• Hazel Lee


Updated: Jun 18


It’s like growing tomatoes. Same principle. In a scene from the movie, Steel Magnolias, Shirley MacLaine summed it up best when she shouted out, ‘Growing tomatoes is what southern ladies do,’ even though she states she hates them.

I grew up on fresh vegetables from our garden in Florida. We lived a simple life. No microwaves, one telephone, one television, one bathroom, no dishwasher, except me, no ice makers, only ice cube trays of course, and no air conditioning. Our air conditioning was a 20” fan blowing the curtains off the windows and walls in every room, but we somehow survived. At least I think I turned out ok.

Growing anything fascinates me. There is something explosive in nature that happens when I see a small bean, dropped into the earth, stick its little head up from the ground in just a few days. It reminds me of the parable about seeds. Jesus compared them to man. Proper soil, proper planting and proper maintenance are the three most important things to grow anything.

Eliminate just one of those steps, and the entire process is interrupted. Dying to one’s self to me meant being resurrected in Christ. There it was. Simple. To the point. Since I am a visionary, I could relate. Watching tall sunflowers grow, showing their big smiley faces amazes me. I love seeing fields of sunflowers. Have you ever noticed how it turns its face toward the sun as it moves? Remarkable!

And so it is with man; mind, body, and spirit. Let just one of those three combinations be neglected, it will cause the rest to stop growing. Like a three-legged stool, let one leg break, the stool is broken.

Speaking of nature, guess who came Sunday afternoon visiting in my rose garden while digging in my roses? When his head perked up, I had to take a picture. Turns out he was a broad-head skink, about six inches long from the lizard family. My goodness, what kind of name is that? UGLY! He went on his merry way and I did too.

Our local nature center identified him once I sent them a picture. The sweet young lady who answered the phone was ecstatic when she saw the pictures. “COOL!” She exclaimed. Really??? She had only seen one, ever! She was so nice but, I’m sorry, that sounded so weird to me. I told her she could see mine, but nope, I was not picking that rascal up.

Another unexpected blessing happened this past week. I had the pleasure of a good friend stopping by my office for a lovely visit. Sharing our many unexpected hardships recently, he shared a beautiful quote written by Dr. Seuss that had given him great solace in various times of anguish and hurt.

“Don’t cry because it’s over,’ ‘smile because it happened.”

How thought provoking. I had to read more Dr. Seuss! Others he wrote, “I speak for the trees, for the trees have no tongues.” I am such a tree lover! “Why fit in, when you were born to stand out.” finally one of my favorites, “Life is too short to wake up in the morning with regrets. So, love the people who treat you right, forgive the ones who don’t and believe that everything happens for a reason. If you get a chance, take it. If it changes your life, let it. Nobody said it would be easy. They just promised it would be worth it.”


My my! See what happens when we least expect it! Had I not been available to visit with my dear friend, I would not be sharing these nuggets of wisdom from Dr. Seuss with you. Perhaps, you will pass them along to a friend.

I’m purchasing a few of his books, filled with his quotes, for a not so sunny day. Next, I plan to pass them on to my friends. I pray they will receive a small seed of wisdom to use when they are going through a hard time. Thank you, Bryan, for coming by this past week. I am a better person because of you.

It’s early evening, so to my garden I go hoping for a glimpse of my Florida speckled butter beans peeking above the ground. Sure it would be easier to buy them at Walmart, but then I would have missed out on the osmosis and anticipation of seeing nature do its thing, AMAZE ME!

Until then.......... keep growing, and let God show off His amazing beauty of spring!

You are my sunshine my only sunshine.......things in life that are important are not things, my friends!

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