New Year's in the Garden - and Out
I've been thinking about the New Year. It's an interesting time. Embarking on new goals in the middle of winter can be daunting, though. Here's an example: I'm gridding out open areas in the garden for spring planting. There's a notebook and pencil on my lap to catch any inspiration that manages to breach my post breakfast inertia.Every few minutes I look out the window at that selfsame garden, which is currently buried under a crusted, dimpled coating of snow. It's not a pristine smooth blanket today. It never stays that way for long. It's a churned up and chunky carpet made worse by my husband's footprints (from walking out to get the newspaper), and from our dog's antics while performing his morning ablutions.
That is to say, it isn't a picture postcard landscape by any means. But it is my garden, and its white patches and graying, muddy perimeter remind me of the coming New Year -- a little. It's waiting for a benediction in the form of the sun transiting a bit higher in the sky, resulting in longer, warmer days. But even that isn't enough for this little garden. It relies on me, this New Year and every year -- to pull weeds and plant seeds and stand armed and vigilant against pests.
New Year's resolutions are like garden duty. They're about hoping for the best from the cosmos (and oneself) and being willing to do some of the hard work. Call it an act of faith. In the garden, pesky chores are the product of a stalwart conviction that spring will come, maybe a little late this year, but it will come just the same. And it will be glorious, with temperate weather and tender showers and light breezes, with a ripe summer and a bounteous fall to follow. I have that picture in mind as I run my pencil lines and make notations in the margins of my college ruled pad. I plan my gardening budget and hope my often aching back will hold up to the challenge.
If you've been unsuccessful with past New Year's resolutions, I'd like to share one of my favorite quotes with you. I try to remember it when my will power stutters. I don't know who said it first, but whoever it was is probably in great shape today and has an impressive credit score. Here's the quote in all its graceful simplicity: "Discipline is remembering what you want."
I like that. It puts power squarely in my hands -- for a great garden -- and anything else I want badly enough. So, dear reader, here is an end to my holiday reflections with a simple wish: I hope you remember what you want in the New Year -- whether it's a great garden, an enviable backhand or a perfect posterior.
Oh, and one more thing: A favorite article of mine really hits home this time of year; please take a moment to read it. I think you'll be pleased you did: 10 Kid Habits to Hold on To
Have as safe and happy New Year's Celebration.