Monday, May 3, 2010

That is not a forest. That's my yard...

We put our bid in on our house about four and a half years ago. It was late October and the tree's were demonstrating their full glory here in the "lovely Hudson Valley". The maples and white birch and the tulip tree showed off all the colors thy had in them as if they were trying to sell the house themselves. Since the house has several large windows, I had immediate images of curling up in front of the fire place in the living room on a crisp fall day with a good book. It was all so enticing...
I had no way of knowing that the rest of that week and the following would be filled with funeral arrangements for my dad. By the time we got back to the house for the inspection, all the leaves had fallen and the landscapers had come and magically blown all of those leaves away. We never gave all those tree leaves and what happens after the show another thought...
Until the following Autumn that is. Glory can those leaves fall! Just a tip...don't buy a house with hundreds of trees around it while in the middle of grief! Just a little tid-bit I like to pass on!
Why the chat about trees today when the temperatures are in the upper 80's and the fire place has already been cleaned out for the season?
Simple...my neck. As in the pain in it.
We have walked a very thin line between woodsy and over grown...the last few years have given way to over grown. And so I spent Saturday cleaning the yard with the kids. I should explain that it was a two year clean up of leaves under the shrubs. You see in October of '08 I was just a busy homeschooling, working- nights kind of mom. There was not time to clean up the yard. In October of '09 I was not a busy homeschooling, working mom...I was in the living room, taking a nap and licking the wounds of boredom. Every scripture I read at that point was about resting in the Lord...and so I did. I rested by napping on the couch and watching Fox news. But my season of "rest" is another topic for another day. Today it is all about the leaves.
Now I should not make it sound like John does not clean up the yard. It just seems that his busyness was related to mine. In '08 he was getting to do all of the jobs I was not and in '09 he was working double because I was not. There was not a lot of time for making the yard all that pretty. Other then grass mowing and the leaves on the lawn, nothing got done.

And so the gardens that look like something out of "Life after people" (have I ever mentioned what a dumb show I think that is? Honestly if there is no one here, why do we care? Again, another post for another day) sit waiting for me to clean them out.
I got under shrubs and removed leaves, I scrubbed bricks that had an inch of moss on them, I removed really, really, really dead plants. I chose to call some weeds decorative plantings and I let the earth reclaim some of the gardens. I have over 180 ft by 5 ft of garden along the path to the front door. That is just the one garden...I cleaned out and mulched the gardens that hug the house. I have not yet tackled the gardens that surround the pool.
The kids and I dragged large branches that had fallen during the storms across the yard in anticipation of the bon fire we will have on John's next day off.
I used the power washer on the stairs and ducked as the mud from all the storms we had in March lunged through the air at me. When I ran to the store later in the day to get some much needed Tylenol I ran into my dear friend Mary from our old neighborhood. She didn't recognize me under all of my mud. I looked a bit like a migrant worker on a lunch break.
...and I am so not done. But today we have glorious rain and so I get to avoid the gardens today! I will pop that Tylenol and use a heating pad on my neck and back while I don't get the laundry done today!
The entire time I was in those gardens cleaning on Saturday I kept humming the hymn, "In the Garden". Now that it is cleaned and out and ready for planting, I can spend my mornings on my bench and meet Him in the Word. I had forgotten how much I missed doing that with Him. Every dead leaf and every inch of mulch became an act of praise in anticipation of my time "In the Garden."
I love that God invites us to join Him in His work. I have a sudden image of Adam and Eve in The Garden with Him. Just imagine that perfect garden. I may have to fight the thistle and the thorn to get to it, but He is with me always, in the garden or in the house or in the car. I have asked for plants for mother's day this year. Maybe I will go out between rain drops and pull a few more of those weeds today. The more weeds I pull, the better my time with Him seems to be. Now that weed pulling might just have to be another post.
Here is that hymn I so adore!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XjshQ9JBfzM

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