Saturday of Spring Project Management

If you missed the Friday lead up to today – here’s the link.

Saturday –

Backstory – In the past 3 years, I’ve masterminded grand Garden plans – without doing much ‘project management’ style activities that allow me to reap full benefits of the time volunteered by kind-hearted souls who are moved to help accomplish said master plan because hard labor, to their mind, is less painful than watching me take 20 minutes to haul myself up, navigate the 10 feet to the wine box/water source, and travel back to nestle  into the comfy corner of my couch….

The man child, who is working his way through the madness also known as the last 2 months of public education, was informed, on Tuesday, that I ould need his help today.

While I want/need/desire the help, I also get how little free time he has – so did a project plan to allow for some ‘me waking up/gaming time’

Which is the teen version of the adult game,

“Are you talking to me before I’ve had my first cup of coffee?

I, ready to go before he, called out before walking out the door:

“When you’re ready, your gloves are on the washer – bring out the shovel and rake, which are propped by the door”

He came out with gloves about 30 minutes later – Quickly turned around and went back to get the tools – and gracefully showed up to do what Mama just can’t even grasp being able to mess with today -heavy, heavy dirt – 🙂  Heavier today than the tires were yesterday…

Reality is fluid and changes from moment to moment, depending on where you’re at –

Project Management, success #1

  • I explained why the dirt had to be distributed in a certain way –
  • I explained erosion, mulching needs, efficient irrigation runs, frost pockets, etc….

(Seriously, quit feeling bad for him – I gave the spiel in less than 3 minutes (I practiced my 3 minute Toastmaster speech last night) and told him, here’s the overview and why this crap

(it is crap – cattle crap from 4 years ago mixed with dirt)

has to be shaped/smoothed out like I’m asking….)

I closed my little rehearsed speech with

“Have fun, take breaks and let me know if you need something.”

Gawd, I may sound like a slave-driver, but I was really proud of myself for being so Project Manager prepared –

Quite frankly, I think he’s really, really glad the two year ‘rammed earth tire’ project is nearing it’s end –

For many reasons, including my ever-changing of master-blueprint-in-my-own-noggin,  which changed as I experimented and learned, which was modified so we could make way for kind offers of tractor/skidster help when it was available for barter, all this means we have lugged tires from one place to another over the last two years as I navigated the changing plan and schedule – if things are planted and there are no more tires to move, he will, most likely, be very happy – 

He’s also highly motivated in achieving the dream of less areas to mow and a future of small, 4’x4′ project areas that Mama can do on her own, or with very little help, which becomes more of a reality as we go forth…

Communicating what’s needed for individual dreams to be fulfilled is really the first job of a Project Manager – says I…

Which means, can I communicate eloquently, to him,

“We do this AND this is what your future looks like – we DON’T and woe to your sad, hard labor, game-sucking future…”

Fortunately, man-child is intelligent enough to do the logic progression without me spelling it out – –


…showed up about an hour later –

First order of business?

“Not sure how you’re feeling today or what you’d prefer to work on, but here’s the list of what I’d like to get done over the next few days – pick what you want/like/feel like doing”

Recited the list, left her to do what she wished and  had a light, easy to empty weed bucket, hand tools and light mechanical yard equipment out, batteries fully charged and ready to go -just waiting for her to pick which favorite toy she wished to play with –

How did it go?

Frickin’ Fantabulous!!!

(Sorry – Fantabulous by itself, just wasn’t good enough, to express the joy of today…)

  • Further purple water-sucking-hog weeds have been pulled out by their roots, instead of just mowed down with the hope we get to root-and-all removal later – –
  • My road side areas are neatly weeded/mowed – so not as offending to the eye of the passerby –
  • Pine needles and leaves from last fall that hadn’t composted in place have been moved to an experimental compost pile – found a beer/herb recipe that is reported to speed up composting – want to try it out – c’mon! It has beer in it!
  • Southside beds have been deep watered, weeded, aerated with a pitchfork (I simply must earn enough money this year to invest in a  3′ broadfork!) and are ready for the 25 wild roses arriving next Friday with the front of the bed sections ready for a bevy of quick growing cool-season crops to go forth and prosper until the time comes for them to  make way for the tomatoes and peppers in June –
  • The northwest perimeter was carefully and beautifully shaped by the man-child – a few times he asked me for feedback if it was going as it should and I’d survey and marvel over, applaud and praise, by an attempted manly chuck on the arm, (I’m not a man, but sometimes I try out the persona, just for kicks…) at how much dirt could be shoved and shaped by a 6 foot, 200 lb, 16 year old and again thanked the gods for the gift of such awesome offspring – area now only needs deep watering and hole digging to be ready for the 25 chokecherries arriving next Friday – –
  • My helpers were free to retire to the house – grab a slice of pizza and cold drink whenever they chose to take a break – and did so –
  • I rotated between raking, moving the watering hose (don’t want to set-up irrigation drip lines till after freezing nights pass), aerating and weeding to baby my poor stamina/sore winter muscles and when I just really needed a break, would retire to house to rest in front of my computer, while perusing my garden database as to companion planting, researching pea gravel costs and learning about acid/shade loving plants – (seriously, something must be done under that big pine tree in regards to permaculture – tired of mowing that area – 🙂

We all worked nearly 5 hours – rested, showered and got ready to head out to take the man-child to visit his dad for the weekend – –

As I returned home, my heart sighed in gratitude at all the work accomplished today –

My Prayer of Gratitude Tonight

“Thank you for the help – thank you for the lessons learned and thank you so very much in teaching me how to prepare better and get more done in less time – “

Universe Answer

“You’re welcome – thank goodness you are finally using what you learned 10 years ago in the corporate world on your garden plans – we really were wondering what other nudgings to send you –

There ya go – the story – tomorrow – I promise –  More Recent Pictures of the continually morphing plan  –

And, soon, the story of Thumper, his Friends & yellow vs. purple tulips… with pics 🙂

And as a preview – The NorthEast corner needs some tweaking to get ready for the 25 Golden Currant and 25 Sand Cherries, also arriving this next Friday –

(100 plants arriving all at once – I truly need my head checked – )

It took me the equivalent of 6 regular sized glasses of wine (mixed with water) to numb the pain and write these last two missives – tomorrow – if I can help it – you’re getting pictures – with short captions –

Sorry if you had to drain a 5 litre box of wine to make it through the whole story – –

Sans pictures – –

And now – NOW – I’m pain-free enough to go to bed – rest and prepare for tomorrow –



3 thoughts on “Saturday of Spring Project Management”

    1. I’ve thought for YEARS kids do not get enough ‘me’ time – even when my own kiddos were younger, I watched my co-workers herd their kids from pillar to post for this lesson, or this advanced class, or this sport, etc., etc. I’ve witnessed some kids whose daily schedule starts around 5:30 and is jam-packed until 10pm or later, between school, activities, chores, homework, etc. I’ve long protected my kids, (especially during the growth-spurt/changing sleep patterns during the teen years) rights to sleep in on the weekends – have a lazy nap day, etc., because so much of their week is filled to the brim with the requests/demands/scheduling of other people – 🙂
      However, I didn’t always provide that ‘wake-up’ time once I gave the kiddos notice that a day coming up is one where I really need some of the concerted time – so was proud of myself when I planned for that extra piece! 🙂


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s