When is an Annual not an Annual?


If you’ve read me for any length of time, you probably know I like to garden a little. I enjoy digging in the dirt, planting flowers, watching them grow, and pointing at them to say, “I did that.” It’s quite satisfying. Something gardening will teach you is Mother Nature has a mind of her own and she tends to change it on a whim. The rules that applied last season may not apply this season. Mother Nature’s fickleness can be frustrating, but can also be an odd, little happy moment. The case in point, Forget-me-nots.

I’ve experimented with several plants and flowers to see what will survive and flourish in my soil and to see what adds ascetic value here or there. I usually choose annuals because if they don’t work out, they’re easily replaced next season. Last season I threw in some Forget-me-nots directly under the front bedroom window. Their height was perfect for their placement in the front bed. They also enjoyed prime watering treatment from the faucet that leaks a little. The Forget-me-nots drank right along with what ever else was getting watered at the time. Ironically, this season, I totally forgot about the Forget-me-nots, but Mother Nature had an odd, little happy to throw my way.

Though they are annuals and should have been gone this year, as soon as the temperature allowed, up came a jungle of entangled green, right where the Forget-me-nots were last year. Momma N. decided they needn’t be annuals. She wanted them to forget they were supposed to die off and instead, wanted them to act like perennials. That entangled mass of green now has lovely pink clusters crowning the stems.

Today’s post isn’t earth-shattering, but the odd, little happy seldom is. Most often, it is simply a moment in life where you remember to stop and smell the flowers, in this case, literally. Not having to plant under that window this season didn’t save me tons of money. It would have been no bother to plant something new there, but seeing those Forget-me-nots return when they were expected to die, was an unpretentious moment of odd, little happiness.

I’ve found that if you hunt the odd, little happy, it will elude you. You can’t force it to appear any more than you can turn an annual into a perennial. It must happen on its own and just be. The best we can do is to be open to it, to attune our mind and attitude to recognize it when it happens. The odd, little happy is happening all around us, all the time. We miss seeing it for a hundred different reasons. I challenge you to open yourself up to it. Start by thinking back over the last couple of weeks. What was the odd, little happy you saw or, now that you think about it, you missed? There’s a comment section below. I’d love to read what odd, little happy you remembered.

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4 Comments

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  1. I always try to enjoy the small moments or odd little happies as you call them. I even have a flower related one too. I noticed the other day, after not being outside for a few days because I felt too bad, that my petunias were growing really well. I was scared I’d kill them, so for them to still be around and doing well a month later, is wonderful.

    I also got really excited when I actually managed to make a basket that looks like a basket with my new scroll saw. I’m still learning so it was nice to make something people will recognize.

    Roy and I finished watching Battlestar Galactica the other night. We watched the whole show together, which was very nice. Our own little weekend movie fest for a few weeks. Always happy when I get to spend time with my baby.

    I caught the little birdies moving around the other day and even saw one fly off. They’re all gone now so I was glad to see them grown before they left. Got a few pics to remember them by.

    I could go on, but reckon that’s enough for now. Hope you enjoy the flowers.

  2. marymkirkland April 30, 2012 — 21:04

    I received a box of books from a friend who went to an author conference and thought I might like some of the books she was given. I thought that was so incredibly sweet of her and I wasn’t expecting it.

    Little surprises once in a while are nice, they give you something to look forward to. Like the little baby Praying Mantis I found on my door the other day. He was so cute.

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