Drops of Joy
Last year William wore the colorful vest I knitted him. The primary colors happened to match those of the toys he plays with when he visits. Self-striping yarn adds instant color design. It gave me joy to see him in it. He quickly out-grew it.
The azaleas in the front garden bloom red in spring. They accent our front door.
I planted this little shade garden three springs ago, adding bulbs, leaving space for the wild ferns do what they like, repositioning the hostas a year later, keeping the moisture loving azalea’s happy during a heat wave.
Even a little garden takes attention. And my attentions were well received. For it began to fill in nicely. This garden gave me joy and made me feel more settled although we have a history of relocations and only lived in this house a few years; settled until . . .
the largest tree in the right of the grouping died. I am familiar with how the ground around a tree is disturbed when tree removers start in with their chain saws. Therefore I’ve begun transplanting some of the plants to a shady spot on the opposite side of the lawn to save them from an impending doom. No more little garden.
When I discovered patches of moss at the shady edge of the woods I came up with another idea to contribute to feelings of permanence. Perhaps with this moss I could create a more aged look to our side entrance.
I dug some up and pressed it into the cracks of the steppingstones. Keeping the moss moist between the intervals when we were away was something I nearly forgot to do.
Some of the larger steppingstones that touch the porch are definitely sunken and will need to be raised up with a crow bar and a new application of crushed stone and soil. The moss will soon be disturbed, too, I’m afraid.
On rainy days I retreated indoors for a little sewing. Pink paisley and polka dot flannel made a pretty gift of washable nursing pads for my daughter. They’re a frugal project and much softer than disposable.
I picked up the idea over the winter when I was blog hopping but lost track of which blogspot listed the simple directions. Therefore I’ll include them here.
Trace three circles on cotton flannel and one circle of fleece per pad. The outside layer of acrylic fleece is moisture resistant. I like to trim two of the flannel circles slightly so that they will fit under the top circle. Stack the circles: one fleece, two trimmed flannel circles, one slightly larger circle (same size as the fleece.) Edge on the sewing machine with a zigzag stitch.
At the same time I started knitting a chemo-cap in organic cotton yarn for a widow who was scheduled for a mastectomy. Her loss is a startling contrast to my daughter’s birthing experience. I couldn’t help think of the changes life brings especially to women.
Life is what happens when you are making other plans. John Lennon
My shifting gardens revealed to me my longing for a feeling of permanence – a reprieve from dark clouds of changing circumstances. As much as I enjoy our home I know a certain nesting urge and deep sense of security will be satisfied by an experience only heaven will bring. Nothing we have in this life is permanent. Youth is fleeting. Change can be unsettling. Losses require the balm of cheerfulness, reassuring friendship. Perhaps we appreciate the little refreshing drops of joy best when we remember that the blessings we enjoy on this earth point to greater ones to come.
All the many little things a mother’s hands find to do in one day may seem to her like trifles in the grand scheme of things. But it is the little things that make the difference in the world. The good they do is inconceivable. They are drops of joy we wouldn’t know if we hadn’t touched our hands to them.
Happiness is a perfume you cannot put on others without getting a few drops on yourself.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
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