A couple days ago, in preparation for winter, we pulled all the tomato plants out of our (tiny) garden bed. Late this spring I went to pick up lunch at a restaurant for my family and in-laws, who were visiting. It was a Sunday—I didn’t realize the restaurant didn’t open until noon on Sundays. It was 11:45am and I had time to kill. On the way to the restaurant I noticed a man selling plants in a parking lot where the Highland Heights Farmers’ Market usually takes place. I hadn’t bought tomato plants yet—and wanted some—so I turned around.

I so wish I had taken a picture of the man—and his car. It was an old car with a rickety wooden greenhouse attached to its roof. The man had a ton of plants, knew everything about them, pulled seeds out of his pocket when explaining their beginnings to me—we talked for 20 minutes.

I bought six tomato plants.

When I got home, Andy said we didn’t have room for six tomato plants.

I disagreed.

He was right.

Still, we got some beautiful tomatoes.

James and Sophie loved to eat them straight from the garden, warm from the sun, the insides spilling (and staining) their summer shirts. At times I wondered how it was possible James could fit that many tomatoes in his belly, yet he did. And I let him.

Even when it was close to dinnertime.

“It’s difficult to think anything but pleasant thoughts while eating a homegrown tomato.” —Lewis Grizzard