Archive for June, 2012

The Botanical Grapefruit

I’ve never had much of a green thumb, although I do so love growing simple things like tomato gardens or tulips. House plants don’t seem to agree with me much. However, there’s something distinctly ethereal about growing anything from a seedling, and maintaining and nurturing it. It becomes yours. It is now part of you, because you have loved and cared for it. I find gardening peaceful. Even just watering my grass at 8 am. makes me feel like I’m closer to the earth at that moment than any other time of my day. Mothering three young boys and playing ping-pong with a limited but, you would think I would put more time into building and maintaining a garden, but alas I’m more likely to open a book, rather than a bag of mulch.

I have many friends with children graduating this year. They’re “flying the coup” as some of them say, and I know that when that moment comes for me, I will have to find something else in life that needs my care. Something that fulfills me when I’m in the nurturing mood. I think a garden would be a perfect resolution for my own empty nest syndrome. It would be a great introduction to get my hubby eating better. It would obviously save finances (which will be strapped in tuition for my birdies in flight). It will be, yet another way for me to keep sweating, even through the retirement years. It’s a great way to far extend my conversations with God. It will decrease the gas and time it requires to drive to Meijer/the farmers market/corner deli for produce, which I can in turn invest in the garden, thereby saving more money. Boy, this is getting better by the minute!

It will also be a good way for me to be more of a community activist by toting the abundant harvest to local charities or neighbors for sharing. I think that’s one of the greatest ways to appreciate someone: giving them something you’ve taken care of, it shows consideration and appreciation 🙂

Although I have no experience with hard labor or organized outdoor activities (hence my aptitude for writing) I know this will be a bit of an undertaking and require some assistance in that area. With that said, I do believe my husky boys will be a perfect asset in this endeavor. After I tell them how much pizza I can make with all the ingredients (including the sauce) they’ll be sure to approve and help with the work. So, it seems only natural that I get this idea going. Maybe I can start a tomato garden first, to test my thumb. I’m pretty good at growing food, herb are my friend. It must be due to my sense of gratitude, I do so love food! This grapefruit at the University of Michigan Botanical Gardens and Conservatory is what made me think of this. It’s truly a beauty. One of the many free and clear wonders of God, but only free if we appreciate its wonder. The Earth isn’t given freely, it needs care and love to maintain itself. It requires understanding and the people inhabiting it need to work hard to keep it the beautiful rock that it is. It’s stunningly hanging freely in the balance with only us here to nurture it, very much like the botanical grapefruit.

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Stargazing the Lily

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How did you get your name?

Could it be the feathery textured petal?

Soft and silk spun sheen,

Immersed throughout-

A blossom of the age,

your kaleidoscope color,

Long and statuesque,

Reaching out lovely

to the world.

You say to me, “Good morning”

with every turn of the sun,

and I pause to take you in.

Such majesty and reverence,

open-faced beauty.

Body language aiming high,

you are the shoot,

and your zenith

a wonder.

The lingering fragrance

tickles my soul.

It stays with me,

walks with me.

You are my friend.

You make me whole.

You scream life,

and I listen.

Smelling sweet,

like a long Summer day,

lost in the tide,

rolling in and out.

A bright, buxom bloom,

shining wildly.

Your Pinkest of Pink,

and rosey petals,

bursting tequila sunrise.

They hug me in the light and fair.

Twirling hues,

thunderous and sparkling,

like fresh melony tangerine.

The Sun, Sky, and Air,

rest stunningly,

within your gentle saunter.

Basking in your glory,

I patiently await,

Stargazing the Lily

Writing Myself: Finding Genre in Everything

Today was my interview with the workshop instructor from Downriver Community Conference Work First program. I participated in a three day workshop called, “Personal Placement Network” (PPN), a program designed to provide professionals in career transitions with proven, self-directed job search techniques and I made an appointment to have the instructor take a closer look at my resume.

He was very helpful. He was able to determine that my resume was in need of a more comprehensive career summary, as opposed to the current opening entitled, “objective” He helped me tease out which career skill-sets I needed to extract, and which information I could lose, altogether. He said professionals have very little time to view resumes and they ought to be as concise as possible. He also stated that although the hard copy needed to be concise, a lengthy electronic copy would be okay, because most professionals are accustomed to scrolling through information on a PC. He helped me devise another career summary that included more detail about my experience as a scholar, and I realized I was able to do this because of the continuous amount of questions he asked me. His inquiry developed even more self-assessment on my part, and I was able to tweak the already ample amounts of skills related to writing that I had listed. As he and I looked over the details of my resume, together we also located a few mechanical issues that required addressing. We basically proofread an outdated version of my CV, and systematically recreated a polished version. We were a part of the writing process, just as tutor and consultant are. He was a peer-reviewer and I gained the benefit of it.

As I sat there, I realized what we had been doing was the very idea that I argue mainstream classes need to incorporate, more. We worked together to make adjustments and changes to text, and the conversation encouraged metacognitive strategies that I used to improve and revisit the text. My resume writing interview was an example of the writing process at work, and how peer-review enables success in that process. I had to giggle after thinking about it. What took me so long to recognize this? I mean, after all, a resume is just another genre, right?