Thursday, September 15, 2011

Day 258, September 15

Yesterday I wrote about lessons from a garden. As often happens, it seems I'm not finished with this subject.
Experienced gardeners know that the first step in planning a garden is preparing the soil. Our soil in Loveland tends to be lumps and clumps of clay. It is suitable for growing vine weed, crabgrass, and little else without a great deal of work and the addition of fertilizer and nutrients.
In the excitement over planting flowers or vegetables, we may forget this important step
Isn't life frequently the same way? In our excitement over starting something new, we tend to skip the preparation necessary. In writing, we talk about "pantsers," those who just plunge in with a story without plotting or outlining, and "plotters," those who know exactly where their story is going.
I am a pantser. I get excited over a character (who is usually talking in my head) and start writing, without knowing where my story is going. At some point, I have to do the heavy lifting of figuring out what my character is going to do and why he is going to do it. I have to prepare the soil.
It is the same in parenting where we hope to grow healthy and happy children. Family prayer. Family councils. One-on-one time with every child. Each is an important step. Each is a part of preparing the soil.
What things in your life require preparing the soil? Are you getting ready to go back to school? Are you looking forward for a two week trip to Europe? Are you doing as we did and planning an addition to your home? Each requires preparing the soil.
So, for today, I am grateful for those times when I remember to prepare the soil.

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