Flowers, greens and leafy things.
Three of my newest and latest obsessions.  Ever since I was a kid, there has always been a part of me that's loved nature and the outdoors.  I can remember the feeling of running bare feet in the grass, climbing the long and ragged limbs of trees and counting a day well spent by the amount of mud and green stains on my jeans and sneakers.  As I got older, this intrigue turned into all kinds of bug collections, rock trays, pet frogs hidden in bedroom drawers and strongly worded letters from a 12-year-old who deeply regretted to hear the news of the destruction of a forest that lined the road behind our home.  As the story usually goes, high school came along and somewhere along the way I grew out of my leafy roots and branchy bones into highlighted roots and boys who drove cars.  Only recently have I made my way back to my old friends of leaves and stems and reconnected with the thumb of mine that was once a few shades greener.
It started with a cactus.
And then another...
And you know what? Maybe I could take care of one more.
Before I knew it, any time I had any excuse to hit the store my feet were trotting past the plant section with hungry eyes before I even had a chance to grab some coffee creamer (that's a pretty big deal for me - I usually throw elbows for that hazelnutty goodness)
Over the past few weeks the walls, shelves and empty spaces of my apartment have been filling up with watercolour petals and lush green leaves, bringing a new sense of life to the space I currently call home.
It's led me to the conclusion that - even if you aren't sure how your nails would look covered in soil or how seriously you could take yourself naming things that don't have faces - there are ten reasons you absolutely need to start a plant family...
They are as follows.  

10 Reasons You Need to Start a Plant Family 

1. It's therapeutic.
There is something so satisfying about picking out a leafy green friend, bringing him home, finding a spot he likes to grow in and then a watering schedule that keeps him bright and happy.  It sounds so simple - because it is.  It's a little bit of simplicity in what can sometimes feel like a very complicated world.  

2. It's fun 
I will warn you now - plants are like tattoos.  You get one and then suddenly you're hooked, looking for new spots and cute designs that would go nice in the corners and areas of your life untouched.    

3. It cures the puppy fever. 
This is the most important point on this list in terms of my mental sanity.  Bentley would not be impressed if I came home with a new four legged creature to which he was suddenly expected to share half of his toys and three quarters of my bed with (despite being 6 pounds, he takes up about as much bed space as an elephant). That said, whenever I come home with a new plant, Bentley is seemingly unphased so long as he gets a welcome-home belly rub. 

4. It helps you feel connected to your roots. 
Like the earlier metaphoric statements about green jean stains and toes in the grass - planting a garden and starting a green family rekindles that eternal flame with Mother Nature.  Our world has become so manufactured that just the other day as I looked down at the carrot I was chopping up for a stir-fry, it hit me with sudden astonishment that the thing was once a seed. It was planted, watered, sun bathed and grown to create the decadent piece of crunchy goodness I was about to add to my dish.  It was a perfect piece of food, packed with nutrients, made from the earth herself.  No ingredient list, no packaging - just bright, orange, plantiful goodness.  I was eating something straight from the fricken ground.
This obvious yet somehow new realization left me feeling oddly satisfied and strangely urging to google how to grow carrots. 

5. It brings life to your home.
Walk into a room without a plant.
Walk into a room with a plant.
Subtle change, huge energy difference.  Try it out - notice the plants in every room you walk in and trust me, you'll start seeking the green everywhere you go.  

6. You can reap your rewards.
Ok picture this - you're chopping up a blood red tomato to top off the veggie burgers you just made the first BBQ of the summer season.
Guess who grew said, juicy, tomato?
You did.
Satisfaction level - 12/10

7.  It's a perfect new hobby for Spring.
Spring is the best time to get elbow deep in some plants and gardens.  Not only is it a season of renewal, it's the perfect ritual to officially close the casket on winter and walk fresh faced and preppy into a new season of lavenders, lilacs and lilies. 

8. It gives you a break from technology.
The other day I was walking up a flight of stairs and the person coming down at the same time literally stopped dead - mid step - to stare blankly at their phone and puzzle out a response to whomever was on the other end.  I swear, the 15 seconds I spent standing there felt like 15 minutes as I felt myself go from shocked to amused to suddenly wondering how many times I had done this myself.  The physical people around us have become ghosts to the virtual ones waiting on the other end of our screens.  We're constantly opening and shutting the exact same apps, scrolling through the same images and having multi-demensional conversations in seven different applications with coworkers, friends, followers, family members and that old neighbour you used to hangout with when you were kids.
Listen, I'm not bitter about technology.  In fact, I fricken love it!  But taking 20 minutes out of the day to tend to something that doesn't have buttons, signals, cameras or keyboards feels really damn good. 

9.  It's cheap & easy!
Honestly, you don't have to spend much.  Start with a plant or two in the window, maybe a fresh bunch of flowers for your kitchen.  Plant some seeds in a jar, look up some cute and easy DIY's.  Let your green thumb expose itself to you and have fun with it.  You don't have to be an expert, though in a way you already are.  Being that we are all exactly that - beings - we ourselves are made from nature too. We are all living things inhabiting this planet, connected in ways we will never begin to understand. In a way, we're all born green-thumbs.  We just may have lost our green touch along the way. 

10. It will teach you a lot about yourself.
For instance, planting a green family has made me realize how much my patience could use some shine and polish.  Like seriously, I planted that seed four days ago, shouldn't I see a sprout by now? And what about you Billy? I'm sorry I watered you a little too much last week but you don't need to be so dramatic.  Turn those yellow leaves green again so I know you're alright... please? Okay I'll check back this afternoon.
If you want to find a little bit of stillness in a world that's constantly moving or a quiet corner in your mind painted in green shades of zen, I recommend walking down the gardened path in life and seeing what blooms!

Happy Planting!
- K