Anything is Possible!

With Love, Hope, and Perseverance

Save Your Own Backyard



This should be interesting. Today’s prompt is: ” is “point.” Open a book on your lap, close your eyes, and put your finger on the page. Whatever you land on, whether it be a word, a phrase, or a sentence, write about it. Enjoy!”

I chose a book sitting in my parents’ living room which is now my living room, called

The Angels’ Little Instruction Book.”

I followed the instructions, book on lap, eyes closed, and opened to a page with these words:

If you can’t save the whole world, at least save your own backyard.

My finger was in the middle of this.

Below is, “You have been trustworthy in a few things; I will put you in charge of many things.” Matthew 25:21. But let’s start with the backyard, please….

Then I had to go let Marigold the mutt outside because she woke up from her long nap. Since she’s 16 years old and sleeps a lot, I have to let her out when she’s up and moving. I gave her a choice between the front yard with steep steps I have to carry her down and the backyard which has a ramp. She chose the ramp. Good.

Backyard. At least save your own backyard. What’s really interesting is that 15 minutes before I stuck my finger in the book, my husband and I were just talking about the work we have to do in our backyard at our permanent address where Hurricane Florence blew our fence over. We’ve done a lot of work on cleaning up the tree limbs and branches, but still have plenty to do when we’re there once a week while living at the house that was my parents.’

I miss my woodsy backyard. It will still be woodsy even after we clear out the limbs and build the new fence. But back to the Angels’ instruction. Who can save the whole world? God? Jesus? If we listen. I used to want to save the world when I was 18 or 22 years old. Then for the next few decades, I always felt like I wasn’t doing enough. I worked with drug addicts and marched for the animals. I carried signs. But it was never enough. Now, I’m settling down and focusing more on my own backyard. Is is because I’m wiser or am I just tired. Maybe both.

I’m reminded of a quote that…Wait, I don’t remember exactly how it goes so I’ll paraphrase: Don’t make the mistake of doing nothing because you can only do a little. Then Mother Teresa said do little things with a lot heart. That’s paraphrased too. Oh, it’s with great love.

But there’s the symbolic meaning of saving your own backyard. Save yourself. Save your family – as best you can – by being a good example. Because who can we really save? I think it’s about taking care of our own backyard. Cleaning up our own back yard. What about the front yard? That’s important too, but the backyard is where the heart is. Save where your heart is. Save what you love. Take care of what you love. Ripples of love will extend to what you like. Maybe even what you don’t like. I don’t have to force it. I can let love flow as it will. Like a river. Or a stream of consciousness.

Here are some pictures from my backyard:

Turkey Tail Mushroom


Leaves in water

Mary in the backyard 3

Old Marigold gets lost in the backyard sometimes.

For more Streams of Consciousness and to learn more about #SoCS, visit Linda at

Here are the rules:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing (typos can be fixed), and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. I will post the prompt here on my blog every Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The,’” or will simply be a single word to get you started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours. Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read all of them! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later or go to the previous week by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!


Author: JoAnna

An open minded, tree-hugging Jesus follower, former counselor, and life-long lover of animals, I'm returning to my creative roots and have published my first book: Trust the Timing, A Memoir of Finding Love Again as well as the short version: From Loneliness to Love.

34 thoughts on “Save Your Own Backyard

  1. wonderful post! so thorough and incredibly helpful. I love the pictures you included, too!

  2. I enjoyed reading your thoughts about the backyard, thank you for sharing. Hope you have a wonderful Saturday!

  3. I like this post, JoAnna. I also like the idea of saving your backyard. Ours is very small, but it manages to be home to one big dumb dog, a few bunnies and a ton of squirrels.

  4. Pingback: The Love Of A Mother – Autism and Other Stuff

  5. a backyard
    well worth
    saving 🙂

  6. Mother Teresa once said “If everyone would sweep his own doorstep, the whole world woul be clean.” Kind of the same idea.

  7. “If you can’t save the whole world, at least save your own backyard.”
    ~ Thanks for sharing that affirmation, JoAnna.

    As I live in a rented, two-story apartment complex, I have no backyard. Thankfully, I live on the ground floor where I have a narrow strip of land for gardening. After my best friend moved out two years ago, the new tenant (a single working male) neglected the plot she had so lovingly created with her young daughter. With the tenant’s permission, I began restoring my friend’s garden plot to its former beauty.

    Over the past year, I’ve taken on four other neglected plots. (Management has a contract with a gardener who comes once a week to mow the lawn, water the plants, and trim the trees, when needed.)

    I’ve received several remarks of appreciation from tenants, both male and female, who have told me that I’ve turned our courtyard into a place of beauty. I’ve received gifts of planting pots, plants, garden gloves and tools.

    I have a sense of a growing community spirit among us–much needed in these divisive times.

  8. “Save where your heart is.” I love this.
    I’ve been embracing the idea of saving my backyard by speaking honestly about the things that are important to me. No, I can’t change the whole world, but I can work to change my little part of it. 💛

  9. Great post!! Reminds me of this: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once said, “If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way.” Cheers JoAnna!

  10. You have written such a warm and true post. Saving your own backyard both physically and
    metaphorically is of great importance. We always wish we could save so much more but think of
    how many backyards there are and how much can jointly be achieved.


    • That’s a good point. We can help others, and we don’t have to do it alone. On the other hand, we have to take care of ourselves to be able to help others. Thanks for your insight, Miriam.

  11. Very well written; excellent thoughts; lovely photos

  12. Nice photos. It is hard work even to clear up the yard. Hope all is well soon with your house.

  13. Aren’t back yards fun? And I love the thoughts of fixing your own backyard spiritually. Great posts.

  14. Such a sweet dog. And a great backyard too. I love my yard but it is unkempt and the birds and butterflies and lizards and dogs love it too, I think.

    • Mine is rather unkempt now, too. I tell people it has the natural look. 🙂 Yay for the birds, butterflies, lizards and dogs. Squirrels, too and an occasional harmless snake.

  15. Beautifully written JoAnna… so loved reading it.. And yes the only thing we can really do is save ourselves, Look within at what needs fixing and see that we are not perfect, but we are works in progress, we need to sweep out the cobwebs from time to time and nourish our souls with what feeds us to be the best we can be..

    I would say JoAnna, if anyone came via your backyard via your blog, they would already see you had done a great job in your yard..

    Love and Blessings dear friend.. This was a special delight to read today.. ❤ Mega Hugs your way.. ❤

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