On any given day at this time of year I can often be found at my favorite produce stand joyously handling and examining the bountiful harvest from my area. We were again blessed with a good growing season this year despite all of the storms and over abundance of rain. While other women ooh and aah over things like clothes and shoes, my sounds of delight are usually over a perfect spaghetti squash, a beautiful butternut squash, or a elegantly shaped gourd that only Mother Nature could have designed. There are so many apples, of every variety you can think of, that I am sure every apple tree for miles around is bare of even one last piece of fruit. The last of the onions and garlic in netted bags or hanging in strings from the rafters, piles of corn waiting to be husked … these are the jewels I covet (ok, I will admit to a purse fetish, but my 24-year-old granddaughter has helped me with my addictions; if I find myself in a store holding one obsessively in my hand, I call her and she talks me down).
Once I am back home, the harvest of the season becomes pots of soup bubbling on the back of the stove, to end up in containers in the freezer for a cold winter’s day to come. Some of the veggies will end up cooked as they are and frozen, or as an ingredient in some new vegan recipe I am excited to try. Nothing goes to waste, and everything teaches me something new about things like spices, seasonings and new ways to use what I have been blessed with.
I like to think of this time of year as another kind of harvest, a harvest of the bounty of lessons and experiences, our failures and successes, that have grown in our lives over the past year, and the benefit of the wisdom that has come from all of them. Like a finished pot of delectable soup, we are the finished product of all the individual happenings in our lives. Whether what comes out is palatable or not fit for human consumption is decided by how we use what we have learned. Often all we need to do to turn it around is to try a different kind of seasoning than the ones we’ve been using to create a whole different experience – maybe a little less salt and a little more cumin; maybe a little less negative self-talk and a bit more self-love. Stir well.
This week our writing assignment is asking us to harvest all of the experiences of this past year, good and bad, wise and not so wise, put it all in a pot, and see what comes out of it. You don’t have to be Julia Child or Dr. Phil to do this. Some of the best cooks, and the best people in general, were created by trial and error. As always have fun with it, and keep writing!
Peace and blessings.