Wednesday, September 26, 2012

What Difference Do You Make?

Frequently, I am in Birthday-mode.  There is always someone’s birthday to prepare for or recover from.  I love birthdays!  I think they are SOOO important!  

At my church, (check it out at, we have a tradition during our Christmas service where we don't necessarily celebrate the birth of a God, but we do celebrate the birth of a child.  We celebrate the birth of every child.  At the very end of the service, the babies born during that year and their families go to the front of the church and, surrounded by candlelight, we sing "Silent Night" to the precious little additions to our world and to our family.  Each child is a blessing and the birth of every child is the birth of a new hope.  You never know how that child will affect the world, how they will change it just by existing.  Not only is the birth of a new possibility, but it is the opportunity for renewal of the parents and the families around that child, a chance to change yourself so that you can more positively influence this children and help that new hope grow.  

This brings me to my next point......with every year that passes; we are given the chance to renew ourselves. We don't need the calendar to give us a New Year.  Each birthday is our own private New Year's celebration.  You get to look back on the year you've had and plan for the next.  How many song writers and authors have written about "the next 30 years" or "a 5 year plan" or similar topics?  You get a chance to make your own new years resolution without the influence of everyone else making the same empty promises influences by the media on January 1.  (Unless of course you happen to have made your arrival on January 1, and then, I hope you don't get gypped!)  You get to examine, "What difference have I made in this year of my life?"  "What difference will I make in this next year?"  "Am I going to make amends this year?" "Have I really had enough and need to go in a more positive direction?"  "Am I pretty satisfied and am going to strive to share that with others?"  This is your time to renew.  

The party isn't bad either, eh?  Along the same lines of celebrating a tiny child on Christmas Eve, each year let those around you celebrate the person that you are.  Let them express to you the hope you give them.  The difference you make in their lives.  You can be modest or shy or hate being the center of attention, but your friends and family know those things about you, so maybe a big party is not on your calendar, but at least let someone cook you a little something and share some cake with you!

Last, one of my big pet-peeves!  People claiming they are not having anymore birthdays because they refuse to get older.  You've heard all of the different versions of this and may have come up with them yourself.  Stop it!  Just stop it!  You learn something everyday, so by the end of 365 days, you've learned quite a lot and grown quite a lot......acknowledge it!  You don't see doctors down-playing the years they spent in school to get where they are, do you?  Every year that passes gets you further on down the road.  Ask my son, he can't wait to be a grown up so he'll know everything!  You are the age that you are because you have figured it out for another year!  Acknowledge it, accept it, and celebrate it!  

Ok, my birthday soap box has been thoroughly stomped upon.  

Now, for a question.......What was your favorite Birthday ever and why?

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Cooper Garden: Autumn Edition - The Trouble with Marigolds

So, we're going to make a go of an autumn garden.  We were out at some nifty little garden/brewing store in Fredericksburg and they had plants, so we thought...why not?  We have these great garden boxes, nice soil, and everything we grew for the summer is already dead, so let's give it a try.  We're sticking to just things we think we will eat, but didn't go overboard on the buying of plants this year....learned our lesson there!

We cleaned out the old dead stuff, tilled it up and re-planted.  Dirt still smells of manure so I hope it's still good.  We also have a minor marigold problem....anyone know what to do about them?  Anyone want them?  I've always heard that you plant them as a natural deterrent to pests...however, I planted from seeds...and they all grew...and grew....and GREW!  Now I don't know what to do with them!!  The hubby says we can make marigold wine, but he's already got pumpkin wine started and we only have the one glass carboy (sp?).  Anyway, here are some pictures of the beginning of this new adventure below.

And to all my regular readers, which I doubt I have many of, I have failed you in my mission to be a better blogger.  I still have the best of intentions to do more blogging!  Anyway, enjoy the pics!

Brussels in the front, Lettuce in the back



Purple Cabbage




and Marigolds!!!

and guess what, Marigolds!!

the compost bin...not pretty, but it's functional

herbs still growing

more herbs still growing