DSC_0839 (1)

Hello and a warm welcome to acoastalplot – my blog about my life and gardening exploits. I’m Sam and I live with my husband David, our three teenage children, one dog and two cats in a village by the sea in the south-east of England. I’m a community worker, co-founder of the website ‘Agnes – the life guide for teenage girls‘, occasional book editor, plus house-keeper, gardener, cook, chief finder of things, etc.

We moved here from London in 2012 and spent the first few years renovating the house before turning our attention to the garden. I write about our everyday family life and our work in the garden (approximately one-third of an acre, on chalk, terraced and quite exposed). I also write about anything else that interests me, such as books and food, and (occasionally, because none of us lives in a bubble) wider world issues.

My love of plants, gardens and gardening has grown since having a family and a garden to tend. David and I both have the RHS Level 2 Certificate in Horticulture and I have an Open College Certificate in Garden Design, and we try to put what we’ve learnt into practise. The great thing about gardening, of course, is that you never stop learning. We try to garden collaboratively and it generally works.

I hope you enjoy visiting here. Do leave a comment and say hello. I do my best to answer comments, unless the only answer is ‘thank you’ in which case please take that as given :-).


A few of my favourite things are (in no particular order):
growing and picking flowers (then faffing with them to photograph!)
taking photographs
our rescue dog Cassie
people-watching; my kids often tell me off for staring at people (I’m not aware I do it!)
Arts and Crafts style
walking across Hungerford Bridge in London
visiting gardens
wrapping gifts
a starry sky
clean sheets (of the paper and bedlinen kind)
walking in the Lake District (getting up high)
floating in the sea (it has to be hot weather, though)
hearing my children laugh (especially all together)
listening to the skylarks singing

I’m not so fond of:
so MANY slugs and snails
horror films (won’t watch them)
reading instruction manuals
the current state of politics

Our dog, Cassie

28 thoughts on “About

  1. Sam – have just been enjoying your latest blog entry. Love the tulips and will try the scones, but sorry to hear David has been ill. Do please keep writing. It brings a little bit of beautiful Kent into our rather grey London life.
    Frances x


  2. I’ve just come across your blog in the comments of Sarah’s Down by the Sea blog. I love it! and will be reading regularly. I’ve always lived by the sea (Cornwall, Weymouth, Bournemouth, Yorkshire, Florida) until coming up to London (decades ago now) and still hanker for it. Like you, I’m also very keen on wildflowers so hoping your descriptions will help me learn more!


    1. How lovely – thank you Caro. Living by the sea does that to you, I think. There’s something about the light, and the sound and smell of it. I’ll do my best with the wildflowers!


  3. Hi Sam, maybe you’ve already found a good simple how to crochet guide but if not and if you don’t mind sending me your postal address, I have one to send you. Was sorting through my knitting patterns earlier this week and found two more, one of which I’d love to pass on to you. It’s brief, clear, and very simple! All the best, Deborah


    1. That is really kind of you Deborah – thank you! I have to confess to having a complete block when it comes to getting the hang of it, so any help is extremely welcome. I don’t want to put my postal address here (and I couldn’t see an email on your blog), so would you mind emailing me – samstanleywd@gmail.com – and I’ll send it to you. Thanks again for thinking of me. Sam x


  4. Lovely blog. I have a horrific time with slugs too (Isle of Wight). Have recently tried nematodes (with some success – must get more for the bits I didn’t do).


    1. Hi, and thanks, thestarter1978. We tried nematodes (in a previous garden) with limited success. I did think of trying it here but it’s yet one more thing to remember to do! Definitely worth considering though.


  5. Hi Sam,
    Your yellow flower picture caught my eye, and then when I visited your sight….Wow! What a beautiful view of the ocean. I’ve enjoyed reading a few of your blogs. I’m going to be a follower. Thank you for sharing your life.

    Liked by 1 person

Please leave a comment if you'd like to. I love reading them. Making connections with people is the nicest part of blogging.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.