In the back southwest corner of our yard is a dump pile. It's a place for grass clippings and watermelon rinds and leaves and trimmings from the flower beds. It is also the place where the kids can dig holes and watch out for imaginary bad guys.
Last year they dumped their pumpkins there too.
They just happened to grow. "We're not touching the vine," Sam informed me. "I read pumpkins don't like to be touched."
I smiled, not really paying much attention to information from the dump pile. I tend to avoid all dump pile news. It's the kind of place where the things they do stay at the dump pile.
Mid-summer, Andy came in from mowing and said, "I think we are growing pumpkins."
I let it roll off of me. I have a black thumb when it comes to gardening and any thought of gardening is unpleasant. I'm a failure at gardening, so the best thing I can do is avoid it.
Late summer and I noticed dots of orange in the southwest corner of our yard. I still didn't give it much thought.
Then Sam showed up in the kitchen with his arms around a pumpkin. "Where'd you get that?" I asked.
"The pumpkin patch!" He grinned. "I told you we were taking care of them."
Last weekend we harvested 19 pumpkins from the dump pile. "That's a bounty, Mom!" Sam said.
"We should grow pumpkins every year," Stephanie said.
"Yeah, we sure should," Jordan added. "We're experts at growing pumpkins."
"We didn't do anything," I said
"Yes we did." Hannah crossed her arms. "We put our old pumpkins in the middle of the dump pile, just so we could watch them all year."
I smiled. I love pumpkins and have always wanted a slew of them to tuck into our flower beds along the front of the house. Andy's not such a pumpkin fan. Or perhaps it's not that he doesn't like pumpkins, but rather he thinks there are better ways to spend our money.
As the kids were washing the dirt and grime from the dump pile off of the pumpkins, I couldn't believe how many there were.
We didn't do anything to deserve them.
They don't serve a specific need, yet the abundance makes me smile.
They are completely superfluous.
And I realized this is exactly how God blesses us. We don't do anything to deserve it and yet the blessings come in abundance. God wants us more than happy. He wants us blessed. My 19 pumpkins will be reminding me of this all season long.