In all reality this has been my first real vegetable garden. I have had little corners of tiny apartments with a tomato plant or two, a window full of herbs, and even a chunk of a community garden, but nothing like this freedom. Nothing like the surprise, excitement, and true admiration of having the chance to grow my very own food. The season is closing in now, with only one week left of our neighbors CSA, (I believe I will shed real actual tears on the last pick up), and only a few things left to tend within the walls of my very, very loved vegetable garden. Butternut squash are turning tan, the pumpkins that havent been stabbed by a few certain little boys are perfectly orange, and the kuri squash is scattered with such a bright autumn color it hardly feels like it could come from nature. I am contemplating a cold frame over my lettuce and spinach as they are almost eating size and I’d love to stretch it out a bit if I can. The Jerusalem Artichokes are full with buds, just days away from blooming and then harvesting. And in the cutting bed, my straw flowers, Calendula, Amaranthus, cockscomb, and globe Amaranthus are all still popping up daily giving me lots to bring in and dry.
But, the truth is on the 24th of July until now I have essentially let the garden go wild. I have harvested what I could, I have hollered to the boys to eat whatever they felt like, “Fill your bellies! Satisfy your curiosity of what grows beneath the ground!” I chanted. I canned nothing, and froze little. But at the same time nothing was wasted. Lots of greens were consumed but lots and lots of (unwanted) greens grew amongst my once carefully tended seedlings.
Jasper is now two months old and with a tiny (ever so tiny) touch of sleep each night, I feel a surge of creativity once again. It is a scratch that I truly can’t itch at the moment, but it seems in between moments of crazy chaos I am finding just the smallest amounts of time to make and feeling pretty good about it. Of all the drying herbs and flowers strung around my kitchen and halls the most represented scent has been the tiny sachets of sage. They were gathered a bundle at a time starting this spring, leading up to just yesterday too. And with a recent gift of the most gorgeous lavender from a lovely, dear friend I found a place to satisfy my restless hands.
This little wreath took less than 30 minutes to finish. It was simple and free and a reminder to me that the time will come again. The time where all three of my boys are out playing king of the world atop of the woodpile, where all three can wiggle their toes into their own shoes and fit their spindly arms into wool sweaters without trouble, and I do indeed have time to put up that food, or knit that sweater, or clean that floor. But for now, this wreath will do.
I think I have been accomplishing the balance I sought out to achieve when welcoming this third little soul into our lives. I hoped for the power to be still and to be okay with it. Each time I am bound to my chair with a nursling on my lap and more often than not, a little boy or two by my side, my eyes mechanically, instinctually search everywhere in my periphery taking mental note of all that “needs” to be done. When I am so lucky to catch myself in the act, I try to slow my breathing, I try to think of nothing but the touch of these three sweet things I have right now. Right at this very moment. I clear the thoughts out like dust under a rug and I let go.