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Grandfather Gnome

Tuesday, June 27, 2017


I had no idea when I married my husband that he came from a family who put gnomes in their gardens.  Over the past years, they have slowly started to take up residence in our gardens. Big ones, little ones, gnomes on posts, gnomes made out of soapstone.  Personally I always thought they were kind of goofy, but who am I to judge?   We’ve had gnomes accompany us on canoe trips and a biking trip a couple of summers ago.  There is a lot of joking about the gnomes in our life.  Of course I placed a beautiful buddha head statue into our garden a couple of summers ago to watch over the gnomes.   A couple of weeks ago I was shocked to find yet another gnome  in our garden.  It is the biggest of the gnomes so far.  I assumed one of our friends had put it there and started quizzing everyone.  I was planning a secret kidnapping and drop off at a location other than our place.  We really had no idea where it had come from,  and yet Jim immediately gave it it’s own special spot.  A week or so after it arrived Jim was talking to his brother, Rob,  about the gnome when Rob started to laugh.  Rob reminded Jim of a conversation that they had last fall when Jim told Rob about how he had the gnomes in his garden and they remind him of his mom.  Jim's mom, Betty, always had gnomes in her gardens and Jim grew up watching her. Jim gets his love of gardening from his mom and dad.  Anyways, somehow someone had saved Betty’s original “grandfather gnome” from their home in Toronto where they lived over 30 years ago. The old gnome had been broken and was very weather beaten.  Rob found it and fixed it all up  (I think that in itself is very sweet) and gave it to a friend who was passing through to drop it off at our house.  Jim now has his mother’s original gnome as part of his collection.  He is just so delighted.  Jim delights in the small things in life and it is really wonderful to live with someone like that.  He uplifts everyone.  He retired a year ago and I wondered what it would be like for him because he loved his job so much.  I can tell you that he loves retirement just as much.  He delights in volunteering at the fish hatchery, the high school and the farmers market.  He spends hours in his garden and has built raised beds and they look beautiful.  He cooks more, is tying flies for fishing and rides his bike every day.  He spends lots of time out bird and butterfly watching in our yard.  He helps his parents and my parents.  He makes Madeline and I laugh every day with his stories.   Mother Theresa once said “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.”    Jim is the king of small things every day that all contribute to the greater good.  I welcome his goofy gnomes into our garden!  

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