Monday, May 20, 2013

Love and Gratitude

Do you ever consciously stop and let the realization that life is good wash over you?  

Don’t get me wrong, there are moments of life that suck.  Like when I was driving on I95 Friday night trying to get to Greg who was stuck in Stamford due to a trail derailment and crash.  As I drove and emergency vehicles streamed by me and families of commuters clogged the already very crowded expressway, I realized how fortunate I was that I was not driving to the hospital to meet either my mother, or my husband, or my two brother in laws, just to name of few of the people I know and love who rely on the trains to bring them safely to and from Manhattan.  

Thank you to each and every friend who called, emailed, texted and Instagramed their concern for Greg's well-being.  Knowing that we were in your thoughts touched us both deeply.

I loved my man extra hard this weekend.  I am utterly fantastically in love with him, and after sixteen years our love keeps growing.  For years Greg has been the gardener in our family.  He used to enjoy helping his brothers when they owned a nursery and then he spent a year working with his friend as a landscaper.  He has always planted and maintained our community garden plot and he began our backyard garden three years ago.  I hate the feeling of dirt under my nails.  Truly I do.  It could drive me crazy if I let it......but then I would miss out on so much goodness.  I have missed out on so much goodness already, but I am correcting that this year.

Our garden is not only growing food but growing relationships.  Grace spent a large portion of her day working with us on our herb garden.  I have admired wagon wheel herb gardens for years.  I was just about to go on Craigslist and start searching local antique stores when Greg called me out to the garage to see what he discovered hidden above in the loft.  Two perfect antique wagon wheels!  They have been sitting there 15 years just waiting to be discovered.  

Now they can be enjoyed every day.

While we were working, we spoke to two neighbors about our garden, and our town, the good, the bad, the ugly, and the getting better.  I am holding my breath for the getting better.  New condos are being built near the train station which has the potential to revitalize an area of our downtown.  We talked about local art shows and I put a plug in to see if my class could display their art journals.  I’ll have to wait and see.  The AAA man who came to break into our Explorer and retrieve the keys that were locked inside had a lengthy discussion with Greg about growing collard greens.  We learned about bee colonies when my neighbor’s son brought over a pound of his fresh beeswax and a jar of his honey.  So much goodness in one day.

Despite the weather, Sunday would prove to be as productive a day as its predecessor.  Greg and I were at Lowe's at 8:00am and by 9:00 we were building a backyard farm!  Farm yard posts and chicken wire will enclose the rabbit hutch and give Gilly a safe place to explore.  The 8 foot dog kennel will be replaced by higher matching posts and different, larger wire.  If we ever have chickens, there will be room here for them as well......

This project is 90% done so I cannot show the final reveal.  The gate is under construction using two pieces of picket fence and the board lining the enclosure will be the back of Gilly's square foot garden!  We were too cold, too damp, too hungry and too tired to begin the dog kennel project.  That will have to wait for another day.  Another good day.  

I am learning that life is really what you make of it.  You can wish it away or you can work it into a reality you can be at peace with.


  1. Lovely post.There really is a lot to be gratfeul for but for when we take the time to notice it.

    1. Thank you. I continuously have to remind myself to stop and take notice.

  2. This is a beautiful post, Jess. I am so glad Greg was ok. It seems that there has been a lot going on lately to make us feel ill at ease, doesn't it? We are watching a family we are close to battle Stage 4 Melanoma - it is the dad. Things are not going well and it's just so hard to explain this to my children, so we try to find all the beauty we can and cling to that. It's is SO SO hard. We also have had a close up view of the total disintegration of the family next door to us - a painful divorce, drug addiction, and the children just left as collateral damage. These two things have made life hard recently - but also show us the need to live life to the fullest and appreciate each and every one of our blessings.

    1. I guess tragedies have always happened and they sure do make us count our blessings. I am at an age now where I take notice and feel much more deeply than I did when I was in my 20s or 30s. I don't want these tragedies to remind me to count my blessings, I want to do that every day rain or shine. I have taken out my old family gratitude journal and desperately want my family to write in it, but it seems I am the only one that is keeping it going.....

  3. The last two lines really speak to me today. It's the first sunny day we've seen since the storms passed through. Time to get back up again and keep on going!


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