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Today’s #RealityWednesday post is brought to you by my cluttered and snow-covered flower garden. Yes, it’s April 6, and we’re in the midst of a major snowstorm here in northern Michigan. Surprise! Ok, not really.

As we all know, the weather changes minute by minute around here. And let’s be honest, we’ve had it pretty easy all winter. Then spring came early, and apparently we had summer and fall (only we didn’t know it), and now we’re back to winter again. Yay!

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Remember when I posted that picture of my neglected flower garden last summer? Well, nothing changed much through the rest of the year, except there’s more clutter there now. You know how it is. If there’s an empty space, be it a desktop or abandoned flower garden, things start to accumulate there. It takes constant vigilance to keep it uncluttered.

But I’m determined to re-claim my flower garden this summer (I mean, next summer … or whichever summer comes first when all the snow goes away). I read something recently where getting your hands in the soil actually helps to calm the nerves. There are certain microbes in there or something that help to decompress our busy and worrisome lives.

Gardeners already know that, of course, and our ancestors knew that (though I doubt they ever thought about things like stress and anxiety). And *I* have known that throughout my life. Being the daughter of farmers, tending to plants has always been in my DNA.

When I was a kid, my room was filled with houseplants like geraniums and Philodendrons and spider plants. Remember those macrame plant hangers everyone made back in the 1970s? I had a bunch of those in my room. And I grew herbs like basil and dill on my windowsill. I even thought about going into the horticulture business at one time.

But I’ve gotten so busy over the past decade or two (or three) – you know, trying to make a living and whatnot – that I’ve forgotten about the wonderful de-stressing aspects of gardening. Then I just spend all year stressed out about my life, not realizing there’s a perfect solution right outside my door. And there’s not one single houseplant in my house. What gives?!

So here is my commitment to you guys – I’m TAKING BACK MY GARDEN THIS YEAR! And also buying a houseplant or two! And maybe even making a macrame hanger! Let’s take back our lives, people! Who’s with me?!

A NOTE FROM JANE: I started Old Mission Gazette in 2015 because I felt a calling to provide the Old Mission Peninsula community with local news. After decades of writing for newspapers and magazines like the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Family Circle and Ladies' Home Journal, I really just wanted to write about my own community where I grew up on a cherry farm and raised my own family. So I started my own newspaper. Because the Gazette is mainly reader-supported, I hope you'll consider tossing a few bucks my way if I mention your event, your business, your organization or your news item, or if you simply love reading about what's happening on the OMP. Check out the donation page here. Thank you so much for your support. -jb

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