A Coordinated Balance

“Your hand opens and closes, opens and closes. If it were always a fist or always stretched open, you would be paralysed. Your deepest presence is in every small contracting and expanding, the two as beautifully balanced and coordinated as birds’ wings.” 
Jalaluddin Rumi



Gardening has always been a coordinated balance between many factors most controlled by Mother Nature.  And after gardening for 30+ years, I have finally decided to stop fighting nature.  It just doesn’t pay, and nature seems to win anyway. 

I have found flowing with nature best as spring snow is going to happen no matter how much I pray it won’t….or an unusually warm winter will be followed by a cold summer hampering the growth of summer veggies. 

And I have learned that trying to plant tomatoes too early can spell doom when nature decides to send a cold wave.  I could cover them, but if the ground isn’t warm enough then they will just flounder and have problems all season because they didn’t get a good start.  So I wait until the weather warms enough to make the plants happily grow.

These pansies, grown from seed, have to be started indoors almost 3 months in advance if I want to get them out in spring and flowering in my pots.  Starting them too late, this year, means they will only bloom for a short time in late spring/early summer.  Once the summer heat sticks around with its inevitable humidity, they will wilt and die back. 


Creating a Balanced Life

As it is with the garden, it is with my life, balance needs a coordinated effort.  I wrote about balance when I started this blog.  And in 7 years, I have learned a lot about creating a balanced life.  

At first I thought it impossible, but I am learning that it takes work…..blissful work because when you feel balanced you know it is worth it.  Much like seeing the first tomatoes or radishes or even pansies flowering from the seeds you planted.

The work is continuous, and you can’t just rest on your laurels once your life seems balanced.  You must continue to make sure you have watered and fed your life, like your garden.  I am continually shifting and adjusting things…..more rest, regular daily habits of meditation, walking, journal writing, creating, playing, and of course work.  Weeding is one of the most important habits I have acquired both for my garden (although you would never know it) and my life.  Clearing out thoughts and actions or habits that no longer serve me, like the weeds, in my garden has helped me to thrive.

Regular maintenance of our lives, and our relationships, will serve us well too.  Of course there are those events that can throw our lives out of whack.  But my continual efforts at seeking balance have helped me react less.  Instead I am more proactive using deliberate actions to create a beautiful, harmonious garden and life.  And who doesn’t want more harmony in their lives.



How do you create balance in your life?  What habits bring your life more bliss and harmony?



This wonderful dish of floating pansies was created with love for my Aunt Mary who recently passed away.  She gave me this dish many, many years ago, and adding a few pansies I grew this year, that are still blooming in our cooler summer, just made me smile.  I am joining Cathy@Rambling in the Garden for her wonderful In A Vase on Monday meme.

The pictures shared here were created with my Ipod Touch camera and two free apps, Pixlr and Prisma.  I love the effects of these photos…..like creating art every day. 

Also I just started posting poetry again on my other blog, Living From Happiness.  You can read it here.


All original content is copyrighted and the sole property of Donna Donabella @ Gardens Eye View, 2010-2017.  Any reprints or use of content or photos is by permission only.

30 Replies to “A Coordinated Balance”

  1. Ah, balance Donna. I’m afraid I threw out all my balance about three years ago and I am still trying to even the scales. The weeds are way, way ahead of me. The vegetables that are growing are being eaten by ants or snails, but what choice is there other than a bulldozer and blacktop, but to keep at it. Slowly, slowly I think I’m getting my balance back. Painting, planting, weeding, seeding … that has become my motto. I could use a little more meditation. Eventually writing will be back in the mix. I like the slow and sure pace. I am not one for the fast lane. The pansies are beautiful and again, I am so sorry for the loss you are feeling. Hopefully that loss will be balanced by fulfillment. It’s nice to see you writing again.

    1. I couldn’t agree more Kathy….we just have to keep at those habits like weeding to finally see the garden come back to life. And I love your habits, ‘Painting, planting, weeding, seeding’, a perfect balance! Thank you for your sweet words of condolence.

  2. balance:) i love that we get a gazillion second chances with that one:) Sending love to you in the loss and the opening and closing, the tides of life. Celebrating flow and every way it finds you in these seasons of your life. You are cherished and lovely in each and every of all your ways:)

    1. I love it too Jennifer….life is so wonderful in that way if we can see it. I love your words, ‘the opening and closing, the tides of life’. Such a wonderful way to look at life. Thank you!

  3. What a lovely quote! How hard it is to balance sometimes when so much is going on, and nature and life does not seem to want to work with our own goals. It is definitely worth it to consciously make things easier and more balanced and to keep consciously working at it as things change. What a beautiful dish that reminds you of some beautiful memories of your aunt.

    1. I agree Indie…what I have found is life seems to tell us that when our goals are not aligned, we have to shift them a bit….and then there is bliss and harmony. Not always easy to see it though….so glad you liked the dish!

  4. What a thoughtful post, Donna; it really resonated with me. Well done for the balancing you have achieved in recent months and long may it continue. Aunty Mary’s bowl is such a pretty thing in itself, but adding your home grown pansies are the perfect tribute to her memory. Love your photo enhancements today – most effective

    1. I am so pleased the post resonated with you Cathy…..I loved putting this vase together….and the photo enhancements have been a great creative habit I hope to continue.

  5. Balance is an elusive butterfly that we chase our whole lives. Ironically, it is only when we pause, that it will alight upon our hand.
    I feel the same way about fighting nature, it doesn’t make much sense! But we have to make our way through the jungle the best we can. 🙂

  6. Balance is important to maintaining our health and stamina but I also find it useful to push the boundaries a bit now and then, both in life and in the garden. Without that, we can be fooled about where the real boundaries are. That said, I think it’s also very important to recognize when you’re on the verge of depleting your energies in a fool’s game, when pulling back to take in the big picture becomes essential. It’s an endless ride on a teeter-totter, isn’t it? Your floral tribute to your aunt is a lovely way to connect with your feelings about her.

    1. Kris your words are very profound and true….I agree it’s a push me-pull me world and we do have to remain aware of our needs. And thanks for your lovely words about my tribute to my Aunt….it was a labor of love!

  7. Balance in my head, heart and garden is rare. Ephemeral magic.
    I am prone to excess. And have learnt that I sometimes NEED to go outsude and just be. And remember that we are human beings, not human doings…
    A work in progress.

  8. Donna, the floating pansies in the dish from your Aunt Mary is lovely as a tribute to your relationship with her.

  9. I agree with you Donna….balance in everything, knowing when to give and how to receive graciously. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and your lovely memories your your Aunt Mary.

  10. I never realized I “weed” my non-gardening life as much as I do the flower beds. That feeling of getting control over a messy border is just like eliminating trouble from other parts of your life. Sometimes you just have to simplify and clear a few things up.
    I worry much less about things like how many tomatoes I’m growing, and planting my own salad greens. The local farmers deserve to make a couple of dollars as well 😉

  11. Sometimes I think the idea of balance is an elusive ideal – we aim to achieve it, but when we do the balance shifts one way or the other. So maybe balance in the garden and in our lives is accepting the constant change. I love what Elephants Child wrote above, that we are human beings not human doings.

    1. I agree my friend….balance is hard to achieve as life is constantly shifting and changing. I love the idea of accepting change and that has been a mission of mine since retiring. Great to chat with you here again. I hope to visit your wonderful blog soon!

  12. I’m so happy to see your thoughtful postings again, Donna. Your words always evoke images and deep emotion. Oh, if only I could achieve more balance in my life ….. P. x

    1. So lovely of you to say so Pam. Balance can be elusive and is a challenge that once seen we can only continue to work toward. It is good to be back writing even if only limited for a time.

  13. Somehow I missed this post.

    Finding a new balance in our life – last week we joined a hiking group. Slow paced, with botanists, stopping for each flower. Each week I learn new plants. Today was 3 hours of hiking, which is making me aware of my fitness (or not). Learning to use a new camera as well.

  14. I’m all over the place. Balance eludes me. Days are never long enough to fit in all the boring necessities as well as the more interesting. I swing between the two. The best I can do is aim to be content with swinging around.

    Incidentally, one of my swings has been away from coastal Dorset to urban West Yorkshire so I have a new blog to reflect this new environment,
    Loose and Leafy in Halifax

    1. Balance is elusive. How exciting to have moved Lucy. It sounds like a fascinating spot to live. I will check out your new blog.

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