‘Be our guest’ is an encounter with a personality and an issue. For a few lines, the Mag belongs to them. They can make it their own. Its tone, its style and the story it tells is theirs alone.
Today our guest is Kate, who lives in Essex in England. After falling in love with her Instagram account @tribeandus we asked her to tell us more about her family life and passion for plants. To our delight, she agreed!
“I live with my husband, three kids… and hundreds of plants!”
I have loved plants ever since my mum bought me my first cactus when I was 10 years old. Don’t get me wrong – I killed it within a week! At that age I had no idea how to keep it alive.
My husband Craig is a UK Wedding Photographer. When we bought our first home together it was the best feeling being able to decorate it and really put our stamp on the place. I filled my new home with plants, ones that I had done my research on and that I knew were easy to look after, such as the ZZ plant, Peace Lily and Mother-in-Law’s Tongue.
I have to be honest, when our first child Marcie was born I didn’t really keep up my plant addiction because having a baby is such a massive deal. I had no time to think or do anything other than feed her, change nappies, watch her sleep, clean the house, stare at a wall, try to sleep myself, watch her sleep some more… and just sit there in awe of everything that had happened.
Then I fell pregnant with the twins and we knew everything had to change! We had to get a bigger car and most importantly a bigger house. We moved whilst I was pregnant, and we fell in love with our new house as soon as we walked through the door. It has its cracks and wonky windows, but we loved it despite its flaws.
My plants moved with us and they love the massive windows in our front room, the beautiful sky lights in our kitchen and watching the sun set in our bedroom and office.
Having three kids under three meant leaving the house was pretty much impossible unless I had an army of relatives to help. So being at home a lot more, my plants kept me sane. I really believe that it’s healthy to have a hobby and a passion for something in life.
My kids are amazing and really respect my plants. It’s strange – like they have a connection to them and know not to damage them. I’m not going to lie, I’ve had to move a lot of my plants around and think of clever solutions to have them high-up and out of arm’s reach. I’ve also had to do my research on plants that are dangerous for kids. But all in all, they respect each other. The kids don’t damage or eat the plants and the plants don’t poison the kids!
My three-year-old daughter Marcie loves to water the plants. She also pots the Spider plant and Aloe babies with Craig and dusts the cacti with her paintbrushes. Bodhi and Rowe, my 20-month-old twins, aren’t so interested – they just stroke the plants and walk away! I love my family being surrounded by plants and we all believe that they are beautiful, calming, oxygenating wonders of nature.