Wednesday, April 4, 2012


It's April.

Rather than spend the month playing April Fool's jokes on my blog, an idea supplied by Child #1 and #2 or blogging from A-Z like so many of my blogger friends, I thought I would spend the month talking about growth.

The idea came to me this morning when I walked out of my house. In the week that we were away my garden suddenly sprang to life. Everything is still wet, but it's lush pink, white and green wet. The grass is shaggy and the camellia's are hot pink. All the rampant growth outside made me think about all the other kinds of growth that has happened this year.

I've had a book published, started a blog, learned to use Twitter, figured out how to find my RSS feed, celebrated my daughter's tenth birthday and my son's seventh, written another book and started balancing a full-time writing schedule with the myriad of activities that make up our daily life.

It's been a big year.

And I've done a lot of growing. The interesting thing about it is I don't feel overwhelmed (okay, most of the time I don't) or unhappy. Instead I feel passionately curious and excited to see what else I can learn and what other ways I can stretch my wings.

I'm not going to discuss too many details of my personal growth because I suspect it might make for boring reading. Instead, I'm going to use this month to focus on the little things. The baby steps that we take to make us change and grow and stretch up towards the sun.

Of course, I have Child #1 and #2 to inspire me. Their growth has a lot in common with the growth that happens in my garden. It's the kind where, in the space of a week, they can put on leaves, bloom and start to look like a completely different plant.

I hope you'll stop by on Friday so you can check on our progress. I realize it's only two days away but this time of year, two days can be a lifetime, and there's no way to predict how quickly we'll change and grow.


Rachel Schieffelbein said...

Beautiful post. :) (And beautiful pictures.)

Jenny S. Morris said...

I've grown so much this year TOO. It seems amazing what I've accomplished. Twitter? Who knew it could be fun. LOL.

Congrats on all you've done this year!

Morgan said...

Oh, I love this, Johanna. What a beautiful post! I feel like this year has been a growth year for me too... it's good looking back-not necessarily while you're living it, but now? Good.

Thanks for sharing. And the pictures are beautiful!

Angela Cothran said...

Life is all about growth. I actually think it is the secret to a happy life :)

Dianne K. Salerni said...

There's all kinds of growth happening in my backyard -- a lot of it of the weed variety! I can also see where some of my plantings have over-grown or out-grown their placement and have to be moved ... or maybe just removed entirely.

I had also set a goal to start a new project over my spring break, and it's kind of a growth for me because it's a genre I've never written in before. I started Monday night and now have 4600 words!

Rick Daley said...

My kids are 10 and 7, too. I love watching them grow, their minds and bodies change in such wonderful ways. My older son has taken to rock climbing at the indoor gym at Lifetime. Sometimes he gets frustrated because his arms and legs aren't long enough to climb routs I can climb, but his determination helps him find his own path.

My younger son climbs, too, and he is no less determined to make it to the top of the wall; neither one gives up easily. Except when it comes to homework, that's a different story...

~Sia McKye~ said...

Oh, I like the terraced look of your garden, Johanna. I some, no longer used, steps outside one of my office windows and I want to add some hanging flowers and pots on my steps.

Growth. That's a good topic. I was thinking last night of how much growth I've made as a writer. It will be interesting to see your articles on it. :-)


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

You've come so far!
Want to plant something for me?

T. L. Cooper said...

Inspiring post! We can find growth in every experience, good or bad, if we're open to seeing it!
Personal growth isn't boring reading though. It's something we can all relate to. I will concede too many details may muddy the message.
So happy for all your success and your growth! :-)

Jemi Fraser said...

Kids can grow and change SO quickly!! Love your idea :)

Tonja said...

Good for you. I think everything we do every day adds up. My kids amaze me too. They are constantly changing. My little guy is 3 and a half, the perfect age I think.

PK HREZO said...

Yep, it's remarkable how much we're always writers and as human beings.

Johanna Garth said...

Thanks Rachel!

Jenny, I hear you about twitter ;)

Morgan, isn't it amazing how much growing you can do in a year?

Angela, I couldn't agree more.

Dianne, that sounds ambititious, in a good way.

Rick, I love the climbing gym for kids!

Thanks Sia! My garden has come a long way since we moved into this house.

Thanks Alex, would geraniums work? ;)

Jemi, almost in the blink of an eye.

Tonja, I LOVED 3 1/2

Pk, writing pushes us to grow all the time, doesn't it!

Carol Kilgore said...

I love spring. Here in San Antonio, whole trees can leaf out in one day. It's amazing.

Neurotic Workaholic said...

Congratulations on doing so much this year, especially on publishing a book and balancing a full-time writing schedule.
I don't think that the details of your personal growth would be boring, but I totally respect your desire to keep some things private.
It sounds like you have two really great kids. I think that watching your children grow up has to be one of the most eye-opening experiences that anyone could ever have.

Botanist said...

Wow, that has been a busy year! And what an appropriate time to reflect on it, when everything outside is bursting into life.

Margo Berendsen said...

What if you aren't exactly crazy about what you are growing into? Sorry, I'm startled at my own reaction to your excellent topic.

Scarlett said...

It is amazing, isn't it! Just a few short days ago I could see through the trees to the meadow beyond. Now the green has taken over again, like a living, breathing entity. Just mesmerizing.

Easter flowers, Redbud, Peach trees, Lilacs and Clematis are all blooming ahead of schedule for Missouri this year. We've had unseasonably warm temperatures a while now. Today's cold rain seems a bit jarring. It's made me stay indoors, instead of fiddling with barn chores and farm repairs.

I'll pay no mind to them today. Kids are all home for Easter break... "and miles to go before I sleep."

Julie Flanders said...

Oh, what a beautiful post. And, congratulations to you on all you have accomplished!! It's inspiring just to read about it.

I'll definitely be back tomorrow to check in again. :)

The Bookworm said...

That's wonderful Johanna :)