When I go to work each day in my office, or my kitchen, or my easy chair (or wherever my laptop takes me), I feel blessed.
After college, I worked first as a legal secretary and then as a legal assistant in offices and firms for over 15 years. I loved that too, but being a writer fulfills my greatest artistic longings. An honorable profession, I wish it paid more. However, like the commercial says, the other benefits are priceless.
Through my work, I am constantly learning. Although I gardened from the age of 21 or so, once I began to write about plants, a twinkling universe opened itself to me.
Besides, learning keeps us young, and I fully intend to stay young in here (I say as I tap my chest) where it counts, until I draw my final breath.
This past week I wrote two articles about birds. One was a shortie for Oklahoma Gardening Examiner; the other a more extensive article to be published in a magazine. Before researching my subject, I knew very little about birds, their habits and habitats. Now, I know a lot.
Because they were gardening articles, I wanted to impress upon my readers the part plants play in sheltering and feeding birds. Like so much of what we read about gardening and the environment, I discovered that diversification is the key.
- Grow a variety of plants which flower and fruit at different times of the year.
- Grow grasses, and perennials, shrubs and trees.
- Grow evergreens so that birds have winter protection.
Before learning about the importance of evergreens, I never thought about hollies except in terms of Christmas cards or carols. Now, I’m planning to buy two or three for my front yard next year. I already have some deciduous ones, but I need to grow a few which remain green all year and have berries. Birds love berries. I even discovered that the invasive, native Juniperus virginiana, or eastern redcedar, has some worthwhile qualities because it is loved by the Cedar Waxwing.
Did you know that Oklahoma is smack dab in the middle of the migratory bird flight path? That is one of the reasons Oklahoma has so many different birds throughout the year.
Did you know the American Robin never leaves our state? It simply moves to the southeastern part where it has more tree cover and the weather stays warmer.
Neither of these facts are in the two articles I wrote, but that doesn’t matter.
The best gift any writer has is his or her insatiable curiosity about the world and his or her fellow human beings.
Like I said, I feel blessed.