Into The Green Garden. 

A place of earth and motherhood. Of nurture and growth. Of seasons and of life.

A lush, abundant place of garden-to- table living. A celebration of my new found connection to the soil and how it is helping me to understand what it means to be human.

We are aiming for all-year round self-sufficiency from our front yard vegetable patch, as well as low-waste and local living. If you’re keen on all of that, join me on Instagram, here. I’ve taken to it just recently, but like a duck to water.


This blog is also a place that celebrates the seasons of our family life too.

We’re in glory days at the moment – a summer if you will – wedged firmly between our son’s last open heart surgery and his next one.

Our experience with him, has made us conscious that everything we experience is temporary, that nothing is guaranteed. And that we have more than enough.

That’s a truth for all of us, but his heart turned the volume up on it for me. Its a gift for which I am becoming more and more grateful.


And so The Green Garden, is also place of honoring the bleaker seasons too.

Of speaking about grief and trauma. And then too, of making peace with it. Of letting it go. I know, that in owning those wintry nights of the soul,  as an essential and vital part of the cycle of life, we are liberated – regenerating and growing in spring in new and surprising ways.

So yeah. That’s The Green Garden. A place of earth and motherhood. Of nurture and growth. Of seasons and of life.

So welcome – nau mai, haere mai.

I hope you stay a while.



This blog started back in 2011 when Albie was born with a shonky heart. It was undiagnosed in utero and one hell of a fright at birth.

His first two years of life with us were often times overshadowed by his heart’s health and we used this blog to let family and friends know what was happening for us.  It was about weight, and cardiac surgeries and worry. It was also often times a vent, a whine, a cry – a way of making order of the nonsense that it all was to us then.

We’ve been through as tough a times as you can imagine without losing Albie. In 2012, he took us all right to the edge with him when he had a cardiac arrest the day after open heart surgery. His heart didn’t pump again for five long days. This blog became a clarion call for prayers and thoughts, from around the world, all of which were received.

Those posts and all the comments that followed, now stand as a bit of a testament to those big, life-altering days. I read them every now and again. Those days  fired us more grateful, more thankful, and hopefully more present in all that we have. I hope I never forget that.

Thankfully our lens on life is wider than his heart defect now, and this blog reflects that too. I remember the keen need to find out all I could about other families cardiac experiences, so I have left it all here. If you are interested in finding out more about Albie’s heart, there are plenty of entries from February – May 2011 and from August – September 2012. A summary of his heart defects can be found here, and the Rastelli surgery he had (and will need an adapted version of again) here.

In 2014, we welcomed Fred. One sweet, calm butterball of a boy, he has provided us all the balm our healing hearts required. He’s not so calm, now that he is 4 years old, but he is still sweet beyond belief.

When I hear Albie and Fred laugh together, I truly do thank my lucky stars.


  1. Hi guys, loved reading your blog i found linked via faceboook. You sound very similar to our own wee family and we have just returned from open heart surgery to fix jacks tetralogy of fallot – unfortunately they found his airway was closing so we also came home with a tracheostomy and more medical equipment than before heart surgery! I loved reading that you like us are working hard to live a good life and enjoying the little things nature has to offer – go the baby wearing they can see and experience so much :). Keep strong, keep putting one foot in front of the other and best of luck for starship next week. Lots of love from the Wall family

  2. Dear Sarah, I received the link to Dear Albie from Kate at Playcentre and have just been reading your story and watching through tears that most beautiful movie. I can’t imagine how Holland must be for you all. And the image and descriptions of what your brave man is going through has broken my heart. I can see that the love around him is so so intense and hope with all my heart that it helps to heal him right now. Your honesty, resilience and pragmatism has amazed me. Just want you to know I’m wishing Albie, you and your people much love right now, and hope that your precious baby is getting stronger by the hour. Lots of love from the Adrian-Burne family.

  3. Hi
    I’m Louise from also England like Marcus , I’m the friend Michelle came to stay with in Auckland last night ! X
    If I can do ANYTHING? Please say , I live not far from hospital , work mon and tues in the street by the hospital , can come sit , stay night or you can stay at mine a night for a break or I can simply just bring groceries or a dinner ! Just shout
    My mobiles 0211675582 , my prayers are with Albie and yourselves x
    Louise Nugent xxxxooooo

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