Place of Peace

Welcome to my home and my garden, my place of peace. In fact, when it comes down to it, my office that I’m writing this from is also my place of peace. I love being surrounded, all day, by my music, my cats, and some of the things most precious to me. Of course there are times of the month when I’m drowning in a sea of paperwork that my office is the least peaceful place in the house, but for the moment we’re getting along fine. Quite often during the day, I wander outdoors, usually for a smoke break, to my other place of peace, the garden. I am so thankful that we live in a country and a place where gardens and swimming pools and space are possible.

Earlier today I was looking through some pics on my computer to print out for my brand new 2012 vision board (that’s a whole post in itself – I promise to share when it’s done) and found some pics of the garden when we moved into this house in April 2011, and some that were taken more recently. Now I don’t pretend to do anything in the garden, other than let nature and our amazing gardener take their course, but I do love watching the progress of the seasons and the new things that flower.  So I thought I’d share some pics.

Dry and dusty, before the grass and before the rain

When we moved in, we were lucky enough to have some well-established trees in the garden, a rarity in this desert country. But the lawn left more than a little to be desired, and there just didn’t seem to be enough. I have always dreamed of having a green and lush garden (as far as water restrictions allow) and this garden was almost a blank canvas.

So bit by bit, we are adding to it. We have a vegetable garden, which so far is producing only a surfeit of chillis, but will soon be yielding onions, peppers, tomatoes and butternut.  Our mango tree is heavy with fruit and they are juicy and delicious. That’s a great incentive to eat more healthily, actually, that the fruit and vegetables come from your own garden. That tree will provide me with breakfast for the next few weeks.  The grapefruit trees don’t produce particularly nice fruit, but they keep amazing birds in our garden.  The plants that we moved from our old garden have settled incredibly and thrived in this new house.  My purple wreath and jasmine are taking over areas of the verandah, and my bauhinia has taken on a life of it’s own.  It had never flowered before we moved, and now it is full of bud, and bright red splashes of colour, and makes itself useful by providing shade for our heat-sensitive and half-witted Boerboel. Not to mention the kitten.

After some rain and some TLC!

It’s amazing the difference a few months and some rain have made to our garden. We sit out there in the morning, watching the birds and noting all the new growth and changes in it, usually while trying to stop the Boerboel licking the other animals and ourselves into oblivion. She does sometimes make our garden less than peaceful but at least she looks the part, like she belongs.  I am grateful every day for our garden. The children and the animals have plenty of space to play, we have a place to picnic on the lawn when it’s not too hot, and we have incredible birds to watch. The garden is one of the things that I love most about where we live.

What is your place of peace like? Where do you live? Is there a place that you can escape to that is all your own?

Here’s hoping that in 2012 you discover your place of peace, both inner and outer, and that you remember to retreat to it whenever you need to.