Monday, June 24, 2013


A strange little realisation dropped from the sky a while back. I knew my blog was coming up for its fifth anniversary sometime in June this year, as I had started blogging back in 2008, but I wasn't sure which day exactly. So I looked it up and got a little surprise. It was the 24th of June – today – but hey, wait on, today's our wedding anniversary, too! So I started our blog on our wedding anniversary? Well I must have, and so today I am delighted to celebrate not only 24 years of very happy marriage to my darling girl, Pammy, but five years of blogging here at Garden Amateur as well.

Here's the two of us on holidays back in 2011, on Tybee Beach
in Georgia, USA on the Atlantic Coast. Nice idea, swing seats
right on the beach. Happy anniversary darling!

And so just a few words on this fifth anniversary of our Garden Amateur blog. 

Sometimes things start for reasons that no longer apply, and continue with a life and purpose of their own. In the case of this blog I thought of it as a 'letter from home' for a pair of good friends of ours, Evan and Michelle, who left Sydney to live in the heart of the Australian outback, in Birdsville, for a year, while Evan wrote a book about the experience. Michelle set up her own blog to post day-day-day observations about life there, and so I was inspired to set up a blog documenting life here in Sydney, intended for them as a 'letter from home', as Michelle and Evan are both gardeners (and they ended up growing some very good crops of herbs and vegies despite Birdsville's 40°C heat). Evan did end up writing that book, called 'Birdsville, my year in the back of beyond' and it has sold very well indeed. And he has gone on to write several other fine books, notably a series about life in the outback, and meanwhile here in Sydney I've plugged away at this happy little blog about gardening, cooking and the occasional travel adventure with Pammy.

Blogging is something that is best done for the sheer love of it, and that's why I do it, and also why I called my blog 'Garden Amateur' – as I do this for love, not money. It's something I do a lot of when there's lots to talk about, such as in spring and early summer, and I quieten down in winter, just as my garden does.

I think I've also managed to keep it going because I've taken little breaks from blogging from time to time. If you do something for love, never let it become a chore. And so when I've tired of blogging I've walked away from it for a few weeks. Then, a bit later on, I notice something interesting going on and the urge to take photos and write comes back, just as hunger always does, no matter how big a meal you enjoyed the day before.

So thanks to everyone who visits here. I never tire of being fascinated by all those little red dots on the spinning world globe at the top of this blog, showing all the places where readers come from. I can understand readers from similar climates paying visits here, but when I see readers from Greenland, Siberia, Saudi Arabia's deserts, the Sahara or Alaska, I feel as if this blog serves purposes I never imagined possible.

It's always a lovely little thrill to get a comment. And so here's an especial big thanks to all you lovely commenters here – most of you are also bloggers just like me and you all know what a positive thing it is to see a little email in your inbox saying there's a new comment to be read.

Finally, a big kiss and thank you to my girl Pammy, who notices so much that's going on in our backyard and has inspired dozens of postings here, thanks to her keen artist's eye. It's our blog, not just mine, and it's our garden, too. We do live life together, and that's the way it's going to be for the next 24 years, too (if I live that long!). Happy anniversary darling!


Simone Felic said...

Parabéns pelos dois aniversários.

Jess said...

Aw what a sweet post Jamie! I can't believe it's been 5 years for your blog, but 24 years for your marriage - that's something worth celebrating! ^.^

Sue O said...

I love following the seasons of your garden and your adventures. I know what you mean about taking a break. Sometimes, I just don't feel the love, but it always comes back eventually.
And I discovered, when I used to track visitors to my own blog,that many of those little dots are Googlebots that troll the web searching for topics, and they often come from unlikely locations. Which might explain the Sahara!

Jamie said...

Now your idea about the Googlebots make sense, Sue. I had always thought it must be wishful thinkers stuck in the a hot Saharan desert tent, reading my posts on torrential downpours, or Googlers in igloos in Greenland, sick of the snow, wanting to know all about frangipanis and passionfruit. Now the truth is out: it's the NSA, disguised as a Googlebot!

Lithopsland said...

Congratulations Jamie & Pammy, & Garden amateur! :D

Lanie at Edible Urban Garden said...

Lovely heart-warming post Jamie. Congratulations!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, you two! Can't believe it's 24 years since you got married! Your blog really was a highlight in Birdsville, it was a little bit of reality in what was a seriously unreal (but fantastic) experience. And thanks for the great plug for Evan's book.

Catch up with you soon at Pam's exhibition opening.