I always say that the ParmFarm is about growing, which I guess we’re always doing in one way or another. But when was the last time you had a growth spurt? Mine was when I met my husband.

This is the first time I’m writing about my husband so it’s a bit of an experiment. I told him this morning that I was thinking about it, to which he responded “Do you have liability insurance?”.

Funny guy, that husband.

He refers to himself as the Sheriff. Or, should I say, he reminds me to refer to him as the Sheriff (that’s not really his badge and no, he does not put on stirrups or walk around the house with a holster – nice image though…). He explains that he is the Sheriff because he is in charge. Of course. (This explanation is usually accompanied by the hoisting up of his jeans with both thumbs.)

Funny guy, that husband.

I should probably now point out that my husband doesn’t really get the whole blog thing. He’s one of these ‘I like to hold a newspaper’ kind of guys, which I can certainly appreciate, but it kind of goes beyond that. Every time I am at the computer, working on the blog, he walks by with a smirk and says ‘So, what are you doing – sexting??’ I kid you not.

Funny guy, that husband. Especially when he doesn’t mean to be.

(“Sexting” is usually done on a cellphone, not a computer (and not by me). I’ve tried to explain this but, you know, he’s the Sheriff.)

Anyway, back to my growth spurt.

Check out the beautiful tile the Sheriff put up on our fence. He actually put up quite a few of them, spaced randomly from one end to the other. This is why I fell in love with my husband.

See, before I met the Sheriff, I am embarrassed to admit, I had no sense whatsoever of what was around me, unless I was reporting, and even then my observations were mostly about people, not surroundings.

I literally thought that those decorative grasses that people BUY for their lawns were just kind of rogue shrubs. I wasn’t blind, I just saw things differently. I lived in Philadelphia most of my life and like so many city dwellers, you have to overlook some things. What you see is really about how you think, or don’t, and I was consumed by my thoughts. They weren’t bad thoughts, or good thoughts, just constant thoughts. I know I am not alone. There are lots of people like that. But I only know this because I had a growth spurt.

When you have a true growth spurt you can’t go back. You wouldn’t want to go back. Have you had one? You would know. Maybe you’re having one right now…

While some studies suggest you should marry someone like you and others studies find just the opposite, it really doesn’t matter because I couldn’t even tell you which we are. We have some frightening similarities, mostly in the way we think. And we have some frightening differences, mostly in the way we think.

But, when I met my husband, he opened me up to a new way of seeing the world, the way he sees it, which is in an artistic kind of way. I know he doesn’t think of himself as artistic – after all he IS the Sheriff – but it’s just his nature. It is in his nature to imagine that an old tile belongs on the fence, and I’m beginning to notice it in my nature as well.

I’d been busy thinking about the world around me but not really noticing it, until my husband came along and pointed it out. And that’s when the growth spurt began.

Which is why I chose to share the tile.

Remember, the ParmFarm is about growth. So I wanted to post the tile as a symbolic reminder that there is greater opportunity for satisfaction at home and at work if you surround yourself with the people most likely to support your growth — and avoid those who’d sell you short.

The Sheriff helped me grow even though he’s never ‘stopped by’ the Farm! I’ve been trying to convince him to join me here. He’s a fabulously creative writer. But of course that’s when he reminds me that I’m just the Deputy.

Funny guy, that husband.

Which is why I don’t mind being the Deputy one bit.

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