Snow on the dogs:
Snow on the boy:
Snow on the blueberry bushes:
In my own mind, miracles are the unexpected things that go my way. These are not to be confused with what a Cajun would call "lagniappe," the unexpected little something extra that comes along with the usual expected events/items, or a bonus. These events stand on their own.
Just lately, I've experienced the Atlanta area's first white Christmas since 1882, the last ping-pong table tomato's not being eaten until TONIGHT (almost the end of December!), and finding a live bat in my kitchen (also tonight!). The mail lately has been stacked high with seed and garden-related catalogues, and everyone at my house is well during the holiday season (usually, someone has a cold). Right now, I am feeling really blessed in this season of miracles (yes, weirdly enough, even with the bat).
If you count as miracles the flashes of insight that sometimes strike people, I've had a couple of those, too. They are both related to a book Joe gave me for Christmas, "The Resilient Gardener," by Carol Deppe, who also wrote "Breed Your Own Vegetable Varieties." I am using that second book as a guide in dehybridizing my favorite canary melon.
In "The Resilient Gardener," Deppe points out that she has a large garden only because she and a friend lease a two-acre property on which to grow it. Her own house's yard is too small to grow many veggies. If she can lease garden space, it is likely that I can, too, if I really want more garden space. That is definitely something to think about.
The other insight was something I've suspected but haven't wanted to totally face: if I want to find a really good list of veggies that do well here in metro-Atlanta, I can't wait for a seed company to pull that together for me. I have to make that list myself. It's going to take some work, researching seeds and sources, and it could take years of experimentation. I've been growing veggies here for a long time, but it seems I have a long way to go . . .
Deppe recommends that gardeners begin with seeds from a local, or at least regional, seed company. There isn't one for the Southeast, not really. Park Seed in South Carolina is the closest, but it sells plenty of varieties that are more trendy than region-appropriate.
The next closest seed source that might count as regional is Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, and it is in Virginia.
Locally, my best source so far in a lot of ways is Ladd's Farm Supply up in Euharlee. It offers some seeds, to measure out from bins, that local farmers have been growing for years. It's a good starting point, but its offerings also have a lot to do with what is commercially available. For example, the owner would like to offer some other varieties in particular that customers have asked for, but hasn't found a good source for those.
I have a lot of work ahead of me! That, too, is a miracle. How wonderful it is to have goals and plans.