False Oasis

I did a book review not so long ago about a woman with 5 boys! (Still shocking to me all these months later)… anyway, the point is that in the very beginning of the book, in fact it was the introduction of the book, the woman talks about her garden. More to the point she talks about her backyard that once was a garden. She talks about the holes, the dirt, the toys scattered from one corner of the ‘garden’ to the other. I read it and giggled, part of me understanding, the other part simply taking joy in the fact that I am not alone.

This past weekend I have been a slave to my garden, thursday I spent the entire day weeding, back breaking work I assure you! I pulled everything I could see, leaving a beautiful garden ready for new plants and some tender loving care for the older ones. I made the trek to Home Depot garden centre with both boys (one hungry and the other who was more than ready for his nap). We got in the cart, ‘drove’ the cart through the rows of plants, the warm sun our our shoulders, the sweet smell of plants and earth surrounding us, water trickling from the freshly watered hanging pots. The boys were in awe of the flowers for all of two minutes. It was shortly after I picked out the first of many new plants that they got bored, and began to use the new spade and rake as weapons of battle, pretending I suppose that they were in the jungle engaged in mortal combat. By the time I was ready to check out the sales clerk, who had watched my struggle, and flinched a few times when the offending spade got smacked on the head of a brother, kindly asked if I would need help getting things to the car. I of course agreed to any and all assistance and once the boys were safely strapped in the car I sat in the drivers seat and rested my head on the wheel. I have worked many jobs in my life, and none have caused this much embarrassment or anxiety or stress… that says a lot to someone who managed a retail store for a number of years!

The drive home was uneventful, nap time went smoothly, planting the new plants went smoothly. This of course was an act of God and not to be repeated in my near future but I will take what I can get and be thankful for it. I had created a wonderful space for Tim and I and I have given the boys a place for thier little mini sized pool, a spot in the garden for them to play in the dirt and they had ample trucks and digging tools to play with. On Thursday night, though sore and tired I felt that I had accomplished something! It looked good!

Friday, Tim and I bought new lawn chairs to enjoy our newly cleaned up and de-weeded garden. That night we had a frozen margarita and lay back to enjoy the warm spring night.

Saturday I tackled the front garden with much the same success… and then it went horribly wrong…

As I was finishing the front I went to the back yard to get the hose to water my new plants. I opened the gate and to my horror I found both boys, both completely covered from head to little foot in dirt (with the help of the other brother of course). My patio stones were black with soil, and my potted annuals had lost their homes and were lying as casualties of war on the hot stone. The plastic trays that they were bought in, were ‘hats’ for the iris’s, the trucks were driving through my new plants, and both boys were grinning from ear to ear. I didn’t say anything, I couldn’t. What do you say? My mother used to tell my sister and I that if we couldn’t say anything nice then we shouldn’t say anything at all… so I walked into the house and looked at Tim.

‘Do you know what your son’s have done?’ I asked. It was enough. He handled it sufficiently. Sunday, dirt again was flying, though my flowers (re-planted in their new homes) seemed to fair the battle of the day. Last night as I sat on my new lawn chair, frozen drink at my side, and stared out at what had been my oasis, I saw dirt. EVERYWHERE. Toys, from one corner of the ‘garden’ to the other. I saw spotty grass from where either the boys or the dog were digging, and I sighed. The woman from that book… she was right. My hopes of a beautiful, well kept, garden are dashed until the boys are teenagers.

I love boys, I wouldn’t trade them. Do I miss the chance to buy a sweet little dress when I see it? Do I wish it was sweet little girls playing with dolls and whispering secrets in the night instead of boys using anything available as weapons, driving trucks into the dog, jumping on each other, hitting each other and finding farts the funniest things in the world… šŸ™‚ Not a chance. They are boys and every day is a learning curve for me, I do my best to bring beauty to our home, any estrogen is welcome here, but at the end of the day, when it’s all said and done, there are things that having boys means I won’t have, and for the moment it means a garden with more dirt than flowers, more holes than grass, more trucks than beauty. It also means a quiet house. Perhaps the key is to create my oasis in here? šŸ™‚

Happy Long weekend everyone!



Published by lauriehaughton

Author & Photographer

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