In a Vase on Monday: distracted




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I didn’t want to miss Cathy’s In a Vase on Monday, so I’ve cheated slightly by picking, plonking, faffing and photographing these vases on Sunday evening as I’ll be up to my eyes tomorrow (today). My offerings this week are in two bargain vases that I found recently – the small green one was 50p on a bric-a-brac stall and the large stoneware pot was a charity-shop find.

Large pot: stems (with flowers mostly in bud) of an aquilegia that was growing through a lavender plant and had to be removed; a few stems of the fabulous, dry-shade-loving grass Luzula nivea which is flowering away; a few sprigs of Geranium macrorrhizum (unknown variety); and some Erigeron karvinskianus which is, yet again, going bonkers on the front steps. I do so love this plant.

Small pot: shorter stems of  Erigeron karvinskianus and some thyme flowers – we planted a few clumps of thyme last spring by the raspberry canes and they’ve formed a lovely carpet which is covered with these pretty flowers right now. They smell delicious.

In other news, I am turning into a house slut and an all-round slovenly slattern (is that tautology? Oh well). I’ve been wearing the same pair of jeans for days, complete with soil marks on the thighs where I’ve been wiping my hands and a rip in the left knee where I kneel down to weed, plant or inspect. There are no clean glasses in the cupboard or mugs on the shelf and dishes are piled high next to the sink. There are dust balls of pet hair gathering in the floor corners and dead flies on the window sills (I wiped one away just before I photographed the vases). The ironing mountain was teetering on the brink of collapse on Saturday, so when I said in my last post that I had the remainder of my weekend ‘at leisure’, it didn’t quite turn out like that (when does it ever?).

Why this state of affairs? It’s May! Turn your back on the garden for five minutes and you miss something. There is far too much to be doing outdoors. Also, I’m the only one who notices, cares and generally cracks and does something about the mess inside. The more sensible parents among you will have instilled a healthy ‘helping around the house’ ethic among your brood at a young age. Mine have to be asked, reminded, nagged, then shouted at to do anything, so I often don’t bother. I know… My own fault… As a result, our house is not as spick and span as it could be.

It’s not going to get any better this week as I have two books to proof read in super-quick time and, of course, I’ll have my eldest for company whose idea of clearing up is putting his mugs, glasses and plates on a table outside his bedroom door. His next exam is on Friday, so until then we’ll be working and ignoring the mess together. Have a great week.

29 thoughts on “In a Vase on Monday: distracted

  1. I’m with you on housework versus gardening. Quote from an 83 year old gardener I met some years ago “I’m not one for dusting, dusting takes your life way, but you can grow with a garden.”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh I am with you on the slovenly side as the garden gets going…chores, flowers, pictures! Lovely vases….I had not thought about cutting the flowers from aquilegia that need to be moved….they may show up in a future vase as I consider moving some that seeded themselves in the middle of other plants.


  3. Funny how that leisure thing never seems to work out. Housework always, always takes a back seat for me. I like outside housework–that would be gardening!


  4. Your 83 year old gardening friend was very wise!! Definitely far more important things to be doing in the garden which are better for your soul than ‘housework’ is… I love luzula and find it a great asset in vases, and it really complements the slender stems of the aquilegia and geranium and erigeron – thanks for sharing. Hope the books for proof reading are interesting – or do you find the content doesn’t really matter when you are proof reading?


  5. I think “slut” may mean something different in England than it does here? I hope. 🙂 I love your vases. You find such interesting ones. I only ever find the kind of cheap glass vases that come with bouquets people send to someone in the hospital. I don’t think I’ve ever seen the bright pink flowers in your bouquet (is it what you called acquilegia), but the flower shape reminds me of the nicotiana that seeded itself in my backyard and comes back year after year. I like the height of the plants and the way they fill the space they’re growing in, so I’ve left them. I have to admit to being kind of a neatnik myself, as is my husband, but we don’t see it in our kids yet. We try to teach them, but I don’t think it’s any guarantee. I hope your proofreading is interesting for you. I think it sounds like a nice job you have, and you’re a good writer so I’m sure you’re good at it. Have a good week, Sam.


    1. Ha ha, yes, it has two meanings – the one you’re thinking of and one meaning lazy housekeeper 🙂 The bright pink flowers are the geranium, the aquilegia is the taller stems with buds (only one pale pink flower is open). Nicotiana is a lovely plant to have seeded around the place – lucky you. I have to admit to getting a little antsy if the house gets too untidy. I’ll blitz it later on in the week and I’m sure I’ll feel much better. Thanks for your lovely comment.


  6. This behaviour pattern might end up lasting a lifetime (and I should know!). Fingers crossed for Friday though.
    I love your vases. The luzula works so well with your pretty arching aquilegia and geranium


    1. They do help occasionally (I’m painting a bad picture!) and I will make sure they are all fully conversant with the washing machine, ironing and bathroom cleaning before they embark upon the world and future partners..!


  7. I think if you took a survey of gardeners in May, the majority would tell you they’ve let the housekeeping go to hell! ;-D I like the quote shared by Wild Daffodil – very apt.


  8. Your new vases are great and they suit the flowers well, Sam. I prepare my vases on Sunday as a routine matter – otherwise, they wouldn’t show up until mid-week. My house is a mess too. This afternoon I was wondering what my husband would say if I brought in a clean-up team to tackle the house while I continue work in the garden…


  9. Don’t feel bad about the house being messy. This may be one way to teach your kids that they should help out. And if it doesn’t bother them, you shouldn’t let it bother you. There’s time later in the year to focus on housework.


  10. Your vases are so pretty, you have used garden plants with the simple elegance of wild flowers.
    Who has a perfectly clean house in May? Boring people, the sort of women who I don’ t want to spend any time with; they have no poetry in their souls and certainly can’ t be proper gardeners.


  11. Your vases are filled with flowers that could come straight from my super neglected garden and wildflower patch. Beautiful. I am now full of good intentions to gather some and place them on the windowsill. I wonder if it lasts until the afternoon, when I go home.
    Tidiness is overrated, particularly if there are other more interesting tasks at hand. My children were raised to help whenever we ask them to but the asking is often a shouting and accompanied by accusations of laziness and whatnot. Sam’s room is a pigsty at the moment, half of our plates and bowls and cutlery are there, circled around his bed and desk. I would be delighted if he even placed the stuff outside his room…. how he can study, I don’t know. Good luck for your son’s exam on Friday. Hope you enjoy proofreading the books. I imagine this to be a very pleasing job but I don’t know, I guess it depends on the content and your interests. I sometimes proof read scientific texts and it makes me want to weep. x


  12. I love the ramshackle flowers (if that doesn’t sound rude) and the vases are lovely, what finds! My children are exactly the same as yours when it comes to housework and I also find it quicker/ easier/ less stressful to do it myself, so you aren’t alone there! xx


  13. LOL! My Mum has a sign on her wall that reads “Gardening forever, housework whenever!” I was moving in the same direction as you with a mountain of ironing and some translation deadlines, but fortunately it poured with rain and turned very cold at the end of last week, putting an end to my garden plans, and I have just managed to catch up before the weather improves again! Love the whispy vases this week, Sam. I can almost smell your sea air when I look at them. Lovely!


  14. My ironing pile is always teetering, and I am not a dedicated gardener, I just hate ironing!! Love your vases, the small green one is especially pretty. My kids don’t do any housework either, takes them all their time to lift their plates to the sink. X


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