Last winter whilst we were house sitting in Wales I updated my bio on the “My Story” page with this: “We’re still travelling but we’re beginning to dream of home, and nesting, and the life that’s waiting for us back in Australia. Instead of longing for quaint mediaeval European towns, my heart goes thump when I think of long dinners with friends, buying a house and making it a home, and regular trips to the library. We’ve reached the tipping point of our travels and are coming out the other end.”
Since then, we’ve fallen in love with the idea of building our own house and have seriously entertained the possibility of building a cob or straw-bale house. This shift was heavily inspired by fellow long-term traveler friends of ours Tara and Tyler, who’ve recently returned home and have started down this very path.
Tara recently blogged about the process of deciding where to live in the massive, varied expanse that is the US. I loved reading about their dreams, and priorities, and thought processes, so they’ve inspired me to blog about our own.
Currently, my main dream-dwelling related obsession is cottage gardens. This is thanks to our cycles through little French villages populated by cottages with colourful window shutters and surrounded by masses of flowers. I’ve had a hard time getting photos of my favourites because of the minor issue of there being people inside and about!
I spent a delightful day researching the revelation that is the cottage garden (heretofore I’ve never been able to envisage our garden). I discovered the names of the flowers oft used in these types of gardens, promising looking books on the topic, and collected lots of inspirational images.
The more I read about cottage gardens, the more enamoured I became:
The cottage garden is a distinct style of garden that uses an informal design, traditional materials, dense plantings, and a mixture of ornamental and edible plants. English in origin, the cottage garden depends on grace and charm rather than grandeur and formal structure. Homely and functional gardens connected to working-class cottages go back several centuries, but their reinvention in stylized versions grew in 1870s England, in reaction to the more structured and rigorously maintained English estate gardens that used formal designs and mass plantings of brilliant greenhouse annuals.
Our mounting excitement at the thought of nesting, combined with finally getting around to seeing the countries we came over here to see has us oscillating between anticipation about experiencing France and an overwhelming desire to be in our little cottage in the hills already! There are many other facets to this dream of ours but those I will save for another post on another day. Thank you for coming on this tour of my next [simple] big dream!