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Garden

Five years ago, when I first stepped foot into this house, we had a nice garden. It was pretty simple. Nothing fancy. Neat. We had a patio at the bottom that my husband only used to put pots on and we never sat on it. The cats loved it though. So the first two years I set about trying to get that English garden feel. Loads of flowers. Tons of color. I spent a small fortune on plants. Loads of pots all over the patio. I just didn’t work right for me. That patio was in the only really sunny spot of the garden. It had to go. I spent the whole of the next winter watching every Titchmarsh show on telly on how to put together a garden. I had my plan.

So the next year, good and early, I planned on tearing it out. It was early May when I had nagged my husband enough to get a skip and get it done. We spent a weekend tearing out one ton of concrete, stone slab, bricks and a bunch of other builders rubbish that had been dumped there. We brought in a huge truck load of top soil. We worked our asses off. What a job that was. But I had a perfect patch for my soon to be flower garden. A lovely spot where I could spend hours away just lost in the joy of gardening. I was so happy. One week later I found out I was pregnant.

That year I had a nice garden. I planted all the flowers that I had planned. It looked like a young garden. It had flowers. I was pleased. I made my plans for the following year.

The next year I had a little tiny infant. You guessed it, gardening with an infant in 90 degree weather doesn’t happen. I watched from the window as my flower patch grew weeds. I got out a few times on the weekends that wasn’t raining to get something done, but that didn’t give me any results. Then the next year passed and I had plans. My son was older. Learning to walk. He could play outside and I could try to garden and make sure he didn’t eat anything he wasn’t supposed to. That went out the window with the wettest Summer in the history of Summers in Britain. We spent the summer watching it pour as we sat inside going stir crazy. Town where flooded. People all over lost everything. I shouldn’t complain as we still had a roof over our heads. But the Californian that I am went nuts. No sun all Summer. It rained until late August. The best we did was a hanging basket out front that never really took off.

This year things will be different. I am willing it to be a wonderful summer. It WILL be like my first Summer here. Summer in England is unlike any other place. Its amazing. The air smells sweet. The sky is bluer then anywhere else. You still get rain, but its Summer rain. The kind that you sit and actually watch the grass grow in the back garden. You have to be out. This should be, if all goes to plan, my last British Summer.

Today, there was sun. Not constant sun but enough. The weather was in the low 60s. I couldn’t help myself. I put on an old pair of trainers, put my son in his Wellies and out we went. I was a bit worried that my son would be underfoot. In to things that he shouldn’t and making it hard for me to get things done. We spent an hour cutting out dead vines. Cutting back dead wood. Just general clean up. Guess what? My son loved it. He ran around and picked up little sticks. He put them in the plastics recycling bin. He was an amazing helper. My son never ceases to make me proud.

My hope is that in a month or so the garden will look like a garden again. Right now its a massive weed patch. As the weather gets better and things dry out we will spend a bit of every day out there. Its good for me, and its good for him, to get in the garden. At this moment I am so excited about Summer.

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