grand meaning (or grand being) behind life and human existence, and that belief, too, can lead to feeling of life being futile since many nihilists believe that in the absence of inherent meaning, human existence has no particular value.

So although both fatalism and nihilism can lead to a feeling of futility, they start from completely different points of view.

Mostly, a search for a name for someone who tends to think things into futility led me to a plethora of mental health sites, as if a person who tends to think about meaning and meaninglessness has a mental health issue when in fact, such people (according to a different plethora of sites) tend to be intelligent and realistic.

The best thing I found about a person thinking things into futility is a quote from Alan Watts, a writer and speaker who translated Asian wisdom into plain English. He said, “A person who thinks all the time has nothing to think about except thoughts. So, he loses touch with reality and lives in a world of illusions.”

He makes an interesting point, though I’m not sure if it fits the premise I’m developing for this blog post. In my case, I tend to think that by thinking about thoughts, I get pulled out of the world of illusions, and that by not thinking, I am lulled into a world of illusion.

But this isn’t supposed to be an essay about illusion; it’s about my tendency toward “futilism”.

I’ve recently mentioned that I’ve been trying to look at gardening as a game, which helps me keep on doing the best I can with my yard, otherwise, I tend to think to much about what I am doing, and the work begins to seem futile. Which, in the grand scheme of things, it is . . . futile, I mean. A hundred years from now (heck ten years from now!) who will even care? The land will be here no matter what is on it and how much work was done.

Even on a daily basis, gardening seems futile (if I think about it). Life so often does what it wants. Some plants that shouldn’t live in this climate do well; others that should do well don’t. Sometimes watering is the right thing; sometimes, it isn’t. Which means, that if I want to keep up with my yard, to continue my creative endeavors on such a large scale, I have to stop thinking so much about what I am doing and why I am doing it, and just play the “game.” Thinking about what works and doesn’t work in the garden — strategy — is all part of the game. Wondering about the purpose of it all is not part of the game, and in fact, is an unnecessary complication because a game is its own reason for being.

This tendency of mine to think things into futility is not just about gardening, but about almost anything. To keep up with this blog and to write a blog post a day, I have to focus on what I am going to say and then say it, because when I start thinking too much about what I am doing here on this blog and why I’m doing it — other than as a writing discipline — the concept of blogging turns to dust in my hands, and it seems futile to continue.

I read the same way I breathe — I just do it without thinking. But when an author makes a serious mistake, it thrusts me out of the story and makes me think, which is not a good thing. In the book I just started reading, for example, the character got a phone call from a call box, the last old-fashioned coin-operated phone left in town. Okay, as unrealistic as that may be, I can accept it. But when the author goes on to explain that the phone booth is outside the drugstore, in the alley by the dumpster — that did me in. For decades that phone has been hanging on a wall in an alley, and no one ever vandalized it? How am I supposed to believe that? So, since there can’t be a phone, there can’t be a call, and if there can’t be a call, there can be no story and continuing to read the book becomes futile.

Yep — thinking my way into futility again.

It does make me wonder, though: if “not thinking” seems to give me a sense of meaningfulness and “thinking” seems to give me a sense of meaninglessness, of futility, what does that say about me? Or thinking? Or meaning? Or anything, for that matter.

Hmmm. I think I just proved my point.

***

What if God decided S/He didn’t like how the world turned out, and turned it over to a development company from the planet Xerxes for re-creation? Would you survive? Could you survive?

A fun book for not-so-fun times.

Click here to buy Bob, The Right Hand of God.

An Instrument of Anarchy

Everything that slows us down and forces patience, everything that sets us back into the slow circles of nature, is a help. Gardening is an instrument of grace. ~ May Sarton

A friend sent above quote to me today. It’s a lovely sentiment — gardening as an instrument of grace — and I do agree with it. To an extent. And that extent is where the ruthlessness begins.

To be honest, I’m not ruthless enough to be a good gardener, but I am learning to be heartless when necessary, or rather, I should say I am trying to learn, though it’s hard. I really do prefer to think of my garden as a place of peace — and grace — but I am committing enough atrocities in even in the most innocent-looking of my garden spaces to satisfy a whole slew of criminals and mystery writers.

For example, the other day, I hacked a few plants almost to death to protect a few shy plants from being choked into extinction by those more aggressive organisms. I beheaded a few plants — cut off the spent flowers — and justified my actions by telling the poor headless plants the decapitation would encourage more flowers to bloom. I tried poisoning some plants that resisted any other of my attempts at controlling their behavior, but those plants have such strong constitutions they even resisted the poison. I’ve murdered weeds, kidnapped baby plants from the mama plants to give the mama room to grow, and even worse, I was so callous, I did not even hear her cries of distress. I’ve stolen the fruits of some plants — admittedly, that’s what I grew the tomato and cucumber plants for, but that does not mitigate the cruelty to the poor plants.

You’d think with all that mayhem (deliberately maiming a living organism) and herbicide (deliberately causing the death of a plant in the same way that homicide is the deliberate act of causing the death of a person), my plants would behave, turning my various gardens places into places of law and order. I suppose they are places of law — the law of nature — but they are rapidly losing any sense of order. Not only do I lack whatever authority or criminal tendencies might be necessary, I also lack the energy and strength to whack my garden spaces into submission, so the plants — flowers and weeds alike — do whatever they wish.

Apparently, for me, rather than gardening being an instrument of grace, it has become more of an instrument of anarchy.

***

What if God decided S/He didn’t like how the world turned out, and turned it over to a development company from the planet Xerxes for re-creation? Would you survive? Could you survive?

A fun book for not-so-fun times.

Click here to buy Bob, The Right Hand of God.