The first time I visited Lisa Story's beautiful home in Coraopolis, I drove right past her kelly green front lawn and its scalloped wooden fence until my GPS barked at me. Rats! I turned around in a parking lot just up the street and slowly crept down Shafer Road as her expansive property revealed itself beyond the neighbors' maple trees. Holy cow. The novice gardener in me wanted to put on some work gloves and lose myself in what appeared to be hundreds of yards of summertime. There was no question. Lisa's story was going to be one I wanted to tell. What I didn't know was that her 2 and a half acre property not far from Pittsburgh International Airport was growing much more than flowers and vegetables and trees of seemingly every genus. Lisa was growing Hope.
It was the death of her father many years ago that turned Lisa's world upside down. Her lone solace in coping with her grief was nature, so she retreated to the sun rays streaking through her backyard woods and to the gardens she planted of every size and variety imaginable in his memory. Lisa had no idea as her soul started to heal outside with the bumble bees and garden worms that her indescribable suffering inside had actually planted a seed.
I will let Lisa tell you the story now... about how her pain blossomed into something quite beautiful. About her mission to help others who are struggling with caring for a sick, debilitated or aging loved one. About her goal to turned her property and its wild oasis into a house of hope.