What has it got in its pocketses?

peagravelAlso known as, “Mooooom, you have crickets in your pocket.” Yes, I did have crickets in my pocket. It was my iPhone. I like to do yard work but I hate to do yard work. I don’t really know *how* to do yard work. But I have got to be channeling The Commander again, because I have been on a rampage to eradicate the Landfill yard of every blasted oak leaf I can get my hands on. And acorns? We must have 50 gazillion acorns on our lawn. Mouse even found one that had sprouted. I would not let her plant it. We do not need any more oak trees around here. (Actually, the oak trees are mostly in the woods.) Anyway, a rake can be utilized to gather acorns in more-or-less one spot but picking them up and putting them in the compost bin absolutely MUST be done by hand.

So why do I have crickets in my pocketses? Because when I am faced with a chore or whatever that I am not thrilled about doing, I figure out some way to break it up into small conquerable pieces. If I were to just go out in the yard and start raking, the whole mess would quickly become overwhelming and I would get bored and probably drift off somewhere, like facebook… Unless I manage to get into a raking zen zone. But usually that doesn’t happen. So. My strategy has been to set my iPhone timer for five minutes. When I hear the crickets, I can either stop or reset the timer and do five more minutes. And five more minutes. Etc, etc. Somehow this allows me to get into a bit of a raking zen zone. I suppose that doesn’t make much sense. It doesn’t make much sense to meeee either. Mouse thinks I am nuts… But somehow it works. And it worked extra well today because I didn’t even count how many times crickets sang in my pocket but I got a lot of picky hand-raking done and about the time that *I* finally quit (to walk to the Plum Market (again) and then put dinner together), the GG got out of his new hammock and swung into action and filled both of our compost carts to the brim with leaves.

Today was a dump day. I am always ecstatic when we somehow mutually agree to do a dump run. This dump run turned into a multiple-stop affair: 1) The annual Pi-High e-waste collection, where we dropped off an old giraffe-style iMac and some ancient disk drives, 2) Recycle Ann Arbor (aka The Dump), where we paid $9.50 to drop off some carpet remnants (yay!!!), and 3) Habitat for Humanity, where we dropped off an old microwave that our kids (and some cousins before them) used in dorm rooms. And yes, I tested it before taking it in to make sure it still worked.

In the middle of all that, we picked up the first of two loads of pea gravel, which the GG laboriously shoveled out of the Courtois Snowbilly Trailer into a wheelbarrow to dump next to the south side of the Landfill where Terrafirma dug everything up and fixed the leak in the dungeon wall last fall.

Oh, and then we met Mouse at Downtown Home and Garden and hauled some stuff back to the Landfill for her so she could work on setting up her garden in our back yard. And crickets in my pocket ensued.

Y’all know that Gollum is source of the title, roight? Who has not read The Hobbit? Radical Betty was still reading to her children when they were tweens and maybe early teens and one summer when they were staying at the Old Cabin, she was reading the Hobbit. One of the things I will remember as long as I live is sitting on the couch at night in the Old Cabin with a fire in that big old stone fireplace listening to RB read The Hobbit to her kids and me and whoever else was listening. She read with dramatic expression and she is one of the people who inspired me to read to my own children since their births more or less until they were tweens. I read to them the breakfast table before school. I read to them on the beach. And wherever… One of the few things I think I did right as a parent is reading to my kids as long as they would tolerate being read to.

2 Responses to “What has it got in its pocketses?”

  1. Margaret Says:

    I have never read the Hobbit. I’m ashamed! I think whatever system you use to work on tasks is great. You are breaking it up into manageable chunks. I need to fling stuff soon, but most of the stuff belonged to my husband, so I can’t bring myself to touch it. Not yet. And I feel like I should have one or both girls here to help me or at least approve/disapprove of what I’m getting rid of. Tricky.

  2. Jay Says:

    Reading to our children can come back to us as well. As a college age kid, Rey would read to me while we were driving places. Especially long distance drives.