Friday, May 6, 2011

“What makes your heart beat a little faster?”

“What makes your heart beat a little faster?”

Darrel Hammon

Cheerios asks on the back of its cereal: “What makes your heart beat a little faster?” And then Cheerios goes on to write “Love your heart so you can.”

So what makes my heart beat a little faster? Probably Joanne, but there is not sufficient space here to expound for my love for her.

Secondarily, then, what makes my heart beat a little faster is working in my yard and in my garden.

Yesterday, I spent a bit of time out working in the yard. After visiting Provo, Utah, last week and seeing all of the green lawns, the daffodils, the flowering trees, the tulips, the bleeding hearts, I felt a bit bleak coming back to winter-can-come-anytime-to Wyoming. I have no flowers up (except for the perennial orange lily), no flowering trees, no daffodils although a few are trying to poke their way out of the wind-swept ground, and no green lawn. In essence, I think the constant, nagging wind has caused everything to suffer from eternal molting.

So, I took it upon myself to do something about it. I got out my Toro mower, put gas in it, checked the oil, put the front wheels down a notch, and cranked the engine. After three pulls, the Toro started right up. And off we went, around and around our giant yard. Two huge bagfuls of grass clippings later, I was done—the mow lines as straight as I could get them. The lawn looked terrific, all that old brown stuff gone and a bit of green trying to wiggle its way forward. Now for the weeding and feeding.

A couple of weeks ago, I stopped by Lowe’s and purchase a big bag of Mountain States Premium Lawn Food, guaranteed to stop weeds from growing—including those pesky dandelions—and greening up the place. With my spreader, I following the spreading directions, first north and south and then east and west, strategically placing the little white pellets in the right place to add nutrients and kill any weeds thinking of taking over my lawn.

After putting the spreader away and returning the excess Mountain States Premium Lawn Food to its bag, I hooked up the hoses, both front and back, and began watering in the Mountain States Premium Lawn Food. As the water soaked in, I could almost image the new grasses wiggling with delight, shouting for joy, and instantly greening. Almost.

It took me most of the day until about 9:45 p.m. to water in the lawn food. I know—I could have turned on the sprinkling system, but I am too much of a chicken, even though it was the Cinco de Mayo yesterday. It had frozen the night before. Usually, I wait until about June 1, when most people believe the frost will not come again. Thus, I watered the old-fashioned way: I dragged hoses around. Now, I don’t mind doing it. It gave me a sense of accomplishment.

While the watering was going on, I also dug out the extraneous grasses from around my orange lilies on the west side of the yard. I knew I would be sore today, but it was worth it to see the new green plants free and clear from the grasses that seem to creep in and around the plants. As I was digging in the lilies, I extracted a few and re-planted them in the kidney in the backyard. We can see this kidney from the breakfast nook; so, it will be a nice view when those tall orange blossoms finally make their way into the Big Sky.

By 10:00 p.m., I was feeling a bit sore. I told Joanne this old body is becoming such a slacker when it comes to doing manual labor. But manual labor is the best exercise and makes the heart stronger. Plus, when I look over the freshly cut and watered lawn and the newly planted lilies, my heart flitters, feeling passion about making things grow and develop.

Yes, Cheerios, working in the yard, digging out weeds, spreading Mountain States Premium Lawn Food from Lowe’s over the newly cut grass, and planting flowers create a sense of passion and truly makes my heart beat a little faster, knowing full well within a couple of weeks, maybe longer, everything will be green, the flowers will be in bloom, and my yard will look spectacular—even in Wyoming, home to blue-ribbon wind.

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