Thursday, March 6, 2008

Natural Areas Before, During and After

This past Tuesday night, a man in our church had our two oldest children (James--king of the mountain here and Elisabeth to his left in the picture in the tan jumper) working at his store along with several other teens, taking all the stock off, removing and replacing all the shelves and restocking. They worked after the store was closed and got home quite late (1:30 AM, I think).

Last night at church he and his wife approached me and were like chickens on a June bug going on and on and on and on about what hard, responsible workers James and Elisabeth were for them. I thought it was nice of them to say that, but I guess I need to get out more and realize that not everyone has children who are so responsible and hard-working. My eyes are tearing up a bit here because I'm so guilty of always expecting MORE.

I got everyone to pose for a quick picture above. Luke was working construction elsewhere and Rachel was watching Emma (3) in the house. Moments after the picture was snapped, this was the scene...

James and Emily filled empty wheat buckets (I think they are 5-gallon buckets) with mulch, Elisabeth carried it and dumped it. Susanna, Benjamin, and I raked it out evenly and around existing plants if necessary. Isaac did a little bit of everything from pulling weeds, carrying buckets, fetching drinking water, checking on Rachel & Emma, etc. Elisabeth had a neat and efficient technique for dumping the buckets. Picture below. She was such a non-tiring worker. Those buckets were heavy. I was carrying them for a while, but she just wouldn't let me continue doing it. My right elbow has been aching to the point where it wakes me up at night occasionally and I'm crying because it hurts so bad. I haven't injured it, so I suspect it's a form of arthritis. Anywho...

This is a before shot of one of the natural areas:

This was the same area after. Doesn't the grass in the front yard even look greener? I think it does. Notice how much farther the shadows are to the right? It took us a while.

Here's an action shot of Elisabeth's dumping technique (do not try this at home)...

I told her it looked like a move out of an exercise routine! She'd swing the bucket in her right hand across her body to her left, then pick up her right knee and catch it on the momentum back to dump to the right, then reverse and do the left, never having to set a bucket down.

She and Emily had a great surprise a little while after we were finished. The aforementioned employer called and asked if they could work in his store for a few hours here and there (maybe as much as 16 hours a week) when he got a truck in that needed unloading and stocking shelves. He wanted our oldest 2 boys, too, but they both already have jobs with as many hours as they can handle along with their schoolwork and home chores. The owner and his wife are Christians that attend our church. They will drive the girls home when their work is finished. That is an answer to prayer for me about my girls.

I'm just so proud (in a non-prideful way, LOL) of the young adults that they are becoming. Sure, they have their faults (must be their father's DNA), but all in all, great young people to be around.

When we were nearly finished with the job, they sent me off to pick up pizza for lunch. Ahhh...I love it when a plan comes together.

~Happy Mama Joan


Sherry said...

Very nice post. Count your blessings many of us Moms out here have good kids who are troubled with addictions!

Libby said...

There really is nothing like the joy of watching your children grow into adults and make their way in the world *s*

Marcie said...

I could use some good kids like that around here! Good workers are hard to find!

Kairle said...

That's a good looking work crew you've got there, Joan. I can see why they bring you such joy!

Your Plan B quilt is turning out great!