Monday, June 29, 2009

Ancient Burial Mounds

Schlepping is a Yiddish word that works so well to describe dragging something along. I schlepped one ton (yes, about 2,ooo pounds) of composted material today. Ben watered for me as I covered up more of my front yard with cardboard, pulled massive amounts of die-hard Bermuda grass by hand (why can't it disappear into its famous triangle? eh?), covered the cardboard with straw then 1/2 ton of compost from the SMART Center (read: the dump where they provide free compost from everyone's garden bins that has been ORGANICALLY heated). Then it was time for manure.

The boys and I took a run to Al's property in the hills of Milpitas (I found Al on Craig's List), where he (thank God) loaded the 1/2 ton directly into my truck, and also showed the boys the little Asian pig he has that does tricks and likes dog biscuits, and let them collect peacock tailfeathers.

Then it was back home to create my ancient burial mounds in the FRONT YARD (neener, neener, City of Sunnyvale) and transplant 21 tomatoes and two sugar pie pumpkins babies, and directly sow some pimiento and melon seeds. The boys played with water guns and ate popsicles.

I reek of a rare perfume of compost, horse manure and sweat, and I'm bone weary and hungry.

Therapy doesn't get much better than this. This is it for me, spend all day doing something dramatically laborious for future yield. The only thing that cranks my wheel better than this is baking bread and painting. With bread you get to eat manna from heaven within a few hours, and paint is IMMEDIATE GRATIFICATION. Yeah, just call me when you want to paint your house. I'm not joking. You just have to feed and water me.

[Note to self: Eat dinner. Bathe. Bury clothes.]

Monday, June 22, 2009

Tape Hair

As I was concentrating on writing a document this afternoon, my youngest ran into my studio with a "Ta Da!", backed up by his Big Brother. His head and face were covered with magic transparent tape, in a helmet shape, reminiscent of the Viking helmets we studied last year.

Nonplussed, I said, "That wasn't a good idea. It's going to hurt coming off. At least you didn't use duct tape - it takes skin off."

They went into the kitchen and Big Brother found a pair of scissors. I turned around to see my little Sampson bending over for his sacrificial haircut, the long brown tresses he has been nurturing for the past year, even through many accusations of being Ben's sister. "If you need any help, let me know", I said.

Tanner appeared minutes later with his new terraced haircut. It happens to all of us, I thought to myself. Our mettle is tested only by how gracefully we endure the outgrowth phase.

And then I realized that I had lived through the burnishing of motherhood. I have lived with an adult male with ADD and raised two boys. You can't scare me.