Around the time I started my first "real" job (self-contained speech and language classroom in a middle school) I discovered succulent plants. Traditionally, I cannot keep houseplants alive, but these adorable tiny plants were supposed to be so easy to take care of I couldn't resist picking one out. It lived on a windowsill in my classroom. I got addicted to them. I wanted one of every kind I could find. They would grow, I'd split them up and transplant them to bigger pots. I got a shelf. The kids enjoyed helping me watering them. I'd cart them home every summer and bring them back the next fall.
Then, one summer I got married, quit my job, decided to return to graduate school to pursue a doctorate, and bought my first house. Umm. Let's just say things were crazy and I was looking to simply in every way possible. I put the entire garden of plants on the curb with a "Free to a Good Home sign". They all disappeared overnight.
Honestly, I didn't miss them. First there was the new house, new marriage, and graduate school. Then Michael and Ava arrived in quick succession. There was a time when the children were both tiny, that I couldn't hardly muster the energy to pet my cats much less miss my succulent garden.
Now that the children are older and life is beginning to find some balance again I have been looking longingly at the tiny baby succulents in the garden section of whichever store I happen to be in at the moment. This weekend I decided to treat myself to a late mother's day gift. I picked out some pretty succulents, some cactus potting soil, and a pretty neat pot that will securely straddle my deck rail and built myself a brand new succulent garden. It's beautiful. I couldn't be more delighted. And this sounds a bit dorky, but my spirits lift and I feel a little joy every time my eye wanders in that direction.