Grandma Gertie always said there's not a savory dish that can't be made tastier by just a touch of tarragon.

Tsunami and Me

Tsunami and Me
too big to escape now....

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Gardens For All Seasons

My handyman came around last week and hauled tarps full of fallen leaves to the back pasture. Because it's been cold and damp, the leaves didn't make for the kind of autumn bonfire that I remember Grandma Gertie built on the back of our property when we lived in Scotts Mills back in the '40s. Instead, of sizzling flames leaping from the pile, the leaves simply smoked and smoldered for hours, finally fizzling out. The pile leveled down somewhat, but it's still fringed by some forlorn taupe-hued reminders of just a few weeks ago, when the crisp fall air sent my spirits plummeting.

Skiing, skating and sledding friends here have a hard time understanding this. They welcome the first snowfall, and begin to plan trips to their cabins. But I dread winter's's too cold and icy in this far northeastern corner of Washington State for a California-born sun-kissed miss. Nonetheless, I intend to gain comfort through these cold days by rereading the Tending Your Inner Garden series all over again, beginning with the first volume, Winter.

Deb Engle and Diane Glass have conducted Tending Your Inner Garden workshops for several years now, using the seasons as a model for change. Whether you're a master gardener or have only sowed an occasional handful of poppy seeds, these books will inspire you to view nature in a spiritual way.

Right now, the books are offered together as a holiday special at a 25% discount...just $49.95 for the complete set, regularly regularly $67.80. These gift sets can be ordered here:

A few years ago I read a call out for stories for this series, and welcomed a chance to publish material of mine that was more essay than story. I'm pleased and honored to be featured in all four of the books, which are described by Deb and Diane below.

Winter: Women’s Stories, Poems and Inspiration for the Season of Rest and Renewal, with my "Tombstone Territory"
We’re thrilled to introduce the first of four Tending Your Inner Garden® books featuring writing from women around the world on themes inspired by the seasons of the year.
The book brings together the work of established authors with first-time writers, all of whom have compelling stories to tell. This first volume focuses on a season of the year that can be challenging because of its stillness and dormancy. Yet winter offers valuable lessons and a resource in short supply in the world—time for reflection, rest and quiet.
Submissions came from all around the world. We selected the work of 31 women whose poetry, essays and stories spoke to both profound and common life experiences—endings and beginnings, renewal, creativity and stillness. As we share these stories and poems, we create and deepen a sacred circle of support on the spiritual path.
Suggestions for journaling and reflection are offered to readers as a guide to appreciating the gifts of this season.
Spring: Women’s Inspiration for the Season of Hope and New Beginnings, with my "Maybe Tuesday Will Be My Good News Day"
The second of our four Tending Your Inner Garden® books features the universal and inspiring themes of spring: renewal, possibilities, hope, new beginnings and emergence.
Spring is a time when nature begins its endless cycle once again, giving each of us an opportunity to refresh and renew. The essays and poems in this volume speak to those themes with grace, humor and a sense of trust that no matter what life brings, spring will always present new possibilities.
Suggestions for journaling and reflection are offered as a guide for appreciating the gifts of this season.

Summer: Women's Writings for the season of Beauty and Resilience, with my "When He Looked Like James Dean"
The third of our four Tending Your Inner Garden® books features the universal and inspiring themes of summer: resilience, beauty, storms, mindfulness and joy.
Summer blesses us with both gifts and challenges: Riotous color and parched grassland. Thunderous storms and blissful sunny days. Hot, buggy evenings and cool early mornings. Kaleidoscope-like butterflies and ravenous locusts. Most of us welcome summer if for no other reason than it surprises us year after year.
Summer: Women’s Writings for the Season of Beauty and Resilience will delight you with the adventures it offers and the memories it evokes.
“Now is the season to call back your heart,” Celeste Snowber tells us in “Bodypsalm for Playing.” This volume will help you do so by evoking feelings associated with the season. Then take pen and paper and use the journaling questions at the end of the book to capture your own memories of summer.
Fall: Women's Stories and Poems for the Season of Wisdom and Gratitude, with my "Autumn Aubade"
After a season of rapid growth and blossoming—so characteristic of summer—fall invites you to sit back, reflect, savor, celebrate and surrender. In your metaphorical autumn, you allow life lessons to integrate back into the soil of your Inner Garden. You recall the joys and sorrows of the year that has passed, acknowledging both milestones and setbacks. And then you let go, knowing that life events are transitory and the cycle of the seasons begins again.
This transition brings both pleasure and sadness. It’s not easy to witness such beauty, grace and ripening without holding on. Yet when you do, you leave with the treasure of rich memories.
The women in this final volume in our Tending Your Inner Garden® series have harvested the fruits of an ever-changing life. They offer their remembrances, gratitude, realizations and guidance. Read their essays and poems, and then turn to the journaling questions at the back of the book to feast on the bounty of your own life.

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