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Last week on the radio I referred to my property as “Poison Ivy Acres”, as I have on this blog and my website many times. Later that day I ran into one of my listeners and he said, “Poison Ivy Acres? Why that name? Aren’t there more beautiful aspects of your garden that can give your property a name?”

Of course there are many other, perhaps more pleasing, names I could come up with. We have several flower beds, productive vegetable gardens, berry bushes and many lovely shrubs and trees. There is also a great deal of poison ivy. It pops up in the wooded area between the house and the lake. It sprouts along the edges of the woods, and at the base of every tree. We repeatedly dig it out and spray it with a salt/vinegar solution.

When I call our home “Poison Ivy Acres” I’m reminding myself, and everyone else, that a great deal of what goes on in the garden – and in life – is out of our control. I’m remembering that along with the best of life there are always things that irritate. I strive to always remember that life is a whole… that it is the beautiful, the desired, and the unwanted and itchy.

Although I don’t want life’s problem plants, I do want to have the entire human experience.

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