Way back when my Man and I bought our first home, we spent a lot of time outside in the yard working in the shrubbery beds and planting trees and planting gardens. Well, ONCE I planted a garden, but it took over the yard and it had fire ants and mosquitos and I planted 14 times the amount of things that I should have for the space, some of which included among other things pumpkins and watermelons.
I was not a success at gardening. Someday I hope to make another attempt, but this still soft voice that sounds strangely like my husband's, keeps whispering in my ear, "Remember the pumpkins..." and so, my hopes of a future of gardening are all I have to this point. Unfortunately, a HOPE sandwich isn't nearly as satisfying as a juicy, homegrown tomato sandwich.
The kids and I discovered something last week that was possibly even more satisfying and definitely longer lasting than a juicy tomato sandwich. It was something much like what propelled my Man and I to toil long and hard in the steamy North Carolina summers to keep our little starter home looking neat and tidy inside and out...a sense of accomplishment.
For the last few seasons our spring home-tending practices turned into baseball practices which led into swimming lessons which ended just before it was time to pack for vacation which happened to be close to the beginning of vacation bible school which, before we realized it lead right back into the new school year thus leaving our spring home-tending practices woefully untended.
This summer has been declared the summer of home improvement by circumstances well beyond our control so we've decided to jump into the spirit of the whole thing with both feet...each...which adds up to a lot of feet around here. A lot of feet is a good thing when there is much work to be accomplished and so are a lot of hands, both of which we have in abundance!
Our front shrubbery bed has long been in a condition we can gently refer to as au naturale which translates loosely from the French as "we've been ignoring it and hoping some lawn and garden elves would show up and do the work."
Since the elves hadn't shown up after our repeated attempts at not doing their jobs for them, I decided to assemble my own crew of lawn and garden elves and tackle the job.
You will, of course, remember the supervisor from our bathroom remodel of last winter. She still takes her job very seriously.
Somewhere along the way, we discovered shrubbery in our shrubbery bed!
You'll have things like that happen when you are working with a crack lawn and garden crew like this one!
It was at about this point in our task that we began to feel a wave of emotion sweep through the crew...
...it was a sense of accomplishment. See it all over those dirty faces?
In just a bit more than three hours, our au naturale jungle...
...became a trophy of hard work for four children whose feet travel these stones time and again each summer day as they play outside. I suspect that when they pass by this bit of ground, they experience a little jolt of memory and think, "Wow! Look what I helped to accomplish."
We learned well the old saying, "First a thing is impossible, then it's difficult, then it's done." I hope we learned it well, and I hope that the fresh sense of accomplishment is a bit addictive because...
...au naturale THE SEQUAL awaits us this week!
Surely it will be no match for this crew!
"Hard work spotlights the character of people: some turn up their sleeves, some turn up their noses, and some don't turn up at all." ~Sam Ewig
Created for Work: Practical Insights for Young Men: It's an easy read full of stories from author Bob Schultz's life and experience doing construction work. The lessons taught are practical, and easy enough for this mom to remember and refer to throughout the day both for the benefit of her children and especially for herself!
From the back cover: "In Created for Work Bob Schultz applies his engaging homespun wisdom, with stories from real life, to teach young men (and boys) what it means to be good workers....Created for Work inspires young men and offers the tools and encouragement they need to embrace God's ways and always give an honest day's work."