Well, the natural beauty that was my back yard is gone, but at least I can walk through it now. It was a good day, but I'm tired, so here's a few things I learned:
1. When Dad says "we'll work about an hour," RUN. It was 6 hours! At some point during hour five I called Mom and said, "He won't stop!" She said, "Well, apparently he's not finished yet." I had a REALLY different idea of "finished."
2. When you keep your grass below 4-5 feet, you can re-connect with your neighbors. In this case, it was a good thing. My friend Devon, a 5- or 6-year-old boy who lives behind me hollered hello and we had a great chat (and I got to rest). His dad will let him talk to me now (long story), so we had a fun, happy reunion and I gave him some toys from $ Tree I had left over from the year. "You're the best!" he said. Made my day - I needed a kid fix.
3. When the weed-eater starts smoking, you get to quit using it - yes!
4. Rakes work best when you use them right-side-up/down.
5. I was not imagining things about those scary tarantula/Little Shop of Horrors weeds. When Dad saw them, he said "Whoa." He chopped them all down, but they still look gross and scary.
At one point in the day Dad was weedeating (he hadn't smoked his out yet) and I was coming behind him to rake the grass he'd cut away so he could see what he'd cut and what not. We got into a rhythm, one that we've had since I was a little girl helping him with things, where I can anticipate his needs and we move together without speaking, in unity. We went back and forth, back and forth, like a dance, staying out of each other's way, watching out for the cord. I realized that this is a type of "conversation" I enjoy so much having with him, and I gave thanks for our being able to relate, and love, in that way.