The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just the body, but the soul. ~ Alfred Austin

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Back to basics

So it's been quite awhile between blog posts once again. It's been a mixture of life being busy and when it's not been quite so busy I just didn't know what to blog about.

After months and months of neglect I spent the past weekend cleaning up the vege garden. I have been itching to get in there for awhile but with a steady stream of tradesmen in the house next door I just haven't been out there. There is a very low fence between my place and next door. That was great when Mrs W lived there, when we first moved in she would come to the fence and we would stand in the shade of the beautiful old peppercorn tree that was in her place and chat. As the years went on and Mrs W became more and more frail, that low fence was nice and easy for me to hop over numerous times throughout the day as I went in there to take meals, help her with showering, and all the other bits and pieces of daily life.

Then earlier this year her family sold her house off. A local gay business couple bought it and since then there has been much work going on in there quite often seven days a week. As my veggie garden  is near this low fence and in full view I have avoided going out there. Last weekend I had had enough. There was no-one there so I started pulling weeds and raking the gum leaves and twigs up from the paths between the beds. A car pulls up and workmen jump out, I swear under my breath and start to pack up rakes, shovels etc, but then I think bugger it! So I stayed out there most of the day and got so much cleaned up. Still a bit more to do but much improved.

A bit of a long intro into talking about getting back to basics. I originally started blogging when I was right into growing our own fruit and vegetables organically and basing our meals around what was in the garden. When I found inspiration from other blogs doing the same thing and living more sustainably and treading lightly on the planet.

Then somewhere along the way I lost my way! We started eating less and less from our garden and more and more crap from the supermarket. More junk food crept in and I have the weight gain to prove it. Not taking as much care with living as sustainably as we could. For months now I have this overwhelming sense of drowning. I'm not living the way I want to live. Granted things have changed in our household. Eldest teen has now moved to the city for university, she does come home weekends but is hardly here between hockey games and catching up with friends. Youngest teen started an apprenticeship back in January. So between full time work, hockey training, hockey games, SES training, volunteer fire and rescue training and his social life...well I never see him, or at least that's what it feels like. I am very proud of both of them and so happy that they are following their dreams. So at the end of the day it's just me mostly for meals and to do everything at home both inside and outside, and with one acre especially at this time of year there is lots to do. And I just can't seem to do it all, not with the two shoulders that give me constant pain and don't want to work like they should anymore.

 I started thinking maybe I should sell and move to a smaller more manageable place. I went and looked at a house on a smaller block last weekend. The house was enormous, way too big for just me to be rattling around in there on my own most of the time and the yard needed lots of work. Nothing but weeds. Blank canvas yes, but just too much work starting from scratch. That's the thing I don't want to start from scratch again I've done it before, more than once. I have done so much to both the inside and outside here, that I just don't want to do it again.

So if I was to find a place on a smaller block that has had most of the work already done then I think I should consider it, until then I need to find a way to cope with this place and get back to basics which as we all know is more hard work than just going to the supermarket. Buying takeaway and buying all our clothes, laundry detergent etc. Having ready meals rather than making our own meals from scratch, baking. All these things take time and effort.

Back to basics to me is growing our own healthy organic food that only has to travel from the garden to our plate. Baking yummy sweet treats so that we know exactly what goes into it, no nasty numbers etc (and only eating in moderation). Meal planning I would love to do this all the time, but for some reason I seem to struggle with it. Learning to make our own clothes and homewares, whether it's sewing, knitting or crochet or a combination of all. Making our own simple and safe household cleaners. Being happy with what we have rather than having to keep up with the Joneses. Spending time out in nature and being in-tune with it instead of constantly being attached to social media. These area just a few areas of what getting back to basics means to me.

Time to go and read a few blogs and get inspired once more!


  1. Hi Sharon, your vegies look superb! Sorry to hear you are feeling overwhelmed. Instead of looking at the big picture, could you just start small and say bake one day this week, cook a meal that you can freeze the following week and add some gardening, even just 15 minutes into every second day? The thought of having to change to everything being done by just you would have me running a mile too as it's just so much. Sorry to also read you live with chronic pain - be gentle on yourself - you have the right intensions x

    1. Hi Jan,Thank you! Although if you look closely the whole entire vege garden is covered in paint splatters from when they painted the shed next door, they obviously didn't care what they were painting - so cross about that. There are some very good ideas you have written, I had been trying to do an hour in the garden on my shorter working days but found I was out there much longer which made me so very sore that I then had trouble doing the inside chores. I do need to change the way I do things. Cooking a meal that I can freeze makes lots of sense as I can then pull it out when I know for sure it's just me for that meal. Thank you for taking the time to give me some ideas, sometimes you can't see the simple or more obvious way of doing something when you are overwhelmed. One of the nice things about blogging is 'meeting' lovely people who are always willing to share advise or great stories :)

  2. Good luck getting back to basics Sharon. It's easy to get off track every now and then isn't it. And in turn its easy to get overwhelmed with the changes you want to make and things you want to do. I feel better about times like this by focusing on little changes. And take small steps. Good luck. x

    1. Thank you Tricia, yes it is very easy to get off track every so often and the overwhelmed part is definitely right. I am going to try focusing on little changes and writing small achievable lists for each week. Step by step, slow and steady and I will get back on top of things again! :)


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