Saturday, May 23, 2009

A little help from my son

Yesterday I spent the whole morning and part of the afternoon cutting and laying five rolls of sod. I did it to fill in bare spots in my lawn where I had killed off wild violets that were spreading like crazy last fall. The job was pretty labor intensive and tedious. Make the bare spot a perfect square or rectangle, measure the spot, cut the sod to fit, lay it in the spot, trim it if necessary, stomp on it, water it, etc. And then repeat, about 20 times over. Luckily for me, I had a helper throughout the entire project: my son.

I'm not sure what motivated my son to get up early yesterday morning, but he did. Maybe it was the comment I made at the dinner table on Friday night, after I mentioned that I was going to spend much of Saturday laying sod. "Can I help you?" my son asked me. "You'll probably still be sleeping when I'm all finished," I replied. Maybe that wasn't the nicest thing I could've said, but I thought it was a pretty realistic prediction.

So yesterday morning, I got up and went to the garden center to pick up the sod. I got back around 8:30am, took the sod out of the van, and went inside the house for a minute. When I walked in the door, my son was standing in the kitchen, wide awake and dressed. It was one of those little miracles that I wish could happen every day. A little slice of normalcy in my otherwise abnormal life. And not only was my son up and dressed, he was ready to help me with the sod-laying chore.

I think the whole job took about four hours, and my son was there with me for about 95 percent of it. He helped with all of the tasks and it was nice having his assistance. Even though it wasn't exactly a fun activity, I still consider the time we spent together "quality time." It was father and son, working together to accomplish something that needed to be done for the household. And that hasn't happened a whole lot in the last few years.

I'm not sure if the rest of the weekend will see my son getting up earlier or not--right now it's 11:00am and he's still in bed--but I'll gladly take yesterday and put it in the positive column.

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