Miss Rumphisus is one of our favorite books. It was one of my mothers favorite books…and was read to us so often that it has become a part of me, and now it is becoming a part of my children. Barbara Cooney is simply delightful and if you have never read any of her works go get one … right now! One of our other all time favorites (written by Donald Hall) illustrated by Barbara Cooney is The Ox Cart Man. But back to Miss Rumphius! At a very young age she is taught that she must find some way during her life to make the world a more beautiful place. Pretty hard she muses, as the world is a pretty beautiful place already. But she finds a way… and in a small corner on top of a small hill in our small little spot here on earth we have made it more beautiful. And we are loving it.
What a beautiful thing Miss Rumphius teaches us. We teach our children to love the world around them. To respect it and use the things that it provides us carefully. We teach them how to use the plants and herbs on the earth to make yummy and sustaining food, and then how to grow more. And now…with the gentle reminders of a beautiful children’s book we will teach them to make the earth more beautiful.
Our children’s garden is doing fantastic. The perennials we transplanted are taking hold and establishing their place, the seeds so carefully planted by little fingers are up and reaching for the sky, and each day we see new growth and blooms. Little toes run in and out of the garden, pausing to shut the gate so the rabbits don’t get in to nibble the plants (really…!), and each day we rejoice in the little bit of beauty that we have helped to bring to the earth. In reality, or how it feels to me, the earth has simply graciously allowed us to reach out and touch it as it shows forth its glory. For the earth itself is the one creating the beauty…we are just allowed to help once in a while. But help we must!