Monday, September 5, 2022

My Summer Vacation

What I Did On My Summer Vacation

Today is Labor Day and, growing up, that signaled the end of summer and the start of the school year. Isn't it tradition that, at least in elementary school, you write about what you did over the summer?

Well this is what I did...

Despite soooo many days of triple digit heat, and caring for mom, and keeping up with my day job, I spent quite a few hours cleaning up the yard. In part, to keep sane, to be honest. Especially as the days passed and mom required more care and attention which required me to be in her room...

I worked mostly while I was out with the little dogs anyway, which was 4-6 times a day in the beginning to ensure they didn't leave deposits on my flooring. Anywho...

First, I picked the pods off the sticker burrs to save all dog paws and my own feet from being wounded by these ugly suckers.

(Technically, they are sandbur seed pods, but we call them Sticker Burrs--and anyone who's experienced them will know exactly what you're talking about, lol.)

But as summer and the heat marched on, I started to just pull the whole plant from the ground. May as well, right? Considering how little grass is in the yard, they weren't hard to find or pull. I think I've mostly gotten them eradicated, although every now and again I find a small straggler or two. But they don't last longer than a blink.

Once the sticker burrs were done, I moved on to some sort of spider-like ground cover weed. Those, too, have been fairly easy to tug from the very dry earth that makes up most of my yard these days. There are also a lot of other random not-grass things growing (or already dead) that I've just plucked. Except the kudzu which grows as vines. Not sure how I'm going to get that out of the yard.

Spider-y plant on the left, kudzu on the right...image courtesy of me.

Then I got a wild hair to rake. Not only were there some leaves already, but our lawn guy is really just a lawn mower--so all the detritus from mowing gets left behind and what doesn't turn to natural mulch just sits, so when I've taken the dogs out I've also taken to wielding the rake.

As I'm out there letting the mind wander, it turns to "fixing up" the yard and what that might look like. I know it'll take money, which I don't have a lot of right now, but some ideas include:

  • privacy fence
  • a deck around the master bedroom (with a French door from said bedroom)
  • non-grass landscaping, which could include:
    • gravel (bye-bye kudzu)
    • actual ground cover
    • hedges / trees
    • pond / water feature
    • mulch
    • any combo of the above

I do have a small section of grass I want to keep and nurture, but we live on a decent size piece of property and I don't want to have to water that much grass in future summers (or install a sprinkler system). Convincing DH to do any of these other than the privacy fence is going to be a challenge. We'll see how it goes.

How's your summer going?

Have a great week.

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