... I never promised you a gnome garden...".
Ok, so that's not the proper word in the song, but it fits well!
Hubby is distressed. Hubby hates gnomes. I, on the other hand, adore gnomes and have conspired to pass this love on to the beautiful boy.
My favourite books as a child were about fairytale lands where people were little and wore red hats, and the plantlife was always oversized - daisy trees, mushroom picnic canopies, conker shell houses.
This book was my absolute favourite.What child could resist those tiny hidden doorways and all the jolly folk in pointy red caps, smoking pipes and sloshing tankards of beer .... yes really!
I so very desperately wanted to find hidden doors and tunnels in our gardens. I spent long hours looking. And when I couldn't find them I would build them myself. At my granny's garden I was allowed to arrange all her gnomes into my very own little fairyland, always around the sunken sink 'pond'. I would cut flowers and poke them into the lawn for a forest, gather all her wonderfully kitsch garden ornaments and spend hours just imagining myself small enough to become a part of the landscape I had created.
I have often told the beautiful boy about these miniature worlds. We even visited our nearest model village, a tiny example of Bekonskot, the model village I remember visiting when I was a child.
And now he has created this...
We have a gnome garden!
To encourage his artistry I took him on a detour after school one afternoon to Gnome Crossing. It is a long way down a dead-end track, not far from Strumpshaw Fen and where the mainline railway crosses the road.
One of those wonderfully English Eccentric places, full of individuality and devil-take-fashionable-opinion- this-is-my-home attitude which I so admire!
Many of the gnomes and ornaments have been repainted in garish colours to keep them cheerful. My gran also used to do this - once a year lining up her little folk along the back path for a quick refurb.
The beautiful boy was completely awestruck, both by the world of wonderment before him, and the fact that it was possible to walk across a mainline railway without any obvious way of knowing if a train were coming - there were lights and bells but really the only clear sign was when the express train whoosed you just a metre the other side of a flimsy gate!
This wise old owl was a great favourite of course.
And I love the use of old car wheels and tyres to create a display - makes you smile that people pretend recycling is a new idea!
So, newly inspired, our gnome garden has developed into something more! A veritable living community of woodlanders in their timber yard...
and in the undergrowth of weeds, small communities can be spied!
It has become so much an agony to long-suffering hubby that the beautiful boy and I are planning a relocation to a newly developed quiet corner of our garden, where they will have their own secret little space in a horseshoe of box hedging. Who knows, we might even build a little wooden door when the hedge is sufficiently grown!
I have not yet offered these little folk to the growing gnome village. They are the remaining few of my granny's tiny pot gnomes.
These are the little folk who populated the gardens of my childhood dreams and after seeing divine cakes at the Vintage Magpie, I think these tiny chaps can stay in the kitschen for a little while!
These two are bigger and I am keen to preserve what is left of the original colouring.
Did you ever see two more kindly and benign faces?
What's not to love?