Summer Garden // 01

When I was a kid, my mom used to grow a huge garden every summer. It was a raised garden bed, made out of wood two by fours. The bed was about four feet wide but rain the entire length of the yard. Our yard wasn’t that big, but the garden always seemed huge to me. It hosted an array of plants–peas and green beans, cucumbers and tomatoes, carrots and lettuce, and a variety of herbs ranging from thyme to rosemary. There was also a smaller garden on the side of the yard where a strawberry plan liked to expand its vines, always came back larger and larger every season.

I remember that garden because it provided the staples for our summer dishes. We’d make jams and jellies and chop up the carrots to go along with the chicken ‘n noodles. We had so many tomatoes and cucumbers that we’d canned some of them for the colder months.

My Mom’s Garden – Circa 2012

I’ve had relatively small gardens myself since then. Nothing more than a few herbs, tomatoes, lettuce, and, this year, spinach. They are in raised garden beds, but not the kind made out of wood slates that are a big as the yard allows, but ones that are plastic and sit nicely on a patio deck.

When spending all of the prior cold months inside, it makes me excited to spread out all the green and tend to something that I can harvest later. It also reminds me of when I was a kid, gardening with my mom in the months of May, June, July, and August.

Since this spring was my senior year in college, I spent most of my time with my head in the books while on campus. I didn’t have much time to shop at gardening stores or Lowes for seeds or even started plants. However, my school has its own greenhouse on top of the science and technology building, and–at the end of every semester–the biology club sells the pants from the greenhouse. So, miraculously, I picked up the few staples I grow every summer thanks to the break that I took studying and the biology club.

The only small thing that this came with was I had to bring the plants with me to class the rest of the day. It wasn’t so bad, I just had a lot of people commenting on my plant babies.

They had a nice little box to sit in while I toted them around.

Now that they’re planted in my garden, they have been growing steadily. My tomatoes have stemmed out and have become fuller, while my lettuce is becoming leafier. I’ve already harvested a few leaves from the basil plant. The rosemary and parsley haven’t grown too much, but they’re a bit slower at growth. I added fertilizer to the beds a few days ago, the growth of all the plants started to become stagnate and it made me worry, but as soon as I fed the little baby plants they’ve been lively since. I planted spinach by seed a few days ago. It’s slightly late in the spring seasons to plant the first batch of spinach, so they haven’t sprouted yet. Hopefully, they will sprout soon.

I’m looking forward to harvesting the first of my lettuce soon, hopefully, the tomatoes will come shortly after. I’ve been looking for good recipes so I can use my herbs in summery dishes. Maybe I can make a full-on meal with everything I’ve grown, substituting a few things from the grocery store.

The whole process of growing plants and getting to use their harvest is both humbling and satisfactory. I hope this tiny garden that I’ve had the past few years can grow into a larger one in the years to come, just like the one my mom used to tend to in the summer months when I was a kid.

Who knows, maybe I’ll even get into winter gardening, something that’s always peaked my interested but I’ve never ventured out to try.

The Quotes That Have Stuck With Me

Saturday was the official end of an era: I graduated from college. The days of backpacks filled with books so heavy your shoulders hurt, a desk filled with used coffee cups, and early bird/late owl classes have come to an end.

I’ve been out of classes for a week. It’s a crazy feeling, I still have a to do list and places to be, but the feeling of being done with a huge milestone is just like a wieght off my sholders. I started to clean off my desk today and while I was in the midst of moving around some papers, I found a few a few pieces of paper with quotes on them that have stayed with me, some how or another, throughout my life as a student.

They mostly have to do with the unknown, having confidence, and being yourself. I know they will stay with me, even after school. But inlight that I now have the depolma coming to me by mail in about two months, I’ll post them, hoping they will inspire you.

“If you’re feeling frightened about what comes next, don’t be. Be brave. Embrace your the uncertainty. Allow it to lead you places. Be brave as it challenged you to exercise both your heart and you rmind as you create your own path towards happiness; don’t waste time with regrat. Spin wildly into your next action. Enjoy the present, each moment, as it comes, because you’ll never get one like it again. And if you should ever look up and find yourself lost, simply take a breatha dn start over. Retrace your steps and go back to the purest place in your heart… where your hope lives. You’ll find your way again. ” -Everwood

“If ever there is a tomorrow when we’re not together there is something you must always remeber. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we’re apart… I’ll always be with you.” – A.A. Milne

“Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without careing twopence how often it has been told before) you will, nine time out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it.” – C.S. Lewis

Growth

Right before this photos was taken, I took a different photo.

It was of a cityscape where sucess is stacked in concrete scrapers that reach upwards, waiting for the dreamers.

But this photo has my feet planted on the ground.

There is nothing spectacular about this photo, it’s just me and the parking lot.

This is where I stand.

The future can be a scary thing, but right now, I am here.

Of Misilanious Thoughts

I’ve got a job in the middle of the city for the next four months. I never thought I’d call these buildings — the heartbeat of Indy — a place I’d dream of working, I never even thought it was possible for me. But this thing call life is unpredictable, even in the best of ways.

A few days ago, I woke up early to beat the traffic and take extra care driving since this January has been a slick one. It ended up being that I arrived downtown an hour early — exactly fourty minutes to spare before I head into work.

I don’t know what it is with me and parking garages, but they seem to be my place to think. Nobody hardly parks on top of the garages; it’s quiet, except for the noises that come from off the streets below; the view is almost always a spectacular one –whether it’s a distant view of a cityscape or you’re in the midst of the massive concrete structures that tower around you.

With this extra time in my hands, I spent it taking photos, writing about my first few days of work, and then riding down ten floors in an elevator, walking out into the city streets, finding myself some coffee. There is always time for coffee.

Work was slow that day but the whole experience of being in my dream office — with windows overlooking the heart of the city — knowing that I made it here, was all I could ever ask for. I made it, after all the hard work and people who told me I could never become a writer, I made it. I get to spend my days typing away and walking down the city streets because I got there early, is just something I will never cease to be thankful for. Even if it is only for four months.

I’m not really sure where I was going with this topic, or if I can’t fully elaborate on it yet, because I’m smack dab in the middle of it — but I will keep coming back to these moments of city and work and writing and figuring out myself and coffee (always coffee)… and maybe, eventually, I will have enough words to fulfill the thoughts and experiences I am living.

2 0 1 9

Normally I write about things when I’m in the middle of them: when I have no idea how they are going to turn out or what the answer is. This is one of those times.

I’m honest when I say I have no idea how 2019 is going to unfold itself. 

I know a few things: This is the year that I graduate college, I grab that post-graduation job, I start writing my first piece of long prose (that will hopefully turn itself into a novel), that I stand on my feet and walk, somewhere. 

This is the year,

 this it is. But that’s all I know.

And If I’m honest again, it’s kind of scary. But I don’t want to be afraid.

The fact that there are so many wonderful things ahead, which I know are going to happen, makes me happy, but there are still so many questions left unanswered. There are those days that connect and thread the big days together that will be full of hard work and tired eyes and things I don’t see coming on this day: page 1 of 365. 

When I think about 2018, it was such a blur, but I wonderful blur. It was a year laden with words, it tested my ability to write — even when I felt like I had no words to say, when my figures and mind hurt from exhaustion, when there were so many things to do besides sitting down in my chair and typing words onto the screen. Most of what I wrote wasn’t very good — not in the slightest, actually. There were a few gems, though, ones I hope to spruce up a little more and then send out into the world. 

A lot of surprises were also carried into my life in 2018, too.  

Sometimes love comes and shows itself to you when you’re not looking for it — or it shows itself when you are, in-fact, looking for it, but in a way you never expected to find it. This kind of love wasn’t what I thought it would look like in the first place: instead it’s one-hundred time better than I ever imagined. 

If 2018 surprised me with it’s unknowns, I know 2019 definitely will. 

I was reading a post I wrote on Instagram on January 1st of 2018; I wrote how 2018 was filled of so many unknown territories, and I was afraid. I supposed it was filled with so many undetermined events, and so is this year, but I don’t think I should be afraid, instead, I want to embrace it wholly — I want to be brave as this year of change challenges me to exercise both my heart and mind while I work to create my little path in this big, crazy world. 

I’m not great with new years resolutions, but I suppose if I could set one goal that would be this: to stay whole, present, attentive, brave, and loving while embracing whatever it is this year gives me. 

2018 was saturated with tired eye and goodness. Now here’s to 2019.