Nan also loved lemon trees and fruit trees in general and cooked up everything she could lay her hands on.
Interestingly I grew up loving lemon trees and know the locality of every lemon tree in a huge radius! It is just my business to KNOW where every lemon tree is! And I come home from everywhere with flowers and interesting things. I guess it is in my blood.
Nan's love of gathering, of cooking, flowers, gardens, chickens... it is all in me and as I do many things I think of her. Recently I posted pictures of bunches of native flowers I gathered at the farm. I said they were not my first choice of flowers but they were WHAT I HAD so I made the most of them. As I played with flowers that day I thought of Nan and her influence on me. I almost always think of her when I am picking flowers or gathering something I have found.
Today I had a letter arrive from my Aunt to say how my flowers on that blog post reminded her of Nan her Mum) and how I am so like her! I felt this was a compliment as Nan was always busy, happy, always constructive and could make beautiful things from just about nothing. She saw the beauty in the everyday. It was all art to her. Nan was appreciating Sarah Ban Breathnatch style Simple Abundance long before the book was written. Thats how she lived.
And so it is no surprise that my Aunt is an author and writes about simple joys and observations. The beauty of gardening, of life and seasons. I realised my Aunt was famous when I understood they study her in Australian school classes in English and at University. But growing up she was my Aunt who always wrote us a poem at Christmas and this was always read out at the dinner table. I was in a poem once too which included me yelling out to the girls when they were coming out of school on a hot afternoon that I have ice blocks! My Aunt was with me that day and it became a poem.
A couple of years ago my Aunt came to the family Christmas at the farm. Mum and my Aunt had a Christmas morning unlike any other chasing (in their nighties) a fox out of the yard. I missed this spectacle that involved one of them ending up in the pond... It would have been good though!
The latest book is called The Fig at the Gate (by Kate Llewellyn) It is a book of observations of beauty, gardens and ageing. The end of it contains the story of Christmas day, the chasing of the fox, and Christmas dinner at the farm. I got to read it as sheets of paper from a type writer before it was finished. And at the end I am in it! Yep, I experience a tiny moment immortalised in literature! And better still not for anything dodgy or regrettable but for something really lovely.
Between my Nan and my Aunt I feel there was an artistic side to the family and that many of my loves have come from them. There is no need to prove how much we influence our children and their children, it is undeniable. What we do now affects the generations, I feel and see the proof of this everyday.
And as Nan loved the seasons, the flowers, the produce that came with them, my Aunt puts these things into words through details of gardens and life. Finding beauty and purpose in the season we are in stops us from wasting it! It might be the season ie the season of spring or a life season ie the time you have small children or the time you have Grand children... but accepting the season you are in and making the most of it is such a key to happiness. Nan knew how to extract every last drop of joy from every season. That is what I want to do. I am coming into a new season now and am blessed beyond words to welcome it.
My new season is that Lucy having a baby! Now everything I learned from my Grand Mothers (and from Laine) I can put into practice!
How lucky I am. This is a Christmas gift for us all. And today I saw my first "photo" and the baby is a thumb sucker. A precious little thumb sucker lol like Lucy was!
On top of all this it is another season... Christmas!
My Nan's ways and things she loved live on in me and as my Aunt could see them in the bunches of flowers I made up I can see them in her book.
So I am caught up in plans for Christmas, summer, a new baby and so many good things!
I hope you are having a wonderful week! xxx