Or Deadhead Your Kids.
Just pick one and commit.
Kids are out of school. At our house that means that I attempt to include them in the household chores. Now, I could go on and on about the various angles I have taken over the years on this subject. But I can tell you this:
None of them are fool proof.
Not punishment, not reward. Not the very real threat of death.
The last couple years I have settled on a list. I write down about 4 or 5 things that need doing, that won’t require an hour of my time explaining, troubleshooting and overseeing. Let me tell you, that doesn’t leave much. They each get their own list which results in about 30 minutes of insane bickering. That is when an audio book and headphones comes in handy.
Anyway, I haven’t quite settled into the routine yet. I’m suffering a powerful lack of motivation. No motivation, even, to crack the whip with the kids. However I did manage, a couple days ago, to get them to go out back behind the barn to cut off the dead peonies. I armed them each with a set of pruners and a rubber tub. It took them less time than I thought it would have, and they dumped the trimmings into the compost pile. Of course, they were supposed to put the buckets away and I found one blown into the weeds and the other on top of my baby bush bean plants, but all in all, I was pretty happy.
That was two days ago.
Today, I went out back to deal with chickens and saw this.
Aside from the Weber, which has no business being there (same goes for the OxiClean bucket), the view made me gasp. My peonies! What happened?!
I asked the kids to “dead head” the peonies. Clip the dead flowers off. Make sure they weren’t drooping over the wall…
What in tarnation?[Aside: my distinct Western Twang is on account of the book I am reading. I’m a “Method reader” — taking on the language and characteristics of my protagonists. Therefore today, I am Sarah Agnes Prine of Sarah’s Quilt. If you are new to this site, don’t worry, I’m almost done with the book. Then I’ll go back to my Minnesota accent.]
It was a bad year for peonies through and through.
It was a really bad year for my peonies.