In all honesty, my front yard is the eye sore of the neighborhood. We bought the house as a foreclosure and the yard is a product of what looks like people just having no idea what to do with it. And that includes us. Around the perimeter is a random mix of: rampantly expanding cacti, a rose bush that refuses to die, random shrubs, half-dead random shrubs, and a lawn that is more weed than grass.
Two three sprinklers broke recently (read: within the last year) and I only got around to fixing them this weekend. While digging through the cement-like soil to get to the pipes I discovered layers of tanbark, large gravel, and a thin layer of sand. Former owners: You’re killing me. And you made me pop a nail.
Two days and three trips to the hardware store later (YOU try investing time in home improvement projects with two toddlers) I finally had everything fixed. I think. I’m testing them tonight when I get home to make sure they don’t leak. Once finished, I think I have to reset our sprinkler system box (my annual chore) so that it will water the back yard as well.
Bonus: I discovered that I’m allergic to grass while working on this project. My arms and legs were puffy and itchy all weekend. Thank goodness for Benadryl and hydrocortizone cream.
Bonus 2: Sean woke up from his nap while I was outside yesterday and was watching me from the dining room window. Jason opened it up so he could talk to me, so I finished working with the words: “I love you Mommy. I go outside too?”
Hubbs was put out of commission on Sunday by a rogue scallion pocket thingie from the farmer’s market, so I took the kids to Target solo for groceries, general provisions, and toys in the afternoon. I had parked on the driveway instead of in the garage because I was working in the yard, so the car was molten-lava hot. I turned it on, blasted the AC, rolled all the windows down, and entertained the kids in the garage for about five minutes to let it air out before we got in.
At Sean’s request, we drove to Target with all four windows down. The kids got a kick out of the air billowing around them and the three of us called out “Whee!” the whole way there. I’m not sure why, it just seemed to fit. They were both so blissfully happy — calling out to me and giggling the whole way. I wanted to bottle the moment.
Once at the store, I loaded both kids in a cart and went inside. Funny thing about kids: You go to a store with both parents (because its easier) and one kid goes off with Daddy (ahem, SEAN) and we don’t see either of them until I call and tell them I’m ready to check out. And if Daddy is there, one kid or the other is constantly asking to get out of the cart and walk around. Flash to Sunday: It’s just the three of us. Sean sat in the large part of the cart and Allie sat in the top seat. She’s occasionally spin around to gibber at him, but both stayed seated — and were content — the whole time we were there. When I told Hubbs, he rolled his eyes and said that it figures that they’d sit still for just me. But I told him the truth: They weren’t “behaving”. They didn’t have a choice. It was just me, so their choice was to sit in the basket or leave. Without toys. No brainer, really.
Sean picked out “Toy Story” action figures, obviously. Allie did too — but chose one with a doll, which must be from the third movie because its the only one I haven’t seen. She also picked out a romper. And when I say she picked it out, I mean she leaned over the side of the cart, grabbed it off the rack, and said “me?”
“Are you sure?” I asked her. She just looked at me as if to say “Are you kidding me, MOTHER?” Obviously. Duh. And then she nodded and smiled at me.
We capped off our adventure with another treat: Soft serve from a drive-thru and some french fries on the way home. When we arrived, they sat at the table with their dad, Allie on his lap, and shared their stories and food. (Or as Sean put it: “Daddy! I have Toy Story. I have Woody. And horse. Buwlzeye. His name Buwlzeye, Daddy.”
I was up until 1 a.m. last night, paying bills and cleaning up a bit around the house. I’m paying for it today. But now I understand what my Dad was talking about way back when I was a kid: Sleeping is a waste of time. Do you have any idea how much I could get done if I didn’t have to sleep? I could actually stay on top of things. Exercise. Make better meals. Have the time to relax and do things for me.
And while I’m on the subject of random dreams that won’t happen in my lifetime: If the geeks of the world could hurry up and invent the transporter from Star Trek, I’d be really grateful. I could use those 2+ daily commute hours for something better.