I created this blog four years ago as a way to record and share my progress in our vegetable garden with other families and to create a record of the recipes that were inspired by the food that we were growing – that is what I thought at the time anyway…. Now I realise that I created it for my own family. My passion for fresh food has meant that I have been able to spend the precious early years of childhood with my boys. We have had time. Time in the garden and kitchen, building family memories, experiences and an appreciation and knowledge of fresh food.
I know that my reader is similar to me in many ways – a busy mum, someone who is part of a dual income family who works part time herself and has young children. I know what it feels like to have life flash past you. I know the feeling of waking up in the middle of the night because you recall that you forgot the kids are supposed to dress up at school tomorrow and you have nothing organised and an appointment first thing in the morning. The competing demands of organising and getting everyone to their activities, events, sport, social outings, doing homework and trying to squeeze in some fun can be hard work. Not to mention the family wants dinner EVERY night, clean clothes to wear, sheets on the bed and towels in the bathroom etc etc….. Family time is whittled away as all of these things steam along.
Four years ago my days were spent either in the garden or in the kitchen with my young children. That time remains in my memory as my favorite time. My eldest son is now seven and at school. My youngest son is four years old, at kinder and heading to school next year. The impending start to school is wreaking havoc wtih my brain at the moment. It is the reason for this post. My logical brain knows that there is still months to go until the new year arrives but it makes me very sad to think that my little week-day garden and kitchen companion will no longer be around. Where does the time go? I am not ready for my children to be grown up so fast.
I am very fortunate to have had the opportunity to spend time with my boys. I am proud that they know how to plant seeds, care for and harvest many types of herbs and vegetables. They have a broad appreciation of many foods thanks to the variety of things that they have helped to grow in the garden over the years that have been included in family meals. These are all wonderful reasons to create a vegetable garden with your family but really the one reason that is most dear to me is that we have had so much time together. We have worked together to achieve results as a family. We have talked, laughed, run, jumped, played, fought, dug, explored, built things, made things and celebrated our achievements. We have feasted – oh how we have feasted! We have gathered under the lemon tree on Sunday afternoons in Summer and eaten snacks and meals made from ingredients we grew in the garden. We have huddled around the chiminea in Winter on the deck overlooking the garden, admiring Mr Fresh’s handy work and talking about what the new week may bring.
The next phase of our family life that begins next year will not change everything. Our family time in the garden will be limited to the weekends but this will be ok because the garden is now well established and I can plant things with low care requirements. We have built the foundations of a productive garden and have established it as part of our lifestyle. I know that these will remain but I can’t help feeling sad about it.
If you are a busy mum and have been wanting to start a vegetable garden BUT it has never quite got to the top of your to do list I hope that this little video inspires you to get started. Spend some valuable family time in the healthy, dynamic learning environment that is your own backyard.
Childhood passes so very quickly. It can feel like a blur of constant and competing demands on the limited time of a busy mum. A vegetable garden provides busy mums with a healthy, dynamic learning environment to create family time. Grow fresh food and family memories. Creating a vegetable garden takes less time than you think. Add a few vegetables to a pot or the garden in a couple of minutes. Choose fast growing, low care plants such as lettuce and herbs and the time required to care for them is just minutes a week.
Grab your copy of my seasonal planting guide in the side bar to the right and get prepared to plant in Spring.
If you know a busy mum seeking more family time please share this post with them.
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