The Landscape of Your Life

1495500977167Lessons & Reflections from the National Butterfly Center

Do you ever pause to look around your home, your yard, your life?

A big move and two upcoming anniversaries have given me reason to stop and really examine my place and time. I look around the National Butterfly Center, and can’t believe how things have changed! We’ve made incredible strides over the last five years, and I can’t even imagine where the next five will take us. Daily, we seem to carve out a little more space for the plants we want, while pushing back the ones we don’t. Those who visit often remark that we are a “work in progress,” to which I reply, “Aren’t all things?”

At home, I am wading through boxes, slowly unpacking, putting things here and there, but not where they belong or where they will reside, permanently. That will take more time than the two months since our move.  As Matt and I approach four years of marriage, we find ourselves, once again, homeowners. For anyone who’s been through a divorce or major life disruption, this is a big accomplishment. Although it’s a huge responsibility, it represents stability and some assurance that you are back on sure footing. 

We bought an older house that needs some work. It’s the perfect metaphor for Matt and me. 

As our first project, I’ve chosen to tackle the yard—and Matt has graciously obliged. The work we’re doing is rewarding because it is so visible. The neighbors can’t understand why we’re ripping out the St. Augustine grass and “perfectly good” ornamental plants in favor of “puny” natives, but soon they will see!  Apparently, the lawn was the pride and joy of the previous owner and something in which he invested heavily.

How many of us pour our energy and resources into the wrong things; into work and relationships that will not pay dividends or sustain us? In this marriage and in this home, I am more conscious about these things than I was before. Every day, I try to sow more seeds of happy memories to yield a healthy harvest.  

As I look out the front window, I am struck by the Scorpion’s Tail flourishing in the front yard. It went from “puny” to POW! in about 6 weeks. The butterflies have found it and the birds have picked my small fiddlewood clean of berries.

Our days, here, are brighter for the wildlife in our yard, and we enjoy feeling connected and contributing.  Crucita, Betony Mistflower, Blue Passionvine, Hairy Wedelia, Tropical Milkweed, Texas Wild Olive, Cenizo, Heartleaf Hibiscus, Pink and Red Salvia, Beggar’s Tick, Low Croton, Anacua, Blue Porterweed and Mexican Flamevine round out the rest of the natives, plus Duranta and Esperanza for good measure. Whew, what a list!  And we’re nowhere near finished in this quest to create a lovely, life-giving landscape and a beautiful life with those we love.


We are grateful for the support of:

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Inside the National Butterfly Center

Hours of Operation

September - March
8:00 - 5:00

April - August
8:00 - 5:00

Come See Us

National Butterfly Center
3333 Butterfly Park Drive
Mission, TX 78572
GPS Coordinates:
26.180243 -98.364973

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