Gardening Like A Growing Up Grown-Up.

Spring has sprung and summer weather is coming. In Virginia, that means miserably hot and humid days. While it’s still relatively cool and bright I am left wanting to create a beautiful green space to sit and have coffee with Pintrest and my 28 cats. Okay, I don’t have 28 cats, but I do feed a lot of strays who are hopefully going to find homes through Meow Stories in the future! ( to adopt, foster, or donate!)

I definitely do not have a big space to garden. In fact, I really don’t have one at all. I’m working with patio gardening and a 2.5 x 1ft patch of soil. In the past I’ve planted gorgeous zinnias that attracted all sorts of beautiful butterflies and moths. I adored them! However, after a couple of years of that I find myself wanting to do something different. I toyed with the idea of fantastical layered-milk painted-vintage-Pintrest filled greenery for my space, but after realizing I was getting in deeper than my timeframe would allow I took a look at the resources I already had and went from there.

Every year for my birthday my mom would get me a dainty and elegant little porcelain doll from the Enesco Growing Up Girls Collection. I remember being so excited to see which new ones would be out for the year. They started off blonde, like me, then at about 6 or 7 I started to receive the brunettes as a gift since my hair was going dark the way of my fathers. I collected them and kept them high on my shelf where I could not knock them over – because believe me – back then if it was breakable and it was near me, you’d be spending the rest of your night with some super glue. While moving about my room, I had decided the dolls would be better placed on a shelf in the basement area instead of my bedroom. I did not want to spend the time wrapping them up in tissue and putting them in a box to move, so I used the tool every kid knows to be the best for moving all objects and had carefully placed them into my bright orange backpack with one working strap (FUN FACT: No matter the brand – my backpacks would always break the first day/week of school. It was a strange curse). Well, needless to say, that did not end well! Hindsight of a child and all, right? The fact that the backpack was bright orange did not prevent it from taking a trip down the staircase after being placed on the floor.

Fast forward into the future and you meet adult me preparing to move my Enesco dolls from the basement to not only a different room, but a whole new country! I had learned my lesson the first time. The surviving girls were bubble wrapped, news papered, tissue wrapped and then further wrapped in scarves and then boxed – in which those boxes were then buffered with bubble wrap in a hard shell suitcase. They were ready to go! But nothing prepares objects for the rollercoaster that is apparently Siobhan Young vs United Airlines. I have a love/hate relationship flying United. The love comes from the fact they have never killed me in a plummeting, fiery death. The hate comes from the fact that every time I have to check my bags with them something goes horribly awry. One time they sent my luggage to a different state and then claimed for 3 days that I never flew with them. So really, I should have known better than to entrust my  breakable keepsakes with their checked baggage in the first place. I couldn’t glue most of them back together since they were quite literally dust. I was heartbroken. In a few short hours a lifetime of memories were crushed up and sitting at the bottom of my suitcase.

Fast-Fast Forward into the present and you see my amazing and loving husband who knew this story and for Christmas went on Amazon and Ebay and replaced my entire Enesco Growing Up Girls Collection and even added the very last one – the bride. *Queue romantic music* So why did I blog about this Enesco-Fiasco in the first place? Well remember back at the start of this blog I was talking about using my resources to garden? That entails me getting my crafty craft on and using the leftover pieces of porcelain dolls that I kept.

I decided my garden this year was going to be less extravagant and run of the mill, and I was going to get creative with it. I love, love, love succulents thanks to my mother who kept an array of them on our kitchen windowsill in beautiful little planters. So I decided to pick up some Hens and Chicks and go from there. Boy, did I have fun! This little space totally reflects me. I have a mixture of teacups, cats, dinosaurs and cameras, all being used to propagate Sempervivum!  I broke out the glass to an old Yashica lens and SLR camera body from my vintage camera collection. It was much more difficult to break that lens glass than I had anticipated – who knew!

I would like to add to my tiny Me-Space as time goes by – but for now I’m pleased as punch at what I have created. The fact that I could create what I feel is a beautiful piece of art out of broken keepsakes makes me feel like I am honouring the effort and memories my mother gave me every birthday. The growth of the plants from the broken pieces is almost symbolic of life and well, growing up. Gives a whole new meaning to the Growing Up Girls.

Garden 2015 Siobhan Young Garden 2015 Siobhan Young Garden 2015 Siobhan Young Garden 2015 Siobhan Young