Despite having lived in Melbourne off and on for ... (counts on fingers) nearly eight years, I still can't get the hang of having the Labour Day long weekend in March. In New South Wales, where I grew up, we have Labour Day in October.
So it always comes as something of a surprise when Labour Day rocks up in March and I find myself a bit flat-footed as I scramble for things to do.
This time around, I flew to Sydney for Mountaingirl's housewarming - her place is amazing, this woman has lived here for about 10 weeks now and it already looks like a house out of a magazine. Gah. The skill! The dedication! I've lived in our place with My One True Love for nearly three years and we are still unpacking boxes.
Mountaingirl has a real knack for making a house a home. Before I give away too many details I'm going to stop myself, as I plan to do a special post on Friday in honour of her talent, so be sure to check back then ... let me assure you, you really want to see the book nook.
The other highlight of the trip was catching up with the Sister Of My Heart, and her offspring, (and my godson) the Miniature Genius. He's a very serious and sober child most of the time, but this is a kid who isn't two yet, but who can count to ten, read his name - and the word Bunnings - and pick letters out of the alphabet. He's a smart cookie.
My primary job as godmother is to work on his vocabulary. This weekend we learnt travel-related words - plane (on a plane, off a plane, plane in sky), airport (go airport, home) - oh, and peekaboo, which he pronounces "keeky-boo". It's adorably cute.
On returning to Melbourne less than 24 hours later, I fell victim to some kind of fever on the way back from the airport (off-a-plane), and instead of driving myself home, accidentally drove myself to my favourite plant nursery and spent a vast amount of money on assorted plants, compost and soil instead. Ooopsadaisy.
It's because I've been looking at the bed in the back garden, the one along the fence, for some time now. It's got three silver birches in it, but it's too narrow to do any real layering underneath, and I've been stumped for what to do. And of course the thing about being stumped is that it puts me into paralysis, and I never do anything as a consequence, except gaze in despair at the bed hoping for some magical wand to make it a garden instead of a frustration.
I think my subsconscious brain took over and directed me to the nursery, where instead of wandering about aimlessly as I usually do, I sought out a giant pile of drought-tolerant plants with the determined aim to just plant the damn things in the damn bed and fill up the damn spaces I hate so much.
FIVE BACKBREAKING HOURS LATER, I stood back and took in the view from the verandah. Not a space to be seen. Instead, masses of dark-leaved purple sedum nestled in amongst violet heliotrope bushes and red verbena ground cover. Indigo salvias butting up against unnamed bushes (no label on the pot) crowned with spires of blue flowers. A couple of ballerina roses, not true roses at all, their long red flower spikes topped with dainty pink butterflies. Snowgrass planted along the front of the bed, it'll mass up and create a kind of edging effect. And here and there, a dwarf goblin daisy that will flower in red and orange.
Ahhhh. Much better.
And then today of course I sewed madly, as I have a market each weekend for the next three weekends. All thoughts of the garden forgotten. Photos yet to come.....