Education in dirt, Part 1


It’s day 2 of the May blogging challenge presented by, Jenni, writer of the lovely blog, .


Today we are challenged to write about something that we know about, or are good at.

Hmm, I consider myself a, “Jack of all trades, master of none.”  Sure, I have my moments of clarity and pure perfection, but nothing stands out so significantly that I want to profess it loudly before my audience.  So let me talk to you about something really, dirty.

Once upon a time, while living in the state of Arkansas, I heard a phrase that has stuck with me for years.  Unkind, perhaps, but an observation that defined a specific moment. In a conversation, with friends, the subject took a dive into the ugly.  Someone referenced a certain someone by saying, “Why, she’s as ugly as a box of dirt!” …

“Say, what?”

Okay, eventually I left that group of friends and headed over to Oklahoma.  (No, I was not doing it to escape their heinous behavior, hubby’s new job meant the move.)

Talking one day with a bunch of Oklahoma friends, a similar, oddly reminiscent remark was made.  This time I heard the statement, “She’s about as lovely as a box of rocks!”

“Say, what?”

Well, I should have moved again, I guess.  Maybe I’d come to hear about someone being blessed with niceness when their looks were referenced within the confines of a box.

Thirteen years later, I finally did move.  Relocation:  Texas (there is something about Texas that I am unable to remove from my ‘history’…hmm…?)

No such luck, now I hear the likes of, “His elevator doesn’t travel to all floors!” or, “He’s shy a few loads of bricks!” or, “His canoe is missing a paddle!”

The only thing that has changed among these friends I keep gathering, is the gender they attack.

I can’t really put my finger on it, other than to say that my friends, and now, myself, can be a bit unkind at times.  Hopefully, we are out of earshot and not part of a gossip-chain when we speak so crudely.

It would serve us right to have ourselves described, openly, should we be caught.   (And I do promise, I do not speak like this in age groups younger than my peers.)

I’m cross-eyed, wrinkled and own bridgework (not the kind that gets you to where you are going), the kind that allows mastication of copious amounts of food.  I have big thighs, graying hair and joints bent hither and to.

(Let’s leave this surliness behind us and get down to the real nitty-gritty.)


I compost.  Make dirt.  Reshuffle life’s discards.  Table scraps, spoilt food that hid itself behind the real goodies in the fridge, that cake or pie, the one I devoured, and then replaced.  Coffee grounds, eggshells, shrimp tails, you name it, as long as it is not beefy, or porky, or oily, it gets tossed into my backyard for a makeover.  I’ve collected fallen leaves, pinecones and pine needles and just recently was the recipient of some cow and horse ‘chit’ that made its way from Durango, Colorado via a neighbor.


Earthworms, and even the precious honeybee’s, love to frolic out back.  My organic garden is my pride and joy, and although it’s only been five years since I began an all organic lifestyle I can honestly admit to a dramatic change that presents itself with each passing year.  It has taken me 20 years to become an organic gardener, small steps lead to giant leaps, and with them, benefits that I couldn’t have imagined.  I don’t fret when I see a bug chomping down on the lovely leaves of a prized specimen.  It reminds me that he/she is eating to recycle a bit themselves.  For every nasty bug in that garden, I have ten-fold the beneficial insect.  Each critter adds his own to this universe, and every bit of dirt that I can produce, organically, is reason alone to admit,

“Life is a box of dirt.”


~ by coffeegrounded on May 2, 2013.

4 Responses to “Education in dirt, Part 1”

  1. 1 – Your garden is absolutely gorgeous!! 2 – I love this entire post and am going to follow you. 3 – When I saw the first picture (of the squirrel), the first thing I noticed about it was how long his fingers and toes are!!!! :D


    • Welcome, and thank-you, Melody.

      I happened to be right there when that little ball of fuzz came to visit. This time of year we are always greeted by many. My poor puppy-dog, Hannah, is forever chasing them along the fence line.
      I’m glad you want to follow along on my daily journey. It’s always a wonderful thing to find a new blogging friend. :) Have a happy day!


  2. Your garden is beautiful. And I really found this writing to be a hoot! If you know what I mean.

    Paula’s Place


    • Paula, I appreciate your kind words. I may know a bit about dirt, but, Honey, I know nothing of the courage it takes for you each day as you travel your journey. I read your post and am in awe of your dedication of spirit and your courage. Kudos to you. I am willing to bend an ear if you wish to scream, cry, rant or rave. Never feel that you are alone in your struggle(s). There are many who cannot fathom your daily journey. Thank you so much for your honesty, and your integrity. Much is to be gained by reading your blog. I wish you peace.


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