We planted our first seedlings in the planter boxes yesterday. To be honest, I know absolutely nothing about gardening! The closest I’ve come is (barely) keeping some herb pots alive, hanging from the vintage white doors mounted on the deck outside the kitchen window. We tried to plant some passionfruit plants so that they would begin climbing up the fence, but the slugs and bugs were relentless and stripped the leaves before it had a chance to flourish.
Nevertheless, we now have a strawberry plot, a furrow of onion seedlings and some mixed lettuce. Eli was keen to put on his gardening gloves and create the furrow for the onions, while Hudson was content shovelling soil into the emptied seedling pots and transferring the contents back and forth. Half an hour later, when we shook the mud off our shoes (or snowboots in Eli’s case- his latest favourite thing to wear, usually paired with a rashi) and the tips of our cold noses hit the warm air of the kitchen, it felt like no time at all had passed.
The onions have already (hopefully) withstood their first onslaught as I found Hudson dancing among the rows in his gumboots this afternoon. I suspect we may experience many such setbacks until the lure of the plots starts to lessen.
Dave had to work today, so I had the kids and house to myself. In holidays past, the unfairness of having to give up a day of ‘my’ holiday would have worn away at me like a pebble in the heel of my shoe, but today I actually found it to be a positive change. We have just watched ‘About Time’ again, which would have to be one of my favourite movies. The poignant message of treating each day as the ‘do over’ day, allowing yourself to really ‘see’ the things you would have missed the first time due to the day’s worries and anxieties, is a frame of mind that I would love to embed more into my way of life.
There were difficult moments, of course, where I got frustrated and grumpy at the kids and their interactions (or refusal to nap properly, in Ivy’s case); but we were (mostly) able to bounce back and use humour to see the funny side. We set up a cafe in the living room and took turns being waiters and customers, Eli gave Hudson a medical check up and injection, Eli learned to ride his new ‘dragon’ bike that he got for his birthday, we danced in the kitchen and had lots of cuddles. Then I got to cook Banh Mi for dinner, one of my favourite meals. Dave arriving home half an hour later than he had predicted amazingly didn’t even throw off the good vibes.
The funny thing is that previously, my story about the successes of the day would have started off with a list of all the cleaning tasks that I was able to get done… and I did get the chance to do a sizeable number of chores that had been ‘eyeing’ me off for a while. But the pleasure of ticking those boxes was far outweighed by the soulful satisfaction gained by being able to recover from frustrations and revel in the magic that is their childhood. Hudson’s squishy cheeks poking out of his helmet, Eli doing a nudie run on the deck and climbing up the basketball pole, Ivy’s fascinated face as she studies her brothers careening around her and throw balls ‘to’ her.
A few shots of the idyllic lunch we had at our incredible friends, Nick and Laura’s house, yesterday. The weather, view, food and company couldn’t have been any more perfect, and the kids kept themselves entertained playing a ‘knock knock’ game and with a vintage Lego plane rescued from hard rubbish.