Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Bragging Alert!

I've been on a mission for the past week: To cut back the, by now, ridiculously high weeds and grass on the southwest side of the house. When Rachael was here, she did most of the front yard and a section by the road before the lawnmower ran out of juice. I don't know what I would have done without her help. My husband will be here this weekend and I hope he can do some weed whacking at the back of the house while he is here. He has no idea of what I have accomplished this week, but I'll tell him before he comes up. It was one of those things where I thought he wouldn't want me to do anything for fear I would hurt my shoulder or ruin the healing process. Or he would worry.
Last week, I saw a reminder in the local paper:
This said that on June 9, the county fire department would begin their checks of rural properties for compliance with fire safety standards. It also said that altitudes above 4,000 feet were not critical on June 9, so they would start checking at the lower elevations. (We are at 4,141 feet per Google Earth)
(California fire safety standards require that rural lots are mowed to stubble within 30 feet of a home and that fuel matter is reduced for the next 70 feet. Tree limbs should be cut to four to six feet from the ground.)
Looking at my yard on June 9, this is a small portion of what I saw. The grass definitely had started to turn yellow.
No stubble here. With no help in sight, I decided to charge up my electric lawnmower and see what I could do.
This good old Craftsman and I worked for about half an hour most mornings this past week, cutting back the tall weeds, something I had thought I perhaps couldn't/shouldn't do with my broken shoulder. But I love to mow and had been itching to get out there. So I thought I would try…doing a little and resting a lot. I used my right arm and my stomach to push and it went OK.
By June 15, I had cleared 30 feet and more, maybe 50 feet of the very tall weeds on the southwest side of the house and mowed the shorter grass in the front yard that Rachael mowed when she was up here.
I took these pictures in the evening because the shadows were so strong in the morning. Looking at all that I did, made me feel both satisfied and proud…hence the bragging alert of the post title. Yeah! I did all that, kind of thing! It hasn't hurt me physically and it certainly has given me peace of mind. I'm not afraid of anything here, except fires. (And, of course, my new fear of tripping over dogs.)
This area of the front yard still needs to be mowed. Then it's on to the back, where, thankfully, the grass and weeds are not as bad and thick as these.


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