Droplets of inspiration: ideas for blogging

Allison Tait blog
Posted on January 16, 2011

“What are you going to write about today?” asked The Builder, as we enjoyed the dying embers of the afternoon on the front porch. He’s always interested in just where ideas for blogging come from.

I thought. “Not sure,” I answered. There’s so much going on in the world, so many words have been written, what can I possibly add? But if I don’t write about the big stuff, what do I write about?

“I’m going to water the garden,” I continued. He nodded, sagely. Watering the garden is what I do to escape.

When Mr7 was a screaming, yelling, wet bundle of misery at the end of his first long, long days as a newborn, I’d hand him over to The Builder the minute he walked in the door (I confess to waiting on the front steps on more than one occasion) and fleeing to the back garden of our little Sydney house to water.

There is something about giving the plants a drink while my mind drifts in circles that brings calmness and clarity. I like to watch the sunlight create rainbows in the water spray. I like to watch the plants stand taller as the droplets hit their leaves. I like the scent of the wet earth. I like the peace of talking to living things that don’t talk back.

It’s as close as I get to meditation.

I turned off the tap, tried (and failed) to re-roll the hose, and came back inside.

“I’m going to write about watering the garden,” I announced.

Do you have a ‘go to’ activity for thinking (and escape)?


  1. Megan Blandford

    Great post.

    I exercise. Usually a long walk will do it or, if things are serious, a run. The other day I was feeling particularly overwhelmed and I went for a swim. Walking, running and swimming always clear my head and I come back with new ideas and perspectives.

    Sometimes it’s hard to remember that when you’re in the midst of a writing ‘crisis’, though!

  2. littlemissairgap

    The shower … I do my best thinking there. I don’t care about when we’ve had water restrictions, (strike me down now) my shower, long & hot, was my sanity. If only I could drink some wine or a cup of tea in there at the same time … now that would be real nirvana!

  3. Deer Baby

    Don;t have a garden. My thing would be swimming – but only by myself. There’s something about floating on your back, with your ears under water, that calms me.

  4. myshoeboxlife.com

    My go to activity is definitely the garden. Weeding, sweeping, pruning. Just the thought of it calms my mind.

  5. Maxabella

    Floating in the pool. Swinging in the hammock. Walking a very long way. x

  6. River

    My “go to” activity used to be clearing out and tidying the kitchen cupboards, or scrubbing the bathroom.
    These days, I just take a nap.

  7. Naturally Carol

    I know that feeling and have done exactly that many times…especially when my kids were all growing up…it is a legitimate escape…and takes you into a world so far removed from the chaotic world inside the house!

  8. ClaireyH

    I don’t have a go to place, but I am still a regular on the front steps, waiting to handover restless children.

  9. Susanne

    I write to do lists. In an old fashioned paper diary, with a pencil so I can do sketches and rub things out if necessary. It’s good to have it on paper and knowing that I won’t forget lets my brain rest (for a while)

  10. Naomi @ Under the Yardarm

    I run, headphone in, music on running… or I make a pot of tea. This is my meditation.

  11. ANB

    My version is walking, although I like it best with someone along for company. D and I do some of our best talking and planning whilst walking and I’ve always been better at thinking out loud.

  12. sweffling

    In the summer, like you, watering the garden: in winter, cleaning the kitchen sink, in all weathers walking the dog.

  13. mel @ loved

    There is something peaceful about watering the garden, I can understand why it’s your escape..

  14. x0xJ

    My escape is a bath with a book. Nothing like escaping my world to some other fictional place.
    But yes, i don’t do it near enough. And often i have the sounds of little voices on the other side of the door which means it isn’t as relaxing :\

  15. @jencull (jen)

    I used to wait on the doorstep for my husband too when I had my first newborn, and then run up to the electric shower, jump in and not be able to hear the colicky crying over the noise!!

    Watering the garden is good too, must try that one πŸ™‚ Jen

  16. MotorbikesLady

    Mine is sitting with a drink (can be a alcoholic or non alcoholic drink, although alcoholic is usually better).

    While my mind wonders through the tangled forest till it comes to the clearing that has the answer for what its searching for.

    (((( Hugs )))) XXXX Kisses XXXX

  17. therhythmmethod

    I used to water the garden as a kid as my way of escaping. Water makes the kind of soothing noises people can’t make.
    Now my go to seems to be sweeping (usually the back footpath, away from everyone) or walking the dog.

  18. Stacia

    I sleep. Always have. It’s something my subconscious needs when I’m all worked up, like a computer reboot.

  19. Marion Williams-Bennett

    What a perfect, perfect meditation!

    Love the part where you say you find peace in talking to living things that don’t talk back. Ahhh, yeah! It let’s speak without worrying about any response, which feels really good.

    Also love the the Builder asks what you’re writing about….that’s a great Builder you have there.

  20. Kerry

    I think a garden is possibly one of the best places to unwind, whether it’s watering, weeding or just contemplating it. Or throwing the snails over the wall πŸ™‚

  21. Anita

    I water too; or lose myself in a book, I often feel like my mind never stops, when I’m watering it keeps on but when I read even my mind gets lost in the fate of the characters before me.
    Thanks for visiting my blog from Maxabella’s linky. πŸ™‚

  22. Suz

    i cook to escape a bit – there is something about the chopping and the stirring and all the other stuff that is soothing for me. Cooking for pleasure and escape that is….not the cook for the kids every night kind of cooking! Great post

  23. Cate

    I run.
    And before you roll your eyes…it’s a great way to let your creativity free. Exercise is all about shutting up the analytical side of your brain (the side that says STOP!!!) and this lets the creative side get a word in edge-ways.
    So, I run.

  24. Andrew

    My shower for thinking. I have to think fast. Don’t want to waste the water. Sometimes if I have a day off work and I am home alone and I have not planned my day a bit, I may very well have an irresponsibly long shower.

  25. Lucy

    I love that The Builder asks you what you are going to write about.

    To escape: I swim. Underwater. For long deep lengths.

  26. Blocks and Knocks

    Wow I could have written that post, but not so beautifully:) I water the garden, the grass, the pot plants. I do it in the dark when everything is still. I don’t think, I just water. It’s never too long before a mini-me comes outside to talk about the stars or some other boring topic, but by them I am peaceful and ready to give again. Great post.


  27. Cate Bolt

    I always find that the best way to think is to stop thinking.
    Cleaning is always good for processing stuff already in my mind but if I’m waiting for divine intervention, I need to stop looking.

  28. Kymmie

    Blogging is one of my ways to unwind and reflect, but the other is sitting in my back yard on my garden seat with a herbal cuppa. Of course, I don’t sit there nearly enough. But today I decided I was going to do more of that this year. Thanks for sharing your beautiful words (as always). xx


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