Puzzle of Life

So I got an email from Kijiji just now with the subject line “What type of Dad do you have?” and in my head I replied, “A dead one” which I meant to be darkly humorous, but no sooner had I thought it than I felt my eyes well up and my chest cave in.

What IS that space inside your chest?

It’s enormous.

It is bottomless even.

No one talks much about it, but we all have it.

This spectacular space we walk around with inside of us.

What is going on exactly when it crumples inward with grief?

Or expands with that euphoric joy that comes when you are really kind to a stranger or when you forgive someone after holding a crazy grudge for way too long.

Some say that is where God lives.

I was raised agnostic but whenever I have contemplated a God and dared to ask “So…are you there?” I feel that same joyful sensation.

It’s like a cosmic reply.

In that space.

In my chest.

Maybe that space is sort of like a puzzle piece that each of us holds inside us. Like a playing card no one but God can see. We spend our life shaping it, polishing it, colouring it in with our experiences and then when we die…snap! We become locked into a giant picture that is being patiently created one piece, one life, at a time.

When we’re all finished here and there’s no one left to die, the very last piece gets snapped into place, and bam! We will be able to step back and see the whole picture of what this crazy life was all about.

The Meaning. For ages 0 and up. 250 billion pieces.

There’s crazier theories.

I know for sure that my parents were part of the whole that made up our family picture. And if they are now also part of some greater picture, whatever their puzzle piece represents, it will be something wonderful.

Because that’s what type of Dad-and Mom-we had.




Enough…For Now

As I brought my wheelbarrow around to the pile of soil on our front lawn yesterday I couldn’t help thinking, I should have got more. I even started to feel a little deflated, but then the neighbour across the street serendipitously called out, “Now THAT’S a mountain of dirt! Is it just for your lawn? What are you going to do with it all?”

“I’m making a garden,” I told her, feeling much better. For the first time in my life I was making a mole hill out of a mountain instead of the other way around.

I moved thirty loads from my mountain to the back yard for these beds and planted some raspberries and a blueberry. One day I will walk down our back steps and be able to fill a bowl with berries for dessert. How handy is that!

backyard new beds

And then I shaped the remaining soil on the front lawn  into what you see here.

new frontyard garden new bed



I planted a Montgomery spruce because I love the tactile feel of its soft needles and its gorgeous blue hues. Beside it I planted a rose glow barberry for contrast…in every way! I have a love/hate relationship with barberries. I love the way they look, but unlike the Montgomery spruce, its beauty is only skin deep. Unless it’s your skin. Then it’s very deep. The gorgeous pink/red leaves pull you in and then SNAP! The barberry bares its teeth and bites you. The thorns on this bush make a rose cane feel almost silky in comparison. Even when I put on the gloves and approach with an almost surgical caution, I still come away bleeding. But it’s worth it. The barberry is just that pretty. And it’s moose proof. Obviously.

I also planted…I don’t believe it. I am peering at my picture and I have already forgotten what the other two perennials are. And at this stage, it’s not going to do any good to run out and look either. I hate leaving labels sticking in the ground, and am always sure I won’t forget, but once removed I am all too often left trying to figure out what the heck I planted. You would think I would take longer than a day to forget though. I blame the excitement. I think I planted a globe thistle and a spirea. Time will tell.

I need to start writing things down on a garden map as soon as I plant them. Or on a stone to tuck under the plant. I used to do that on the farm and it worked-and looked-really good. I’ve been away too long! Though what does it matter I suppose. It will be whatever it is no matter if I carefully map it out or not. Still, it’s good to know what you have in your garden for all kinds of reasons.

And I still think I should have ordered a bit more soil so I can plant more things to forget.😊

Oh well. It’s a start.

And if it’s really not enough soil for all the plants I have on deck, there is always next year.

Or next month.

Or next week.

Or tomorrow. 🤭

The Latest Scoop…A Dump Truck’s Worth!

The much anticipated soil arrived on Friday morning and it looks fantastic! Definitely worth the wait.


The driver was completely unconcerned by having to enter our tight cul de sac with such a big truck and then being asked to back the thing between two trees onto our tiny lawn to dump it right where I wanted. He couldn’t have been nicer. 

Unfortunately I had to leave for work only minutes after the soil hit the lawn, but now that it’s Sunday that pile is about to get played in. I mean worked in. No play. Definitely play.

So happy.

It’s the little things that make life worth living.

Like manure.

Only a gardener would understand my glee.