Welcome to A Library and A Garden. I’m Jessie. I wear lots of hats, metaphorically that is, as I find it difficult to find hats that actually fit my head (whether my cranium is abnormally large or my curly hair is too wild, who knows). Here is a short list of my hat collection: writer, teacher, suburban kid herder, imperfect wife, clan chronicler, Minnesotan, spiritual seeker (aka conflicted Catholic) and reader. There are more. Aren’t there always?
My life is pretty modest, particularly compared to the life of Cicero, but one of his oft quoted aphorisms resonates with me: “If you have a library and a garden, you have everything you need.” Wouldn’t it be absolutely magical if one could walk through the forest, say, or along a lake shore and simply happen upon a library. Brilliant, right? Two of the most blessed things in the universe together at once. Well, I suppose Cicero is really describing a means of sustaining one’s body and one’s mind…and, I like to think, one’s spirit. Sharing stories and getting outside in nature go a long way towards achieving that goal. Thus the title of the blog.
It seems that, on any given day, I can do no better than to strive towards a means of sustaining my body, mind and spirit…and, by proxy, the bodies, minds and spirits of my family. It is a fearsome endeavor and some days it lays me low. But I continue to hope. I like to think I am a hopeful sort, essentially an optimist in the face of an increasingly snarky world. Not that snark doesn’t have it’s place. I’m a fan of snark too. But hope is essential. Barbara Kingsolver (who I not-so-secretly adore) wrote, “The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for. And the most you can do is live inside that hope.” So, as our darling Ms. Emily Dickinson dwells in possibility, I dwell in hope.