a way to garden has a baby sister (or 3)

sisterprojecthpNOT CONTENT TO SIT STILL OR TO HAVE JUST ONE SISTER, we have given birth to another. Blog, that is, and specifically a blog network called The Sister Project. Want to meet my real sister, and some new ones?

The Sister Project is sort of my unplanned late-life baby; it wasn’t meant to happen. What was intended was a book, co-authored by me and my younger sister, Marion Roach Smith. While Marion was writing away diligently, I was at my house carrying on a late-night romance with internet 2.0, and with WordPress in particular, as you A Way to Garden visitors know. The latest love child of that romance is The Sister Project, a blog network or family of related blogs: sister blogs.

The more Marion (left) and I delved into our joint memoir that circles round the puzzle of “nature or nurture?” and our same-but-different realities as siblings, the more I got to thinking about the other sister experiences out there. Whether biological or political, half, twin or step, sister to one brother or to five other girls, all of them are loosely threaded together with ours, or so it feels.

I thought we could explore that thread of connecton in a blog network…and so here we go.

The Sister Project turns out to be related to A Way to Garden in more ways than just through me. Everyone among the first bloggers on the new network had a connection to my garden blog…again, it’s all about the threads.

Marion, 52 (my genetic sister) was the catalyst for some of my earliest garden essays, and coined the phrase “Urgent Garden Question” that now is the title of the Q&A Forums here.  One of A Way to Garden’s first commenters ever, then-stranger Paige Smith Orloff, 42, has become a sister-friend to me in these exciting last months.  And my cherished youngest sister-friend of many years, Anastasia Smith, 23, was A Way to Garden’s summer intern. Each has her own sister story, and maybe you do, too…

So come see us, maybe even this holiday weekend. No time like a holiday weekend for family stories, is there? Happy Thanksgiving from me and all my sisters, new and old, to you and yours.

  1. Gina Hyams says:

    Congrats! I’m happy to see your super top secret project finally unveiled. Paige pumped me for sister movie recommendations, but never spilled the beans!

  2. Sharon says:

    Margaret, this brings tears to my eyes, as I leave tomorrow for my annual sister-weekend trip with my beloved sister Linda. And just last week, I checked on the domain name “sistersadvice.com,” musing about a network of sisters. Don’t worry, I’m not really planning anything, just liked the idea. I’m more than happy to share in your network.

    Congratulations on a beautiful baby.

  3. Claiming Sisterhood aka Anastasia Smith says:

    From summer intern to blogger! Thanks for the shout out, Ms. Margaret. I hope all you gardening fiends will come by check out the “family” love at The Sister Project.

  4. chris says:

    just a bit too much estrogen for my taste..but then again, maybe i should get in touch with my feminine side….(btw, best of luck)

  5. Margaret T says:

    How exciting! As one of six sisters, I know there will be lots of interesting tales to share. I wondered what your blog would be like in the winter — this is a great surprise.

  6. margaret says:

    Thanks to all of you for good wishes (and Chris, we like you just as you are). Speaking of getting in touch w/one’s feminine side, though, blogger Anastasia Smith’s brother jumped right in on her blog in the most open manner. And I know him to be a big, macho guy. So if you do decide to get in touch w/the yin side, Chris…a role model? (Kidding. Just stay Chris.)

    @Margaret T: Don’t worry, A Way to Garden will be doing its regular thing a few days a week this winter…and more often in spring, summer and fall. We are open for business no matter what winter delivers.

  7. jane gross says:

    how do i cross comment from she/said-she/said to here? i bet my brother would know the answer, even tho he’s not much good at dishing about boys & clothes. a glorious launch. go girls! (and when it’s time for music, don’t forget the other roach sister, and kate & anna mcgarrigle.)

  8. margaret says:

    Thanks, John, and likewise I hope your holiday is lovely.

    Jane, great tip re: musical sisters…we will add both to the list of pop-music sister acts…and see you again soon here and there we hope.

  9. Mars says:

    I don’t mean to be superficial, but that picture of Marion is so beautiful. Just a photo of a woman being natural and looking quite at peace. I like that.

  10. margaret says:

    @Mars: We had help getting blown-dry and makeup tweaked, and then we just did the photos…and I promise you I did not retouch them at all. So satisfying to just be ourselves. Thanks for noticing.

  11. jane gross says:

    margaret, further sister tips (and sibling musings) on marion’s blog. here, i’ll continue to beg for those beans you were putting up several months back. or maybe some canned tomatoes?

  12. Kerry Nolan says:

    As the eldest of four sisters and sista-friend to lots more gals, I have to say this is a WONDERFUL idea!
    Please give Marion my best and tell her I miss our weekly chats on the radio!


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