With the advent of Spring, thoughts turn to new birth – flowers in the garden, puppies on the lawn. All around me, people have one of two thoughts on their mind “what can I buy at the garden centre today?” or “oh, I just LOVE my little pet”. Yup, even in the blogging world, I’m surrounded by people who are either plant lovers or pet lovers, or (cringe) BOTH. Even my friend Michele, who, though I knew she loves to garden, I was SURE would continue to be my compadre in the “don’t want a pet” category, has fallen head over heels in love with a puppy. She’s even become a POSTER CHILD for petlovers everywhere. Yeesh! I have been abandoned.

I am neither a plant lover nor a pet lover. Well, that’s not entirely true, I do love plants, I just don’t particularly like to plant them, prune them, weed them, water them, or worship them. I like plants that grow green and lush on their OWN accord with no input from me. It’s why I live in a house with huge maple trees all around it – no work on my part, and they look fabulous.

Sometimes I think there must have been a flaw in the gene pool that I got neither plant-loving nor pet-loving genes. But then I just have to remind myself that bbb (my big brother) is on my side, so the gene pool essentially got cut in half on that particular gene. Don’t you DARE fall in love with that puppy, bbb, that you have the AUDACITY to let into your house or I may never speak to you again!

My friend and colleague Dan tells me that kids who grow up with pets grow up more well adjusted. So, in other words, I’m cheating my kids out of their adjustment, and they’ll probably need therapy. Dan also has an organic farm, so he heaps the guilt on on BOTH counts. Did I just call him my FRIEND? Sheesh!

Fortunately, my husband and oldest daughter didn’t get the genes either, so I’m not outnumbered in my house. So far, we haven’t had to give in to the pressure from the other two girls to get a puppy, and when Julie needs a gardening fix, we just send her to her grandparents’ house.

Sometimes I wonder… do I lack compassion if I can’t get all warm and fuzzy about a pet and I’ve killed more house plants than most people ever own? Am I a cold fish? Am I stunting my children’s growth by passing on my cold-hearted ways? Oh, the guilt. (What’s a mom without a healthy heaping of guilt?)

Seriously though, I will embrace my gene pool, I will stand tall and proud in my uniqueness, and I will not let all this plant/pet craziness beat me down. You have your plants and pets to connect you to Spring, I have my bike rides down river pathways and, starting this weekend, sleeping in a tent! I LOVE sleeping in a tent!

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