Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Dandelion to the Bee

As a girl who grew up in suburbia there was never any doubt in my mind I would eventually live in either a city (right smack in the center!) or the country.  My husband and I lived together in the city for a while and than when the moment presented itself (and I was six months pregnant) we moved out past the suburban sprawl and into our cozy house next to the flower farm.  The question comes up often enough as to whether or not we can really make this life work....(a down economy doesn't help).....but than we have this sense that our path lead us here, that it is our home and that if we can give one thing to our kids, it is a childhood where they can run free and love the open world around them.  To love that world we hope, will help them want to take care of it as they grow older....either that or "pie in the sky" should be my middle name.
Of course the factor of wanting to make our life out here work is made easier with days like we had this past weekend.  There is no question spring is early and as concerning as that may is beautiful.  The sun was shiny, the birds chirpy, and the kids hopped like little tiggers from one exciting adventure to the next.  I was right there with them but it was clear, I wasn't necessary.  The fun was there.....everywhere around them.  The adventure was inlaid.

From what I understand there are dictionaries being printed today that do not include the words "dandelion," "acorn," or "willow".......perhaps that is why I see little need at this stage in my children's lives to expose them to much more than school, some great theatre (we travel to the city for this!), a few museum trips.....and anything and everything outside the back door.  Even in suburbia, the things I remember the most (more than the ballet lessons or soccer clubs) was trailing through the forest, building forts and finding frogs. I remember the camping trips, the summers on my Grandmother's Vermont farm....I remember the grass, the trees, the sticks I trailed in the creek.  When I grew up I found ways to travel the world and explore beyond my small horizon....but as a kid....dandelions, acorns and willow.....they were the foundation.  (Makes me wonder what kind of "backwoods" dictionary I would put together.)
A new table and benches for the fairies......"you know Mom, now that spring is here."
The truth is, I could find this the city, in the suburbs.  If you look for nature, you will find it pouring through the cracks and pushing its way in everywhere we have tried to squelch it.  I know, I have found it in the big, bold, industrialized streets of our cities.  But....if you don't learn to look for it.....if you aren't given the eyes to find it....will you know what you are seeing?  Will you know how precious it is?  Will you know when it looks weak and in need of attention?  You may know somewhere in that deep reservoir of ancient brainwaves but will that be enough?  Will you have any idea how important the dandelion is to the honeybee if the dictionary doesn't even bother to include it?  I don't know.

The American Toad mating in the pond.  Their survival technique is to mate in a frenzy and lay all their eggs at once so the predators do not pick them all off.......This weekend was most absolutely "The American Toad Day of Mating" was quite awesome.

"American Toad Day of Mating," gelatinous egg production......creepy but oh so cool.

More quince.
Mud bath....stage two.
Found: One teeeny tiny nest.
Found: One four-leaf clover.

Virburnum macrocephalum.
Time to attach the hose.

So.....this post is a little bit about why I chose to write a blog in the first place.  If you find something worth loving, you may also find something worth taking care of.  We found something we love and we're gonna fight to stay here because of it.  If we ever do have to move back to the city we'll still build fairy houses....they just might be the kind of fairies that live under fire escapes.  

Thanks for stopping by,


  1. Gorgeous photographs--even with mud on top!

  2. And what is this horribly lacking dictionary?

  3. The dictionary I referred to is the Oxford Junior dictionary. The words removed (dandelion, acorn etc.) are linked in my post to the article I am referencing. There are also other articles about the same topic (including on in the Christian Science Monitor). The words being removed are "nature" words and in their place is this very forum....the blog. So it goes.
    Thanks for stopping in and I agree....I liked the "mud on top!"

  4. I wish I knew people like you where I live, or at least one person. I stayed up very late last night writing a post, which I did not publish, about how I feel like I'm the only 30 something mother living in Southern California that likes to garden. I don't know one person who has any desire to garden. Here, it is a chore that you pay someone else to do, not a hobby or a way of life. I'm the opposite of you, grew up in the country, now live in the burbs, which is fine, but I love working in my itty-bitty yard this time of year and I just wish I could share that with someone who could relate.

  5. Dear Craftee Girl,
    I understand the sense of needing a community for your interests. The only things I would say, you can always share your gardening fun with me. I love all stories, trials, experiences from the garden. I love the gorgeous fairy garden you made! I showed it to my own daughter and we were inspired to add some fun bits to her fairy abode. And two, I am a firm believer that "what you are seeking is also seeking you" has been true over and over in my life and I hope it is true in yours. Set your mind to finding those like-minded individuals and they will be there talking about growing tomatoes and pole beans over morning coffee. (it will be great fun.)


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