Tuesday, September 16, 2014


I often find that when I am working with my hands, my mind is productive.  This jives with things I've read lately about the lack of reflection in our lives, and its resultant absence of wisdom.  I find that if my hands are busy, but my mind can roam, my thinking can wander, be deeper, better, more productive.

As I picked tomatoes in my garden this morning, I found myself pondering something a high school friend recently posted on face book.  She is not just a gifted writer, but a working writer, and she posted something to the effect that she had to learn to stop hoarding her good ideas for some future project, but to use them as she thought of them.  As I picked Sweet-100 cherry tomatoes by the bowlful, it occurred to me what wise advice that is.  When I pick the ripening tomatoes, I make way for new tomato growth.  The more I pick the ripening cherries, the more the plant will produce.  If I leave them too long, the plant keeps pouring energy into them until they over-ripen and split.

When I pick the beautiful summer zinnias the stems divide and produce more flowers.  When I trim the roses and keep them from forming rosehips, they put out more buds.

And I wonder if it might not be so with ideas.  Pick them and use them, and make room and energy for more.  Don't hoard them, lest all your energy be diverted into maintaining the ones you have. Every idea, like every tomato, is a gift from above, intended to be savored.

And so, Gentle Readers, I return to a recurring theme: there is a gardening illustration for almost every truth in life!

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