I’m always excited about the changes of the seasons. Usually by the time one season is ready to leave, I’m just as ready to see the next one arrive. Spring is on the way and one of the indicators I always look for is farmers and gardeners who start working their soil. I don’t know if I’ve been feeling lazy or have other things in mind that I would like to focus on, or both, but I’ve been a little lax in committing to a garden this spring. I had some issues last summer due to the heavy rain and not only did the excess water dampen my garden and rot my tomatoes, it dampened my enthusiasm for starting another garden this year. When I think of my vegetable garden I’m reminded of my soil and what it might need, I think of bugs and ways I can outsmart them without using chemicals, I think about the small space I have to grow on and get a little frustrated and I think of those rotten tomatoes that hung on the vine last year that reminded me of the popular quote from a movie, “life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get.” Those poor soaked tomatoes looked beautiful on the outside, but cutting into them was just like that quote; the rain made them either tasteless or rotten on the inside, and continuing on with the chocolate analogy, it was like biting into one of those fruit crème chocolates that nobody likes. Needless to say, I’ve been feeling that “why bother” attitude sneaking up on me this year. Then, it happened…I opened up a jar of tomato jam and the gardening bug started chewing on me. This past weekend I was looking at my pictures and saw all the beauty of the vegetables that I had grown last season. Well, I had to remind myself, the first harvest was out of this world good and isn’t it amazing how I could grow such beautiful plants that actually brought fruits and vegetables to the table? There is something about gardening and growing your own food that gets in your blood. No matter how frustrating the weather, the pesky bugs or the failed crops that get to you; gardening can be addictive and the satisfaction you receive from growing your own food is extraordinary. Feels like its time to pull out the canning jars.