time and memory

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Strong forces are bombarding the mind and the material, natural world. As I write this, I am astounded by the force of the Earth Quake in Japan and the resultant tsunami washing up on the West Coast. Energy which shifts the earth and challenges us to get our minds around the magnitude of this event just as we watch the waters and waves hit and spread to encircle the islands from all sides.
I am living happily in the month of Adar, but I am viscerally and spiritually connected to the natural world and all of humanity. Never privy to G-d's ultimate plan, I continue to strengthen my faith and join forces with the best of human responses to this devastation.
Ah, the challenge to stay positive and focus on what is in front of me! And so I say, Thank G-d for March 17 and the Irish and the secular calendars which mark this day. While I will may not be wearing green, I will be at my 'green-est' as I get out into the garden and down on my knees to start planting!
March 17 in my area of North America, is the time to plant peas, mustards and some lettuces.
Therefore, today serves as a reminder that if you have not already purchased your seeds- do it ASAP. Of course, you could buy them locally as well.
Planting peas and lettuces with children is a very engaging. Even planting the peas for them or virtually should be considered. We like to start our grandchildren out at about 18 months. If a child can stand, I consider them to be my partners in the planting process. Do not confuse 'planting with children' with 'supervising' children. I consider the "planting of the peas" a great example of the social construction of knowledge and experience. We do it together. We discuss it while it is happening. the peas, unlike lettuce seeds are large (they are the size of a pea!) We take turns, either I poke my finger in the ground, and the child drops in the pea, or the child pokes and I drop in the pea. Older children in the neighborhood are able to do both processes. Planting with children is a shared experience. I always use a personal pronoun when I refer to our gardens. If a child lives far from us, I might say, "I planted peas today in your garden" After the children plant, I continually give them updates on 'their' peas even on the phone. Of course the most fun is picking the pods when they are ready. And what to do with grandchildren far away? Well, when the pods are ready to be picked, they don't wait for the next holiday visit. So, last year, I pulled the entire root system up, untied the trellised peas and stuff the whole thing in a bag and
I took Amtrak up hte east coast so the children could 'experience' pulling the pods off of the stalks and take the peas out of the pods themselves. Perfect for little hands and great hearts of all ages.
So, thank you to the Irish who keep me focuses on just the right time to turn green and get into my garden.