Last year, at the end of Summer, we moved into this house that has a lovely little garden. It was the first time in years that I have had a private garden to explore and relax in - quite a treat when you're housebound and severely ill!
Last year we didn't do much in the garden, the family focused their time and energy on the inside of the house and I focused on recovering from the move and the disability assessment that came soon after it. This year was different - we have really enjoyed the garden this Summer!
Glorious Flowers Everywhere
My parents do all the gardening, my sister is not the outdoorsy type and I cannot dare to garden, no matter how much I might want to. So I tend to stay on the sofa most of the time and watch my parents gardening, and on better days I might go for a stroll while they're out there.
At the back of the house we have 2 long flower beds, each with some well-established plants and a couple of small trees either in or overhanging them. We also have 2 decks and a shed. These are all arranged around a small central patch of grass which has a paved path around it.
The front yard is basically just a paved driveway with a couple of storage sheds on one side and a small flower bed under a little blossom tree, so we don't do much on that side of the house.
We have a lot of birds visiting our back yard, so we have a bird bath and a feeder by each flowerbed. We get loads of butterflies too, so we sowed loads of seed for flowers that would attract more butterflies and bees to the garden. More insects means more birds too, right?
It was quite a wild mix in the end, but that just made the occasional walk around the garden that much more interesting and colourful.
Apart from the wild flower seeds, we also planted some of our favourites, which of course included a few gorgeous Roses. The pale pink climber surprised us, it came up through the floor boards of one of the decks and then just spread all over the nearby fence and our little greenhouse. It made loads of flowers!
We planted a dark pink Rose in a pot on that same deck, and in the flower bed on the other side we planted two miniature Rose bushes, one red and one yellow.
Apart from the roses, we also planted a few Dahlias in various shades of pink and purple as well as Irises, Lilies, Primulas, Petunias and Alyssum.
To cover some of the fencing we planted a few varieties of Clematis as well as a lovely mix of Sweet Peas. We did try to keep the colours in each flower bed restricted. In one bed we planted mainly pinks and purples and in the other we planted the reds, oranges and yellows.
The previous tennants must have planted some things we obviously didn't know about, because there were some pleasant surprises, and of course when they bloomed they mixed the whole colour scheme up!
There were some gorgeous Peonies and bright yellow Arum Lilies and even a random solitary Sunflower - a seed probably dropped down from the bird feeder. Here are some of the surprise blooms:
Our First Family BBQ In Years
Being the first time we've had a garden since moving to the UK almost 9 years ago, we were finally able to have a family BBQ! We invited my aunt, uncle and cousin over and had a lovely time.
I stayed in my room while all the preparations were happening and only went out into the garden once the food was ready and the table was set up. They had put out on the deck one of our anti-gravity garden loungers for me and a little side table right near the table where they would all be sitting. A lovely sunny spot with gorgeous views of the trees and sky beyond our garden.
I didn't stay out there too long, because my skin started turning red, but I ate my meal and enjoyed the warm sun and fresh air until I had finished my food. Then I was helped back inside to my bed where I lay in the dark to recover while the family continued their visit outside. It was such a treat to spend that time with them outside and the BBQ meal was delicious!
A couple of weeks later the 4 of us had another little BBQ out there, this time mum and I lounged out on the patch of grass while dad cooked the meat and then I moved inside to eat with them at the table before returning to my room.
Having a garden, especially such a compact one, has been such a blessing to me this year - it's been over a year since I have been outside our gate, but being able to occasionally get outside in a safe and quite space is truly a treat!
Bare Feet On The Ground
Fast forward a bit and I've not been outside in weeks, maybe over a month. Since I don't get out much anymore, because those walks around the garden wipe me out too much to attempt them regularly at the moment, I have decided to try grounding instead of walking.
What is grounding?
Grounding, also called Earthing, is the practice of making contact with the earth to exchange electrons. The surface of the earth is electrically conductive which means it holds an unlimited supply of continuously renewed free/moving electrons. By walking barefoot on the earth, we can absorb these into our body - this process, called grounding or earthing, has proven to reduce inflammation and pain and can affect the functioning of all body systems.
So instead of expending loads of energy on walking around the garden regularly, and only managing to get out there once or twice a month as a result, for the time being I'm focusing on simply grounding while seated - my aim is to get out there twice a week now.
Our patch of grass is right outside the kitchen door, you can see the glass doors to the right of the grass in the photos above. It's literally 2 steps from the threshold, so my sister puts a chair out for me and I step out onto the grass and sit down.
I have a cup of coffee or my snacks while out there, watching the birds and butterflies or the clouds rolling by and then come back in and rinse my feet in the tub before going back to bed to rest.
I am a firm believer that every little thing helps - it might not make a noticable difference at the time, but over time, all the small things add up to promote better wellbeing and quality of life.
I'm hoping that grounding will be one more piece of the puzzle for me.
I might not get to see the flowers close up, but I get outside, breathe in the fresh air, enjoy the lovely views and I get my bare feet on the earth for a few minutes.
I think it's worth a shot.
What about you?
- How was your summer?
- Have you ever tried grounding?
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