...my latest distraction.
Now, let me warn you. As far as obsessions go, I've been known to go completely overboard in two areas--crafting and gardening. It is not beyond me to scare strangers because of my excitement unintentionally. I do realize this...My husband and I have spent the better part of 3 weeks working on installing a pond in our backyard. It is 720 gallons of heaven!! The only drawback (next to having to haul each and every one of those stones by hand) is that the sound of running water does make you want to go to the bathroom until you get used to the trickle of the waterfall--ha!
Last year we installed a patio, and did most of the landscaping. This year, we finished the backyard off with the addition of the pond. Well, at least for now. Next year's project--an outdoor fireplace--is now in the designing phase. (Just don't mention that to my hubs, okay? Give his back some time to recover...)
Now, you have to know us to understand that this is a big deal. Chris and I are not do-it-yourselfers. We call people and pay them to fix stuff--he was raised by a single mom and really has no idea how to do basic repairs inside the house. Not a big deal--he's got mad financial skills and makes up for things in different areas. But landscaping is something he and I learned together. When we got married in our first house, the yard was a mess. We studied and learned about plants and design and really got into it. Some people golf together, some people bowl...we garden. That was one spectacular garden, and I cried like a baby when we moved from that place.
So much so that I still refer to it all the time (which drives him nuts--"it's not your garden anymore, we moved 5 years ago!" blah blah blah...) Ah, those were the days before children!! We had time to bond and share and create our home, work on our relationship and all that other stuff...
We had TIME then. ha!
Now, 12 years into gardening together, we still love it. We talk in shorthand. We step back, tweak every little detail, make it exactly ours. We love the satisfaction it has brought to our lives and to our home. The outside is really his domain. My husband takes such pride in it too--and he's often spotted in the neighbor's yards helping out others when he can. Yes, he's already agreed to help someone install their own pond in a few weeks in fact...
So really, if you're thinking of getting one, DO IT. It really was surprisingly easy and very affordable (and if I can do it, a monkey can!). The possibilities are endless!
When his grandma died two years ago, I was asked what I wanted to keep of hers. I asked for her peonies. Chris used to mow her lawn as a teenager, and he remembered those always being there in the springtime. I love that they were in full bloom this year for the first time, in the perfect spot.
I love that we get gift cards to landscaping places, and that people buy us cool garden gadgets. I love eating dinner out on the patio every night we can as a family. We build fires and burn marshmallows over a fire here. Our kids catch fireflies and praying mantus' here. We have friends and neighbors over a lot to entertain, and we have found ourselves living out here now.
Like everything, it is always a work in progress...
And while this miniature rose garden (above) isn't the one I had in my first garden, it will be. I am a freak--no exaggeration here--over miniature roses. I have a collection of the tiniest vases and make small little arrangements all summer long with those beauties!! They make my heart skip a beat.
I know it isn't anything spectacular to people who live in more mild climates to have incredible yards and landscapes. I also know there are a lot of people who have way more amazing yards and houses--so I apologize if this comes off as over-the-top, sincerely. I also don't mean to scare people away by my excitement or passion either. I just find such gratification in it.
These plants and flowers seem to rest my soul. They really do. They speak to me, and I talk right back to them (figuratively here, folks. I haven't completely lost my mind...yet...) It is a slice of heaven on earth, and nurturing them and coaxing their growth somehow seems so personal to me. I feel privileged to have them here with us--almost a bit guilty for having them all to myself.
So, what does it for you? Besides the obvious on this blog--scrapbooking and family--what is it that fulfills you in ways you didn't know were possible? I want to know. And what is it that makes you love it the way you do??
Whatever it is, I hope you know what it is. And I hope you have access to it and enjoy it and love it as much and as often as possible!!