Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A treasured gift!

I'm in the midst of a very hectic week, slowed down at first by a head cold that has caused me to sneeze non-stop for the better part of three days. The cold is abating, and I have a moment to breathe (literally and figuratively) and post a quick note.

I've been intending to post this since Christmas, but as you can tell, I haven't spent much time on blogger these past few weeks. Here is one of the treasured gifts I received this Christmas, from my grandfather.
I expect you'll have to click on the image to make it bigger to read the text. It's a poem titled "A Plant That You Cannot Kill", written entirely by my grandfather. You must read it!

So here is a little context: Every year before Christmas I'm asked for my "Christmas List" and every year I try to comply. Usually I can produce such a list easily as I tend to write things down as I think of them throughout the year. This list is not specifically for Christmas; it's more to keep track of what I want and why. I tend to like to give things great consideration before buying and by keeping a list I can watch for things to go on sale, or consider alternatives. It's sort of a way of maintaining a little self-control when it comes to shopping. But I digress....

This year I've had a miserable time with houseplants. For some reason, they keep dying! Now, I've never really had a good track-record when it comes to plants, but this year was particularly bad. I killed a spider plant (who kills spider plants???), an umbrella tree, an aloe vera plant and my thai basil. Now, arguably, Thai basil is not a hardy plant, and it's time came and went. The aloe vera became too top-heavy and when I tried to transplant it into a bigger pot, it protested by dying. The umbrella tree was fine for well over a year, but then last August it started dropping it's branches (umbrellas?) one-by-one until there was nothing left. Observe Exhibit A. (right). If you look closely (or click on the image to make it bigger) you will see a few of the limbs that dropped at the tree's base, in the plant pot. You'll also see my rather scraggly aloe plant. So sad.

But I digress again....

So I kill plants. Or so it seems to me. I have one houseplant that's survived the carnage of 2009, and I'm hoping against hope it survives 2010. So, on my Christmas plant I was hoping to re-green my apt with something so hardy, it would survive my neglect or black-thumb. And apparently my grandfather knew of just the thing! As you can see in the picture at the very top his creativity knew no bounds. Not only did he find me a plant i could not kill, but he wrote a poem to go with it! My grandfather is not usually the poem-writing sort. He's a story-teller, yes, and a genealogist (the two sort of go hand in hand), but the poem was definitely a treat and a treasure! I will safely care for this plant so that in the years to come, at Christmastime, I can put it on display without having to worry about it dying over the holidays due to lack of watering, or worry about poisoning Millie (because we all know poinsettas are poisonous for cats).

Thanks Grampie!

*** PS. To my shock and horror I thought I almost killed this plant too when I lifted it out of the box I had it in and one of the branches pulled out of the foam. Fortunately it went right back in place, without any permanent damage. Phew!