Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Sowing The Seeds.

We were at a BBQ over the weekend, and someone asked me ' so how are you? what have you been up to'

In my previous life I have no doubt that I would have very quickly responded with something like, ' Oh you know, getting the boss in and out of Kuwait for his latest meetings has been a nightmare, or finalising a holiday booking for a honeymoon couple going to the Maldives, it so sweet she doesn't even know what he has planned, or did a complete restyle on this client, she had hair down to her waiste and we cut it really short and put three diferent colours through it, she looked fantastic and loved it, but the hubby wasn't so sure.'

But in this instance, in my new life, which is much quiter, much calmer, much more focused on TBH and I

When asked ' what have you been up to ?' mmmm I was somewhat flummoxed as I didn't really know what to say, what had I been up, home making, blogging, researching the internet, learning and oh yeah.....planning, making and sowing, but it just didn't seem interesting enough to talk about in that situation at that particular time, then when I came away and thought about it, I wanted to shout hey!!!! Actually I have been really busy achieving what I have spent over 10 years working towards I have been living my dream regardless!!!!! Thanks pj great advice.

When I was a kid in Kenya, we had quite a large vegetable patch, and when I was peckish I often indulged myself in a little digging of carrots from the earth,vaguely rinsing it in under the garden hose, and crunch, biting into all it's crunchiness and goodness, or I could be caught scoffing a whole load of peas fresh out of their pods.... mmmm there really is nothing quite like fresh home grown veggies straight out of the ground.

Many years later I remember working in a salon that was next to a veggie shop that sold peas in their pods, so I went an grabbed some for an afternoon break, one of my colleagues said ' Oooh what are they' I explained and they replied ' wow I didn't realise that is what they looked like, I have only ever seen them in a tin or a freezer bag'.................... that was one of my first realisations that sadly so many people in this day and age have no idea where their food comes from or what might be in it, or how it goes from being a seed in the ground to a beautiful pretty plant giving us the fruit of it's labours.

TBH and I both love cooking, we do it quite differently however, but we both used to watch with envey these chef's who were able to go and pick their produce straight out of the garden, knowing where they come from knowing the good nutritional value that they are going to add to a meal.

We have wanted a veggie patch for years now, we did try a few herbs and tomatoes on our balcony in Dubai, but nothing really materialised, might have had something to do with fall out from the nearby alluminium smelter, but hey, in our plans to leave Dubai one of our criteria was to FINALLY be able to grow some of our own crops. We had planned on buying a small property here in Cyprus with some garden, but as that has not yet materialised, and we are currently in a rental property, so our plans for veggies subsided for a little while..... I got all despondent, thinking that because we were in a rental and it already has every little cacti and ornamental plant in place, then we wouldn't be able to grow our own stuff, that was 4 months ago, before I started to learn, and that is where the internet is so so useful. By researching and learning what others do, on float cabins, on boats, on balconies, and on large farms I got inspired and came up with a brain wave, lets make a veggie box out of old pallets,( which has been done else where).TBH gets loads of pallets at work, they are free and it is a good way to recycle them. Using these means that if we find our dream property or if should we have to move, we can take the veggies with us. So TBH got to work on a box and I will post about the making of it seperately.

That is also the reason that this is quite a long blog, I wanted to share with others the small ideas that I came up with to reuse,and recycle in order to achieve what you have been dreaming of for so long. I pondered over what or how I could make seedling box's............ then I started saving egg boxes. ( Am sure this too has been done before)

I punctured holes into the bottom of them with a knife for drainage,

Then cut them in half and placed the bottoms into the lids

I filled these with soil ( Thanks Mum for the donation) making sure the soil was really moist,

Then I proceeded to dig a small whole in the egg cup full of soil and begun to sow my seeds, Carrots, Cucumbers, Corriander, Corn,Tomatoes, Green Pepper and Rocca, so we are looking forward to a nice healthy home grown, home made salad, how fantastic would that be.

I covered the seeds with soil and gave them another sprinkling of water from my home made recycled watering can, which is basically a 4 litre fabric softener bottle, ( I no longer use fabric softner) I skeward holes into the lid and there you have it a watering can.

I knew I would get totally confused as to what seeds I had put into which box so I cut up a yoghurt carton and made the signs out of that.

It has all taken time, a long time, as with many things in life it has not been an overnight process, and we still have a long road ahead,learing what will grow,learning how to help it grow, it has taken time to think through ideas and put into practise those ideas, it has taken thinking outside our usual box,TBH and I are both creative, but not always practical at putting things together. It has been a learning curve for the two of us, helping each other to re asses, is that really the best way to do it? Perhaps if we did this or perhaps if we did that, and teaching ourselves to stop, complete a process and then move on, and in much of our veggie box/begining to grow, one idea has arisen out of another idea, as the mind works gently to find soloutions.
We have put the veggie box at the front of the property, not overly pretty, and whilst I was stood there knowing that it is the most practical place to have it as the sun will be on it all day long in both summer and winter, but wondering what ' others' would think of our veggie box amongst the ornamental perfectly placed cacti, an elderly gentleman pushing his grandaughter in a wheel chair , walked down the street, he stopped to chat and we discussed my dilema, to which he replied ' it is not whether it looks pretty or whether other people like it or not, you come first and if it serves your purpose, my dear THAT is what really matters.' What wise words! This very kind man not only taught me a lesson that day, he also gave us a very good soloution to how to cover our seedlings to prevent the cats, or Harry the hedgehog from messing up our good work.

TBH managed to make a recycled seeding cover which again I will blog about at a later stage. But the seedlings have been out enjoying the sun's good energy which is helping to make them strong and healthy,

So that hopefully in the not too distant future we will reaping the rewards and bennifits from much hard work,and many years of dreaming. So next time at the BBQ when asked what I have been doing I will feel more confident to say, I have been planning making and sowing the fruits and vegetables of our simple but beautiful life in Cyprus.

By the way, have you tried the salad, it tastes really good.

1 comment:

  1. Hi, what a lovely post, it nailed me down to the very last word. Congrats, you're giving a real example of what each and every one of us on this planet should do to improve sustainability and this is something to be proud of! All the best,