Yard Work

Today Jason and I spent some quality time together… in our yard cutting and pulling out anything that doesn’t belong. Basically anything that grows in our yard is one big overgrown mess, except for the grass; Jason does an excellent job of mowing.

Let me begin by saying that I dreaded my first summer here in Tennessee. The main reason? It is hot here! We get some high temperatures in Oregon but not the humidity. So, since I am a true Northwesterner and I love the rain and don’t even usually look forward to the summer there, I really didn’t look forward to the summer here! The next reason is, it feels like it has been summer here forever. In Oregon our summer goes from July through September. You really can’t count on any nice weather until after July 4 (it always seems to rain when you want to be outside enjoying the fireworks) and then it gets warm for the rest of July and August. September is usually nice but kind of hit and miss.

Well, since coming to Tennessee, it truly has been the endless summer. I’ve hardly gotten to wear jackets or warm fuzzy sweaters since arriving in March (unless I take one along to a restraunt or store because the air conditioning is so cold you need a coat!). Besides the fact that there are still 2 months left of summer. Sheesh, that’s like, half a year of warm weather! I must say that I have heard reports of this summer being hotter than normal as it seems to be everywhere around the nation.

The way that I have counteracted this unusually warm weather is by 1) staying inside my nicely air conditioned house set to 75 degrees and 2) spending days at the lake in which the cure for being hot is jumping in. Other than having a large body of water nearby for cooling off, I really haven’t been outside for more than ten minutes (except for one time but I was suckered into it). So far, I really haven’t minded summer, it hasn’t been the trial I thought it would be.

The next break in thought I would like to add is that I have no idea how to do yard work. It was never my favorite chore as a child (a gross understatement, ask my family) and it has sort of carried into adulthood. Our house in Oregon literally only had grass. There were no trees and no flower beds. So naturally I left all the mowing to Jason and didn’t really have a need to do anything in the yard except for pull out the rhododendrons because I hated them. Moving into this house I noticed all the flower beds and was really excited about all the trees. They gave the yard such character and I could just picture all the flowers I would have to make the house look so inviting. All of those grand notions flew out the window as I encountered my first summer here. Go outside and work? Ya, right!

So I decided today to bear the heat and make our yard look a little bit more presentable. It really was getting rather embarrassing. There are beautiful roses but they are so overgrown that they aren’t pretty anymore. And those trees I loved so much definitely needed a trimming. I talked Jason into coming out with me at 11:00. Dumb idea. Why didn’t I start earlier? So anyway, I started with a flower bed and began ripping pretty much everything out except for the roses, which I cut way back hoping that I didn’t kill them (I received a rose book for my birthday this year which would have been really helpful but I decided I would concentrate on that next year when the the jungle is a bit more tame). I kept clipping and chopping through the flower beds while Jason cut down a couple of huge holly bushes. He then tackled a tree in our backyard that was overgrown with some sort of vine and kudzu (a crazy vine that takes over everything). The whole time we’re working I’m saying things like, “So, are you almost done there? Should we go inside soon?” Meanwhile, our cat is sitting on the window sill inside, meowing at us to let her come help (we didn’t).

We finally made it to a respectable 3 hours of work and called it a day. The yard looks so much better, which makes me happy, but it still has so far to go, which makes me discouraged! I’d bet that Jason and I are the only ones that can tell anything has been done! But the good news is that I am now here, sitting in front of my computer in my nice air conditioned house, for which I am extremely grateful!