It’s come to this. I am gardening.

Very mixed emotions about this sport and even more concern about my long-term commitment goals. You see, once the renovation on the former U.S. home was complete, I set about carefully curating a garden design that would required almost zero input from me because I have a black thumb, save for roses and peonies. The front garden was a thoughtful collection of hellebores, holly bushes and 40-year old azaleas whose pink and white blooms lit up our corner like a unicorn-themed birthday party for a five year-old little girl. Nothing I much needed to tend to.

The back garden was a sun-drenched space that I filled with roses, peonies and lilac. With the exception of caging the monster peonies so they would not decapitate under their own weight, little else was required of me.  I liked it that way.

Colonel Joseph’s Coat was my favorite rose, taking over the arbor with its beautiful color every summer, and flooding the area with its heady aroma. All I needed to do was admire.

But now here I am. Our property is strangely dotted with young giboshi of random varieties, perhaps planted by the previous owners, who I am convinced did not love this house. Giboshi is the Japanese term for hostas; I’m using that term because it makes me feel like I have been traveling. Which I have not been, unless you count hauling the recycling bin to the curb.

As the giboshi have begun to open I am organizing and transplanting them according to their variety. The base of this oak had been bare, but soon will flourish with the dozen or so Deja Blu, Tokudama, or Formal Attire plants that I collected. I can’t tell them apart, but they all seem to look alike right now.

In the background is a sizable “island” that is also quite bare. 🙄 I’ve missed the window for significant design on the island this season; but come autumn, look out!

These pretty purple perennials were tucked into a corner where no one might see them, and so I moved them to a more prominent position in with three other similar, tiny plants. They’re quite lovely, whatever they are.

Yes, not only am I keeping my reindeer displayed all year, I even purchased a solar light to shine on the silhouette each evening. 

The gardening has crept indoors like the out of control Vinca in the background. More research is needed, but I don’t believe the vine will attach to the brick. If they do, I shall go all Queen Cersei upon them.

In the warm and sunny kitchen I am cultivating San Marzano plants. FROM. SEED.  Rather excitingly I also found Thai Basil plants at the grocer, and added the Rosemary and German Thyme to the mix. It’s been a few weeks and the plants are all still alive and thriving. No one is more shocked than I.

Inside our little prairie homestead, last weekend Jack decided he wanted a desk a la mine and Anna Grace’s. With his Home Depot curbside supply pickup he set to work, even covering his desk with the leftover reclaimed barn wood from my project.

Anna Grace upped the game and painted her bedroom, not surprisingly, blue again.

More supplies for the master bathroom arrived, the delivery person commenting FROM A SAFE DISTANCE OF COURSE that his wife would like my bathtub.

Master Bathroom Update. Looks just like it did on 12 March. 😷🤣😷 Someday, my Contractor will come.

The Trinity student appeared quietly in the kitchen one morning around a little past 0600 (“The middle of the night” in Uni-speak.) Seems her Geophysics Prof was holding fast to the 0900 exam time (0400 EST), regardless of the time zones in which all of the scattered students resided.  Anna Grace scored a “First” on the exam, the Irish equivalent of an, “A.”  She “rocks,” one might say.

Out of sheer boredom on a rainy day, the children attempted to coax CTF to the upper level, where a world of bedroom sofas and comfy rugs exist, and a place to which he has only traveled but once.

CTF was all game at the sound of his name. Cheese bits were placed on the stairs to entice him. But…Hard pass. He was all too happy to eat the cheese, though. 

Meanwhile, I set about baking a raspberry Babka from my grandmother’s recipe. Babka is derived from the Slavic word, “Babcia,” meaning Grandmother. I think mine just might be proud.

Home Improvement Time! Remaining in the morning room was the sad light fixture that conveyed with the house. I had had my eye on this antler chandelier for some time, and took advantage of the design site’s online discount and free shipping offer that popped up during this stay-at-home period. It’s a sweet nod to our time in Austria.

The cease fire had ended. Pretty certain this violates some tenets of the Geneva Convention.

On what would have been Jack’s graduation day we invited the neighbors over for bubbly and snacks. Not quite dinner at The Occidental. In fact, not even close.

What will the next week bring?