Welcome to my own Personal Jungle

island overview

The jungle as it is today.

At the age of 42, I acknowledged an opportunity to do something different with my life. As an only child, I stood to inherit my father’s 20 acres on an island in Puget Sound, Washington. My mother had died a few years earlier and my divorced father was having health problems that made takin care of the place alone increasingly difficult. Dissatisfied with my own life as a single, childless woman in a futureless relationship and a career cul-de-sac, I decided to return home to take care of him and turn his property into a professional garden.

In 2008, I made $100,000 in salary and bonuses. By April 2009, I had quit my job and moved from California back to Washington to live with my father in the home where I grew up. At present, I live on the rent from my house, a part-time computer job, and my father’s graciousness allowing me to stay here for free in exchange for cooking, cleaning, and maintaining the place. Needless to say, I have perceived that most people, including my employers, believe that I am delusional. I often find myself defending against accusations that I may have actually lost my job and returned skulking to live with my parent. Or perhaps the voices that criticize are only in my own mind.

Anyway, the story is much more complicated than this, and involves the key elements of love, hate, death, jealousy, fear, mental illness, and family legacy. All of these things have brought me to the point of making this drastic change in my life.

I have no children, no siblings, and very little family left on the East Coast. Only my father and I live here in Washington. Once he is gone, I will be alone in this world, with nothing to show for my stay here.

I feel that the creation of this garden is the very best way that I can return what I have taken over the years to sustain myself. With it, I honor the memory of my mother, and share my love of gardening and passion for biology with my community.

To keep myself on track and remind myself that it is the journey and not the destination on which I must focus, I have commenced this website to share both my personal philosophy of the simpler life, and my passion for art and for gardening. Please share it with me and enjoy!

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Adventures in creating a 10-acre garden from scratch