Thursday, July 31, 2008

Adventures in Mowing...

Awhile ago, maybe as far back as last Fall, I remember talking to my friend Jenna on the phone and asking her how her day was going. She said it was going great and that she just got done mowing the lawn.

"What?! - did you say YOU just got done mowing the lawn?!" I asked in surprise. To which she replied that yes, SHE just got done mowing the lawn. I must have sounded more shocked than I meant to because she went on to tell me that it is something that she chooses to do and that she actually finds it kind of therapeutic. My little brain said "WHATEVER!" in my head and thought about all the times Mark mows the lawn and how hard it looks, it didn't seem very therapeutic to me. But, lately I got to thinking... Jenna has never steered me wrong before. In fact, quite the opposite, she is truly the strongest example of the person I want to be that I've ever had. This is no secret to her, I tell her all the time that I want to be Jenna when I grow up (despite the fact we're nearly the same age). I've yet to talk to her even when things might not be going great for one or both of us that I don't walk away feeling refreshed, energized and like a daughter of God. Plus, she also introduced me to the concept of "toilets and towels on Tuesdays" ....not a hard concept, just a matter of cleaning your bathrooms and washing your towels on Tuesdays - something that has truly stuck with me and sometimes even worked! I've also adopted her idea of everyone in the family owning their own color of towel (thanks to Charlotte buying us all our own color) and having a towel hook in their room. On Tuesdays, you wash the towels and hang them back on everybody's hooks and you're good for a week....or sometimes two or three if - like me, you only remember that it is Tuesday every other week or so. :)

ANYWAY, like I said, lately I got to thinking that Jenna has never steered me wrong before...maybe, just maybe there IS something to this lawn mowing thing. I decided one day to try it out. The timing was perfect, it was the week of Mark's birthday and what better present to give your hubby than the day off from mowing the lawn, right? So, I asked Mark to teach me the ropes and off I went! I mowed while he trimmed, we were the perfect team. I actually had FUN - I liked soaking up the sun and making cool designs in the grass. Not bad, I thought - and definitely worth trying again...someday. Well, "someday" came a little earlier than planned as the very next week on the night before "lawn mowing day" Mark didn't get much sleep. I was sort of responsible since I stayed up talking maybe a little bit too loudly to Charlotte and Mikele who had come to stay for a few days. Since I felt partly responsible I couldn't make Mark who was running on like 3 hours of sleep come home and mow - so I did it again, and this time solo. I enjoyed it the second time almost more than the first. Jenna was RIGHT! (though I never really doubted her) it WAS therapeutic - I could really get used to this! I e-mailed Mark and told him that I mowed again and that he didn't have to come home and do it. He jokingly asked if anyone we knew drove by and saw me and I joked back and told him "only our bishop, stake president and most of the elders quorum, not to worry" :) hee,hee. So, anyway, this morning I woke up and thought "Hey, it's Thursday - time to mow the lawn" and off I went. I really enjoy being able to get into a rhythm and just think and ponder. I think about my cute neighbor across the street when I'm mowing toward her house and I think about my cute neighbor next door to me when I'm mowing on the side of my house - I think about how blessed I am to live in this neighborhood, in this house and in this country. I look at the mountains on both sides of me and realize how beautiful our state is and just feel happy to be alive and I think about how my hard working husband won't have to come home and worry about working even harder and that makes me happy.

BUT, since I AM a girl after all I realized on this third go-around that I do have a few fears ...things that I bet Mark has never thought twice about...for instance:

What if I get a blister in these shoes since I refuse to wear socks with them because it looks too dorky....yeah, it would be worth it, there's NO way I'm wearing socks with these shoes.

What if my shirt looks too tight and shows all my fat.....maybe I should have worn one of Mark's t-shirts instead. Nah, then I would have looked frumpy...this one will have to do.

What if the Wasps resting happily in the nest that Joshua just found under the mailbox decide to initiate war on me while mowing and attack me from behind.

Speaking of bugs, what if ALL the bugs that I disturb while traipsing through the bushes (and there are a LOT of them) decide to join the wasps in their declaration of War and attack me from all sides. ....ewwww!

What if I do it wrong and Mark has to do it all over again.

What if I break the lawn mower and we have to buy a new stupid lawn mower instead of the flat screen tv that I really want instead.

What if the blower thing that Mark uses to blow all the grass clippings back on the lawn, that seems to weigh 10 times what I weigh (though realistically probably weighs less than ten pounds) suddenly switches to sucking power instead and sucks me and Gabe in. ACK!

What if the poisonous mushrooms that Gabe has scattered all over the lawn turn airborne when mowed/crunched up and I fall to my death on my freshly clipped grass and the lawn mower mows over me. Double ACK!

Okay, so I didn't really worry about the last two things...just needed some more items to make my point. :)

Thankfully, none of the above happened I didn't get a blister after all, and maybe after a good summers' worth of mowing I'll burn off all my fat and not have to worry about my shirt. Yeah, I'll go with that.

I also kind of wanted to try to mow a heart shape into the front but was too afraid I'd mess it up...I bet Mark's never had that thought either. :)

AND, I've decided the blower thing hates me. Oh, and it's stupid. And heavy. And stupid. And if it's secretly alive I bet it laughs at me while I try to use it, I can't blame it, I would laugh at me too because it's heavy and I can't hold it right and end up blowing all the grass INTO the garage and have to go deeper inside to blow it back out and it's stupid. (and if Gabe could read he'd be telling me right now "mommy, don't say too-pid")
Oh, and this is what happens when you send your 3 year old to his room for having a chocolate chip cookie party while you were mowing the lawn (when you've told him ALL morning that he can't have a cookie because he didn't eat his eggs) and then you sort of forget about him because you needed to take a picture of the lawn that you are so proud of to e-mail to your husband. oops. Sorry sweetheart, I will make it up to you when you wake up, I promise! (and in my defense, he fell asleep in less than 5 minutes...that's only 2 minutes longer than his normal time-out time so he must have really needed a nap today...right?)


Cindy said...

Good for you! It looks great! I mow the lawn at least twice as much as Mark does. Not because I find it relaxing or anything though. Mark is just so busy that if I don't want our yard to look like trailer trash I have to do it myself.

The Forney Four said...

The thought of you putting a big heart in the lawn made me just laugh. I love the way girls think. And I seriously can't believe you mowed the lawn. I think my hubby would fall over and die. And I defintely don't want that to happen.

Shill and Company said...

Way to go Melanie! I love mowing the lawn. Chris used to get so embarrassed that I would do it so often. The worst for him was when I was 9 months pregnant and still doing it. Two of my neighbors came out within the first 5 minutes of me out there and asked if they could do it for me. I told them nope, I love being out here. Chris told me he was afraid that if two people came out, what was everybody else thinking? He felt like a loser. Poor guy. I do it because I love to be outside and enjoy the break from housework and kid duties.

Oh, I have to tell you that what you said about the blower was hilarious. You are so funny. I adore you!

Peggy said...

I'm the lawn mower in our family too. I love it. The being outside, being away from the kids, alone with my thoughts, the sun, the breeze, the exercise. It's great! Glad to hear you've discovered it! Oh, and I am totally going to do that toilets and towels tuesday thing! Thanks for the tip!

DIANE said...

You made your old aunt really chuckle on this one. But man did that lawn look G O O D. I mowed all last summer because Ken was down with a blood clot. I enjoyed it but luckily he didn't get outside to see it. My eight year old neighbor boy told me cross cutting the lawn is so much nicer. What is that? When I asked Ken he as aghast. Haven't you been doing that? So it was good he didn't get to see it. Now he is better I have to weed and use the blower thing. But at least we conquer together, right?

Reggs said...

Mel i loved this post!! I laughed the entire time. I loved your lawn, I love your stories and I think your boys are so handsome! What a good mom you are, taking all these pictures and mowing the lawn!
I would mow the lawn, but I don't ever want it to become my obligation. It's the same reason why I pretend I don't know how the drill works.

Shar said...

Sis you are so funny! It sounds like people have been keeping secret how great it is to mow the lawn. And to think I felt sorry for them all this time! It's nice to know that I dont have to anymore! It takes 2 hours to mow ours and thats just the front! I'm glad to know that they enjoy it! Oh and if you say your fat one more time I am going to dis-own you. I mean it... just try it...

Brandi said...

Hi Melanie! Wow it's been awhile hasn't it!
Thanks so much for sharing your blog with me! I will definately stop by again! I am addicted to this stuff!
As for the lawn, well, Jason and I sort-of tag team it. At the beginning of the summer, he is usuallly the mow-er, but as the summer wears on I do it more and more frequently. But I really don't mind it. I turn on my mp3 player and jam out while I do it. I think the solitude is good for us! :)