Thursday, July 25, 2013

Men's Work

A couple weeks ago Mike and Jake tackled some things that needed doing outside.

They started with mowing the lawn.  This is the first year that Jake has really taken an active part in mowing our grass.  He does a good job, but some days are a little harder to get through without 20 water breaks than others thanks to our good 'ol fashioned push lawnmower!

They shared mowing duties that day, I believe.  (Mike wanted things to move along a little faster than Jake-speed.)  I usually edge the lawn a few times a summer, but haven't been able to do it this year.  Let me be clear: it hasn't been from lack of trying.  I've tried to get the machine going a couple times, and looked like a complete moron the last time standing outside after having mowed in ridiculously hot weather - I was DETERMINED that I was going to get the edging done.  I lost.  I could not get it started and I was tired of the idea that my neighbors were inside sipping coffee and giggling over cookies at my follies.  (To note: my neighbors are actually quite nice and would probably not snicker...)

Anyhoo - the boys took a look at things and determined that the fuel pump was not working properly.  They headed to the hardware store and then got to work.

They were both so intent on how this engine.  It was actually kind of fun to watch them interact and work together.

To test it out they filled the gas tank full and this was our conversation:

KERRY: Shouldn't you fill just a little bit to see if it works rather than fill the whole thing to empty it all if it doesn't?
MIKE: [blank stare]
JAKE:  Nope.  Go big or go home, mom.

The results?

It has been decided that we will be purchasing a new motor.

I came outside a little later to discover they were on Project #2 - tree trimming.

I saw Mike walking around.  I heard Jake but couldn't see him.  Turns out I was just looking in the wrong spot.

I'm pretty sure he was in heaven.  He informed me this was really the first tree he had ever climbed.  He was in charge of snipping out the small dead branches.

Mike headed over to the other tree and started working there.  It is now much easier to see when backing out of the driveway after he removed several low branches.  Hooray!

Mike also got started on the summer project he wanted to finish: a new gate.  Ours has been consistently getting more crooked and harder to open.  We needed easy access this summer for several reasons and Mike decided building a new gate from scratch was going to be easier than modifying the old one.

It's finished - except for "aging" or staining - whichever comes first.  My favorite part is the new lock.  We've all commented on how much easier it is to open the gate now.  It's almost fun!  (That might be too much enthusiasm over a gate.  That might be a sad commentary on my part.)

In between all this, we worked together to create this masterpiece for dinner:

These two guys are handy to have around...I think I'll keep 'em!

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