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Gardening – Recreation, Meditation, Exercise

January 13, 2008

We have raised two wonderful children (well, more like my wife did most of that) with whom I am well pleased. Michael (Son-boy, as I have lovingly called him since that first season of the Waltons), is in the digital animation business, and he and his wife both work for Dreamworks. He applies himself as a Technical Director and she as an Animator and both are marvelously creative people (not to mention that our first grand-daughter is a genius already). Our daughter Christy is likewise highly creative; a dancer and entrepreneur as her life has evolved, with great people-skills and a very giving heart.

She has a special avocation in gardening, which gives her enormous pleasure and meaningful expression. She has such love for gardening that she created a very informative website for the purpose of unfolding the wonders of the gardening universe. This treasure trove of gardening mysteries is called, and if you are a gardener for your own re-creation, or even for exercise, you should get much enjoyment out of her site. Sign up for her newsletter and you will receive a cornucopia of great ideas. She has been a vegetarian from the time she was attending UC Irvine, and so the gardening love fits with her quest for beauty and sumptuous and healthy eating. Her writing style is so light and refreshing, and I delight in her skill at turning phrases – her words are an open gateway to her spirit. I am blown away at the realness of her prose and how easily she instructs and imparts meaning to any activity.

As I was reading her latest newsletter it struck me that I may have a fairly large readership of seniors who’s passion is gardening, for relaxation, spiritual recovery or for exercise. I decided to add a Gardening subcategory under Rest, Recovery and Relaxation. She wrote me an introductory blurb for this column, and I plan to feature her articles under the new category. Here is what she had to say about gardening this day:

“I just spent a couple of blissful hours in the garden pulling weeds and pruning the roses back. Some people would laugh and ask, ‘How can pulling weeds be blissful?’ Well, there are so many ways that gardening is therapeutic both physically and mentally. For example, pulling weeds is meditative. Your hands are busy while the mind is solving the problems of the world. I often invent new products while I’m gardening because my mind is free to think while my hands are doing menial tasks. You’re also getting a physical workout, using your stomach muscles to hold yourself up while you use your arm and back muscles to rip out weeds or cut thick branches. After even hours of work, I’m sore the next day. Gardening also has a way of being a barometer for how well we take care of ourselves. I discovered the correlation between the state of my garden and the state of my personal well-being a few years ago. I’m currently writing a book that uses gardening as a metaphor for how to take care of yourself.”

Christy Wilhelmi is owner of, the ultimate resource for garden nerds. She is a board member of Ocean View Farms Organic Community Garden in Mar Vista, California, and gardens almost exclusively with heirloom vegetables.

If you like to spend (re)creative time working the soil and tending to living plants, then check our site often for new ideas and make daughter Christy’s site a frequent read.

Good Living, Frank

Frank Wilhelmi

Frank Wilhelmi

Frank Wilhelmi – Retired/consultant electronic engineer researches and reports practical strategies for optimizing health and fitness into advanced age. “I have a passion for living life to the fullest, and helping others to do the same.” A rapidly growing body of knowledge now enables us to extend our health and fitness decades beyond popular expectations.

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