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Volume II
January 31, 2004

Winter Gardening

Even though it seems the thick of winter is upon us, before you know it, little red-breasted robins will be welcoming spring. When the cloudy blues of gray skies settle in upon your family, pull out the seed catalogs that are now arriving via mail. (If none are coming to your mailbox, you can request catalogs at many gardening websites or look at products online.)

Gather the family and start plans for your garden. Whether you just grow one pot of herbs on your windowsill or plant an acre of land, everyone everywhere can participate in getting their fingers dirty! Additionally, gardening is a rewarding family activity, in which even the littlest tots can participate. Planting, watering, weeding, sheltering, patiently waiting, tending, harvesting. These steps teach the Law of the Harvest in action (i.e., you reap what you sow) and can be a springboard for discussion and application in family life.

Thumbing through the seed catalogs let children choose one type of flower or vegetable that they'd like to grow. Map out your potential garden and place an order for the seeds or shop for them together at your local supplier. Some plants need a head start (anywhere from 4-10 weeks before outdoor planting time). Again, let children help plant these seeds in indoor pots and then help tend and moisten them as they grow.

Finally, let children recycle the seed catalogs into colorful garden collages. Help them cut out the pictures of flowers and plants and then glue them to completely cover a poster board or piece of card stock. Then hang up the poster in their bedrooms to bring spring to mind, even on the coldest of winter nights!

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