Butterflies, Children, and Gardens…They are Worth the Wait!

Dear Reader:

As I look back on my life…particularly the years raising Mandy, Walsh, and Tommy…I understand now that growing a garden and raising a family are quite similar…both a metaphor of the beauty and challenges of daily life that one day emerges into beautiful memories of then and now…or a beautiful butterfly from a caterpillar!

The garden started with a plot of bare land and a big circle….the family started with Mandy, then Walsh and Tommy! I learned from my garden and raising three children…that perennial is the way to go with gardens….and children!

Perennial: Lasting for a long or apparently infinite time, enduring or continually recurring. Even butterflies whose life span isn’t that long…have life cycles that continually keeps recurring. 🙂

The recurring cycle results in my precious grand-doggies and grandchildren…who all bring me such joy.

As the garden and family grows…the new buds from the older plants begin to bloom again and bring joy and beauty.



New additions are added,  in the form of flowers, bushes, trees, and garden decor, to the garden…new life appears each year. (The birds help a lot!)

So until tomorrow…my children and now grandchildren are my true seedlings. What a privilege it is to be able to watch my garden grow and watch my children’s and grandchildren’s lives take them closer each day to the person God intends them to be.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

When the first seedling sprouted…Mandy arrived. If you think she looks like she is laughing…think again…she had the “screaming” colic  for the first three months of her life;  no one slept…I was a walking zombie! (We love you now darling! 🙂



Dee Dee, Tommy’s grandmother, always loved this picture of Tommy… just like I love the ones in the latest photo book where Eloise is screaming and the others are staring off in space or doing anything else but posing…they are real…and that is what makes them memorable. ..like the Velveteen Rabbit!


The funniest “Velveteen Rabbit” photo, however came four years ago at Easter. Lachlan had just been born on St. Patrick’s day and was probably around three weeks old in the photo…he was not happy but screaming…Rutledge was staring at him like why hasn’t someone taken him back from where he came…he’s a real pain…poor Jakie’s head was the size of a pumpkin so he couldn’t sit up…and kept falling on Eva Cate who looks like a suffering martyr in the making…the only one, like Walsh says, smiling and staring at the camera is me…grandmothers persist when others have fallen away. 🙂



About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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1 Response to Butterflies, Children, and Gardens…They are Worth the Wait!

  1. Rachel Edwards says:

    Oh my goodness…love the family pictures…they are wonderful…and I adore the one with you holding all the babies in your lap.


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