Monday, May 7, 2012

My Dream

My name is Jen...short, simple, and to the point. And that pretty much describes ME, except I'm not short :) I'm a fairly "new gardener" as far as experience goes; but if passion, love, and internship account for anything, I'd say I'm a pro! I grew up in a small neighborhood in Oregon's valley, surrounded by lush greenery and so much rain, you pretty much grew webbing between your toes to get to school everyday.

My fondest memories growing up were those spent in the garden with my family. My grandparents always had a beautiful garden that not only provided food for them, but provided beauty and enchantment to those who passed by. My parents, with a father from a small central west Texas farming community, sought to not only provide for our family by way of fresh food, but also yearned to create an appreciation for what a garden can provide; physically, emotionally, and spiritually. These are the "truths" I have carried with me.

I went to college with a dream of becoming a vet. As my studies progressed, I began to see exactly where my passions lay. I had a passion for helping animals and people, yes, but I had a great interest in how things grew; not only what made them thrive but if I could reproduce the same thing in my small apartment. And I did. I finished college with a degree in liberal studies - and no that does not mean I'm an extreme liberal, quite the opposite actually - and rushed into the world with exemplary ideas and no clue as to what I wanted to do!

I had several jobs here and there but i was never satisfied with 'life'. I always felt as if there was more out there;  as if I hadn't found my"'calling" (for lack of a better word). I worked my tush off, got married, and moved to central Oregon, away from everything familiar - climate wise yes, but away from all my family and friends. In essence, I was given a chance to start anew.

At first, I didn't know what to do with this newness I had been given. We bought our first house that was beautiful, but had a completely naked and SMALL yard. It intrigued me at first glance. I began to see how I could morph it into the lush green "paradise" I had grown up in. Boy was I WRONG! Everything I tried, failed, and most of the things I planted, died within the first summer of being in my new home.

I didn't let that stop me though; I saw it as a challenge I was not willing to admit defeat to! So, for the past three years I have worked, experimented, questioned, and learned about many aspects of my garden. Not only about my summer garden (the produce!), but the aesthetics of ALL of my gardens as well. In essence, I've learned what I can provide for my garden and all it can provide for me.

I very often have a very perfectionist outlook on my life...if I'm going to do something, I had better know how to be the best at it. Gardening has taught me lighten up. I can go out into my yard and experience everything it has to offer - from the sound of trickling water to the birds chirping wildly at the sight of fresh food, to the wind rustling the leaves in the trees to the complete stillness of the early morning - without fear of rejection or regret. It is here I am truly happiest.

My wish is not only to one day begin a small farm with my husband and start a family, but I hope I can be a spot of inspiration to everyone who yearns to garden but think they can't. Read, enjoy, and experiment! It has completely changed my appreciation for life!


  1. I love your blog, its so fun and interesting! I can't wait to keep reading...

  2. I can't wait to see how your 'dream' developes too!!