After a while, you learn the subtle difference

Between holding a hand and chaining a soul.

And you learn that love doesn’t mean leaning,

And company doesn’t mean security.

And you begin to learn that kisses aren’t contracts

And presents aren’t promises.

And you begin to see your defeats

With your head up and eyes open,

With the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child.

And you learn to build all your roads on today,

Because tomorrow’s ground is too uncertain for plans

And futures have a way of falling down in mid-flight.

After a while, you learn that even sunshine burns

If you get too much.

So you plant your own garden and decorate your own soul,

Instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers.

And you learn that you really can endure

That you really are strong.

And you really do have worth.

And you learn and you learn…

With every goodbye you learn.

Veronica Schoffstall



The sky Sunday evening, beautifully illuminated, casting pastel light all around the garden. A perfect end to two very wonderful and productive days getting ready for this year’s green up.

We also grilled some chicken in a tasty Tex-Mex style, loaded up on salad and beans, and farted plenty afterwards (oh, yes I did!).

Since we’re patiently awaiting our ability to return to restaurants, we haven’t had our favorite beef bulgogi at ShinSaDong since last summer. I remedied the fact with another internet search. Ground beef bulgogi salad success. It’s the small things.

In the BIG things category – Greg got his first vaccine last Friday, and I am on the roster for the J & J this Sunday – one and done. Praise be to science and kindly nurses administering shot after shot after shot.

Oatmeal peanut butter cookie, gilded with peanut butter frosting. Sometimes you need extra.

I bought a Willie mug!! It has Trigger on it, too, plus blue bells and mockingbirds, state flower and bird of Texas, of course. A mighty fine sip, if I do say so.

Sleeping giants….

I am not a religious person, but a very, very spiritual one. And though my Dad has read the bible daily, for as long as I can remember, I have never had the desire or inclination to do the same. I’ve found people’s interpretation of religious texts, and religion, as a whole, to be more dangerous to the general population than not. The Crusades, Islamic terrorism, Hindu & Buddhist extremism, the sexual abuse of priests and pastors on the innocent, the list goes on and on and on.

That being said, there are two very powerful notions of God that are with me daily. That he or she resides within every body and especially that a person can encounter God any place, any time. I always had difficulty believing this when encountering the cruel people of the world. Why would God reside there, when there are far nicer places to be? But then I thought about the awful person being an instrument of teaching for others, for me. God works through that person to show me how NOT to be. What to stand up for and rise against.

I’ve also been thinking a lot about how when I was little and would see a brilliant sun beam, I believed God was shining a light on a person in need. How the thought left me joyful. The sticky bit was in wondering if the person knew it. How often are we aware of that brilliant light shining on us? How often do we take the time to recognize the beauty and love around us? I think it’s time I do more to seek that awareness. That presence.

And a perfect tie-in to the photo up yonder. When my Great Aunt Mary died, my Grandma Tess found hundreds of Catholic medals in her room. I took maybe a quarter of them and fashioned a necklace with a few of them a while back. I liked the spirit of it, of having metal worn by her prayerful hands, but the look wasn’t quite right. I took it apart and made this one, with all my favorites. It jingles and sings, speaking loudest of her, while buoying my spirit, too.


Perform all work carefully, guided by compassion.

The Bhagavad Gita



And don’t think the garden loses its ecstasy in winter. It’s quiet, but the roots are down there riotous.



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