Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Rethinking the Summer from Hell

As I trudged through the gardens on Saturday, hose in hand, pondering the expected return of August's 100+ degree temperatures had me in a funk.  Not for the first time this summer, I felt a distinct lack of enthusiasm for the gardens and gardening.  Why do I continue to garden in such inhospitable conditions?  And how long can I continue to do so before I throw up my hands in despair and allow heat and drought to do their worst?  Mental histrionics, it's true, but I've been pushed to the very edge of my limits this summer as never before.   

I've been teetering on that edge for the last month but Saturday evening, I was rescued by a seemingly unlikely group of benefactors.  When the doorbell rang and I opened the gate to a director from the community association, my first thought was, "Oh, frass! What did I do to provoke the yard police?"  It's been over five years since we've received any negative feedback on our unconventional landscape but I've remained wary of offending those who monitor such things for our homeowners' association.  It was a happy surprise to hear the director say that they appreciated all the hard work I put into the gardens and to receive a sign proclaiming ours the "yard of the season" for summer 2011.


Sometimes the support you need to keep calm and carry on comes from an unexpected source.  I am truly grateful to the Nottingham Country Community Improvement Association for recognizing and acknowledging my efforts, and thereby encouraging me to look at this summer's gardening experience differently.  Yes, it's been an undeniably hellatious summer but the gardens are far from bereft of blooms and foliage.  I'm still not happy about the heat and drought and I hope never to experience a summer like this again, but there's beauty on my corner of Katy and I'm not ready to give up after all!




19 comments:

Wendi P said...

Congratulations! Your garden is my inspiration! And you deserve such a wonderful award!I

Alison said...

Kudos to you, Cindy! I often get discouraged at the end of summer, but with the truly hellatious summer you've had, I have to admit you have good reason to be discouraged. This award is a testament to your hard work coping with the heat and drought. I'm glad the recognition has come, and delightfully, from an unexpected quarter.

Gail said...

Cindy, I had tears in my eyes as I read this. I want to personally thank your neighborhood association for honoring your garden. I know how darned hard you've worked to keep your garden and spirits alive. Congratulations my dear friend, you so deserved the recognition. xogail

grwhryrpltd said...

wahoo! i bet you inspired a few folks to look at traditional yardens in a whole new way... congratulations cindy!

Jan said...

Congratulations. This is wonderful. I know how hard it is to try and stay positive when the weather and Mother Nature just don't cooperate. I think the birds I have had lately have been sort of a sign that all is not lost.

Ginny said...

Congratulations - so glad this unexpected appreciation knocked on the door when you needed it most.

Birdwoman said...

A very well-deserved honor, I'm sure. Congratulations, and, for the sake of all your neighbors, do carry on!

Fairegarden said...

Oh what a happy turn of events, a twist in the right direction to this story with such a sad beginning, Cindy! I am so proud of you and your efforts, and thankful that you have received that much deserved honor. Cool sign, too!
Frances

Jean said...

Fantastic. That's definitely what the head gardener needed, I know! Keep pushing on my friend.

patsy Bell Hobson said...

I was watching the weather map and thinking of you. You go girl. There is always light at the end of the tunnel. (even it is another hotter than hell Texas day.)

StoBlogger said...

CONGRATULATIONS! That is awesome and encouraging news to a fellow Texas gardener. Hang in there, surely next summer will be better.

Dee Nash said...

That was the sweetest story. God listens to our sadness and turns it into joy. My heart lifted as I read this.

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

I don't think you'd have appreciated the award quite this much if the summer hadn't been so horrible. Keep up the good fight.

HolleyGarden said...

All us Texas gardeners are frustrated this year. But your garden must look fabulous to receive such recognition! Congratulations! Nice to have all your hard work recognized.

Autumn Quiles said...

Ohhhh, I am so happy for you Cindy! I was having the same thoughts myself and I hope that inspiration heads my way too... :) Congratulations!

Mac_fromAustralia said...

Congratulations! What a lovely surprise.

Bluestem said...

Congratulations on a well deserved award! I think weather extremes like the heat and drought we faced this summer help others to see the value and benefit of unconventional landscapes. Keep it up!

Cindy, MCOK said...

Thanks, y'all, for your kind words! And a special welcome to those who haven't commented before. It's wonderful to be appreciated!

Jayne said...

Congratulations on your Yard of the Season award Cindy. Well deserved.