Lawn Gnomes


This is our house! Its a cute wee thing in the middle of the woods and I’m so damn happy to be calling it home. To find it you have to go careening up curvy mountainous roads, make a sharp turn into what appears to be a solid wall of palm trees and bamboo and then go rumbling down a steep, pebbly, homocidal driveway and try not to disappear off either side and go rolling in a fiery inferno onto the fields below. Fun, every time.


But as the reward, you get this. Nice eh? Not a house or car in sight. Just grass and trees and birds. Tuis, spectacled finches that look like they have googly eyes glued to their heads, wax-eyes, fan tails, hawks, birds that look remarkably like Eugene Levy, little brown ones, little black ones, and one giant fat pigeon named Greg who is seriously exactly like a basketball covered in feathers. He takes immense pleasure in pooping on me when I walk under him. We are enemies. Damn you, Greg!


Come, walk with me around the gardennssssss…


Today was the day we Took Back The Yard! It involved a giant bloody pair of shears and a beauty of a lawnmower that’s leftover from some war time era. Did they have any wars in the Victorian times? I also spent the bulk of the morning picking off leaves and stems of every plant, eating them and declaring what they were before pruning or pulling them out of the ground without mercy. Everything turned out to be some kind of lettuce.


There she is! I can feel everyone in the entire world laughing at how impractical and stupid this is, but holy smokes.. its so fun. Its such a cool, simple, practical machine and it does its job really damn well. As my parents can both attest to, I detest mowing the lawn, but this was actually really fun. And an incredible work out. I didnt realize I had muscles under my arms and in the backs of my knees… ee…


Here is our glorious pile of clippings that I was very proud of! This is also a picture of our new gym.. I was sore after this.


A pretty flower. I can’t remember what these are called. Bird of Paradise? Anyway, very pretty and we have a wall of them around the front of the house.


Doing the laundry. Also the old fashioned way because we are too poor for a washing machine right now.  We do it by hand in the sink.. it takes about a week to get it all done. Thats not an exaggeration.. Anybody in the Auckland area want to donate a washing machine to a couple of broke ass but loveably dimwitted Canadians who seemingly insist on doing absolutely everything the hardest way possible??

Also for the record CB is way better at all of these things than me. Somehow when I do a load, all my tshirts come out smelling like my socks and when he does it it’s like we’re both wearing clothes washed in springtime rainbows.  Argh..


A tamarillo tree. I can’t tell but I think they are ripe— anybody in the Auckland area want to swap a washing machine for 20kg of tamarillos? Mmmm tamarillos, for when you cant decide whether you want to eat a tomato or a .. grape?


A little tiny grasshopper thing! I was going to say Weta but I’m not sure. We definitely have wetas here though, they look like prehistoric grasshoppers and are more amazing than they are scary. Greg likes to eat them.


Nasturtiums looking for the light. Future plans to turn this little shed into a chicken coop until the landlords notice… CHOOKS!


Looking up into the tamarillo tree.


This tree is growing beside the tamarillos and I don’t know what it is. It is some kind of fruit for sure. Feijoa??


The insides taste nice but have that bitter pectin-y taste.. hm..


An armload of the worlds most beautiful beets!


The back of the lot, not much going on back here. Just grass and some .. even bigger grass.


A nice fern that shades our garden.


This beautiful tree covered in purple flowers is my favourite. They look ultra violet against the green background of New Zealand bush and are so mesmerizing.


The healthiest silver beet in the universe. We will be eating this everyday forever.


A look out into our valley.


Celery! Growing out of the ground! I didnt know it did that!


Little pink rosebuds.


These are two of the strangest flowers in the garden. No idea what they are, and they do not taste good.





Mowing down the foot of thick, wet grass.


A monarch sipping the sweet nectar of this lovely tree. Some kind of rata? I really need to get a book on this stuff..


Squishing a tamarillo and eating its GUTS!


All the while, a tui sits and watches me, whistling like a little old man.


Author: Kara Lalalala

I write this blog for my family cause I am terrible at letters & emails.

4 thoughts on “Lawn Gnomes”

  1. Thanks for sharing your gorgeous lush slice of paradise. Loving all the lush edibles. And please get chooks so I can live through you. I want chooks real bad.

    We have a similar low tech mower and I agree, it’s fun to use. I don’t mind the little work out either. As long as the grass is dry and not too long. When we first got it, there were 4 of us drinking in the backyard. We all took turns and moments later it was all done. I just have to be careful that Tofu the bunny doesn’t follow too closely. Still it’s less scary than having a fat rabbit follow a conventional mower!

    Just saw that F&P were giving away fancy washing machines so you might as well check it out. Sorry if this sounds like spam, but I’m in no way affiliated with F&P.

    p.s. I don’t think those fruit are feijoas. Be careful eating random berries in your garden. You might not wake up.

    1. Lawn mowing party! Genius.. anything can be fun with friends, booze and bunny rabbits eh! Thanks for the link to the F&P contest, I was just thinking that it might be fate and we’d win and wash everyones clothes! But alas its not for non-residents.. boo. We’ll just have to do it the old fashioned way and pay for one with money I guess, sigh.

      Also yeah.. I dont know what those “fruits” are.. might not even be fruits.. Ill just wait and see what they turn into…

  2. Your home looks so beautiful Kara!! Man I want to go running in those open fields singing with my arms outstretched. All Sound of Music like and shit. Must be nice to see that every day! My Grandpa had one of those old mowers until like 7 years ago…when he finally decided he had to get a new one for his giant backyard in Peterborough…he was 78 then! About time I’d say…
    Miss you! Glad to see you are well!

    1. I would love to see you take off running through these fields! You’d be all “The Hills are Aliiiiii–” get tangled in the 3 foot long crab grass and fall flat on your boobs. I would definitely laugh. Your grandpa had fantastic taste in lawn mowing machines! Saw you went to Texas, lady. Jealous. Bag yourself a cowboy?

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