|Phlox: My favorite springtime flower. Just wish they bloomed longer!|
I'd love to be able to say that I have a green thumb, but I can't honestly do that. However, I love gardening and every spring I find myself obsessed with what I can do in our yard. And someday, when I don't have tiny tots, I'm going to actually spend productive time in the garden. I love flowers and nature and the whole process of growing things. And almost everywhere you travel on Earth, you'll find things growing.
I love those Nat Geo shows about desert conditions-- where you would think nothing could survive yet there are animal tracks and sparse plants sprinkled throughout the desert. This reminds me that wherever we are, things tend to grow naturally. This doesn't mean that the growth comes easily, quickly, or without challenges, but it does happen.
So back to the blog name. I never would have considered myself a small town person. I love all the things cities have to offer: diversity, culture, entertainment, food, athletics, shopping, etc. If I had chosen anywhere to live, I believe I would have chosen a larger city-- Chicago comes to mind because of it's proximity to family and it's size. It's big but not gigantic. It has the bustle of a city with the smiles of midwesterners. It has museums and bike trails and the Chicago Cubs. It has a giant lake. It sounds perfect.
But, as is often the case, I went where there was work. In my case, it was a teeny tiny town-- population less thank 2,000. I promised myself I'd only live there for a year, maybe two and then get the H out of Dodge. Small town life, two stop light towns were not for me.
But, as is also often the case, my plan and that of the Universe weren't exactly the same. See, there was this cute guy who had also just moved to town, and happened to live next door to me. And the second time he kissed me, I knew that my plans were screwed (that story is a whole other blog post). I was staying in this tiny town. Indefinitely.
However, it turned out that small town life wasn't so bad. In fact, I kind of found myself liking the small town and what it has to offer. I love it's quiet parks and the familiar faces you see everywhere. I love the wide open spaces and fresh air. I love the absence of traffic and the presence of the small town "hand-on-the-steering-wheel-wave". I love the fact that as soon as night falls, I can step outside our patio door and see millions of stars. When I first moved here, I missed certain conveniences that are found in bigger towns (and sometimes still do). It can still be frustrating to be 30 minutes away from a Target, but on the flip side, being 30 minutes away from a Starbucks has probably saved me a small fortune. Although living in a small, rural town can be inconvenient and take some adjusting, I realized that like many things, my experience here was all dependent on my attitude. I could either moan and complain about life in a teeny tiny town with nothing to offer me, or I could suck it up, acknowledge that I'm here for awhile, and that things are pretty darn good. In some ways, I feel like I kind of got planted here-- maybe accidentally on purpose. And now that I'm planted, I need to bloom-whatever that means. And ta-da! The blog name! Basically, "Wherever you are, do your best." or "Do your best with what you're given." or for all you Project Runway fans out there, "Make it work".
That "just one year" time frame has come and gone....actually it's now been ten years that I've lived here. It's become our home. Not sure if it's our "forever home" or not, but we've definitely 'made it work' and it's working out pretty well.