growing things on a tuesday

I don’t even know what they are. All I know is The Man brought home some packets of seeds, we planted them with the kids and now, they are tall, leafy, ready to bloom flower things. It amazes me.I just finished reading Life in Defiance by Mary DeMuth, the final book in the Defiance Texas Trilogy. The main character, Ouisie Pepper, is trapped in an abusive marriage with husband who won’t let her have a garden. But she plants secret seeds anyway.

I bend to the ground, run my hand along the iron-rich earth. Oh dear God, make these little seeds grow. I’m like those faith teachers, laying hands on the thing in need of resurrection. I wipe my hands on my pants, then move to the house’s corner where I’ve planted Ethrea’s purple rose shoot. It’s a greening stick saluting the gray sky today, but someday, Lord willing, it will reach magnificence.

– Ouisie Pepper

This weekend, I have spent a bit of time in our yard, examining the plants we have, pulling up a few weeds. At least, I think they were weeds. I have never felt any type of confidence when it comes to plants. I’ve always thought those pretty yards were for all those people who knew stuff about plants. I like my yard now, but it’s mainly because the people who lived here before us landscaped it nicely. We just try to keep up with what is already here.

But reading about Ouisie and her longing to have her hands in the soil and watch things grow reminded me of the beauty and life that comes from a small seed, broken in the dirt. I’ve been encouraged to learn a little as I go and not allow the fear of failure, even in such a small thing as a plant, to keep me from delighting in this tiny plot of leafy, green space in my backyard.


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  1. says

    Hey Emily! Great post! I too have been working in my garden and trying to cultivate my totally non-green thumb. We just recently moved into a rental house that has been lived in for the past nine years by the owners…who are INSANE gardeners! I mean they have everything! We are kind of stressing about maintaining it all…but will do our best! I may be totally wrong here but I think the plant you have is basil. At least thats what the leaves look like to me. Make pesto out of it and then you’ll know for sure! lol

    • says

      Hi Kelsey! It’s not basil, I know that for sure. It does kind of look like it though. I will tell you it’s getting ready to bloom something. I can’t tell what though. Maybe something reddish? I’m gonna see if I can find that seed packet…
      .-= emily´s last blog ..growing things on a tuesday =-.

  2. says

    your post is perfect for me today… i visited my neighbor who gardens like some decorate… layers and layers of beauty. so i came home, took inventory, and intend to begin layering myself! i’m afraid, like you, lacking confidence with my black thumbs… but i’m gonna give it a go! :)
    .-= patty´s last blog ..And On Memorial Day, Give Pause =-.

  3. says

    When we bought our house in Nebraska 9 years ago, we bought a garden, too — raised beds in the backyard and a huge flower garden along the street in the front. I was clueless, never having planted a single thing in my life. But I’ve grown so much with my garden these last few years, and the kids just adore it. I wrote about it here a few weeks ago — I swear, gardening has become sort of a spiritual thing for me:

    Anyway, I think those mystery plants you have might be zinnias — I plant them every year, and they produce the most prodigious blooms all summer long.

    Good luck in your gardening endeavors, Emily — you won’t be disappointed!
    .-= Michelle at Graceful´s last blog ..Summer Evening =-.

  4. says

    Hi, Emily, I’m linking up today. Yesterday I had a first tomato sandwich of the year from our garden & a blackberry crisp shared with the hubby, with blackberries that also were plucked that day from our vines. Those are the little things that really make me thankful today!

    He grows the veggies & fruits, I grow the flowers. Gardening is so rewarding!

  5. says

    I’m with you on the garden thing. I’m a total black thumb. I just stare at the yard and have no idea what to do! Just maintaining what the builder put in 8 years ago. I have grand plans, but it never happens!! Maybe one day.
    .-= Mary Jean´s last blog ..Sweet Boy ~ Sweet Shot =-.

  6. says

    I think you planted zinnas. They are one of my favorites because while they are blooming they attract hummingbirds, and then when the petals fall off in the fall the birds come and pick the seeds out like a bird feeder. It’s awesome.

    I read Slow Burn last week while on Jury Duty, and was wishing I had stopped by the book store on Sat. so that yesterday while it was raining I could have curled up with Life in Defiance. Headed to pick it up today.
    .-= imoomie´s last blog ..A Lovely Moment… =-.

  7. says

    I started really enjoying our yard when I gave up on the idea of keeping it neat and tidy. Our veggies mix in among flowers, and we look at weeds as part of the package. Our garden is a mess, but there is so much goodness packed in there. I like to say our lives of fruitful – with boys and tomatoes. :)

    you’ll have to post some more garden/landscape pictures as the season goes on??


  8. says

    complete solidarity over here on the lack of green thumbs. i too have gorgeous bushes and blooms only because someone else planted them and they have (thus far) survived in spite of me. (i have, in a bold stroke of optimism, recently planted tomatoes, mostly because i hear they are impossible to kill. they may be underestimating my ability to murder leafy green things, though. we shall see.)

    good luck with your maybe-zinnias. they are looking quite happy and tallish.
    .-= nic´s last blog ..once upon a sunday afternoon. =-.

  9. says

    Girl, I am coveting a pretty yard right now. Our newish house “boasts” a row of ugly builder shrubs along the front of the house and that’s it. Our backyard is a one-acre treeless, barren, former cow-pasture. Between my perfectionist tendencies and our lack of landscaping budget, I have basically done nothing, wanting to draw the shades and escape the scorn of my neighbors with pretty yards. But you’ve made me want to go pull some weeds…and read Mary’s books. : )
    .-= The Scooper´s last blog ..Right, Left, or Middle? =-.

  10. says

    I can identify with you Emily. I love flowers and long for one of those English gardens, but I really lack a green thumb (which seems somehow important). I think the real problem is my penchant for wanting great results with little effort. I’m working on that!
    I love it when my little efforts are successful and am encouraged to keep learning and trying. Your post spoke to me in so many ways.

    P.S. I am also rather deficient in computer skills, so this is probably just me. I can’t get the code for your button because when I right click after highlighting the html nothing happens. Ditto with trying to add my link. I have to type it in because I can’t get the “copy, paste, etc,” box to pop up when I right click. Am I doing something wrong – or rather do you know what I’m doing wrong?
    .-= Linda´s last blog ..Peace – tuesdays unwrapped =-.

  11. says

    Thank you, as always for hosting a party that let’s us all celebrate the simple, lovely things in this world there are to be thankful for if we take the time to slow down and see them.

    I have no idea what you planted. I love to garden and do the weeding and watering and such but I rarely know what anything is unless it grows something obvious like a tomato or strawberry off of it or if I ask my mom. She knows what everything is :)
    .-= Emily@remodelingthislife´s last blog ..Trips Around The Sun =-.

  12. says

    Emily…wanted to stop by and thank you for helping me to have the courage to start a weekly summer Linky party on my own blog! Its my first attempt…(quite scary..LOL) Biggest fear is no one will link up! I would really appreciate your prayers…you are such an encouragement to me!!!! I read your blog daily and you always help me to focus on what’s really important in my life…remembering to see how God is in control at all times!!! Something I will need to remind myself of often now that the kiddos are all home for the summer…let the excitement begin!!! Still praying for you and your writing everyday!!! Can’t wait to read your first book!!!
    .-= Mary Joy @ Snapshots from my Heart & Home´s last blog ..Low Cost Summer Family Fun Party–Children & Playgrounds~a match made in heaven =-.

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