Saturday, November 18, 2006

Under construction and lots of dirt

I may have mentioned in passing that our backyard is periodically under construction. Since the winter rain has started, the ground is now soft enough for digging. So, we have started our next yard project. We are going to put in a pathway and patio. The digging is preparing for the foundation, upon which we plan to put pavers. It is going to be a challenge finding enough places to put the dirt. Some dirt is going into last year's terrace project that needed just a little more. Some is going to level out some low spots in the yard. A lot will be going into the garden and orchard area (it has some very uneven spots). We may ask our neighbors if they need any extra dirt. But, we expect that we will need to take load or two to the dump.

It is both amusing and nerve-racking to watch our daughters play outside during these construction times. We have stakes with twine stretched throughout the yard outlining the project area. The girls love playing with the string. But at least they aren't tripping over it any more. So, Daddy has to retie broken strings once or twice a play session. It is also hard to keep track of what they are doing since Mommy and Daddy (while present) are both busy doing jobs during the increasingly rare, nice weekend weather. Today the kids were enjoying sitting in the ditches that Daddy has dug. Child number two although not yet two, figured out how to climb into a wheelbarrow all by herself. Child number one decided her sister's hood was a handy container for dirt. They discovered that worms are wiggly. They love to climb all over the dirt piles in our garden area. They rock climb the terrace wall to explore up there (usually a nice place to find sticks and weeds). Child number one got to help by playing with the landscaping rake to smooth out dirt in the places we wanted it. They still don't like taking turns or sharing things. I found myself saying, "there's enough dirt for everyone" and "please give your sister her worm back." The kids love playing outside. I would usually let them play outside more often, but between the rain and the construction. They only get to go out there on the weekends when both parents are available. They got a good two hours of outdoor play today while Mommy raked leaves and Daddy dug and moved dirt. Our green waste barrel is now full and the ditch for the pathway is about one third completed. So it was a good day for everyone. We just had to strip the kids clothes off as we brought them in. I did remember to check child number two's hood... a handful of dirt, some dead grass, and a live worm.

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