Hey gals. Happy Tuesday to you! I've been home sick today, making soup, cleaning my room, and oh yeah, binge watching the Queer Eye reboot that just came onto Netflix. (If you haven't watched it, go out and buy tissues, then hit play. You will be shedding a few tears, guaranteed.)
I've recently become a committed plant mom. Not a plant auntie. Not even a plant babysitter. No, a plant mom. When I got back from my trip to Europe a month ago, I had this strange urge to care for something. To make it grow. To be accountable. To nurture some lovely plant babies. High maintenance, low maintenance, it didn't matter. They would be my children and I their mumsy.
So what is it about buying plants that feels so attractive? What's up with this crazy millennial craze of going into plant shops and spending our barista tips on snake plants and pathos and little succulents and cacti that make you physically say "awe, what a sweetie!" in a baby voice out loud? While I can't speak for every millennial, I can tell you why I started collecting plants. And it starts with my mom (as most good things do).
I'm sure you've heard this before, but I really mean it: my mom is the best. When I was growing up, we would go on Costco dates, always winding up in the food court, where I'd get the berry smoothie (which would give me crazy brain freezes) and my mom would get the iced coffee. She helped me with all my school projects, my co-designer in creating everything from an amazing poster about Massachusetts to a presentation about Bessie Smith. She would laugh at my jokes even when they weren't that funny. She was my partner in crime. She has my back in any and every situation but also isn't afraid to tell me the hard truth, the truth I don't always want to face. But she's given me the courage to face it, knowing that I have worth and value.
But what the heck does that have to do with plants? Well. Along with being my superhero, my mom was also the superhero to a myriad of plants around the house. Some were in brass planters, others in simple clay pots, but they were all equally loved and looked after by her. My mom's claim to having so many plants around was to freshen the air in the house, but I have a theory that she just loved seeing things grow and flourish (something she is an expert in, let me assure you).
Yeah, she's also a mega babe, so there's that.
About two years ago, my parents moved out of our childhood home in Bend, Oregon. They were heading into a new chapter in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and their U-Haul could only hold so much. So along with random kitchenware and knick-knacks, they bequeathed me their kitchen succulents and cacti. And although they've been neglected a few times (thank the Lord that child services for plants doesn't exist), I've loved seeing them in my own kitchen. Yes, I've killed two of the cacti with overwatering, but I'd prefer to think of it as "over-loving" them. And I digress.
My parents have been living in Santa Fe for almost a year now, and every time I make a visit, I see new plants that've been adopted by my mom. She tells me about the ones that are giving her grief and the angel babies that are growing just by being there. She sends me pictures of the new plants she finds at Trader Joe's, smiling happily in the tub where she watered them.
So I guess for me, being a plant mama is less about being the plant wizard, and more about being a little bit more like my mom. Maybe someday I'll be on her level of plant whisperer, but no guarantees. Nevertheless, I'll continue collecting plants and possibly killing a few in the process, because it makes me think of my mom, and the way that she nurtures not only her plants, but also how she nurtures me. Thanks mom, you will always be plant mom goals to me.