Getting ready for spring….
April 2, 2010

already planted tulips....

I started my morning on the back porch….the first morning that it has been warm enough to do so, and what a great start to the day…a little yoga, some cereal, a cup of green tea, and check my email…just so nice. But being out there also reminded me of all that remains to be done…you know how it is…..there’s plenty of that.

I’ve pulled out tons of overgrown honeysuckle…omg, what is it with that stuff…it’s all bundled up on the curb where I HOPE the trash guys will pick it up. Please? I’ve cleaned out the gardens pretty much…all the broken and dead stuff gone…all that remains now is….yes,  to mulch. Now there’s a word that strikes fear and dread in the heart of any homeowner….mulching….the most back-breaking, seemingly endless task ever created by some insane gardener. Stan Stovall was describing to me yesterday how some one does his…I allowed myself to drift to the place where you imagine having your mulch done too. So this year…for the very first time…drumroll please…we’re hiring out the mulching. That’s right…actually paying someone to do what we could do for ourselves. I don’t know why this is so hard for me, but it is. Somehow hiring someone to do what you could do,  cuts to the quick of my Protestant work ethic…the sheer decadence of someone else doing what is clearly YOUR work. Am I the only one who suffers from this malady? Was it my upbringing? Probably. My Mother was never one to hire out work…we either did it or it didn’t get done. Period.

Just one bundle of honeysuckle.....

Anyway, cut to the quick or not…I’m doing it(ot not doing it actually) and I’m glad, ok??  In fact, I cannot wait to see the fresh mulch along inside the professionally edged beds…something I never do….or I kinda start it and then decide it’s just too hard…and then later hit the Advil bottle.  I’ve already put in some tulips in the front pots…kinda pretty…and I’m just so doggone ready for spring…and I have a sneakin’ suspicion some of you are too. Have a lovely Easter weekend everyone, play nice with the Easter bunny and come home safe.

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A sore back and a splash of cold water….
March 30, 2009

I thought of my friend and co-worker Gerry Sandusky, somewhere between the 10th and 14th bag of mulch…..GS had told me last Monday, how he had for the first time ever, hired someone else to mulch his garden beds. He said, “It was fabulous. Saturday evening came…the gardens looked great, I was enjoying a glass of wine, and my back didn’t hurt!” And I seriously considered doing the same…but it’s hard for me, like for many of you, to pay someone else to do something I know I can do my self. So, there we were this past weekend, dragging increasingly heavy bags of mulch around, raking the stuff into place….it was a long Saturday, ok? And yes, my back does feel the effort today, no doubt about it. On the plus side… my gardens look great, and I still have the couple of hundred bucks it would have taken for someone else do the job, in my pocket. Gerry, when he reads this, will snort derisively, and say something like…”Sucker…” Maybe next year Ger, maybe next year.

And then this morning, I turn on the shower to get ready to come to work, and 30 seconds later, the water is still stone cold. This is not a good sign. I pop downstairs, push the little red button on the boiler(our hot water is oil heated though I desperately want an electric on demand hot water system-this one is on demand, but oil is the energy source)….the boiler comes on for about 10 seconds and switches off again. This means something is wrong, you ain’t getting no hot water this morning. So I had to kind of make do….and while I briefly considered washing my hair in the sink..the coldness of the water was just too much…so I’ve opted for a pulled back do for the news tonight…you’ll see at five. And I’m waiting for a repairman to call and say, NOW I’m ready to fix your oil burner.  I really want a hot shower!