This Is What My Stress Looks Like

When I’m stressed, or tense, or anxious, or over busy, or just have a lot of stuff on my mind…

I find it very relaxing to water and tend my garden.

You’ll find me in the evenings, wearing a big straw hat, a cup of tea in one hand, hose in the other hand, watering my plants and absent-mindedly pulling out weeds. There’s a time when I suddenly want to mow my lawn but I don’t know what to do! I remember my first time driving a zero turn lawn mower, I’m a little bit terrified and excited at the same time, I don’t know what I am doing! It’s funny right? No Problem, I did it right!

It brings me so much stillness and deep joy.

So as an indication of my mental well being — check out how green my plants are haha.

Garden 2019

They look so happy, like they are bursting out in green orchestral song.

 

Garden 2019

They are like little, gleeful children, with crazy fun personalities, thriving under my care and attention.

It makes me feel like such a great person. Look what I made! I’m so clever!

 

Garden 2019

On the flip side.

When I’m happy, relaxed and cruising along in life… um, funnily enough, my garden dries up and dies!

It gets overgrown with weeds. Dead leaves and branches fall all over the place and make it look messy. The outer leaves of plants die. There are no flowers. No new buds. No growth here.

It might go on for months. Until I find a moment to step outside, to throw out the rubbish or something and notice — OH SHIT. OOoooops. Yikes I let that ball drop! Sorry little garden! Must make you a priority! Tomorrow!

Ha!

I say all this with a big smile on my face.

It’s not exactly a great parable. Not sure what I’m trying to say. There’s no real message of inspiration here. It’s just a funny story!

Lil Sunflowers

Oh the things we get up to when there’s a screen ban in the house!

Sunflower Rappers

It’s still the school holidays here in Perth.

To combat the boredom, my kids planted sunflowers from seed.

20 of them sprouted, which produced much joy for everyone.

Then they named the sunflowers after rappers, singers, song lyrics and rap song references.

(Why? Because Post Malone has a song out called “Sunflowers”)

Sunflower Rappers

Now when they water the plants, I can hear them rapping in the garden.

My kids are seriously so funny.

My Baby Succulent Nursery

Stolen Succulent

This is me with a stolen piece of succulent plant!

I was at a cafe and I spotted a cool looking succulent in the cafe’s toilet. I asked a waitress if I could have a little piece and she had no idea what I was talking about (sigh!), and she said she’d ask the owner, but she didn’t get back to me. So I pinched a piece anyway. And so it’s not reeeeeally stolen?!

When we bought our first house 15 years ago, I was obsessed with succulents.

I had so many! I knew the names of them!

But then I had children. So my interest in them waned. I could barely have a shower and look after myself, let alone look after a couple of house plants.

Now I’m back at it.

I have a mental wish list of succulents I need in order to complete my collection.

When I go on my weekly runs, I often look into people’s gardens and if I spot a succulent I want… I knock on their door to ask if I could break off a little branch so I can propagate it.

In fact, when I go for my runs, I always carry a bit of cash (2 x $5 notes) for coffee, for a snack, for emergency water or…. for the instance I come across a succulent and someone is reluctant to give me a branch for free, so at least I have $5 to offer them???

Hasn’t happened yet, but I’m always prepared for it haha!

Rare succulents can be over $20!

You only need one leaf to propagate a whole succulent.

You need a lot of time too and take care of them properly, Click Here to learn how to make your own succulent soil mix at home.

Baby Succulents 2017

Here is my succulent baby nursery. The one on the left is a baby orchid.

They are my babies. My new children. Who don’t talk back.

Look how well they are doing!

I’m so proud of them.

Baby Succulents 2017

These guys have been growing for 6 months.

They are so bright, green, glossy and… succulent.

I keep their leaves polished too!

Baby Succulents 2017

These guys are new additions, from my sister’s house. Including the one I stole from the cafe.

All looking very young and perky. Doing rather nicely!

I’m also on the hunt from op-shopped terracotta pots and retro bowls, to grow them in. As I have LOTS more bigger succulents in my garden.

I definitely see 2018 as a year of daggy hobbies :)

Life From Laziness

Ok here’s a funny story.

Before I left for my 4 week long trip to London and Paris (in January)… I snipped off a pretty hydrangea flower stem from my garden, placed it into a tall jar of water and left it in my laundry.

You know, for decoration.

Then I hopped on a plane and left my husband and three kids at home.

4 weeks later.

I noticed that no one thought to throw out the rotting stem?!

Hydrangea Sprout

But I also noticed that a baby hydrangea had sprouted!

It was very cute.

Hydrangea Sprout

I didn’t know hydrangeas grew from stem cuttings!

And I wouldn’t have known this because… I would have NEVER left a rotten stick in a jar of water for 4 weeks!!!

Potting Orchids for my Mum

On the weekend, it was my mother’s 70th birthday.

I planned to take my mum on a little staycation – to book her (and myself) into a fancy hotel for one night, enjoy dinner, a massage, buffet breakfast and a bit of relaxing by the pool! Sounds so good right?

However the timing wasn’t great, so we had to postpone the hotel stay to another date. Which meant on the actual day of her birthday, I’d be giving her a big fat NOTHING.

My sister and I came up with an idea to give her an orchid… because all three of us like buying orchids for each other haha.

Re-potting Orchids

I went to Bunnings and found a very pretty one!

But it looked a little small and lonely by itself, so I decided that I was going to buy TWO orchids and combine them into a nice pot… to make a more worthy looking 70th present.

Orchids were about $30 each, the pot was $20 and the orchid mix was about $10.

Re-potting Orchids

I filled the pot with potting mix and made sure the height of the orchid was ok.

I also made sure that the leaves of the two orchids didn’t crash into each other, and that the flower stems turned inwards, towards each other, rather than outwards.

Re-potting Orchids

I made a little mess, but the whole process was so simple!

Re-potting Orchids

It was such a good-looking gift!

We celebrated my mum’s birthday with 80 family and friends, we ate lobster noodles and a very large, triple-layered pandan cake. YUM!

Re-potting Orchids

And here’s a close up of the orchids. So pretty!