Yesterday I decided we were going to have a family bonding event and do lawn work TOGETHER. Responding to moans and groans, I explain how LUCKY they are that they don't have to rise at 4am to milk cows, muck stalls and feed chickens. Instead they get to work in the 500 degree heat pulling weeds.
My 29 yr.old cousin, who is temporarily living with me, volunteered to help. He promises to show me how to work all of the power tools in the shed. He makes quite a fashion statement--shirtless, with knee-high rubber wader boots and a cowboy hat. I'm really wishing I had a camera. My son, not to be outdone, comes outside in Pirates of the Caribbean pajama pants, a button down dress shirt and cowboy hat to match my cousin. Did I mention the 500 degree weather with a gazillion degrees of humidity?
I take the weed wacker. I decide it will be a good anti-stress therapy to WACK away those weeds. My cousin is in charge of the hedge clipper--for those weeds that are 6 feet tall and resemble trees. My son is given the task of weeding a small bed near the mailbox. He has done this before, so I don't think he needs much guidance.
30 minutes later, my arm and hand are numb from weed wacking and I've barely made a dent in the weed forest, which is my yard. My cousin is having difficulty. Apparently it is against his karmic principles to kill ANYTHING. When I question why he isn't hacking off the weeds, I get responses such as--I thought that plant was nice or the coverage gives you more privacy or that one had flowers.
I check on my son. Instead of weeding the front bed, he has DUG A HOLE. Not a small hole, but a large hole in the MIDDLE OF MY FRONT YARD. When I inquire oh so patiently about the hole in the front yard, he explains that he WANTED to dig a hole. Not only is this hole unsightly, but dangerous. Perhaps he has a secret death wish for his sister. The next time she mows the yard, the tractor mower will flip over. I give him directions to fill the hole and continue weeding. I am very specific about what constitutes a weed and what is a REAL LEGIT plant. In my mailbox flower bed, I only have 3 plants--lilys and the rest are weeds.
I go back to WACKING. A while later, I check on my son again and notice LILY DECIMATION. I'm not overly attached to my plants, but this was one of the only plants that I managed not to kill and it was lying shredded in the driveway. How could you kill my lily???
My son is now demoted to the back yard picking up debris. What's debris, Mom? Just pick up all the wacked plants in the back yard. I check in with my cousin later. How's my son doing? Is he picking up the plants? Sort of. He's been talking about how he is going to be a MALE MODEL, so that he never has to do yard work.
This is why parents drink.