Thursday, 24 January 2013

Beautiful Blog Award - and my cat

Nadezda at Northern Garden nominated me for an award just before Christmas. I have waited to find a suitable post to write about it, but between posts about spring weather and snow and other things, this one has been put on the back burner until now.

I was also challenged by Nadezda in a different post for a long list of questions like favourite food, favourite artist, favourite plant etc. but I think questions like that is too general and I don’t think the answers would necessarily be very interesting in my case. Instead I would just like to tell you a few things about me. There is more information about me on two of the other awards I have received, if you should want to know more – here on The One Lovely Blog Award and on The Versatile Blogger Award, but today it is all about numbers:


1. I used to work as a Dental Hygienist when I still lived in Norway, I was medically retired at the age of 30, 18 years ago.

2. I have lived in London since summer 1999, and in my current house since December 2001.

3. My current house is the 23rd house I have lived in since birth, and my 14th since leaving home at the age of 16.

4. I have had a garden or a balcony-garden in every house I have lived in since leaving my parent’s home, that’s 14 different gardens I have attended to, often created – and left!

5. I created my website in 1999 and it is still running, I add to it quite often and upgrade it every now and then. My website has many separate sections within the website, almost like standalone websites. My website has almost 8.000 pages in total and the most popular section is the gingerbread house section. You can find my website GRAPHICALITY here.

6. I have a plant list on my blog and my website, it helps me keep track of all the plants I have in my garden. Currently I have around 130 different plants in my tiny garden, some plants I have just one of, some, like Lilium regale I have more than 80 of.

7. I also have a list of all the plants I have had in my garden the last 11 years, but for some reason have taken out, or plants that have died. Some of the plants died because they were annuals, some didn’t do well because they were unsuitable for my garden and some I simply didn’t know how to care for. Some plants I had to take out because they did too well and became way too big for the space they had. All in all it is a long list of my trial and errors. The list of previous plants in my garden is now of 145 plants, which is more than the list of current plants. Not sure what that says about me as a gardener!

8. I have self-published 6 books, 5 of which are for sale through Blurb.com. 


Thank you to Nadezda for nominating me! I am not going to pass the award on, but if anyone feel challenged to reveal some facts about themselves, consider yourself challenged :-)

I would like to finish this post by reposting some photos of my cat - one can never have too many cute cat photos or what? Well, I suppose for some people it can be too much, but I hope you will feel that these were worth watching again if you saw them last time. I didn’t have that many followers and readers back when I posted these the first time around, on 7th March 2011, I had only been blogging for just over 2 months by then. The video is best viewed in HD, on full screen, so please adjust your settings if necessary. Until next time, take care.





24 comments:

  1. I'm embarrassed that I hadn't visited your main website until now. Helene, your artwork is incredible! Those illustrations--especially the Trilliums--are exquisite! I will be checking it out a little more now. Very nice websites, too. I'm just starting to construct websites for other people. It's fun, but a lot of hard work. Very impressive work! And you definitely deserve the Beautiful Blogger award!

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    1. Thank you Beth for your kind words, my website is a labour of love :-) I have been thinking of selling some of my work on fineartamerica.com, just need to get enough files organised together in the right filesize. There's just not enough hour in the day!
      I started out my first steps at graphic design on computer doing webdesign in 1999, it is great fun but I am sadly behind today's technology - haven't really kept up with things. But the simple way still works so I keep updating my website.

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  2. The cute cat works every time for me xx

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    1. Thank you, glad you liked the movie.

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  3. Helene, it was very interesting to learn more about you! I was surprised how many houses you lived and the plants you've grown up! You have a list of all them, it's incredible.
    The video is wonderful!

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    1. I am thinking of writing a post about the plants I used to have in my present garden, and why I no longer have them there. I remember all of them, and miss many of them :-)

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  4. I have never visited your website before, Helene, it is just beautiful with so much to see! Congratulations on your books, such a wonderful accomplishment. I love that technology today allows us to achieve whatever we wish :) And, I completely agree with you, there can never be enough cat pictures. Cats have a world of mystery in their eyes.

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    1. Thank you for your kind words Rosemary. Getting Internet connection to my PC in 1998 opened a whole new world for me, but getting a digital camera revolutionised the new world! Being able to take as many pictures as I wanted without having to pay for getting them developed was incredible, I took 7000 pictures the first year (in 2004)!

      As I am now housebound my world is very small, it consist of my house and my garden – but I still take pictures for my blog and my website practically every day and I often make small videos too – and sometimes some of my pictures end up as a book. It’s all part of keeping me sane :-)

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  5. What a stunning cat (cat photos always work for me, particularly a green eyed cat). This was my first time visiting your website as well and I was quite impressed with all the artwork. Good job too on keeping up a plant list. I have tried to do this in my garden but find I often forget to update and invariably much is left off the list.

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    1. Thanks for your kind words, my cat is a real charmer - well in my eyes at least! My plants list is a necessity since my memory is pretty bad, if I am to avoid digging up plants and bulbs I want to keep I need to maintain a record of what I have. The plants list goes together with the drawing of my garden.

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  6. What a lovely tiger you've got :o). I like her green eye!
    Have a lovely Sunday!
    Alex

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    1. Thank you Alex, my cat is great company to me :-)

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  7. Your cat is gorgeous Helene. Your talent for taking pictures is incredible! I struggle with just learning how to blog - great post and numbers.....well, we are all just a number aren't we :)

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    1. Thank you Angie, my camera has been a part of me seens childhood, I am on my 5th camera now, third digital. But I have yet to take any photography course or classes, even if I would really like to. I just do photography like everything else, gardening included - trial and error :-)

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  8. Hi Helene, I am impressed by your list keeping skills! They are for sure helpful to keep track of the plants, successes and failures, in the garden. I started doing something similar, but have not been able to up date them. Maybe your posts motivates me to re-start, again. Your cat is such a beauty and seems to be quite a character!
    Have a great start into the new week!
    Christina

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    1. Hi Christina, my plant lists came about because my memory is so bad, I have lists for everything around the house!! And since I had the list and kept updating it, I thought I might just as well put it on my blog :-)

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  9. 130 plants in a tiny garden!! Your tiny garden must be couple of acres! If not, please post a bigger picture of your garden with arrows pointing here and there where all the plants are so that we novice gardeners can learn. You are true-achiever - wow! how do you get time to do all these - writing books, blogging, gardening, photography and then working also! Hats off to you.

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    1. Thank you KL, first of all, if you want to see where all the plants are, there is a drawing under the tab GARDEN DESIGN on the top of this page, and you can find the plant list on the tab PLANTS. My header photo shows most of my garden, it’s really just my patio with the seating area that doesn’t show. I change the header photo with the season so this is a winter photo, if you go to any of my (label) ‘Garden Blogger Bloom Day Posts’ you will find the same photo in the start of every posts from each month.

      I have actually many more than 130 plants, as I have 130 different plants, some only one of, some 2 or 3 of and some, like Lilium regale I have more than 80 of and Lily of the Valley I have lost count of. I have no idea how many plants in total I have, if I count every crocus, every lily, every arisaema, every cyclamen and every Lily of the Valley I probably have much more than 1000 plants.

      I have designed my garden in a very low maintenance style, with something flowering every month of the year, lots of evergreen plants and bark chippings in all the beds so I don’t have to do much weeding. I am disabled and housebound and can’t do much heavy work but I potter about for an hour or so whenever I can and when it’s not raining – all year round.
      My best gardening tip is to start small, and then add to it. Don’t try to run before you can crawl...
      On the tab MY GARDEN there is a video showing pictures how my garden has changed over the years, from humble beginnings :-)

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  10. Hi Helene,

    Thank you for letting me know about my little squirrel friend being a 'she'. Other than the obvious is there another way to tell? Congrats on your blog award and your kitty is so sweet and adorable!

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    1. I don’t know any other way to tell if the squirrel is a he or a she, other than the obvious, but the obvious is rather obvious on squirrels, if you get them from the right angle! Have a look at the picture in one of my posts of a squirrel that use to come in my garden:
      http://graphicality-uk.blogspot.co.uk/2011/01/0501-half-full-or-half-empty.html

      I also have short movie of the same squirrel: http://graphicality-uk.blogspot.co.uk/2011/08/0108-grey-squirrel.html they are cute but boy do they make a lot of damage!

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    2. It is always so great to get to know a fellow garden blogger better! I hadn't been to your other site before - your gingerbread houses are amazing! I thought I had lived in a lot of houses. That would be hard to leave so many gardens!

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    3. Thank you, my Gingerbread House section is still the best visited part of my main website, even if it hasn't been updated in over 10 years!
      I hope to stay where I am now for as long as I can - for as long as I can manage the stairs in my house :-)

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  11. Congratulations on your 200th post! I really look forward to seeing your garden transform through the seasons... and I'm amazed at how many plants you've cleverly worked into the design. You're an inspiration Helene x

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    1. Thank you PJ, I appreciate your support :-)

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